Gardening: It’s time to put the garden to bed – Lifestyle – providencejournal.com

Big yellow school buses are on the road again … or at least a few of them. Tree leaves in the swamps are turning red. Frost and cold weather are sneaking up on us. This year I resolve to get my garden put to bed early so that I am not wearing gloves and long johns as I cut back the daylilies and other perennials on cold, wet fall days. Here is what I am doing now — or will do soon.

First on my list is the need to sow some grass seed. I have places where my lawn was killed when a torrential downpour dumped sand from the road onto the lawn. Fall is a better time to sow seed than the spring because the ground is warmer, and it will germinate quickly. In the spring, seed can rot during cold, wet weather.

I will spread some topsoil or compost to improve the soil, then mix it in with a short-tined rake. After spreading seed, I will cover it with a layer of straw. That will help to keep the soil and seeds from drying out, though I will water occasionally if the soil gets dry.

Chrysanthemums are for sale now at farm stands, and I purchased a few pots of them to brighten up the front yard. I treat them as annuals, even though some of them are perennials. But the growers cut back the plants as they grow, causing them to branch out and produce hundreds of blossoms on bigger plants. If I let them over-winter, the plants would have some flowers, but never so many as what the professionals produce. To me, it’s worth it to buy a few each fall.

Mums in pots tend to dry out quickly, so I have been soaking mine in my birdbath. That way the pots suck up water, getting it down deep. I could actually plant my mums in the ground, but I like them in pots on the front steps or in my wooden wheelbarrow. They need water every few days.

This is also the time of year when I move shrubs. I recently moved a Diervilla, one called “Kodiak,” which was given to me years ago. It was crowded in between a crab apple tree and a red-veined Enkianthus. I decided it needed more space to grow, and I wanted to expose a stone wall behind it. So I dug it up.

This shrub is about 3 feet tall and wide, and it had been in the ground more than five years. I used a shovel called a drain spade, a spade with a long, narrow blade. I pushed it into the ground at a 45-degree angle in four places around the bush. Each time I pushed the shovel handle down to lift the shrub slightly. Then, when I’d gone all around it, I got the spade under the middle of the plant, pushed down hard, and popped it right out.

I tugged on the plant

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Gardening: Two former farm kids embark on new life in Clarkston after helping grow church garden

When I’m 86 years old, I hope I still have the spunk and the ability to garden like Jeanie Baker and Leon Alboucq do.

These two intrepid former farm kids have inspired – and put to shame – the rest of the gardeners at the Resurrection Episcopal Church Community Garden.

Between 2013 and 2019, they grew more than 18,000 pounds of produce and donated it to Spokane Valley Partners Food Bank. Earlier this summer they decided to hang up their hoses in Spokane and head back to Clarkston, to be closer to old friends, family and a milder climate.

The Resurrection Community Garden was started in 2013 when members of the church converted about a half-acre of the field behind the church into raised beds. There weren’t enough resources to build beds in the entire space, which left a quarter-acre empty. Jeanie and Leon saw an opportunity and asked to have the space to plant.

The two dusted off the farming skills they learned as children during the Depression era and began planting.

“We were a couple of old farm kids who knew how to grow stuff,” Jeanie said, so taking on a large garden was no big deal. “We remember the Depression and how people went hungry.”

They grew up in the Lewiston area and met as high school students at the 1951 Junior Livestock Show in Spokane.

“Leon was on the FFA judging team, and I was a cute blonde who was showing an Angus steer,” Jeanie said. Life took them on different paths for the next 60 years: Leon as a stock car racer, cattle rancher, grocer, fire chief and Snake River mailboat operator and Jeanie as a nurse in Henderson, Nevada, and Spokane.

Their paths crossed again in the early 2000s. Leon’s wife died, and Jeanie sent him a sympathy card and then two Christmas cards before he responded.

“It was like all those years just disappeared,” Jeanie said. “We’ve been together ever since.”

Leon moved to Spokane to be with Jeanie, saying what else was he going to do, “that’s where the cook went.”

Jeanie and Leon raised cabbage, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, radishes, several kinds of squash and collected produce from the other members of the garden to take to the food bank.

“It’s the right thing to do,” Jeanie said.

She also grew a long row of colorful zinnias to draw in pollinators and taught other members of the garden how to gather the seed for the next season.

