Category Gardening

Fall Vegetable Gardening Tips

Just because the temperatures are falling and days are getting shorter doesn’t mean that you need to till under the garden and call it a season. Fall can be a delightful time to take up the hobby of vegetable gardening! While ‘hot weather’ plants such as tomatoes and peppers may be winding down for the year, there are numerous other vegetables capable of thriving in the cooler autumn months. If you are interested in maximizing the vegetable output of your garden, try out these great tips for vegetable gardening in autumn.

Growing Great Crops in the Fall

  • Salad greens, such as lettuce, arugula and spinach generally prefer the cooler temperatures of fall and spring...
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Serviceberry – an Edible Landscaping Plant for Early Summer Fruit

Here in the Northwest, the serviceberry bushes, (Amelanchier canadensis), along the Interstate are the first to show their color in the spring. And what a display they can be – they are often completely covered with a cloud of white blossoms that give way to edible fruit in the early summer.

The Serviceberry is also known as the Juneberry, shadbush, sarviceberry, and saskatoon.

The fact that these plants show up along the freeway gives you an idea of their hardiness. They can range in size from a medium-sized bush to a multi-stemmed tree that can grow up to 30 feet tall. The taste of their fruit and the display of their blossoms can also vary between varieties...

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Harvest and Store Garden Vegetables

learn how to harvest and store garden vegetables

Vegetables gathered at just the right time can be stored naturally or, in many cases, by deep freezing, for use months later in the kitchen. Nature, however, makes its own provision for over- winter storage and the survival of the species, which involves either the production of seed (peas, beans, etc.) or roots to remain in the ground to produce seed heads the following season (parsnips, carrots, etc.). Vegetables in this latter group store much better if left in the ground and lifted as required, or stored in clamps.

parsnips can be left in the ground throughout the winter

parsnips can be left in the ground throughout the winter

Root crops should never be stored in plastic bags, for they will invariably rot...

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8 Beneficial Bugs for Our Gardens

Not all the insects, worms, spiders and flies that frequent our gardens should be considered pests. Many of them are actually beneficial for the plants we’re trying to grow, because they pollinate flowers, aerate the soil and/or prey on plant-eating insects. The use of pesticides will kill off these helpful critters; on the other hand, the services they provide for us might allow us to dispense with chemicals in our gardens entirely.

Predatory insects are nature’s way of controlling other insect populations. For this reason, killing off all the bugs in our gardens indiscriminately can upset the natural balance and cause other types of pests to proliferate. We would do well, then, to identify those that are doing us a service.

What follows is a list of 8 of the most common beneficial bugs...

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Mulch Benefits: Organic And Inorganic Mulch Types

Mulching is the practice of placing a loose surface onto the surface of soil in your flower or vegetable garden in order to protect, insulate and beautify the area. This loose covering is called a mulch and it can be either of an organic or inorganic variety. Examples of mulches include compost, stone and grass clippings. Every gardener should understand the many benefits of mulching the soil in their garden. This article will discuss the benefits of mulching, how to choose the correct mulch and have a quick look at some of the different types of organic and inorganic mulches available.

Benefits of Mulch


Let us explore some benefits of mulching:

  • Prevents soil erosion – Soil erosion happens when winds or water slowly wear away the surface of soil and remove it...
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Watering of Your Organic Vegetable Garden

Ninety-five percent of the structure of the plant is composed of water. Almost all of the processes of the plant involves water, and this is why watering is one of the more important aspects of effective gardening for your vegetables’ organic garden. Together with light and carbon dioxide, water helps accelerate the necessary processes needed in effective care of your plants.

With vegetables, you cannot afford to go wrong since this will provide nourishment to both animals and humans alike. Water also acts a supplementary source aside from rainfall.

An irrigation system is necessary to provide the required amount of water in your garden. The natural sources of water, namely, precipitation and underground water systems, are not often sufficient for the plants...

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Apartment Container Gardening Can Offset Rising Food Prices

 This is a guest post submitted from a fellow Urban Homesteader:

 

 

I have never had the inclination to become a farmer, but if food costs keep going up at the current rate, I may have no other option but to start a garden on my balcony. Every week the prices for basic foods are higher than the week before. No one is saying anything, but I am sure everyone has noticed. At this current pace, our weekly groceries will equal our monthly rent payment before the end of the year. I have no clue what is driving these prices, but something is going to have to give.

The economy and jobless statistics are still too unstable. Prolonged unemployment has thrown crushing blows within our family for the last two years. We have had to downsize from renting a house to an apartment...

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What Changes Can I Make to My Garden to Be More Natural?

Gardening has changed a bit in recent years as people’s philosophy of gardening is starting to change to go back to more natural and organic methods. For those who have been gardening for a number of years, these new practices might be a bit hard to understand at first since the traditional ways of doing things is adding chemicals to the soil or plants to take care of problems and grow larger plants. Organic methods work a bit differently.

Traditional methods use chemical fertilizers to add nutrients to the soil. Organic methods use compost. This is organic matter and carbon matter mixed together. This would be things like fruit peels, vegetables, grass, hay, leaves, and other types of waste mixed together. Over time it breaks down into rich soil that doesn’t need any fertilizer at all...

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Organic Garden Guide to Controlling Pests for Your Vegetables

If there is anything that prevents your organic garden from yielding the best vegetables, it will have to be the pests that invade and surround your area. Now, if you are really serious about controlling those pests and keeping them out of your garden for good, a volume of materials is readily available for you to be equipped and knowledgeable about the various types of pests that can threaten your crop.

The very hard thing about pest control is the fact that there are so many types of pests that can invade your garden; it will really be quite a challenge to recall them in one sitting, so full immersion to your gardening activities is the only surefire way to inculcate ample knowledge on pests to watch out for.

One of the tried and tested tactics for pest control is by familiarizing yourse...

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Fragrant Winter Shrubs: Perfuming Your Garden: Slideshow

Fragrant Winter Shrubs

Although sweet floral fragrances are usually associated with spring and summer flowering plants, there are a goodly number of shrubs, bulbs and bedding plants that perfume the air all through winter.

Fragrant Winter Plants

Fragrant Winter Shrubs

Best known of all winter fragrant shrubs is probably Daphne Odora – the flowers may be pink or white – the foliage dark green or green with a silver edge. It should be planted in a semi-shaded area along with another excellent shrub, Sarrococca, which has spicy, small white blooms and glossy pointed leaves – a plant of neat growth habit. Fragrant viburnums are a mid-winter favorite – nurserymen will have a selection of varieties.

The Fragrance of lemon blossoms is most delightful in a winter garden – as is that of other citrus...

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