Tag: Gardens

Five tips for container gardening success

Five tips for container gardening success

Courtesy of Bonnie Plants Container gardens are an easy way to incorporate color, edibles and interest into the landscape. Container gardens allow you to easily dress up your balcony and patio, create a colorful welcome for guests and keep edibles close at hand for cooking and entertaining. They’re also […]

On Gardening: Follow a pruning strategy for evergreen shrubs

On Gardening: Follow a pruning strategy for evergreen shrubs

Daphne bloom. (Tom Karwin — Contributed) Let’s consider evergreen shrubs, which differ from deciduous shrubs by continuing in leaf year-round. This is not the same as retaining leaves all year: evergreen shrubs sometimes are described as dropping their leaves year-round, for on-going renewal. A separate group of evergreens is […]

Gardening checklist for May includes patience

Gardening checklist for May includes patience

May is the month when we really can’t wait to get our gardens started. Everywhere we go, there are temptations. Great plant sales are being advertised, and they are hard to resist. It is wise to keep in mind that the last frost date for northern Illinois is May […]

Good weather and renewed interest in shrubs helped Wyevale Nurseries to best March sales since 2012

Good weather and renewed interest in shrubs helped Wyevale Nurseries to best March sales since 2012

Wyevale Nurseries says the sales increase has been driven by demand from independent garden centres, trade customers and cash and carry. Sales and marketing director Adam Dunnett said: “It’s fantastic news. March has been a great month for us and our best March since 2012 and in fact it […]

RHS Garden Bridgewater clears city planning

RHS Garden Bridgewater clears city planning

View of the Welcome Centre. Image: Hodder and Partners The application for the 63-hectare garden will now be referred to the Secretary of State because it is being built on the green belt, on the site of a former historic garden at Worsley New Hall. An RHS spokesperson said […]

Kid crops: Getting started with family gardening

Kid crops: Getting started with family gardening

Provided Gardening is one of the most rewarding things a family can do together. Spring has finally arrived bringing with it the promise of a new season for many things — baseball, landscaping, recreation, graduations and moving on to new schools or careers. It’s also time for gardeners to […]

Seed Now, Eat Later: The Urban Dweller’s Guide to Indoor Gardening

Seed Now, Eat Later: The Urban Dweller’s Guide to Indoor Gardening


Though it may not feel like it, spring is just around the corner, and farmers are in full swing prepping their seedlings for a lush summer harvest. For home gardeners and urban dwellers—whose unseen gardens dwell on rooftops or tucked into windowsills—that means it’s time to start planting, too. […]

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You’ve been raking leaves wrong your whole life

Looking for a way to cut down all that time spent on autumn chores? Look no further.

Raking leaves in the yards is a cumbersome, tedious task, only worsened by the likelihood that a child will destroy hours of work by jumping into the pile. But did you know that you’ve probably been raking leaves wrong your whole life? Ditch the pronged gardening tool and get yourself a hearty piece of cardboard to make the job easy-peasy.

Pure genius. Now are there any tips for making snow shoveling any easier?

H/T Just DIY | Photo viawickenden/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)

Read more: http://www.dailydot.com/lol/best-way-to-rake-leaves/

No backyard, no problem: how to grow your own vegetables in an apartment

We are increasingly disconnected from the food we eat. What better way to fix that than to grow your own stash? Madeleine Somerville explains how

For the five years I spent as a youth worker, I spent my days playing pool and handing out condoms, functioning as an advocate and running a gardening program called Grow. Grow was designed to reconnect kids with the process of planting, growing and harvesting organic fruits and vegetables.

While bribing teenage boys to care about organic gardening was challenging, it also had unique rewards. I witnessed a 17-year-old kid discover how broccoli grows and watched as he idly picked snap peas right off the vine and declared with shock that they actually tasted good. These discoveries underlined for me how disconnected many of us have become from our food.

Today, the farm-to-table movement has made many of us consider the origins of what we eat at restaurants. But at home it can be difficult to stay mindful. The simplest way to take on a proactive relationship with what you eat is to grow some of it yourself. Its a trend that seems to be taking off.

