Rss Feed
Tweeter button
Facebook button

Archives for May 14, 2017

GARDENING TIPS: Planting root crops

? Yaqona cuttings are usually planted in the morning before the sun is very hot. A plot can consist of 3-5 cuttings if one is planting normal, and more than six if one is using the lovo style.

? The best soil for yaqona is land that is being planted for the first time (virgin soil) or for the second time. Land that has been left unplanted for more than five years can also be considered.

? A plot needs to be dug with the soil to be nicely prepared. Small rocks need to be thrown away because too much heat from the sun can heat up the rocks and burn the cuttings.

? After planting, the plot needs to be covered to protect the young plants from the heat as it begins to sprout.

? Because yaqona takes 3-5 years to mature, dalo is usually planted in between plots. This will act as another source of income and also provide food.

? Tavioka is not recommended to be planted within the plot because during uprooting it can damage the root of the yaqona plant, which is the most prized part of the plant.

? Weeding is usually done once a month.

? The Marines of Dravuwalu do not rely on any man-made manure because they believe their land is still very fertile.


Article source:

Transplanting tips for getting the summer garden growing – Fairbanks Daily News

FAIRBANKS — I do two sets of transplanting, one into the greenhouse and one, a week or two later, into the garden. The unheated greenhouse has been registering more than 90 degrees during the day and about 53 degrees at night, so this weekend I will be filling it with tomatoes, bell peppers, cukes, eggplant and one guaranteed-to-mature-in-cold-climates watermelon plant.

I actually began the greenhouse transplanting 10 days ago, by starting the hardening off process. My warm garage produces good seedlings, but they are a bit wimpy. Even though the greenhouse is a protected shelter, they need toughening up before I put them around the clock into a place with longer hours of sunlight and warmer temperatures in the daytime and cooler temperatures at night.

I start by putting the seedlings on wagons that I pull outdoors, the first day for only about two hours and in the shade. It is important to shelter them from the wind, so I have clear garden umbrellas that fit over the wagons; before those I draped plastic over saw horses and shoved the wagons under the tents. Each day I increase the amount of time they spend outdoors and by the third day I don’t put them in a shaded area at all. Since these guys are all going into the greenhouse, I use plastic for the entire hardening off process, but when I do this with seedlings going into the garden, after a few days I remove the plastic so that they become accustomed to the wind. I check water needs daily because between the elements and the fact that the seedlings are still growing, the containers dry out quickly.

I do know what a pain this is. When I had a regular job, I would start mid-week after I returned home from work. Two hours on Wednesday and increasing it an hour per day meant that by Saturday I could leave them out for a full day and for 24 hours by Monday. If you can’t manage a week, at least do a weekend’s worth of hardening off.

The actual process of setting my seedlings into the soil is routine, and pretty much the same for garden or greenhouse. I start by thoroughly soaking any seedlings I am going to transplant that day because it makes it easier to pry them out of their containers.

While the plants are drinking water, I dig my holes. Some plants have extensive root systems, so need much deeper and wider holes than flowers or vegetables with shallower roots. The ideal is a hole wide enough that the roots can be gently spread out and deep enough that the plant will end up at the same soil depth it was in its seedling home, plus about an inch. If you willy-nilly thrust a plant down into a hole, you can stunt or kill off plants that need to have their growth nubs exposed. I always use the example of strawberries, because their growth crowns are so visible — see the little area of what looks like bunched up leaves? If you bury that, no strawberries.

Indeterminate tomatoes are an exception to the one-inch-deeper than they were in their original homes rule. You can cut off all the lower leaves and bury the stems up to the top leaves and roots will grow all along the buried stem. Don’t do this with determinate tomatoes because they have a set height and yield, so a massive removal of leaves and stems can reduce the harvest. Your seed packet will tell you what the growth habit is, as should the nursery tag if you buy your transplants. If all else fails, Google the variety.

Once the holes are dug, I fill them with water. To help insure that sturdy root systems develop, I throw a handful of bone meal into each hole, and then cover that with a layer of dirt and fill the hole with cold water again. Not every gardener uses bone meal but I think that it really helps, particularly with heavy eaters. I never got a decent corn or eggplant crop until I used bone meal, so I’m sticking with this step.

