Drought Tolerant Plants need less water

Photo credit: CJAD

The August long weekend is nearly here and no doubt you have big plans to weed and water your garden with your precious time off.  What a silly idea.  No one plans to stand at the end of a hose applying water to their plants when they can be doing something more useful and/or fun.

Use Less Water: Plant Drought Tolerant Plants

by Mark Cullen

Here is a list of my five favourite plants that require minimal moisture.  Note that you can plant any of these now and you will find a wide assortment of them at full service garden centres everywhere.  Note that everything you plant will require watering for the first few weeks after planting.

 

  1. Geraniums.  The annual flowering plants that you grow in window boxes and in your garden bloom all summer and basically made the Germans famous as gardeners.  It has been said that if you took all of the geranium-planted window boxes in Germany and put them end to end they would circle the globe 4 times (this has yet to be verified, but it is a good story).  Visit Germany, see for yourself.

While among the most prolific flowering plants on the planet they are also quite tolerant of extended periods of drought.  Not ‘bone dry’ drought but the kind of dryness that occurs when you leave for an extended weekend and return to an otherwise wilted garden.  There are the geraniums, blooming away and standing more or less as they should.  Not so petunias, New Guinea impatiens or a host of other annuals.

  1. The other geraniums.  The above mentioned geraniums are not geraniums at all, they are members of the genus Pelargonium.  Someone thought it would be fun to confuse us by attaching a common name that has nothing to do with the official classification.  Alas, ‘confusing you’ will never happen when you are in my capable hands.

The real geranium (Geranium spp.) is a perennial garden performer and I love it.  When people ask me how to grow grass under their Norway Maple (which is nearly impossible) I ask them if they would consider planting perennial geraniums instead.  It is a great low growing, perennial flowering ground cover or rockery plant and all members of the family tolerate dryness.

  1. Echinacea.  The stuff that you ingest when you feel a cold coming on is derived from the root of a native plant by the same name. The common name is ‘purple cone flower’.  The original species is purple, it produces ‘cones’ while flowering that are loaded with pollen and (later in the season) seeds.  Butterflies forage on the pollen in droves and gold finches harvest the seeds throughout fall and winter.

 

Read the full article: CJAD

 

What a difference a year or two makes!

 

Temperatures, watering times down this year

By Rodd Moesel

This year we have yet to reach 100 degrees and have been blessed with regular refreshing and thirst-quenching rains.

What a difference a year or two makes! In recent years at this time, we had already experienced triple digit heat several times and had been watering regularly to beat a punishing drought.

This year we have yet to reach 100 degrees and have been blessed with regular refreshing and thirst-quenching rains that have dramatically reduced how much time we have had to spend watering to grow and sustain our trees, shrubs, gardens and lawns.

Normally we would slow down on planting at this time of the year and focus on mulching, watering and trying to support or sustain the crops we have already planted. With the extra moisture in our top and sub soils and the milder conditions this year, you can still experience great success planting container-grown trees, shrubs, annuals, perennials and even warm-season vegetables as long as you will be faithful and dependable in watering when needed between our natural rains.

This is prime container gardening season as many folks are spending more time outside on the patio, the front porch or in their back yards. You may be entertaining guests and want to dress up your apartment, condo or home with the extra color and excitement of live plants. Container gardens give you two opportunities to make a design statement. One is with the container you select. It can be anything from a traditional black nursery container to a decorative terra cotta or other color plastic or foam pot. It can be a whisky barrel, an old wash tub, a wheelbarrow or other imaginative container that can hold soil.

The big issues that affect container gardening success are the size of the container and how much soil it can hold, drainage holes for water to escape from the container and the quality of soil used in the container.

Read the full article: News OK

The Container Gardening Ambassadors (the Fresh Food Home Guards)

All we need is your free moral support to make this world better

by Prof. Dr. Willem Van Cotthem (University of Ghent, Belgium)

Become a member of our container gardening group by clicking the ‘JOIN’ button at https://www.facebook.com/groups/221343224576801/  

(today almost 43.000 members).

Here are some of your trumps

Bottle towers with vegetables and herbs - Photo WVC P 1070455 - Video https://youtu.be/HuykRRspWOY.
Bottle towers with vegetables and herbs – Photo WVC P 1070455 – Video https://youtu.be/HuykRRspWOY.

1. If we show how to build a bottle tower <http://youtu.be/-uDbjZ9roEQ> to all the schoolchildren of this world and teach them how to grow some vegetables and herbs at school, they will enjoy building more towers for their family at home.

Riser with vegetables and herbs growing in recycled bottles - Photo Jojo ROM (The Philippines)  56269_1483085875405_1181604134_31159685_1301366_o.jpg
Riser with vegetables and herbs growing in recycled bottles – Photo Jojo ROM (The Philippines) 56269_1483085875405_1181604134_31159685_1301366_o.jpg

2. If we alleviate child malnutrition in our countries by teaching them container gardening at school, recycling all discarded containers in school gardens, e.g. on risers (see

video https://youtu.be/l7o_5UKIKTo

and <http://www.facebook.com/willemvancotthem>),

there will be sufficient food for decent daily meals and a cleaner environment.

And soon there will be fresh food galore everywhere.

Dwarf orange fruit trees grown in pots - Photo Container Growing - .jpg
Dwarf orange fruit trees grown in pots – Photo Container Growing – .jpg

3. If we convince all young mothers to plant only one fruit tree for every newborn baby and if we plant a fruit tree for every dear family member passing away, we will soon have orchards protecting us against global warming and climate change.

Barrels  cab easily be transformed in vertical gardens with a lot of fresh food - Photo Grow Food, Not Lawns - 542232_449799711742313_474788682_n.jpg
Barrels can easily be transformed in vertical gardens with a lot of fresh food – Photo Grow Food, Not Lawns – 542232_449799711742313_474788682_n.jpg

4. If we pass this message to the world leaders and publish all our photos to show them our green container gardens, it will be a giant convincing step towards a global food revolution.

And soon there will be less hunger because container gardening means solving these major problems at the lowest cost.  People in developing countries have been inventive to grow fresh food in a panoply of containers (pots, buckets, bags, sacks, barrels, …).  There is a lot of indigenous knowledge about best practices and success stories in food production. It is our moral duty to follow their examples and invest in large-scale application of their methods and techniques.  International organizations should reach hands with NGOs to ban hunger and malnutrition without any delay.  They should start in all the schools.

Let us put an important step towards a better future today:

JOIN THE GROUP OF CONTAINER GARDENING AMBASSADORS.  They are the Fresh Food Home Guards !

IT IS TOTALLY FREE : https://www.facebook.com/groups/221343224576801/ 

Low-maintenance gardens

Photo credit: Diablo Magazine

Drought-tolerant garden by Nico Oved

No Water, No Problem

These three fabulous low-maintenance gardens don’t sacrifice beauty, even if they do slash your water bill.

Garden design by Nico Oved - http://diablomag-images.dashdigital.com/DM1504_098_DIG.jpg?ver=1426628281
Garden design by Nico Oved – http://diablomag-images.dashdigital.com/DM1504_098_DIG.jpg?ver=1426628281