Devine Chatter — Vermicompost RSS

Testing your garden soil

Garden soil testing can be broken down into 3 categories - physical, biological and chemical. Physical - It's fairly easy to give your soil a physical test at home Structure - squeeze a handful of damp soil, open your hand. Does it fall apart? If it does then it's too sandy. Poke it - if it crumbles apart it's good. If when poked it retains its shape than it has too much clay. Drainage - does rainwater drain away quickly or does it sit on top of your soil. Roots need oxygen that is in the air spaces. Too much water clogs up the air spaces. Water retention - after a good watering does the soil stay moist for days or dry...

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Are Older Seeds Still Good?

Have you been looking over seed catalogs deciding what to grow this year? Before you spend money on new seed do an inventory of what seeds you have from the years before. Some seeds store better than others. High Mowing Seeds has a helpful chart listing the longevity of different seeds. For example, turnip seeds are good for 5 years but corn seed may only last for 2. Here is a link to High Mowing Seeds chart.  Vermicompost has been shown to increase the viability of seeds. In a research study done by Michelle Wills and Gary R. Bachman, Tennessee Technological University, they found that vermicompost added to a coir based potting mix had a positive effect on seed germination of Echinacea purpurea (purple coneflower). More...

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Tomato Collars

Put cut off buckets or pots around your tomato plants to shelter them from wind and keep them a little warmer at night. It makes watering them easier because you just water inside the pots so you're only watering the tomato plant and not wasting water. Best of all your cute little puppy dog or kitty cat won't lay on them. See how happy Charlie is? I have read that this will also protect plants from cutworms.

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