GARDEN TIPS FROM ORGANIC GARDENING MAGAZINE READERS
Used coffee grounds make excellent earthworm food. Earthworms will multiply rapidly by adding coffee grounds to a compost heap. ~ Phillip Smith, New York
Cabbage butterfies are repelled by tomatoes, rosemary, sage, and peppermint. Plant any of these along side your cabbage plants. ~ L.F. Easterbrook
Nasturtiums among fruit trees will reduce destructions by aphids. ~ L.F. Easterbrook
(Note from Me: Nasturtiums also work well in the garden next to squash plants to keep aphids at bay.)
To control insects: Mix powdered garlic and black pepper in equal parts in a pint of hot water. Let it sit till it cools by about half, then strain through a dairy straining pad or something similiar. It sprays easily from a had sprayer and really stops the bugs. ~ Martin Stansbury, Illinois
FLOWER GARDEN NEWS
This morning was so nice, 65 degrees, that I went out and worked in my flower garden. The flower garden is in front of the house; it is a work in progress. I’m a bit disappointed; all my tulips have not come up yet and I am concerned that a mole ate the bulbs. I was reading in a issue of Organic Gardening about baring your soil. The article recommended raking away your mulch to allow the soil to warm up in the spring; giving the plants and bulbs the needed warmth and sun to emerge out of the ground. The article did suggest keeping your mulch or ground-up leaves so you could put it back later when the summer sun heats up.
I took this advice and raked the largest dead leaves away uncovering the ground-up (mulched) leaves I placed their last fall. This leaf mulch was about 2″ thick so I raked away enough leaving just a thin layer. I’m hoping that this will allow the tulips that haven’t emerged encourgement to do so.
I did find a new growth in the other flower bed. Did I mention there are two in the front? Anyway, it looks like a bulb growing but don’t ask me what it is I have forgotten I even planted anything there. I do have some hycintha bulbs I need to get in the ground, it’s a bit late so I may just wait till fall to plant them.
I bought two new plants for the flower garden; ‘Hawaii Blue’ Ageratum and ‘Silverdust’ Dusty Miller. I’m going to wait till Monday or Tues. to plant them. Monday starts a few days of above ground planting.
We’ve had rain here in AR all week with a promise today for it to stop. I took a peek in the garden yesterday and the radish seeds are showing their green tops. The potatoes continue to hide in the ground. I am concerned that they have rotted from all the rain. Our garden has sandy soil and the run off from the rain has been good. I can’t tell that it has washed away any of the soil. Perhaps all they need is a few days of sun shine to pop out of the ground.
The local Harps/PriceCutter grocery stores have their plants now. I bought my cucumbers, sweet peppers from there last yr. and they did great. I think I’ll get them from there again if they look like good plants. I’ll have to look at the planting calendar to see the good planting day for above ground crops and buy accordingly.
A link to the 2012 Planting Calendar is at the top of this page above the picture of last yrs. cabbage plants.
March 10, 2012
WELCOME to my 2012 gardening blog. Last years blog was a lot of fun for me to make and share with, well whoever read it, so I’m doing it again.
Last years Blog
ArkansasFarmerette 2011:: http://arkansasfarmerette.wordpress.com
I’ve already paid a visit to the local Farmers Co-op and bought my Pontiac seed potatoes, onions (red(purple) and Walla Walla yellow), Sparkler White Tip radish seeds, blue lake bush green bean seeds and Clemson Spineless Okra seeds.
The weather here in AR gave us a mild winter with only one snow day. Right now we’re going from 30’s or 40’s at night to 60’s to 70’s during the day. There was a light frost yesterday morning. It is hard to know when the last frost is so you can do you main planting; since our weather is so odd. ‘Course they say, if you don’t like the weather here just wait a day and it will change.
Three days ago my Dad cut up the seed potatoes and laid them on newspaper to dry. For those of you who don’t know how to cut them; the purpose is to cut the potato into chunks where each chunk has an eye. SEE PICTURE BELOW. The eye is where the plant and roots come from. You can cut up to 6 eyes from a potato, depending on the size. I bought a 4 1/2 lb. bag of potatoes and my father cut out close to 80 chunks. My Dad tells me that his father planted the potatoes eye down in the ground and my Mom’s mother planted them eye up. I just drop them in the 3” deep hole, cover with dirt and press with my foot.
Today was/is a good day for planting root crops. I planted 72 potato plants, 134 total of both onion varieties and a 5 ft. row of radishes. Rain tonight is in the forecast, so they will all get a good soaking. It is too early to plant the green beans and okra. I will not put them in the ground till late April or May.
Be sure and check out the 2012 Planting Guide