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  • The Wildlife Nursery July 22, 2014
      Gardening often provides the closest encounters we ever have with wild creatures.  It is a solace and a distraction in bad times, and a shared joy in good ones.  ~Ursula Buchan     When you establish a wildlife garden, you need to be aware that at some point in the spring, summer or fall you will […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see all t […]
    Donna Donabella
  • The Good in Grapevines July 18, 2014
    I am sometimes dismayed by the rapid growth of my Muscadine grapevines (Vitis rotundifolia).  Then I spot a bird picking through them and I relax and am glad that I procrastinated on cutting back. Heck, this southeastern native vine can be cut back at any time. This past week I watched the cardinals dancing in […] We love hearing from you! Please click here […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • A Monarch Waystation in a Mall’s Landscaping July 17, 2014
    At the Healthy Living Market, which occupies the old JC Penny’s space in the Wilton Mall of Saratoga Springs, NY, there is a new Monarch Waystation site. I had the privilege of doing a landscape renovation to the surrounding island beds and sidewalk gardens this spring. We included many native perennials, and cumulatively the site […] We love hearing from yo […]
    Jesse Elwert
  • Smooth Sumac July 15, 2014
      Just a couple weeks ago, some of the bushes along my woodland edges were abuzz with pollinator activity. The flowers of Smooth Sumac, Rhus glabra, were the magnet.   Butterflies, including this Red-banded Hairstreak, Calycopis cecrops, were part of the crowd.   Honey Bees, gathering nectar, to help some bee keeper with his honey supply were also attracted. […]
    Brenda Clements Jones
  • Sweet as honeyvine July 14, 2014
    This “weed” is a host plant Honeyvine milkweed (Cynanchum laeve) is a vigorous, perennial trailing vine that is native to our eastern and central states.  Some people consider it to be a nuisance “weed”, but I call it Monarch caterpillar food. Hardy hearts I like the honeyvine’s heart-shaped leaves and the fact that I never […] We love hearing from you! Plea […]
    Judy Burris
  • Yellow and Blue make Beauty in the Garden July 11, 2014
    When I see the bright yellow flowers of the Partridge Pea (Chamaecrista* fasciculata) I tend to think of Sulphur butterflies because it is a larval host for several members of the Sulphur butterfly family. The other day I was out enjoying the diversity of insect activity on the Partridge Pea plants back in my pond […] We love hearing from you! Please click h […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Tracking Down a Lonesome Dove July 11, 2014
    Boy, were husband Matt and I baffled when a friend sent us this picture of a bird nest on the ground, with chick and egg. “What is it?” he wanted to know. “Precocious young?” That was our first thought when seeing a feathered youngster next to an egg—that “precocial” youngster already had feathers when it hatched. […] We love hearing from you! Please click h […]
    Sally Roth
  • What Native Plants Will Stay Green In Summer Drought? July 10, 2014
    In Southern California, we have a problem: There’s no green stuff in the summertime.  Many of our native perennial plants die back and leave you with a garden that is, well, lacking for the color green.  Most of us have this ńeed to see green in the garden, so much so that we would go […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see all the beautiful p […]
    Kathy Vilim
  • Vital Velvet Mesquite II July 9, 2014
      In this summer month when the mesquite pods begin to ripen, I have been discussing mesquite in a number of my blogs (see list at the end of this article). The naturally sweet seed pods of the native velvet mesquite (Prosopis velutina) are a valuable source of food for numerous desert dwellers. Two-legged desert […] We love hearing from you! Please click he […]
    Jacqueline Soule

#GardenChat

Green and Easy, Down the Row I Go

Have you got a problem? Do what you can where you are with what you’ve got.

~T. Roosevelt

Every now and then a random conversation will spark an idea for a blog post.  Yesterday I mentioned that liquid kelp is a valuable and nutrient rich fertilizer for plants to a vegan friend who was searching for an alternative to animal-based fertilizers. That got me to thinking about the organic solutions I use created from other plants and used as fertilizers and preventatives. The best time to spray plants is in the cool early morning or late afternoon. Always test the spray on a few leaves first, if there’s no negative reaction, treat the entire plant. Julia, these are for you!

Fertilizers:

  • Liquid Kelp (or seaweed) is valuable in starting seeds, preventing damping off and makes a nutrient rich foliar spray for indoor and outdoor plants. The plants’ leaves and roots store the nutrients so apply only 3x a season: at the seedling stage, upon setting plants out and at the blossoming stage.
  • Compost Tea: Used like manure tea only it’s made from your own kitchen compost. To make simply put 2 c. of compost into a mesh bag, old pantyhose, sock etc. and place into 1 gallon of water. Let steep for 48 hours. For large outdoor gardens put two shovel-fulls of compost into a large container  and fill with water. Let sit 48 hours before using.

Prevention:

  • Damping off: Chamomile Tea used to treat the soil when starting seeds will prevent damping off.
  • Powdery Mildew: Horsetail tea (yes, horsetail that horrible invasive weed!) can be used effectively against powdery mildew on vegetables. A few dried leaves mixed into a gallon of water and allowed to steep for a day will make a concentrate that needs to be diluted before use. Mix 1 part tea to 5 parts water for use as a foliar spray.
  • Downey Mildew: Chive spray. Chopped chives simmered in hot water for a few minutes and strained will make an effective foliar spray for cucumbers and winter and summer squash. It also helps to repel chewing insects.
  • Black Spot: Apple cider vinegar (about 2-3 Tbsp.) mixed into a gallon of water and sprayed on roses will treat leaves affected by black spot.

There are many more. It’s worth taking a little time to read and research natural organic methods to use in the garden as preventatives and solutions to problems. It’s just as easy to mix up an herbal foliar spray as it is a harmful, synthetic concentrated one. The big difference is your health, the health of your garden and the beneficial organisms living in it. For more solutions visit the concoctions page.  Green and easy!



6 comments to Green and Easy, Down the Row I Go

  • You know, today’s the first time I’ve ever heard of using seaweed as a fertiliser, but it sounds pretty tempting to give a try considering how good it’s supposed to be for humans. Is it easy to find in stores?

  • Lisa Gustavson

    It’s an excellent fertilizer! It’s available in stores as a liquid concentrate. It may be called liquid seaweed, liquid kelp or sea kelp concentrate. All are the same thing and are used the same way; dilute with water. If you’ve not used it before you are in for a surprise! Your plants will be stronger and greener and healthier. Best of luck! :-)

  • [...] Green and Easy, Down the Row I Go « Get in the Garden [...]

  • I have to agree with Josh, I have never heard of seaweed as a fertilizer. Sounds like it can work wonders though. I will certainly take it into consideration

  • Stacy

    Excellent info! I also like the nod to Dierks Bentley. :)

  • Lisa Gustavson

    Thank you! I’m glad you found the information helpful..and my reference, LOL!

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