Friday, June 6, 2014

Gardening in the Green Mountain State

This week I helped my pal JB plant a garden at his homestead in Vermont, which is currently on the market, if you or anyone you know is interested in owning a little piece of New England.  It's several acres with a three-bedroom house, garden shed, raised-bed vegetable garden, and a small orchard.

JB’s wife is a landscape designer, and it’s always fun to swap gardening ideas with these folks.  On this trip I learned about the wonders of drip irrigation (see, growing potatoes in bags, and lovage.

Of the many pearls of gardening wisdom I gathered from this book, here are a few of my favorites…

  • Lacewings and ladybugs are beneficial insects to have in the garden.  An adult ladybug can eat 5000 aphids in a lifetime.  (Aphids = bad)
  • Example of companion planting:  put basil near tomatoes to repel the tomato hornworm.  Also, most pesky bugs hate onions and garlic, so plant them everywhere.  Marigolds repel lots of bad bugs too.
  • Top-dress garden beds with ½” of compost to ensure a steady flow of nutrients and to inhibit plant diseases.
  • Brushing small tomato plants gently (to emulate wind) will encourage them to grow short and strong.

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