Only after all this preparation are my seedlings ready to move into the greenhouse or garden. I work with the seedlings one at a time because the tiniest of roots can dry out if they are exposed to the air for too long. I put the plant into its hole and gently push the soil in, pressing down to eliminate air pockets. Watering is more efficient, and saves you money, if you insure that the water goes down to the roots instead of into the walkways. You can do this by pushing down the soil enough that there is a bowl around each plant. Hand or rain watering will naturally collect into that sunken area, funneling it to the roots.

I have found that the bowls deteriorate over the season, so either you must keep making new ones or you can install season-long bowls. Over the years, I have amassed dozens of those black plastic containers that housed the honeyberry, raspberry and rose bushes I purchased from local nurseries. They are too large for my seedlings and too small to be decent container gardens, so now I recycle them to make plant bowls. I slice off and discard the bottom third of the containers and set the remaining cylinders around each of my greenhouse plants and my larger garden plants. (Meaning, I put them around my pumpkins but not around things like scallions or pak choi.) I push them a few inches into the dirt and bank dirt around the outsides to keep the plastic in place.

These bowls don’t just direct the water to the roots of the plants, they help me keep from over and under-watering. Most plants need at least a gallon of water a week, unless it is a cold or rainy summer. These bowls hold around that much water, so no guessing required. I tend to over-estimate how long I have been watering (and weeding, for that matter). This makes sure I don’t decide five minutes is really a half hour of watering.

So, I dig holes, fill with water, add bone meal, scatter more dirt to cover the bone meal, water again, set in and gently spread out the roots of each plant, back fill and pat down to make a bowl, and push in the plastic summer-long bowls. But I am not done. I add half-strength fish fertilizer to warm water and water the transplants again. Then I go back and look at each transplant to make sure the watering has not helped the soil develop sink holes; if so, I add dirt and water again. Then I go inside and complain to my husband about how tired I am.

Linden Staciokas has gardened in the Interior for more than two decades. Send gardening questions to her at

Article source:

Get to know the history behind Norfolk Botanical Garden’s Skipwith Garden – Virginian

If you are a regular visitor to Norfolk Botanical Garden, you may have noticed a relatively new addition to our Colonial Garden. This new extension is called the Skipwith Garden.

It is based on the records and plants grown by Lady Jean Skipwith of Prestwould Plantation, Va.

Who is Lady Skipwith, you might ask? She was the second wife of Sir Peyton Skipwith, who owned Prestwould Plantation. The Skipwiths were one of the most documented nonpolitical American families during and after the Revolutionary War.

Lady Skipwith’s library, in particular, was one of the largest assembled by a woman in America at the close of the 18th century. Included in her papers are detailed diaries and garden journals.

Jean Miller Skipwith was born at Elm Hill, Va., in 1747 (or 1748, as records vary), and was the youngest of three children born to Hugh and Jane Miller. The Millers returned to their native Scotland in 1760, where Jean’s older sister, Anne, met and married Sir Peyton Skipwith VII, Baronet, in 1765. Anne died in childbirth in 1779, and at some point during the next several years, Jean and Sir Peyton began a courtship that resulted in their marriage in 1788.

The Millers and Skipwiths had returned to America by that time, where Sir Peyton had purchased a large tract of land near present-day Clarksville. Here, he and Lady Skipwith built their home, which was named for Prestwould Hall, the country home of the Skipwith family in Scotland.

The Georgian-style mansion was completed around 1795 and was considered one of the largest and most complex houses in Virginia at that time. It still stands overlooking Kerr Lake, and is open to the public.

Shortly after the house was completed, Lady Skipwith began her gardens. There are numerous records of garden plans and plant lists (she did love her lists). Lady Skipwith included many native plants in her garden designs, as well as old familiar cottage flowers, plus new exotic plants from around the world. Her records included wish lists of plants she wanted to acquire as soon as she could, and a tally of all the wildflowers growing on her wildflower island.

Many of these plants are familiar flowers we may all remember from Grandmother’s garden, but many are surprises. Fancy tulips, tuberose, yellow autumn crocus, mallows, hibiscus, geraniums and star jasmine are some of the plants she most favored. Striped French marigolds were also used widely, as they were immensely popular during that time.