Jeanie and Leon have been a priceless inspiration to all the members of the garden. Their knowledge of gardening has given confidence to many new gardeners. Their words of wisdom have made us better people. Their stories have grounded us in local history and the value of living a practical life. Lastly, their homemade wine kept us laughing. We will miss you, Jeanie and Leon.

And yes, they are already planning their new garden beds in Clarkston.

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How Gardening Services Can Help to Keep the Garden Arranged

Garden upkeep is usually a bit of a challenge, particularly for individuals who have a busy lifestyle or disinterest in gardening as a hobby.

Fortunately, assistance is readily available, especially for those willing to add life in their home’s exterior without making drastic changes. Creating a gorgeous garden is the final touch that every home needs. For people who are lucky enough to own one, gardening services could be needed for upkeep purposes.

Tidying is a word that is not usually used in relation to gardening. Nevertheless, it is one of the most regular areas of expertise that proficient gardeners provide on regular basis. Gardening services are usually affordable. Gardeners remove the stress of having to try and maintain a garden from those with little desire for the process of gardening itself.

One of the main methods that a gardener could help to improve is the layout of the backyard. They can also help to map out where particular plants are supposed to grow. Occasionally positions can easily be adjusted as desired by the expert. It might seem like there is very little carte blanche when it comes to transforming the whole design of the garden. Nevertheless, booking gardeners can actually make that simple and easy.

Gardening businesses offer some of the very best non-drastic alternatives to invasive property transformations. Simply by pruning trees, removing weeds, and rearranging the weeds where plants have grown, a gardener can create a place that is practically unrecognizable from how it was before.

For those who love the style of their garden, gardening services can be an excellent way to make sure that a backyard area remains in fantastic shape. This condition cannot be maintained with just a couple of minutes of weed eliminating every now and then. Gardeners go the extra mile when it comes to maintaining properties. They could additionally provide specific bug repellents or land supplements that encourage a garden to exceed its potential.

It is very astonishing to see how much a garden could change once it’s been treated by a specialist. Further visits are a must for any individual planning to maintain long-lasting freshness in their plants. Gardeners also provide simpler tidying up tasks for example litter clear-up, hedge trimming, and lawn-mowing within the garden.

Gardening services are as broad or as precise as needed. The gardener must be consulted and familiar with square foot estimates in advance, considering that different sizes of gardens require different sizes of tools. The amount of time it can take for a gardener to finish a specific job is determined by the actual size of the outdoor space. It might seem like larger gardens could need more time to be accomplished. And yet a simple lawn-mowing task in a big garden will take up less of the gardener’s hours than intricate pruning on a smaller property. It’s up to those providing the service to give you a reasonable price based either on square footage or hourly service.…

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The Best Gardening Tips for Spring Preparation

With such a cold winter, many gardeners are delighted that the spring is finally here. Even better, it is time to plant seeds and cultivate gardens which will bring about the hot green attractiveness of the spring season. However, without early preparation, your gardening might not be successful. Below are some of the very best strategies to organize your gardens for the spring season.

Start looking for seeds and bulbs

If you'd like to plant flowers such as lilies, it is time for you to start ordering seeds and bulbs. Otherwise, you will miss out on the radiant summer display. You could get the seeds online or purchase them from the nearest store in your neighborhood. Make sure the seeds and bulbs are in excellent condition to avoid disappointments late in the season when the planting season has passed.

Cleaning the garden

If there are debris in the garden, it is time for you to throw them out. Don't ignore the lawn and the pond. Remove any weeds from the garden and put them in a pile to create a compost that could be used when gardening. Dig up the soil in the garden and flowerbeds to make sure it doesn't harden. If you cannot do this yourself, it is time to find a gardening service.

Cleaning the greenhouse

If you'd like to plant in a greenhouse, it is time to do tidying. If there are any leftover plant debris in the containers, clear them out. Ensure that the seats and floors are cleaned completely to avoid bringing in any pests. Look at the temperature and everything necessary to make sure the greenhouse is in an amazing condition when the spring season starts.

Repairing gates

If you would like to divide the plants in your garden, you need to start fixing the gates. If you are using wooden fences, make sure they're properly treated to avoid pest attacks. Fix any broken latches and re-paint them accordingly to make your garden appealing when the planting starts.

