Should you pee on your plants ?

Photo credit: Huffington Post

PHOTOGRAPH BY JOHN HOWARD/GETTY

Discover the incredible benefit of urine in the backyard

by Jean Nick, for Rodale’s Organic Life

Depending on which gardening circles you hang with, the concept of urine in the garden may already have surfaced as a discussion topic. So what’s the deal? Should you seriously pee on your peas, tinkle on your tomatoes, and take a leak on your lettuce?

Related: Is People Poop Good For Plants?

Well, not on them, exactly, but if you aren’t using your urine in your garden and on your compost pile, you are, pardon my French, pissing away a free, valuable resource and missing out an easy way to help close the gaping hole in your household nutrient cycle. Using urine in the garden can help you cut your water use (less flushing) while also cleaning up the environment downstream (no water-polluting fertilizer runoff).

Your #1 Choice For Fertilizer
Recent scientific studies have shown urine is a safe and very effective fertilizer for cabbage, beets, cucumbers, and tomatoes, and pretty much anything else you want to grow. Urine boasts a nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium (N-P-K) ratio of 10:1:4, plus more modest amounts of the trace elements plants need to thrive. The nutrients in pee are highly available to plants, too—an extra plus. One estimate suggests a family of four can produce the equivalent of more than 100 pounds of all-purpose garden fertilizer every year. Oh, and the best part? It’s free! Oh, be still, my nickel-pinching heart!

Related: The 10 Best Garden Crops to Plant This Summer

But ewwww…yuck! Is it safe? Yes! Unless you have a serious infection, urine is usually sterile, and the chances of disease transmission from it on the household level are very, very small. And any slight odor dissipates almost immediately once it’s applied to the soil. While we’re not suggesting you drink your urine, know that astronauts on the International Space Station do drink the stuff—after it’s purified. So comparatively speaking, sprinkling it on the soil in the garden is a pretty tame use.

How To Use Your Very Own Garden Gold (Free Deliveries Daily!)

Read the full article: Huffington Post

Bucket vegetables

Photo credit: WVC P1110578 copy

Vegetables and herbs can be grown easily in buckets. Notice the drainage hole in the sidewall, saving some water (not drained through a hole in the bottom). See also the layer of coarse sand on top (mulch), which is limiting evaporation (Willem Van Cotthem’s comment)

Gardening in a Bucket

Growing wholesome, healthy vegetables in a container are a way of life these days. Here are some easy and less expensive tips for creating that bucket garden.

In a bucket - http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/hort/files/2015/04/tomatoes-in-pots-eddie-powell-225x300.jpg
In a bucket – http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/hort/files/2015/04/tomatoes-in-pots-eddie-powell-225×300.jpg
  • In a large container or on a plastic mat on the ground, mix garden soil and compost in a 2:1 ratio. Two scoops of soil and one of compost, add the recommended quantity of slow release fertilizer from product label
  • Drill 6 to 8- ½ inch holes in the bottom of the 5-gallon buckets. Make sure that the buckets did not contain toxic materials!
  • Line the bottom of the bucket with gravel. You may substitute broken pottery or sticks that are broken in short links
  • Fill the bucket to within 3 inches of the top of the container
  • Place container in sunny spot that will allow drainage
  • Plant chosen vegetable with two seeds in center of the container
  • Water well and keep moist but not wet
  • Place plant support around seeds

Plant requirements:

Read the full article: UF/IFAS

 

 

Attractive containers indoors

Photo credit: Better Home Gardening

An “Air Plant”

Beautiful Indoor Terrarium Plants

Terrariums are an attractive source of creating greenery inside your house. They reflect a serene look providing your home pleasing attire. Not only that but also planting terrariums is a fun job, especially the indoor ones. You can involve your kids in this activity as this would promote a sense of gardening in them.

Closed terrariums hardly require water and can grow without much look after for years. You might want to keep a few things in mind while planting terrariums. For indoor plants, It will be wise to select plants that can bear moisture or humid temperatures. In addition to that, these plants should be able to survive low or indirect light.

If might want to choose plants that are smaller in size while planting terrariums indoors. Make sure they don’t touch the sides of the containers.

Tip : 20 Best House Plants You Can Grow

How about we give you a list of beautiful indoor terrarium plants and make it easy for you to select from one of them. Choose from any of these petite beauties to add grace to your house.