After Sir Peyton died in 1805, Lady Skipwith ran the plantation on her own for the next 21 years. By the time of her death in 1826, she had accumulated a huge library of books covering a wide range of subjects, including many popular novels of the day. The College of William Mary now has control of the bulk of her archives, including the garden plans. Lady Skipwith was a skilled botanist, who had a working knowledge of Latin.

She took great pride in her intelligence and extensive education, which was quite unusual for a woman during that period of history. The design of the Skipwith Garden at Norfolk Botanical Garden is based on Lady Skipwith’s plans, and from her lists we have selected all of the plants. Our hope is to honor and remember the legacy of one of this country’s great gardeners.

Article source:

Leitrim garden designer and Organic Centre announced for Bloom 2017

Leitrim based garden designer and interior architect, Leonie Cornelius and the Organic Centre in Rossinver have been announced in the line-up for Bloom 2017.

Run by Bord Bia and now in its 11th year, Bloom showcases the best of Ireland’s horticultural and food industry. This year’s event will take place in the Phoenix Park, Dublin for five days, June 1-5, over the June bank holiday weekend.

‘Everyone has a Dream’ by Leonie Cornelius at Woodie’s is a small show garden for the popular Woodie’s brand. This dreamy space, which combines old and new, aims to show how, through careful design consideration and creative thinking, we can build the garden of our dreams on a small scale. It will aim to show how simple products such as stone, copper and painted surfaces can combine to create a truly unique and personalised space, which is all about customisation and creative thinking. The garden invites us all to ‘Dream big in small spaces’.

Leonie Cornelius is a garden designer and interior architect. Her company, Blume Design, specialises in extraordinary customised garden and interior designs for companies and brands, as well as private clients. One of Ireland’s leading garden designers, Leonie has worked on the RTÉ Today Show as the regular garden design expert and is a Judge on the popular RTÉ Super Garden show. In 2016 she started working as the Woodie’s Design Ambassador and collaborates on unique design projects and ideas with the well-known brand. Leonie’s first book, Dream Gardens, is in shops now.

The Floral Nursery Pavilion will be brimming with flowers and plants from more than 30 of the very best plant nurseries in Ireland and Hans Wieland from the Organic Centre in Rossinver will be located here. The Organic Centre promotes organic growing, sustainable living and eco-tourism. It is a not for profit organisation set up in 1995, with the aim of providing public education, training and information.

Located on a 19 acre site in Rossinver, Co Leitrim and offers 100 weekend courses on organic horticulture, gardening, green crafts, alternative energy, and artisan food production. The Centre is a recognised eco-tourism destination. Facilities include demonstration gardens polytunnels, an orchard soft fruit area with heritage varieties and an eco-shop selling organic seeds, garden tools, books, and seasonal vegetables.

Article source:

Welcome to my garden at the lake

It seems right that every home with wonderful interior spaces should be surrounded by equally stunning gardens, doesn’t it? At my lake cottage, I’ve been hard at work on the inside stuff. But, unfortunately, I am an abject failure when it comes to gardening. Once, I made a feeble attempt to bring the courtyard at my Atchison, Kan., home to life, only to be told by dear friends that the plants I’d been cultivating were poison ivy. Oops!

Apparently once you have picked the right shrubs, perennials and annuals for your garden, then put them in the spots that are not too sunny or too shady for them, you have to also water them regularly. Who knew? Needless to say, my plant kill rate was embarrassingly high until my friends Gloria and Lynda nudged me aside and made my courtyard a paradise.

So when it came time to put in the garden at our lake cottage, I didn’t even pretend to know what I was doing. It was time to bring in the pros. I knew what I wanted: A garden that was lush and mature, full of the romantic, old fashioned flowers I loved in my dad’s garden as a kid.

While we didn’t raze the existing house, we did do extensive renovations, keeping only a few choice features, like the stone fireplaces in the living room and study. Even though everything else in the home was new, I wanted it to all look old, full of charm, like it had been a family cottage that had been passed down one generation to the next. That went for the garden too.

