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Easy to Grow Broccoli, Cauliflower & Cabbage

May 4th, 2009 by Veggie Master

Broccoli Packman Hybrid from Park Seed Co.

Growing broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage in the vegetable garden or containers is easy to do.  You can buy plants or raise them from seed.  Try growing your own if you want lots of choices when it comes to varieties.  Start the seeds indoors 4-5 weeks before you’d like to set them out.  Older transplants won’t do as well in the garden.  Cole crop seedlings (that’s the family broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage belong to) can take more cold than tender crops.  I set mine out 2-3 weeks before our expected last-frost date.  A floating row cover will protect them from excessive cold.  [Read more →]

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WonderSoil, Food-Growing Encyclopedia, StrawPots & Super Plums

April 28th, 2009 by Garden Sage

WonderSoil is by far the best soilless potting mix I have ever used.  It is a dehydrated, compressed medium that quickly expands 10 to 12 times in volume when water is added.  It is made up of a combination of coconut coir, worm castings, kelp, mycorrhizal fungi, water-holding polymers and organic micro-nutrients.  Seedlings germinate quickly and are sustained by the nutrients.  [Read more →]

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New People’s Garden on the National Mall

April 22nd, 2009 by Veggie Master

The gardening bug has really taken Washington DC by storm!  Not only is Michelle Obama growing her own food garden at the White House, but the US Department of Agriculture will showcase sustainability at the new six acre People’s Garden on the National Mall.  [Read more →]

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Garden News & Notes

April 21st, 2009 by Garden Sage

Berry Compound Reduces Aging Effects:  In a study of aged rats done by USDA researchers at the Agricultural Research Service it was found that a diet rich in the berry and grape compound pterostilbene “reversed measurable negative effects of aging on brain function and behavioral performance”. The report goes on to further state that “pterostilbene was effective in reversing cognitive decline, and that improved working memory was linked to pterostilbene levels in   [Read more →]

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Something New In Blueberries – ‘Pink Lemonade’

April 14th, 2009 by Garden Sage

Pink Lemonade blueberry

'Pink Lemonade' blueberry

Briggs Nursery, a wholesale grower from Elma, Washington, has announced a new introduction for 2009, a true first in blueberries.  The scientific name is Vaccinium ‘Pink Lemonade’.   Briggs is trying hard to get enough of these plants to the trade, but they inform me that gardeners will probably have to wait till the 2010 season before supply will be sufficient to meet demand.  [Read more →]

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Earthworms in the Garden

April 12th, 2009 by Veggie Master

Common European Earthworm

Common European Earthworm - courtesy of Wikipedia

Earthworms in the garden are one of the best indicators of soil health and vitality.  They are the original recyclers, turning garden waste, grass clippings and even sand into food for your plants.  These little wrigglers ingest their own weight daily and expel nutrient and mineral rich castings which will keep everything from carrots to roses growing strongly.  [Read more →]

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Deadly Enemy of Japanese Beetles: the Tachinid Fly

April 8th, 2009 by Veggie Master

One of the unsung predatory heroes of the garden which works diligently to keep the bad bug population down is the Tachinid fly.  Out of more than 8,200 known species, nearly 1,300 reside in North America today.   [Read more →]

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Grow Winter Squash for Storage

April 6th, 2009 by Veggie Master

Like other food gardeners, I enjoy eating sun-warmed tomatoes picked ripe off the vine and crisp greens harvested in the cool of the evening, but yesterday as I was preparing my favorite roast veggie dish, I thought about the lowly winter squash.  The name says it all,  this is not a vegetable to be enjoyed ripe from the garden, but rather dug out of storage in the dead of winter when we are longing for a taste of summer.  [Read more →]

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Neighborhood Food Growing

March 29th, 2009 by Veggie Master

Here’s a new twist on eating locally grown food.  Friends, neighbors and others in the same geographical area are banding together to grow as much of their food supply as possible.  It’s a great idea, especially now during our economic downturn.  [Read more →]

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Vegetable and Fruit Growing in Containers

March 25th, 2009 by Garden Sage

This season try growing vegetables and fruit in containers on the deck or patio.  You can have the benefits of ornamental plants and the pleasure of delicious produce.  Floranova, a creative plant breeding company located in the UK, has developed a line of food plants for containers that have been selected for their beauty and successful cropping in large pots.  The plants are compact, naturally branching and of determinate habit.   [Read more →]

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