Organic Landscaping

Gardening for Pollinators

bee gardens

What are pollinators? Pollinators are organisms that aid in the transfer of flower pollen to allow for the fertilization of plants which is essential to fruit and seed production. Some plants such as most grasses have very light pollen which is easily carried in the wind but most plants (80% of flowering plants) are dependent on pollinators to transfer their pollen.

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The Butterfly Garden

Butterflies see the whole spectrum of colours but prefer the brilliantly coloured deep pinks, reds, scarlets, bright blues and usually those flowers that are very fragrant too. Most butterfly plants are perennial and thus will be a permanent sanctuary for butterfly caterpillars. Shrubs and perennials that attract butterflies are honeysuckle, verbena, hibiscus (Rose of Sharon), lantana, butterfly bush, violets, columbine, larkspur, beauty bush, morning glory, frog-fruit, blue-eyed grass, lemon mint,

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Companion Planting

companion plants chives

Companion planting is vital for organic vegetable production. It is also a type of intercropping. Intercropping and companion planting is very beneficial for flower beds too. There are plants that assist each other to grow; plants that repel harmful insects to companion plants; plants that retard other plants growth; plants that delete the soil whilst others that add to the soil. You may have heard that “roses love garlic”. Allium is the Latin word for garlic. Vegetable alliums are chives, garlic, leek, onion, and shallots all of which are excellent protective companions for roses. The

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Q How can I keep my annuals looking good without a dose of 20-20-20 synthetic fertilizer?

best fertilizers for annuals gardens

A Try one of several available types of fish emulsion fertilizers and you can use a blood meal – bone meal mixture. When planting your annuals in late May make sure they are started off with fresh compost. To contribute to soil health diversify your annual garden by including colourful perennials. Follow companion planting guidelines to improve your annuals.

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Q: What is over-seeding? Why is it important to lawn care? When and with what?

overseeding lawn services and tips

Jeannette Cross answers your questions about over-seeding, why it’s important, and when and how to go about properly over-seeding your lawn in her Ask an Expert series. A: Over-seeding is applying a suitable blend of grass seeds to an existing lawn to replenish grass cover to create thick grass that will crowd out weeds. In the spring one should check for dying grass and repair it with over-seeding and top dressing. Weed seeds are very opportunistic and will establish themselves wherever bare soil exists. Top dressing is the addition of organic material such as compost

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Ten Steps to Healthy Gardening for You and the Environment

steps to create a natural garden

Step #1 Educate Yourself and Know your Property: Know what pests are prevalent in your area before choosing plant varieties. Think about your willingness to maintain your chosen plants as some varieties need more care than others. Know your soil type and pH. Know your garden’s water characteristics. Consider companion planting. Know your garden’s exposure to wind, sun, shade and affects of winter. Know your zone hardiness. Know what is a garden friend and what is a garden foe.

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