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Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category


   Sep 24

An Ounce of Prevention

A couple of weeks ago I suggested waiting until the first killing frost before digging up the tender bulbs. At the time I did not anticipate that the frost would be accompanied by six inches of snow. Fortunately the soil has remained warm despite the freezing night temperatures so the tubers and bulbs should all [...]

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   Aug 27

Spring Classes and Lectures

February 23: Got faked out by the weather forecasters and cancelled the classes this weekend, they are re-scheduled for the next two Sunday mornings. February 10: Classes begin next Sunday. Spring is only four weeks away. I will be turning beds in March. I provide lectures and classes in the Greater Boston area. If you [...]

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   Jul 10

The Independent Gardener

Back to Our Roots Washington, Adams, Jefferson and Madison were Founding Fathers and our first four presidents; what else did they have in common? They were land owners and farmers. Now Adams only worked 400 acres inQuincy, whereas the other three had a comma in their number, but he was a farmer none the less. [...]

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   Jul 10

Recipes

Dark Rye Bread – I read an article about all the foods that are good for you; nuts, chocolate, coffee; and I remembered this recipe. Ingredients 2 tablespoons dry yeast 1 tablespoon sugar 3 tablespoons molasses 3 tablespoons melted butter 1 egg 1 cup warm milk (about 110o F) 2 teaspoons salt 1 cup ground [...]

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   May 25

Pest Management

Pest Prevention and Control (June 2012) - If you were to make a list of the garden pests starting with the worst offenders it would look like this: 1. You, 2. Children, 3 Pets, 4. Wild animals, 5. Insects, and 6.Diseases You – A little surprised to be on the top of the list, well don’t [...]

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   Apr 23

Weed Me a Riddle

The definition of a weed is a plant growing where you don’t want it to grow. The operative word here is plant. It can be an iris, tulip, marigold, squash or tomato; if it is growing where you don’t want it, it is a weed. With respect to gardening, some people are convinced that if [...]

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   Apr 23

Lawn Care Made Easy

August 18: Lawns, lawns, lawns; why do I get so many questions about lawns? A pox on the house of the Englishman who first brought grass seed here; and the Long Island aristocrats who made it fashionable to have a lawn. If we took the money we spend every year on lawn care products and [...]

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   Mar 30

Outdoor Activities

March 19: Mother Nature can be soo crule. Ten-inches of snow and it is still falling. So much for sowing peas this weekend. March 13: As predicted, the vegetable beds are now clear of snow and heating up in the sun. If it dries enough by this weekend I will be planting peas and lettuce [...]

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   Mar 23

The Tool Bag

An Ounce of Prevention Within all living organisms there is a molecule, adenosine triphosphate (ATP). It is responsible for delivering energy released during respiration to wherever it is needed in a plant or body. In an oxygen rich (aerobic) environment this energy is distributed to allow plants, and us, to go about our normal daily [...]

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   Mar 14

Opening Day

My gardening season officially starts on March 24th this year. That was the day I will sow the peas. Sugar Snap, Mr. Big, Knight andLincoln; three 12-foot rows on a raised bed. Two hours of quiet time turning soil and counting worms. People can argue that the season begins when the seed catalogs arrive in [...]

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   Mar 09

Still Cold Outside

Spring is here, the crocuses, tulips, daffodils and hyacinths have broken ground, and there is only a little white stuff left. So it must be time to go outside, take in some fresh air and start planting right? Not so fast there green jeans type person it is too early to start digging outdoors. “What [...]

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   Feb 14

Composting

February 7: Dirt and soil, soil and dirt; often used interchangeably when describing outdoor gardening activities. Adults work the soil, children to go play in the dirt; gardeners prepare the soil for planting and get dirt on our hands while doing it. Just what is it? The dictionary only slightly clarifies the difference: Dirt – [...]

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   Feb 10

Plant recommendations

Dahlias Rule: I learned a long time ago that the best way to stretch the blooming period of any perennial is to grow several varieties of the plant. Just about every perennial has been cultivated to produce dwarf, medium and tall heights in a rainbow of colors with early, mid and late season blooming periods. [...]

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   Feb 05

Home Grown Vegetables

December; The soil temperature has dropped below fifty degrees and the micro-organisms are going into hibernation. That is my cue to put the tools away and look back on the growing season for lessons learned that will make next years gardening easier and more enjoyable. Did you know that a woodchuck is nothing more than [...]

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   Jan 27

Does Fertilizer Go Bad

I received this question last spring. I have old bags of fertilizer in my shed; are they still good, can I mix them together? Yes, absolutely, don’t throw any of it away and you can mix them together. What is most confusing when trying to understand fertilizer is the word “nutrient.” “Healthy plants need lots [...]

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   Jan 27

Going Organic

I receive a lot of problem questions at this time in the season from people who have decided to garden organically. They subscribed to the magazines, did all of the reading, surfed the web but; their plants aren’t as big as they used to be, there aren’t as many flowers or fruit on the plants, [...]

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   Jan 23

The Three Sisters

This is the time of year when there is a lot of traffic on the gardening blogs from people who have heard good things about Three Sisters Gardening. They want to try it, even though they are not sure of what it is exactly, and how to do it. Essentially, the Three Sisters Garden is [...]

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   Jan 13

Heirloom Seeds

New Catalogs, Part 2: In January, the crop harvested is gardening catalogs. The agriculture industry, like so many other industries, has experienced its share of mergers and acquisitions. I am aware of three companies that each acquired a half dozen or more operations and still produce catalogs under their original names. So, ordering from one [...]

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   Jan 11

Sunroom Activities

February 27: Sowed some cool weather vegetables in flats. Lettuce seedlings will be transplanted by the end of March (I hope.) February 15: My recommendation to anyone who wants to start a garden is to make a list of things you want to grow, design your ideal planting bed size, and then cut everything in [...]

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   Jan 06

Grow Light Plan

March 1: How do your seedlings look when you harden them off before transplanting; tall and scrawny or short and stout? If you are like me then it is probably the former; but I am getting better. Successfully growing plants from seed indoors is a mixed bag because our focus is out of order. Sunlight, [...]

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