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  • Bird Population Soaring May 22, 2015
    Spring 2015 is once again proving to be a banner year for bird broods in my beautiful wildlife garden.  Bluebird brood #2 has successfully hatched and 4 healthy mockingbird babies located in a holly shrub not 15 feet away joined them this past week.  It is dizzying watching the two sets of parents feed the […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to s […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Monarda Madness May 21, 2015
    The first Monarda blooms of 2015 opened up this week, kicking off a series of great blooms from now until late summer.  Every year I learn to appreciate this genus of native flowers so much more until I feel that I might just be on the edge of monarda madness because last year I actually […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see all the beautifu […]
    Ellen Honeycutt
  • Twinleaf May 19, 2015
      A very early wildflower, Twinleaf, Jeffersonia diphylla, is native to eastern North America. It is a plant that I must remind myself to hunt for, well before I’m used to finding wildflowers blooming. Here in the mountains of central Virginia, that crucial time is late March into early April. Each flower only lasts for a very […] We love hearing from you! P […]
    Brenda Clements Jones
  • Trilliums April 21, 2015
    There is not much more thrilling than hiking through the woods and finding a patch of native wildflowers. Some are minuscule, not of bright color, others can knock your socks off. Trilliums fill the bill for knocking my socks off! In the picture above, you see White Trillium, Trillium grandiflorum, about to bloom in one of my gardens. I’ve […] We love hearin […]
    Brenda Clements Jones
  • Help for Hummers April 16, 2015
    Putting up a hummingbird feeder is a fun way to bring hummingbirds close to a viewing space like a window. Like other types of bird feeders, it is often the first step in developing a love of our feathered friends and a desire to nurture them. So once you’ve taken the first step, I’d encourage […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see all the be […]
    Ellen Honeycutt
  • Native Plant Appreciation Week, Osceola County Florida April 10, 2015
    Today’s article is going to be about promoting the use of native plants, mostly because I forgot that today was Friday and didn’t do any critter research. I’ve been busy promoting The Central Florida Native Plant Sale (3rd annual) which is today, April 10, 2015 from 4-7 p.m. and tomorrow from 8 a.m. – 1 […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Ladies of the Day April 3, 2015
    Notwithstanding their common name, I’ll start by clarifying that they aren’t all ladies.  After all, in North America the order odonata need male and female to reproduce. I’m not clear how these insects acquired their common name.  Damselflies are an interesting group of insects. Predatory in both larval and adult stages, these are insects you […] We love he […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Skink Wars and More on These Sleek Lizards March 28, 2015
    I was on the patio late one afternoon and the trashcan was rocking.  I glanced over since you never know what creature of nature will be visiting my place.  I figured that maybe a black racer or water snake had slithered underneath the wheels setting the rocking in motion. Then I heard thrashing and a […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see al […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Spring Garden Care March 26, 2015
      Spring Garden Care People who care about attracting wildlife to their gardens usually learn over time about best practices for fall cleanup and especially the fact that it’s really beneficial for our birds if we refrain from relentlessly cutting perennials to the ground before winter. But what then happens in the spring for garden care?   Here in […] We lo […]
    Jesse Elwert

#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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