Easy terrariums

Read the full article: Better Home Gardening

See also: http://gardenandfarm.blogspot.be/2015/04/tips-on-building-terrarium-at-home.html

Compost Tea At Home

Photo credit: Gardening at Home

How To Make Compost Tea At Home

How to Make Compost Tea at Home – Gardening Tips at Home.>> Compost tea is already used as natural garden tonic since a long time ago. Compost tea can fertilize and improve the overall health of your garden crops. So in this article, I will share about compost tea recipe andhow to make compost tea at home.

How to Make Compost Tea

There are several compost tea recipes available around the world but basically there are two methods to make compost tea as follow:
1. Passive Compost Tea
Passive compost tea is the simplistic and most common used. To make compost tea using this method, just soak tea bags in water for a couple of weeks. The liquid is then used as fertilizer for plants.
2. Aerated Compost Tea 
Aerated compost tea is more costly and need more effort compared with passive compost tea. You will need some additional ingredients such as humic acid, kelp, and fish hydrolysate. Additional tool like air and/or water pumps is also required. However, making compost tea using aerated method give some advantages, it takes less brewing time so the fertilizer will be ready within a few days as opposed to weeks.

 

Read the full article: Gardening at Home

If flavour rather than bulk is your priority

Photo credit: The Telegraph

Spuds on tap: pick what you need for your meal and leave the rest to grow 

Photo: GAP Photos/Gary Smith

How to grow potatoes in pots

Not only fantastic if you’re short on space, growing potatoes in containers make for a delicious crop

By Lia Leendertz

That sweet, nutty taste and the texture like slicing butter just doesn’t exist in the shop-bought potato, and I wanted it back in my life.

The answer has been to start growing them in pots. There are lots of ways in which this beats growing them in the ground, and a few in which it really doesn’t. Let’s get the negatives out of the way first. This is not the way to grow if you are after bulk and high yield. It is also high maintenance and you will need to remember to water regularly and well.

However, if flavour rather than bulk is your priority then this is a lovely way to grow them.

Potatoes grown in pots become almost a different vegetable. One of the reasons they are so good is that they grow so fast, giving them a soft, moist texture and almost non-existent skins. This also happens to be the secret behind the flown-in earlies: they are grown in places where the soils warm early in the year, so growth is speedy. But most of us don’t garden in a south-facing sloping Jersey field by the sea. After the chill of winter most UK soils are slowly warmed through by a still-weak sun. But pots can be moved to a sheltered corner to bake, onto a sunny balcony or patio, or even into a polytunnel or greenhouse. This will help increase the heat in the compost and therefore the growth rate of the potatoes.

Read the full article: The Telegraph

Tips on how to re-use compost in your containers

Photo credit: Vertical Veg

Salads are one of the easiest crops to grow in old compost – these are in a mix that is several years old.

How to re-use old compost – ten useful ingredients

by Mark Ridsdill Smith

Traditional gardening books often tell you to replace the compost or soil in your pots each year. But if you have more than just a few pots, emptying and refilling all your pots will be a time consuming, messy, difficult job. It will also be expensive. And it just seems a waste to throw it away.

So a question I’m commonly asked is: ‘is it possible to re-use the soil / compost in pots’?

The answer is most definitely YES. It will last for several seasons, at least (and perhaps even indefinitely).

Learning how to re-use it is really useful if you are growing in containers, so the aim of this post is to help you on your way.

What you need to know…

There is quite a lot of detail and information in this post. If it seems overwhelming, you only really need to remember three things:

 

 

Read the full article: Vertical Veg

Containers in the farm-to-table movement

Photo credit: Google

Ethnic restaurant Asian garden

Farm-To-Table Will Change Us [Opinion]

by Carol Miller

Unlike all the trends our industry has seen come and go, the farm-to-table movement has the power to rewrite our future.

A trend is like a wind that disturbs a pond but doesn’t reshape it. Take gazing globes, huge 10 years ago. They made our industry a lot of money, but their popularity faded, and we moved on, unchanged.

Container gardens had a bigger impact. They were a hit with customers who wanted instant gratification and with retailers who liked selling several products at once. They also reflected a changing customer base, who valued getting the visual impact of gardening without the work.

Home grown vegetables - http://perfectgardeningtips.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/container-vegetables.jpg
Home grown vegetables – http://perfectgardeningtips.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/container-vegetables.jpg

I want to take the time to unpack that thought. Container gardens’ popularity rose along with the flood of smart phones, big, immersive TVs and games like Candy Crush. People still eat out, go to theaters and, yes, garden. But they spend less time doing so.