I learned the hard way that to get more mature trees, shrubs and perennials, you have to open your wallet. That hurt. A lot. But I considered it a wise investment in my home’s exterior design. As the trucks pulled up and the landscape started filling in, I was dazzled.

most of the houses on our street, our home sits down below the street level, with a backwards sloping lot that leads down to the lake. We decided to turn the small front yard into a patio, covering it in flag stones that have an aged patina and edging the space with raised gardens filled with flowers.

Our quiet neighborhood doesn’t see a lot of car traffic, but in the evenings, the lane is crowded with people out walking their dogs or strolling. Dan and I will sit out front on lovely evenings and catch up with our neighbors.

I could not tell you the names of almost any of the plants in my garden. Honestly. I found a garden design team I trusted, told them my vision, then got out of their way. But I know tulips! We planted tulips all around the house, in big showy masses. They are one of the most audaciously happy flowers I’ve ever seen, and I can’t get enough of them.

By Mary Carol Garrity

Tribune News Service


This column was adapted from Mary Carol Garrity’s blog at

This column was adapted from Mary Carol Garrity’s blog at

Article source:

Landscape architecture gets its rightful due in exhibit, book …

Landscape architecture is all too often viewed as a stepchild of architecture — a mere adornment rather than an integral part of the environment that shapes how we live.

Anyone who has been delighted by the colorful arrays of tulips popping out of the planters in the middle of Michigan Avenue — or who has sat beneath the ethereal canopy of hawthorns in the Art Institute of Chicago’s South Garden — knows how wrong that view is.

At its best, landscape architecture can create compelling places that soothe frazzled spirits and resonate with meaning.

That’s the message delivered by two new explorations of the field — a small but smart traveling show about the work of the late Dan Kiley, on view at the Chicago Architecture Foundation, 224 S. Michigan Ave., through Aug. 25 and a handsome book that sheds fresh light on projects by Chicago landscape architects Douglas Hoerr and Peter Schaudt.

How container gardens can convert your balcony or patio into an …

The container gardens of Sheila Schultz ather Denver home. These are containers with tomatoes, rhubarb, and herbs.
The container gardens of Sheila Schultz ather Denver home. These are containers with tomatoes, rhubarb, and herbs.

Container gardens yield many benefits — not the least of which are lovely, low-maintenance landscapes and fresh veggies bursting from small spaces.

“The biggest benefit is that container gardening is great for people without soil to grow in, whether they live in small spaces or have balconies, or HOAs that don’t allow changes to landscaping,” said Brien Darby, manager of urban food programs at Denver Botanic Gardens.

“It’s a luxury to have fresh greens growing, but it’s an attainable luxury,” Darby said.

Laurie Jekel, who founded The Last Detail in 1980, has designed the container gardens at Cherry Hills Country Club for the past 25 years.

“Start small. You don’t have to tackle the whole landscape. Just tackle some pots,” Jekel said. “It’s not that hard, and you can get a big bang for not so many bucks. If you grow veggies and herbs as an urban person, you get truly organic fresh produce.”

Containers add pizzazz to outdoor spaces, delivering almost-instant impact with color, texture and dimension of the pots.

“Containers add height to early-season vegetable gardens with spring kale, mustard, and chard, so it doesn’t look like a flat green landscape,” Darby said. “Lots of us use groupings of containers for the color of the pots. I like bright, primary colors with vegetables.”

Another benefit to pots: gardeners can more easily keep an eye on sensitive plants. Pots help protect delicate species that might get damaged in a landscape or by slugs. Container gardens bring interesting plants closer to eye-level. And smaller pots or those on casters can be moved indoors for protection from hail, snow, or other adverse weather.

“In pots, we do more adventurous annual displays than we could do in ground,” Darby said.

She designs containers primarily with edibles. In pots, she grows a spectrum of greens.  Darby recommends dwarf varieties of tomatoes, peppers, squashes, eggplants and other fruiting plants.

Jekel prefers growing certain plants such as lettuces and basil in containers to avoid slugs.

She said, “Slugs tend not to get in pots.”

Jekel also pots up herbs, annuals, perennials, bulbs, shrubs and even trees.  She noted that many plants come back in a pot if they’ve been watered over winter.  And Jekel’s container gardens do double duty because toward the end of a growing season, she transplants potted herbs and perennials into the landscape.