In 2011, the UK reported that 5% of fruits and vegetables consumed were home-grown, up from 2.9% in 2008. As of 2014, the US, boasted 35% of households, or 42m, growing food at home or in a community garden, up 17% in five years.

The internet offers a wealth of resource guides distinct to your regions soil makeup, climate and growing season, making planting and troubleshooting a snap. So theres just not much standing in between you and your future garden.

How to grow your own vegetables in a flat, condo or studio apartment

If you live in a flat or a condo and lack the space for a garden of your own, you may still be able to access a plot of land through a community garden. Ask around to see if one exists near you.

When you do get started, veggies such as kale, peas and zucchini are easy to grow and can offer a confidence boost to novice gardeners, but the best guide for what to plant should be what you love to eat. Browse through a seed catalogue and see what makes your mouth water Ive always loved West Coast Seeds for unique heritage seed varieties, but finding a seed supplier local to you will give you your best chance of success.

The start of something special. Photograph: David Sillitoe for the Guardian

Fill the garden plot with your favourite veggies or those that tend to be more expensive to buy in grocery stores, such as cauliflower. Staggering the planting of one-time harvest veggies such as broccoli or radishes by planting their seeds in several batches a few weeks apart means they wont ripen all at once and overload your garden (or your capacity to eat them).

Planting a few varieties of squash or pumpkin means youll enjoy harvests all the way into late fall but make sure you have plenty of room for them, as their vines do like to wander.

If a ground-level garden is out of your reach, you can still tackle gardening on a much smaller scale. Growing herbs on your countertop or windowsill allows you to replace dried old pantry staples with the real thing, and growing salad greens instead of succulents means you can enjoy a fresh salad every day, without the plastic packaging or the cost.

This could be the fruits of your labor. Photograph: Igor Golovniov/Zuma Press/Corbis

Secondhand stores often have plant pots for just a few dollars; fill them with spinach, arugula, radicchio and romaine lettuce for a great salad mix you can harvest as needed. Old teacups are the perfect size to hold a handful of herb staples such as basil, cilantro, oregano, and parsley (but unless youre experienced in drilling ceramics, the cups wont have drainage, so be careful not to overwater).

Dont get suckered into buying a whole bunch of specialized gardening gear you can do this on a fairly barebones budget and with repurposed items too. As long as its not leaching anything toxic, your carrots arent going to care what they grow in, promise.

Its incredible how much you can grow on a balcony: things such as chard, tomatoes and strawberries can thrive in container gardens, depending on your growing season and the amount of light you get. You can even regrow some veggies right from the cuttings, without starting over from seed.

Finding a way to grow your own food connects you with what youre eating, and it also offers massive nutritional benefits too. Nutrient degradation occurs rapidly between when produce is picked and when it is eaten green beans, for example, lose 77% of their vitamin C after seven days. The quicker you can eat your produce after its been harvested, the better. Having a backyard or balcony full of fruits and veggies is a great reminder to do so.

But what of those who havent the time, the space or, frankly, the inclination to grow their own food? It neednt be all or nothing, a choice between a backyard garden or a sprawling supermarket.

Farmers markets offer a fantastic in-between option for those who want to close the gap between field and table without getting their hands dirty. Food in the US travels an average of 1,500 miles to get to your plate, but shopping at a farmers market allows you to buy the freshest and in-season produce, absent long-distance shipping or artificial ripening. In the UK, this site gives a great listing of local farmers markets; this site does the same via a zip code search for the US.

At the heart of it, this is about more than carrots or kale. When I speak about being disconnected, its more than kumbaya hippy nonsense. We are increasingly living at arms length from what we eat and wear, from our communities and those we love. This detachment is having a profound impact on our social, emotional and psychological health and although growing veggies in your backyard isnt a cure, its a damn good start. It closes the gap between us and the food we eat, it reminds us that food doesnt come from the supermarket shelves, cleaned, trimmed and packaged.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/apr/12/how-to-grow-your-own-vegetables-herbs-apartment-flat