So it can be argued that selling container gardens was a necessary adaption to our customers’ lifestyles.

Combo gardens had a bigger impact than gazing globes. But what gazing globes are to container gardens, that’s what combo gardens are to the farm-to-table movement.

Read the full article: Today’s Garden Center

Indoor Plants in Winter

Photo credit: The Record Herald

Rosemary in window-Turn 1/4 every few days to keep growth even (B.Petrucci)

Winter Care Tips for Indoors Plants

by Carol Kagan, Master Gardener

EXCERPT

From Master Gardeners I have learned a few key things, so here is my quick tip list followed by a number of great resource sites. It is important to check the needs of each plant since they can vary greatly.

Aloe roots crop - http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BhvAgFZ2Q4s/VMEdUMUBThI/AAAAAAAADU4/Yo2jVQRwhsw/s1600/aloe%2Broots%2Bcrop.jpg
Aloe roots crop – http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-BhvAgFZ2Q4s/VMEdUMUBThI/AAAAAAAADU4/Yo2jVQRwhsw/s1600/aloe%2Broots%2Bcrop.jpg

1. Be sure the plant is potted in the right size container (with a drainage hole) and right potting soil.

If you are digging it up and dragging it in from the outdoors then potting it up, don’t use garden soil. It’s too heavy.

2- Water only as needed when the soil is dry.

Water from the top until water comes out the drainage hole (You do have a drainage hole, right?) into the saucer. About two hours later, drain any excess water from the saucer. Don’t allow the roots to stand in water. If you don’t see drainage but have watered well, check for a clog in the hole and clear it. Inconsistent watering is one of the primary reasons for plant loss.

3- Use room temperature water.

Leave tap water out overnight, uncapped or uncovered, to allow the chlorine and fluorine added to city water to dissipate. Although these probably don’t harm plants, you want the water to be at room temperature anyway. Rainwater, snow melt and well water are ok. Don’t use water run through water softeners.

4- Light should be appropriate for the plant. – See more at: http://www.therecordherald.com/article/20150122/BLOGS/301229993/1391#sthash.uFCa0nro.dpuf

Combine the colors

Photo credit: Container Crazy CT

One year, these three plants were used in two pots and the foliage rich result was eye-catching

Yellow shrimp plant with two companions make the perfect trio in two pots

Container Crazy CT
Container Crazy CT

Foliage Lasts Throughout the Season

One of the benefits of focusing on plants for their foliage features is foliage lasts throughout the growing season.  In many cases, annual plant blooms will wither away towards the end of the summer from heat exhaustion or repeat blooming.

So when you use foliage with a captivating thriller plant, like the yellow shrimp plant, you result with a stunning combination which is easy to assemble and maintain.

pachystachys-lutea

Echoing Foliage Colors

Notice how the dark purple plum like color (violet-red color on the color wheel) of the sweet potato vine’s heart shaped leaves are repeated in a band of the same rich purple plum color in the leaves of the Coleus ‘Kong Rose’ plant.

Repeating a color of one plant in another plant is a way to add impact to a design. This holds true in containers, patio pots, and in gardens of the ground.

Complementary Color – Yellow and Purple

Read the full article: Container Crazy CT

Winter sowing is great

Photo credit: Buffalo-Niagara Gardening

Start seeds outside now using milk jug, other containers in ‘winter sowing’

by Connie Oswald Stofko

EXCERPT

Will opaque milk jugs work for winter sowing?

I had first tried winter sowing a few years ago with the translucent milk jugs that we used to get in stores around here. Find the directions for the milk jug greenhouse here.

I had good results, but wasn’t sure if it would work with the newer opaque milk jugs, so I tried it last winter.

This does work with opaque milk jugs!

I tried it last winter and by spring I had tomato seedlings. I worried that they were coming up later than they should, but our spring was cold, so they were probably on time.

I’m not sure why it worked with the opaque milk jug, but it did. When the top and bottom halves of the opaque jug were closed, they didn’t fit together as neatly as they did on the translucent milk jug. Maybe that let in enough light for the sprouts.

Other containers for winter sowing

If you don’t trust the idea of using containers that are opaque, there are lots of other options.

 

Read the full article: Buffalo-Niagara Gardening