Clean the gardening tools

Having thrown the gardening equipment in the shed during winter, it's about time to take them out of storage. Clean, sharpen and inspect them to make sure they are functioning well. Change broken or damaged equipment so that everything is working before you start planting.

Prepare compost / manure

If you'd like your crops to grow completely when the spring season comes, you have to be equipped with a large amount of garden compost and manure. However, you need to avoid using fertilizers or pesticides that can harm your plants. As such, any unwanted weeds or plants picked from the garden need to be placed in a compost area. On the other hand, it is also sensible to collect any animal droppings in your garden and store it for use as a compost.

Last but not least, you should be prepared with plenty of water supply when the seeds are planted. Without water, the plants will die within a short time. …

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Homeschooling and Gardening – What Your Child Can Learn and Grow in a Garden

The experience of growing a garden can help home school students learn a great deal. A garden can be very rewarding and also very frustrating. Growing a successful garden does not have to be difficult. Here are some things that your home school student can learn from working on a garden:

1. Practical demonstration of how plants grow – You can read all you want about plant cycles in a textbook, but until you see it happen before your eyes, it does not always make sense. Maintaining a garden shows children how a seed grows into a plant and how weeds grow right along with plants. They see a demonstration of how weeds can choke out a plant if they are not properly cared for.

2. Problem solving skills – When your plant does not grow or you see holes or bugs all over your plants, you need to figure out what to do. This might cause motivation for further research on how to take care of the problem.

3. Growing plants can take some patience and perseverance – sometimes it's hard to wait for that seed to pop out of the ground or for the fruit to appear on their plant. Sometimes those pesky weeds keep coming up and need to be pulled and pulled again. Sometimes you need to keep tending to the plant that gets bugs or diseased. Regular maintenance of weeds is required to have a successful garden.

4. Gardening can be good therapy – After working hard and maintaining a garden it can be a wonderful experience to just go out in your garden and walk around to look at the plants and the wonders of God's creation.

5. Multiple grades can benefit – A two year old and a 100 year old person can learn from and enjoy a garden. A small child can help plant and cover seeds over with dirt along with picking a few weeds. An older child can pick quite a few more weeds and learn about how the flower turns into the harvest. All ages can help with harvesting and processing the food that was harvested.

Even children living in a city can benefit from gardening. All you need is some dirt, a seed, water and sunlight. Try some easy plants first like: carrots, zucchini, tomatoes, beans, lettuce, and many more. Sometimes maintaining a garden can teach your child much more than they would ever learn from a book. There are many benefits for both parent and student.

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Vegetable Gardening For Beginners – Planting a Beautiful Vegetable Garden at Home

Are you looking to plant your very own vegetable garden but you're not sure how to get started? Planting a healthy vegetable garden provides so many benefits including an abundance of healthy organic food and saving thousands on your grocery bills. I don't know about you but I still remember the days when a tomato from the supermarket tasted like a tomato, not anymore unfortunately. Let's look at some vegetable gardening for beginners tips to help get you started today.

Vegetable Gardening For Beginners – Tips
Preparation is the key to growing a beautiful and healthy vegetable garden. Planning is critical for setting up a vegetable garden that you can harvest every daily. Vegetable gardening for beginners does not have to be difficult with the correct planning.

First you must decide on your plot, the area for your garden. The ideal spot is somewhere that receives plenty of morning sun and protection from the elements such as wind. Although you maybe limited with the space you have available don't be discouraged as you will be shocked at how much you can grow by maximizing the space you have. Ensure there is sufficient drainage for water run off.

Importance Of Soil Quality
One of the most common vegetable gardening for beginners tips you will hear is never underestimate soil quality. Soil is the life line of a garden do not underestimate it's importance. You must ensure that your soil preparations include checking the soil and preparing it by testing its pH levels. The ideal pH level for your soil is 6.5, if you do not have a test kit you can go to your local garden outlet and let them test it for you.

Don't stress if your levels are out of whack for the moment, you can purchase garden lime that will improve the pH levels of your soil. In a nutshell your pH levels will determine how much nutrients your vegetables will be able to receive.

Preparing Your Plot
Dig your plot and turn your soil over, ensure you dig into a depth of about 12 "(30cm) and remove any weeds you find by hand. Avoid using weed killers and they can effect your soil structure and levels. Once your pH levels are in healthy range, wait 4-5 weeks before you begin planting.

