Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Internet Resources for Gardeners

Plant identification, help with plant problems, and a great deal of gardening information can be found at the UBC Botantical Gardens Forums.  I have had many unknown-to-me plants identified by the members there and received a great deal of helpful advice.

Everything from gardening ideas, success stories, and advice can be found at the Garden Web forums.  Topics are well organized and plentiful.  I find it can be time consuming to search information in this forum because many topics can be quite long. That may also be due to my tendency to wander off topic when I find something that interests me.

The gardening section at The Old Farmer's Almanac contains a wealth of information easily accessed and understood.  I often refer to the planting dates (you can input your postal code or zip code and it will return information specific for your growing area) and even seed starting dates for your area. I find moon planting interesting, but I'm not sure if there's really anything to it.  My father planted 'by the moon' and was quite the successful gardener; but I can't say that the two are truly connected.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Old gardens, new gardens and resolutions

Three years ago we moved and I left behind the gardens I'd worked so hard to build.  It was a difficult, but necessary move.  In return visits I see the new owners have dug up or mowed over the 40 hostas and bed full of ajuga I'd planted.  I got a hernia planting that particular side yard.  Trees and bushes have been left to sprawl and the rock garden looks like a weed bed as it hasn't been tended at all.  It's a painful thing to see.  I know they are no longer mine, but all that work and effort has truly become a waste.

Because of that, I've taken a different approach to my gardening.  It is entirely for my enjoyment and more utilitarian than in past.  I know that we will not be at this location forever, either, so I'm not expending a great deal of efforts on permanent gardens.  Instead, I'm using more planters and the beds are full of annuals.  They can easily be seeded with grass once we're done here.

I like planters because they are portable, I control the growing medium (instead of the soil controlling me as is often the case with difficult soils), I can manipulate the light they receive easily, and one planter is more easily remedied than a bed full of disease or pests.

I've been avidly reading Question and Planter.com  for tips and suggestions and finding that I seem to hoarde the knowledge I've gained over the past 30 years to myself.  It isn't intentional.  I often do not realize that some of what i know is not common knowledge. Not everyone grew up with a landscaping father who taught his kids as much of what he knew as he possibly could over the years.

I'm not making promises as I'm fairly busy, but I am going to try to post more frequently and share information that I find invaluable even if I think it is common.

Are you planning next years' gardens yet?

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