Spring is for planting and rewards those who wait!With some planning and know-how you can avoid disappointment from early spring cold snaps.With spring newly arrived, we as gardeners and horticulturists cannot wait to get our hands dirty! However, to achieve success and to avoid disappointment we must be patient and keep a few key things in mind before meeting shovel to soil.WeatherWe must remember to listen to the weather, and more importantly temperature, above all else.Temperature is a key deciding factor in plant success and growth. In fact, it is wise to look out for a constant minimum nighttime air temperature of 50 degrees F for at least one week before planting tender warm-season bedding plants, vegetables, and seedlings. Planting before that temperature consistency results in stressed plants, making them needlessly prone to disease and insects. Your plants will not grow, or they may be da...
Caring for Your Garden through the Winter MonthsDuring the cold winter months, it may seem like eons before you will have the chance to work in your garden again. But there are many helpful tasks you can perform during this season that will keep your garden maintained, and ensure that you have an efficient spring!1. CompostingIf you have not already tried your hand at the marvelous art of composting, winter is the ideal time to try! Many gardeners fondly refer to compost as "black gold" and for good reason. Composting results in rich, nutritious food for your garden, and it's a great way to reuse household waste and kitchen scraps that would otherwise go in the trash.However, composting also takes time, which is why winter is the ideal time to start. It will take at least three months for fresh scraps to decompose into usable compost. By the time spring rolls around, you will have compost ready to put ...
Coffee is a delicious part of everyday life around the world. Whether it is a morning cappuccino, an afternoon coffee break at work, an evening espresso date, or a decaf café au lait before bed, coffee is so deeply ingrained into civilization that it is hard to imagine a world without this precious bean. But where did coffee originate, and how did it become such a phenomenon?Most historical records point to coffee’s originating country as Ethiopia. Legend has it that about a millennium ago, a goatherd named Kaldi found his missing goats acting hyperactive after eating berries from a nearby plant. The berries turned out to be a cherry-like fruit whose seeds are now known as the famous coffee bean. Kaldi brought the berries to some monks nearby to have the abbot investigate. The abbot made the berry seeds into a drink that kept him awake all night for evening prayers. News of the energizing berry spre...
Benevolent Wildfires? With wildfires currently plaguing the western United States, one wonders if any good can come from these natural disasters. History and science show that wildfires are not only beneficial for multiple ecosystems, but are actually necessary for the survival of several species of plants and animals.There are some plants that rely on fires for seed germination and others that benefit from the nutrients of the burnt greenery and added sunlight in the aftermath of the fire. Below is a list of five different types of trees and flowers that – like the mythical phoenix – rely on fire to rise from the ashes.Eucalyptus TreesEucalyptus trees first came to California from Australia in the mid-19th century. Sealed with resin, the fruits of the eucalyptus trees are reluctant to disperse their seeds. Although fire would seem harmful to the life of eucalyptus trees, it proves to be quite the ...
moving into condos and apartments know that giving up a backyard or a garden plot is part of the deal. Yet as urban gardening catches on, condo-dwellers are finding
new ways to continue using their green thumbs.As long as you have a balcony or a patio, some
direct sunlight, and a way to provide your plants with water, everything else
is quite easy! Successful apartment container gardeners know how to take
advantage of every available inch of space.Container gardens offer unparalleled versatility
when it comes to size, color, shape and materials. They offer portability and
the opportunity to grow new and unique plants. They are relatively lightweight
and easy to plant. Many planters also come with a liner that can be removed
quickly and easily to swap in a new container arrangement or to move the liner
to an area that is easier to plant. These types of gardens also allow the opportunit...