The vegetables that you grow will dependent on where you live. Speak to your gardening outlet that will buy seedlings from for the most suitable vegetables.
Ask about purchasing some organic fertilizer which will be the life blood of your garden. Organic fertilizers such as animal manure, blood and bones as well as compost are terrific choices for providing essential nutrients and moisture.

Growing Vegetables Year Round
The key to planting a successful garden is to have vegetables that you can harvest year round. By doing this you can rotate different vegetables to help ensure the health of your gardening by limiting pests and diseases. One of the most common vegetable gardening for beginners mistakes is …

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Home and Garden Book Review – Make Gardening Fast and Effortless

Many people want a beautiful garden, but it can take a lot of time to have such perfection. But what if I told you that you could have an almost perfect garden without the high cost, intensive effort or without spending all your time creating it and keeping it that way; if I showed you the secret would this please you?

Now then what if I told you that I learned most all of my "Secret" gardening tricks from a book? Would you believe it? What if I told you the name of the book, so you too could be one with a beautiful garden in 20% of the time, or less? Would you buy it? I did, and the book is simply called;

"Instant Gardens – Practical Projects for the Impatient Gardener" by Peter McHoy; Lorenz Books, Anness Publishing, London; 1999. ISBN: 1-85967-959-5.

The best part of this book is that it is fully illustrated with step by step instructions. Everything you'll need for each project is listed, as well as substitutions if you cannot get the supplies, want to save a little extra money or modify the project as you go. The book goes into drawings, use of space and renderings, before you start you'll need a plan; the plan is to have a low-cost beautiful yard and garden, that is easy to make and easy to maintain.

Build lattices, ponds, brick walkways, retaining walls, water features, fences and grass that looks like a golf course green. Understand the eco-system you are building, the birds and critters you'll attract and how to make it all look like the garden of Eden.

Now then, as this is a book review, I must give you're the pros and the cons. The pros I have listed above and the cons, well, I can only think of one. I should have bought this book a lot sooner, before I invested 10s of $ 1,000's in my garden. Please consider this.

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5 Awesome Gardening Tips for Inspiration

Gardening for some is a hobby, for others it's a passion. Either ways, gardening demands patience, carefulness and a positive attitude. But knowing some tips and tricks always comes in handy. If you are a beginner looking for some guidelines or if you're an expert who is trying to figure out where have you been going wrong, this article is for you. We have gathered some expert gardening tips that will help you take your gardening experience to a whole new level.

Prepare the Soil well

Plants grow in soil, the soil is what nourishes and nurtures them and provides support to the roots to grow. Therefore, it is very important that you carefully prepare the soil before planting anything in it. Take into account the demands of your plant and the soil type that it tends to do well in. if your soil is not up to the standard, treat it. Divide the soil among different kind of plants that you are planning to grow according to their requirements. The best kind of compost to feed your soil is leaves. Leaves make for the best fertilizer and are totally natural. Also, they are abundant in any garden, so use them to your advantage.

Plan ahead

It is important to plan ahead of your plants. Take note of their growth period and the maximum size that they can achieve once mature. This is because a plant, planted without planning can lead to size constraints and no one wants to go through the hassle of relocating their plants. Moreover, plan the location of your plants in your garden according to their life cycles. If you are growing vines, plan what you want them to climb; this will increase the symmetry and will add to the beauty of your garden.

Tool cleaning is important

Sharp and clean tools make gardening easier and faster as compared to blunt and dirty ones. Always keep your tools in shape so that they may come in handy in case of a garden emergency. Allocate some time from your gardening time to clean and sharpen your tools regularly.

Regularly check for pest infestations

Pest infestations are always easier to avoid if a gardener is able to identify harmful pests before they have reproduced tremendously in his garden. Therefore, it is important that you schedule regular inspections of your garden. If you notice any signs like wilting plants or eaten leaves, take them into account immediately. Look out for pests that may be causing them and do your research on finding and controlling them.

