If you’ve been wanting to release these beneficial insects into your garden, NOW IS THE TIME!! Due to a shortage in supply, we may not be able to order more so get yours now. Be sure to ask for our tips on releasing them into your garden.
For our post on Encouraging Beneficial Insects in your yard, click here.
Anytime I plant something, the very first thing I do is prepare the soil. The soil has to support and feed the plant so it is vital for healthy productive plants. Here is how I plant my veggies:
1. Make sure the soil is not compacted but rototilling or digging the entire bed is not necessary.
2. Mix in soil amendment. I love Gardner & Bloome Harvest Supreme for vegetables, annuals and perennials. You can mix this Harvest Supreme up to 50/50 with the native soil.
3. Add required amount of desired fertilizer. My favorite is Gardner & Bloome Tomato, Vegetable and Herb fertilizer since it is natural, organic and long lasting! Preparing the soil in this way will feed your garden for 3 to 4 months. So for long term crops like tomatoes, be sure to reapply later on.
4. When planting tomatoes you can apply eggshells, Epsom salts or lime in the hole to prevent blossom end rot.
5. Plant your veggies and prepare for harvest!
It’s time to start choosing cucumber varieties! We have a wonderful selection of Botanical Interests cucumbers.
The cucumber is one of the top five most popular garden vegetables, probably because it is adaptable and very easy to grow. Cucumbers require significant water – when grown in very high temperatures or with inadequate water, they can become increasingly bitter. Many of the newer varieties we carry, though, have no bitterness even under stress. They grow best in full sun, prefer a light, fertile, well drained soil, and long, deep waterings rather than frequent sprinklings. Cucumbers also adapt well to vertical growing … help the young cucumber plants find the structure by placing their tendrils around the support. Cucumbers also do very well in containers if kept properly moist. They also do well in greenhouses and cold frames.
Choosing a tomato can be a very overwhelming task. There are so many to choose from and if you have limited room you aren’t able to just “try” a few varieties. Maybe you’ve tried different ones over the years but maybe you’re to new vegetable gardening. Here are a few things to know and think about when choosing a variety, or two, or three…
1. Do you want an heirloom or hybrid?
For those who have tried growing Cilantro and failed, like I have many times, I wanted to share with you my success. I have grown large crops of Cilantro every year…successfully!! This is what I do and how I preserve it.
First, Cilantro is a short lived annual. It bolts quickly as the days get warmer and longer no matter how much you try to pinch off the flower buds. So PLANT IT NOW! I plant my Cilantro each February, even in frosty weather, and harvested it all by mid-April. That was all. My crops that I had planted after February bolted so quickly that there were no leaves to harvest. However, if your plants bolt too quickly, let the seeds develop and harvest them. Use them for coriander in cooking or use them to plant next year!
Check out this unusual citrus we have received as well….Australian Finger Lime!
This particular species grows as a small, tree-like shrub or small tree to about 6-8′ tall and 5-6′ wide, compactly and slowly. It is easily recognized by its very dense, twiggy habit and tiny, tiny, glossy green leaves closely set along the thin, rather whippy, prickly stems. Flowers are small, pink, and are scattered along the branches. Its fruit are composed of four skinny segments wrapped in a thin, leathery skin, about the thickness and length of your little finger, and green aging to red brown when ripe. The fruit don’t hold long after ripe, they will drop after a short while. You split the skin and the tiny, very firm, caviar-sized vesicles pop out, so you eat it like you do caviar, popping little round flavor kernels shelled from the thin, leathery, membranaceous skin that normally encloses the segment. It is sour and lime-like, comparable to pummelo or grapefruit in some strains, with a rind odor that is heavily lime-like with a strong pine fragrance thrown in. It mostly flowers in spring and bears in late fall to early winter, but it tends to flower and have some fruit almost all year.
Excerpt and photo courtesy of Monterey Bay Nursery.
If you haven’t been in lately, you haven’t seen the selection of citrus that we received last week! Hurry for best selection!
For tips on growing Citrus, see Adria’s latest post! Citrus Care & Growing Tips
Did you know arugula is a super food? It ranks right up there with kale and collards. Do you grow it? Arugula adds spunk to salads or tastes amazing on it’s own as an Arugula salad. Botanical Interests, our seed supplier, has two types, “regular” and an wild arugula which has a complex, spicier flavor.
Easily grown from seed or find starts in our herb section!