Category Archives: Techniques
I want to make this as simple as possible for you so I am breaking plant propagation into two seasons.
Autumn is usually the most beneficial season to start working on the soil. When the gardening season starts to wind down, there are several things that can be done to improve the soil and prepare it for next spring. End-of-season soil improvement often includes adding in organic nutrients, raw organic matter, and well-rotted compost. By refreshing the soil, it should be ready for the next season’s seeds.
Gardeners have used coverings to protect plants and to extend the growing season for centuries. These coverings can be as elaborate as heated glass greenhouses, or as simple as a plastic bag supported over a single plant. Temporary shelters are known as cloches, and can be almost any size or shape. Sheltering your plantings with cloches offers protection in four different ways:
Vermicompsting is organic, non-burning, and rich in nutrients. You can use vermicomposting in any garden project or for any plant in your house to enrich the soil and ensure healthy plant growth. The following is a “HOW TO” guide to creating your own vermicomposting farm.
When you are learning how to start a garden, irrigation is another major consideration. You have options, starting with a sprinkler can, which is better for indoor or smaller gardens, or you can use a garden hose, preferably with a spray nozzle, you can use a portable lawn sprinkler, a soaker hose, a trickle or drip system, or an automatic drip system. There are a few things to consider when you’re deciding which type of watering equipment you will need.
Vegetable gardening can be one of the most rewarding experiences in life. Eating your own fresh vegetables picked straight off the plant or fresh from the ground with the real taste still intact beats store brought produce every time.
Creating a Sacred Garden isn’t difficult, but it does take some planning. Here are 10 easy ways to create that Sacred Space.
Before there were chemical and manufactured pesticides, early settlers used companion planting to keep away pests and to make their crops grow heartier. Farmers of old would plant squash, beans and corn together because they knew that these three crops were kept in balance because they gave each other nutrients.
Our Agrarian ancestors learned eons ago that successful farming depended upon the cooperation of the Gods – in particular Mother Nature. Planting and planning a successful vegetable garden depends largely on the signals Mother Nature sends us.
It’s perfectly okay to talk to your plants, no one is going to think you’re nuts. If your plants start talking back to you – well then perhaps you have some issues. Now take Britain’s Prince Charles who once stated “I happily talk to the plants and trees, and listen to them. I think it’s absolutely crucial… ” It seems the Good Prince is also listening – I wonder what his plants tell him? The prince stated in a BBC documentary. “Everything I’ve done here, it’s like almost with your children. Every tree has a meaning for me.”
Hundreds of years ago, simple huts were made with grasses and plants assembled into the thatched roofs, which grew to keep the house insulated and guarded from natural elements. Currently, this archaic concept of a roof garden has changed into the modern practice of installing and growing various kinds of plant life in many different forms on top of homes, bungalows, sheds and other adjacent buildings. From elaborate, ornamental gardens to simple, functional mats, these new structures (and the technology that makes them possible) are spreading speedily across the country.
No one disputes that the wildfires are a major risk each summer. Sprawl development around big cities and second home projects in scenic areas have pushed more homes into the “wildlife urban interface,” where uncontrolled fires ignite houses and put both residents and firefighters at risk.
For some the phrase living off the land brings back an audio memory of a song from the 1970’s; Dog Named Boo by Lobo. For others it means foraging and companionship farming. In the beginning of time all people lived off the land, hunting and gathering food. Eventually people learned how to grow crops and raise animals for food. These agricultural societies were dependent upon the land for their existence.
Here is an idea for an excellent cheap propagating table, which is at a good comfortable height for people with physical problems like arthritis. This can be put together by anyone out of cheap second-hand and or new materials, to suit yourself.
Unless you are a professional landscaper, or have plenty of experience tending to your own lawn and garden, knowing how best to care of plants can be difficult. For many individuals, gardening is a trial and error process, often ending with many dead plants. This is often due to over-watering plants. Actually, plants are more likely to be killed by watering them too much than too little. To the casual gardener, this can be a source of frustration. Here are a few simple tips and tricks for knowing when and how much to water plants.
A cold frame is an enclosed framework that allows you to grow garden crops in winter. The cold frame can be a simple three- or four-sided structure build of scrap wooden boards or concrete blocks that adjoin an existing structure. The four sided cold frame can be a free-standing structure.
I tend to be frugal when gardening and tending houseplants. I don’t buy pricey garden or potting soils, but I learned the hard way that you shouldn’t bring outside soil into your home. It is loaded with bugs, microbes and weed seeds.
“If your garden was there before you were, chances are it grew out of many others’ dreams.” ~ Ferris Cook
It’s spring which means gardening time again!
“…in the winter, far beneath the bitter snow, lies the seed that with the sun’s love, in the spring becomes the rose.” (“The Rose” by Amanda McBroom, 1977.)
One of my favorite topics is the many uses for liquid worm castings, ‘worm tea’, in the garden. This unique organic fertilizer is especially effective when used to grow roses, perhaps the most favored flowers on earth and certainly the most discussed. Some refer to them as ‘The Queen of Flowers’. They certainly are my favorite and, judging their popularity worldwide, the favorites of millions of gardeners.
Living in a condo or apartment shouldn’t prevent you from enjoying of the fresh tastes or heavenly scents of Spring and Summer. Even with the smallest of balconies, you can create a garden that suits your style – 25 floors high.
Composting is easy. You don’t need any special knowledge or equipment, and it takes only a little extra effort to collect your wastes and establish an active compost pile. Once you’ve got it going, it just about takes care of itself.
Many people think that the only way to make compost is to use a commercial bin, but nothing could be further from the truth. People in the past have built their own compost bin with much success. So if you want to give it a try, here are five easy cost-effective ways to build them.
There are signs all around us that spring will soon be here. The song birds are returning, buds are starting to appear on the trees, and the sales ads at all the garden centers and home improvement stores are filled with pictures of lush, healthy plants in pots and planters.
I have been a passionate organic gardener for over thirty-five years. My first memories are of my father’s fruit orchard in Marden, South Australia, where the deep alluvial loam grew magnificent plums, apricots, peaches and nectarines. In fact, everything we planted grew well. And I fondly recall our early morning trips to the market in the 1970s, the ute loaded up with half-cases full of ripe, juicy fruit ready to sell.
When starting a new plant from a leaf or stem cutting, the cutting will be more likely to form roots and create a new plant if a rooting hormone is used.
Like most people who grow deciduous fruit trees (apples, peaches, plums, cherries, apricots, etc.) I used to do lots of serious heavy pruning every winter. Each winter I would head back dozens of those long, tall canes that had grown the year before. On some trees, plums in particular, each year I’d often find myself cutting back a huge number of new branches, many of them well over six feet in length.