Keep evolving

You just cannot keep growing the same thing over and over again forever, as a gardener. It will not only bore you out of your socks but will make any extraordinary garden seem dull after a little while. Find new varieties that may interest you. When a plant dies, look out for a replacement that you have never planted before. Try new techniques of planting like grafting. Experiment with your garden. This …

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Importance of Using the Right Gardening Tools

Spring and summer are great times for growing plants and in order to do that correctly, you need to use the right gardening tools. As long as you use the correct tools and equipment in gardening, one can effectively and efficiently plant anything in your backyard. From producing yummy vegetables and herbs to maintaining beautiful flowers in your garden, one cannot do these properly with poor and inappropriate tools. Just like how a soldier needs his weapons or a writer needs his pen, so with plantsers and gardeners that depend on appropriate gardening tools.

Having the right gardening tools for the job is just as important as picking out the seeds or plants you want to grow. If you don't have the proper tools to tend and toil your garden or to take care of it after you plant it, then it won't grow very well or would yield less.

Getting the Right Tools for the Job

First, you will need something to dig up the ground so that you can plant your seeds or seedlings. Some of the gardening tools that do this are shovels, trowels, spades, and garden forks. Each of these does a specific job. For instance, you will need a garden fork or a shovel to initially break up the ground and get it ready for planting. Which one you use may depend on if you have a small garden area to work with or as large one, or how hard the dirt is where you want to place your garden.

It is also a good idea to get a hoe, as you will have to deal with weeds and need a way to clear them out. If you have a large garden, this example of gardening tools is very vital. In a small patch of ground, the spade or trowel will probably work to get up the weeds. A garden hose, weed cutters, and water sprinklers would then be needed to maintain the garden.

Since gardening tend to be rigorous where tasks would include digging into hard ground and removing stubborn weeds, this requires gardening tools to be durable and should be made of the toughest materials. The garden shovel, spade or trowel should be able to dig up any kind of ground no matter how wet or dry it is. That would require these tools to be made of steel in order to function well. While some of these tools come with a rubber handle, it would be wise to wear gloves for added protection when gardening.

When harvesting fruits and vegetable, it might not be a bad idea to add a cart or wheelbarrow to your gardening tools. This way you can carry both your tools and equipment out to your garden, as well as the fruits of your labor from your garden and equipment. So, the bottom line is that if you plan on growing a garden you will need the proper tools with the right strength and function to plant, maintain …

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Remarkable Uses Of Oatmeal For Lawn Care And Gardening

Oatmeal is one of the healthiest foods you can include in your diet. It is rich in fiber, antioxidants, and other nutrients. Although it is low in fat and cholesterol, it is one of the most filling foods around. As such, if you're trying to lose weight, as long as you minimize the number of sweetening ingredients you add, you should consider including oatmeal in your daily diet.

Aside from being a healthy meal or snack, oatmeal has been found to have many uses as well. This food product has been found to have many uses in lawn care and improvement and can be used by gardeners as well.

Below are some uses for oatmeal in the lawn:

As pest control . Oatmeal is nontoxic but slugs and snails love them. However, oatmeal can kill these pests since it can swell up inside their tiny stomachs. To use oatmeal as pest control in your lawn, simply sprinkle some dry oatmeal grains around your plants. Make sure you use oatmeal sparingly since in large amounts, they can swell, become slushy and packed around stems if they get wet. Also, too much oatmeal grains can also attract rodents and insects.

As fertilizer. Many gardeners and lawn care experts say that sprinkling some oatmeal in your garden will give plants iron – a nutrient they need. Some also say that adding a small amount of oatmeal in planting holes stimulates root growth. If you want to try using them as fertilizer, use old-fashioned, slow-cooking or raw oats instead of the instant ones since they are packed with more nutrients and contain less artificial ingredients.

As remedy for poison ivy, poison oak, and sunburn. You are always at risk of accidentally touching poison ivy or oak or getting sunburn if you always work outdoors on your lawn. If you do get these illnesses or health issues, you can use oatmeal to soothe the itchy area. Put a small amount of oatmeal in the leg of a stocking then tie it around the bathtub faucet. Allow warm water run through the packet of oatmeal while you fill the tub. Afterward, soak in the tub for at least 15 minutes. To experience more relief, use the wet bag to rub over your skin later.

To remove sticky sap. Lastly, if you are working on your plants without wearing gloves, some sticky saps will stick to your hands. You can remove this by rubbing oatmeal on your hands before washing them with water. Oatmeal works because it has a slightly abrasive quality that helps loosen up the goo or sap.

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