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Blossom End Rot

Blossom End Rot

I am testing tomatoes this season to find determinate (non-vining, think bushy) varieties that might do well in containers. From the original planting of the seeds, to the tiny sprouts, and on to healthy plants with their thick stems I have hope that garden-fresh tomatoes will adorn the table before the end of June. The […]

Field Guide to Urban Gardening

Field Guide to Urban Gardening

Gardening readers picking up a book with the phrase “field guide” in the title may be expecting an encyclopedia-type type book useful for identifying pests or wildlife. Kevin Espiritu has compiled from his vast gardening experiences a catalog of options for those of us who garden in limited space. If the patio or the balcony […]

Ideal Gardening Weather

Ideal Gardening Weather

In April we wondered if the rain would ever stop. More than once the passing storms unleashed liquid fury in such volumes the gutters and downspouts could not handle the load. The rain barrels overflowed, and the low spot next to the neighbor’s house morphed into a swamp that took several days to percolate into […]

Growing Great Grass

Growing Great Grass

Grass, like other plants, exhibits seasonal behavior. The fescue in my lawn appears reasonably green in winter and fall, richly lush in spring, and something approaching dead during the heat of July and August. I’ve learned that watering the lawn to trick it into remaining active during the hot months is pointless. The dormancy gives […]

The How Not The Why

The How Not The Why

Gardening requires a great deal of learning. Here’s a list of some of the resources that impart knowledge to my gardening portfolio. Books These vary from the “Ahh!” of the glossy compilation of perfect pictures of even more perfect gardens to the encyclopedia style of tips and techniques. My book collection has spread to a […]

Celebrating Hosta Diversity

Celebrating Hosta Diversity

Many gardeners have a favorite (or maybe three or four), and for me that would be hostas…and of course coneflowers…and don’t forget salvia…oh, and the milkweed varieties that attract Monarch butterflies. OK, it is hard to pick a favorite. In my deeply shaded back gardens I experimented to find plants that might thrive with minimal […]