Vegetables

Safe Organic Pest Control

There are two wonderful organic pesticides which are completely safe to use on food crops and around children, pets and wildlife.
Spinosad is a compound derived from a bacterial species originally found on sugar cane. It is an organic pesticide with uses including cat fleas as well as for agricultural food crops.
It controls a wide range [...]

Testing Leftover Seeds

Do you have some old vegetable or flower seeds laying around in a drawer or on a shelf? Do you wonder if they are still any good? There is an easy test for seeds to see if they will still germinate before it is planting time. First, check the packet to see if there is [...]

Warm and Cool Weather Vegetables

All the root, leaf, and flower bud vegetables like cool weather. With the exception of peas and fava beans (which like cool weather), all the fruiting vegetables like warm weather.
It is interesting that vegetable seeds are programmed with response to soil temperature. For example, lettuce, spinach and turnip will germinate at soil temperatures as low [...]

Starting Vegetable Seeds Inside

You will need trays or pots, potting soil, soluble or liquid fertilizer, a sprinkling can and some labels to start your seeds inside. You can start a few plants in pots, but a seed tray or “flat”, as nurserymen call them, gives room for more. All containers should have holes for drainage to keep the [...]

Mulches Reduce Weeds and Improve Plant Growth

One of the best ways to reduce weeding is to apply mulch around trees, shrubs, flowers, fruits, and vegetables. The most popular mulch material is bark. Bark is available in three different size chunks and finer sizes called bark dust. Bark can be purchased in bags but is much cheaper in bulk. If you do [...]

Choosing Fertilizers

The best time to fertilize most permanent plants is March and April. Lawns also need a late summer or fall application.  I also fertilize anytime I plant new plants. Although there are many specialized fertilizers available, I use two types for almost all my outdoor plants. I use lawn fertilizer for my lawn, trees, and shrubs, and [...]

Speed Warm Weather Vegetables

Speed Warm Weather Vegetables

Serious vegetable gardeners look for and plant early-maturing varieties so they can harvest their own fresh vegetables as soon as possible. There are some techniques and aids to speed vegetable growth which will help even more.
The most important vegetables to baby in order to speed growth are the long season ones like tomatoes, peppers, squash, [...]

Hardy and Tender Vegetables

Vegetables divide themselves into two major groups based upon their tolerance of cold temperature and preference for cool or warm weather. It is easy to remember which group vegetables fit into based upon the part which is eaten. All leaf, stem, flower bud, and root vegetables except potatoes and sweet potatoes fit into the hardy [...]

Test Left Over Seeds

Do you have some old vegetable or flower seeds laying around in a drawer or on a shelf? Do you wonder if they are still any good? There is an easy test for seeds to see if they will still germinate before it is planting time. First, check the packet to see if there is [...]

Hybrid Varieties Have More Vigor

In selecting plants and seeds, you often find the word “hybrid” as a descriptive term. Some organic gardeners shy away from hybrid varieties because they have read somewhere that they are “unnatural”. Hybridization is actually a process which occurs all the time in nature. Pollen is carried by wind or insects from one plant to [...]

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