Category outside garden

Rotate Your Home Garden

Have you ever known a gardener that just never seems to have a successful crop of anything? Ask them what they plant and where- there’s a good chance they plant the same thing in the same place, over and over.
They’re not bad gardeners- they’re just missing a step. Suggest they begin to rotate crops from one are to the next, and with a little work, they’ll enjoy harvesting their own food.

Why Rotate Crops in a Home Garden?

Bugs get used to the same crops in the same place. You might as well set plates out when you plant the same thing in the same spot- or in the same container, for that matter.

Diseases that affect one plant will often affect plants in the same botanical family, but not in another...

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How to Save Your Own Set of Seeds

Saving seeds doesn’t have to be a frightening task and can even be absolutely easy, according to Fred Bove of the San Francisco Permaculture Guild. Instead of waiting for the last riffraff plants to flower, he instructs to look for the biggest, most colorful specimens that were among the first few plants to become ripe.

He urges to resist harvesting the first beautiful flower, vegetable or herb of any one planting, and allow full maturity.

“You want to save the best characteristics (of any plant) and pass them on,” explained Bove. Depending on the plant, you may want to select for size, flavor or how quickly it takes for the crop to reach maturity. “That way, you’re promoting the desired characteristics in the next generation of seeds.”

The next important challenging task is identifying a ...

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Organic Edible Gardening With Kids

Teach Kids to Grow Vegetables and Herbs Without Chemicals

Composting

You can start an organic garden with your child any time of year by composting. Playing in the dirt is elementally satisfying to children, so give them children’s garden tools to help you hack away at your mound, introducing oxygen and hastening the breakdown of your scraps.

If you live in an apartment, consider a small vermiculture station in the kitchen where red wiggler worms turn vegetable scraps into rich garden soil. Red worms appreciate paper bedding, so the child can shred old homework and tests to get the bin started.

Seed Starting

The smallest toddler can get in on the gardening game when you start a flat of vegetable seeds at home...

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Starting Seeds Indoors

STARTING SEEDS INDOORS

Starting your seeds indoors will lessen the amount of time you have to wait to see results in your garden, and many people prefer to grow their plants indoors first to ready them for the growing season. It can be motivational and satisfying.

If space is available near a sunny window, start seeds four to eight weeks before the plant-out date in your area (average date of last killing frost). Starting too early usually results in spindly plants due to crowding and lack of sufficient light.

Almost any container with drainage holes in the bottom will work for planting. Paper milk cartons cut in half, Styrofoam cups, tin cans, plastic trays and pots are common containers used...

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How to Grow an Edible Landscape

Do you think you just don’t have the space or time for a vegetable garden? Is the idea of vegetables in neatly spaced rows the only way you can imagine growing them? Think again.

There are vegetables that are so beautiful that they are right at home in any garden bed. Some kinds of flowers taste marvelous in a salad or served up with melted butter along with the vegetables. Grow a cucumber vine on that arbor for the delicate yellow flowers, interesting tendrils and of course cucumbers for your salad. A row of raspberry or blueberry bushes can make a lovely, and tasty hedge. A vegetable garden does not need to be hidden in the back yard. Plant these lovely edible plants in plain sight and create an edible landscape.

6 Plants for a great edible landscape

Rhubarb makes an outstanding plant fo...

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Growing Your Own Rhubarb: Growth and Cultivation

Rhubarb is commonly eaten as though it is a fruit, although in fact it is a perennial vegetable. It is simple to grow, produces a good crop, and if tended with care, can last for up to twenty years. It prefers either full sunlight, or partially shaded areas.

Varieties of rhubarb include ‘Victoria’, ‘Cawood Delight’, ‘Ruby’, ‘Champagne’, and Timperley Early’.

Planting Out Your Rhubarb

Growing Your Own RhubarbRhubarb can be planted out in sets/crowns anytime between November and early April, and can survive temperatures as low as minus fifteen degrees centigrade, as it is virtually frost resistant. The sets are usually around 10cm in diameter.

Before planting, ensure that you have a clear, well-weeded, open patch of well-drained soil, and that the soil is well fertilized...

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Guide to Landscaping for Winter Birds

We showed you how to attract birds to your garden for the summer, but now we want to share with you how to care for your winter birds.

When winter is here and the days grow short it seems like many things are dead and everything seems so lifeless. I found that adding just the right equipment to your landscaping will attract winter friend into your yard. Watching these winter friends interact with each other will give you great pleasure. I have young children in my home and one summer we decided to make our yard more attractive for winter birds. These winter birds came into our lives and made our winter months something great.

If you would want to persuade the winter birds to make their homes near you and your family then you will need to take a good look at your landscaping and see what yo...

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Possibilities With Pumpkins: The Life Cycle of a Squash Enhances the Family Circle

Picking a pumpkin is one of the joys of childhood. In autumn pumpkins are ubiquitous at grocery stores, garden centers, and farmers markets. The most fun place is the pumpkin patch where children can see the fruit as part of the life cycle of a living vine.

Within the life cycle of the seasons in a garden the pumpkin goes full circle. Seeds sown in spring produce a flowering vine throughout the summer. Fruits harvested in autumn become decorations, food for wildlife and humans, residence for rodents, and seeds for snacks and next year’s garden. Winter remnants of the plant become organic nutrients in soil supporting seeds sown in spring.

Pumpkins prompt possibilities which link generations together in the family circle...

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Fall Gardening Chores: Prepare the Organic Garden for Winter

The onset of autumn is bittersweet for many gardeners, as we say goodbye to our tender annuals and vegetables but welcome the respite from intense gardening chores. Note your successes and failures in your garden journal, and make plans for next year’s growing season.

Fall Gardening Chores

Clean Up Autumn Leaves

Organic gardeners with deciduous trees face a mixed blessing in the fall. Dead leaves are an unparalleled source of carbon in the compost pile, and gardeners should keep a ratio of four parts carbon to one part nitrogen in the compost bin. However, gathering all this free fertilizer is laborious, and it’s tempting to neglect raking chores.

Fallen leaves quickly mat together and form a suffocating blanket on the lawn...

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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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