In terms of design, containers work well when matched to the architecture of the home and the gardener’s style. The marketplace offers pots in many materials: ceramic, terra cotta clay, frostproof fiberglass, ornamental concrete and zinc. Both Darby and Jekel steer clear of metal pots that can get too hot in Denver’s intense summer heat.

Jekel favors Campania International pots. “They’re expensive, but it’s a one-time investment. They stand up to the erratic temperatures of Denver. Ninety percent of my clients have them. They’re super heavy, so you can even plant trees in them,” she said.

When selecting a plant palette for containers, make sure plants have similar growing habits — especially true for pots in full sun or shade.

Jekel delights in fragrant plants in pots. “It’s so nice when the wind blows or you bump up against scented plants. We all need a lot of soothing in our times.”

When designing container gardens, think of a teepee with the tallest plants at the center and trailing plants at edges. A common container garden formula calls for combining a thriller (something dramatic), a filler (greenery to fill in the blank spots) and a spiller (a trailing plant) in each pot.

Keys to thriving container gardens:

• Go deep. “If doing veggies, you can get away with 10 to 12 inches deep for leafy greens and herbs, edible flowers, but anything that fruits — tomatoes, squash, eggplants pepper — needs 16 to 24 inches of depth,” Darby said.

• Drainage is essential. Darby is not a fan of creating false bottoms with gravel or other materials. “You run the risk of water build-up,” she said.

• Roots down. “Some plants get very root-bound and they’re strangling themselves,” she said. “We always rip off the bottom of plants from the greenhouse so its dirt and the roots are going down, not in a circle.”

• Mix it up. When growing in pots, use a container mix or potting mix: “It’s filled with a lot of organic matter. It’s light and fluffy, so there’s no soil compaction issue; and it holds water better,” Darby said.

Jekel has used Fertilome potting mix for 37 years.

Darby said, “Definitely refresh soil before planting. Even if not putting new soil in, dump out the old soil on a tarp and solarize it for a couple of days. It will be less compacted. Ideally, mix in some compost.”

• Water regularly. “Pick a time where you water pots, everyday or every other day after work or whatever, but be consistent,” Jekel said. “Plants need regularity. It’s super, super important. You train the plants; the plants don’t train you. Once a week, use something like Miracle-Gro.”

• Maintain. Container gardens don’t require much weeding, but maintain pots to keep them looking their best. Switch out cool-season annuals when they get leggy. Deadhead summer annuals to keep them flowering. Remove any yellow or brown leaves. Stay on top of harvesting vegetables.

Article source:

Landscapers, celebrate National Public Gardens Day today!

botanical gardens in huntsville alabama

The Huntsville Botanical Garden in Huntsville, Alabama, is one of the many public gardens participating.

Today is National Public Gardens Day and it serves as an opportunity for the public and the green industry to get out and appreciate the country’s many public gardens.

Established in 2008 by the American Public Gardens Association, along with their then partner Rain Bird, the day was created to drive local and national exposure to the importance of building gardens committed to community enrichment and environmental responsibility.

National Public Gardens Day is held on the Friday before Mother’s Day weekend each year and invites the community to explore their local green spaces and take advantage of the conservation education that public gardens provide.

Members of the American Public Gardens Associate use the day to promote plant conservation, water conservation and the preservation of green spaces.

Visitors to public gardens, arboretums, zoos and historic gardens today can receive various discounts, promotions, demonstrations and other great incentives.

Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, is one of the participating gardens and will be demonstrating how its horticulture staff designs and grows their displays. They will also be showing off their production greenhouses on this day.

Others like Cheekwood Estate and Garden in Nashville, Tennessee, will be offering free admission while some public gardens will offer discounts if visitors download a coupon off the American Public Gardens Association’s website for that specific garden.

While some may think that public gardens are just for the community, these locations are also treasure troves of inspiration for landscapers. Additionally, sometimes it can simply be a treat to enjoy a beautiful space that you know one of your peers in the industry helped create.

To find participating public gardens, or any public garden, check out this link to search for one within 150 miles of the set location. You can also refine your search for specific horticulture features such as sensory gardens, rose gardens and more.

Presented By:

Article source:

Outdoors notes: Urban lakes, ponds getting more fish; Ducks may nest near houses – Omaha World





Article source: