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Posted by on Aug 20, 2012 in Borage, Companion Planting, Vegetables, Yellow Squash, Zucchini | 41 comments

How to Grow Zucchini and Yellow Squash

How to Grow Zucchini and Yellow Squash

Name: Summer Squash (Zucchini and Yellow Squash) **Summer squash, a category that includes Zucchini and Yellow Squash, is easy to grow unless your summers are very cold and rainy. **They do not take up much room in a garden because they are bush type-plants and you only need a few for a rather large harvest. Two or three plants per family is a realistic-sized harvest.   Position: **Zucchini and Yellow Squash need a sunny spot with good drainage and where other squashes have not been growing recently. Allow 9-16 square feet per plant. **All squash like fertile soil with plenty of organic matter to retain moisture. They are heavy feeders and drinkers because they produce big stems, big leaves, and big fruits. **Their ideal pH level is around 6.0-6.5. Simply add a shovelful of compost or peat moss and an application of liquid fish emulsion. Test your pH levels with a kit like this.   Propagation: **The seeds of squash should be purchased and not saved from previous crops unless...

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Posted by on Apr 21, 2012 in Companion Planting, Parsnips, Vegetables |

How to Grow Parsnips

How to Grow Parsnips

Name: Parsnips Description: **Closely related to the carrot except even healthier for you because it contains more fiber and potassium. **Parsnips are easy to grow and very tasty if roasted. **You should use fresh seeds every year. Position: **Sun or partial shade will work for your plant. **It will grow on sandy, loamy soils best. Stony soils are not suitable because the roots will fork when they meet the stones. **Spread a thin layer of well-rotted manure or compost over the ground for the plants in early spring. Propagation: **Sow outside in March. **Germination rate is unreliable and often slow. Consider sowing a marker row of carrots or lettuce along the same row to remind you where they are while you wait. **Sow ½ inch deep. Thin to 6 inches between plants when plantlings. Parsnips hate to be transplanted, so discard the thinning and do not try growing in trays/modules. **Have 1 foot space between each row of parsnips. Maintenance: **Weed carefully between the rows. **Only give them water...

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Posted by on Mar 10, 2012 in Companion Planting, Cucumbers, Vegetables | 2 comments

How to Grow Cucumbers

How to Grow Cucumbers

  How to Grow Cucumbers **Cucumbers have come a long way in the past 20-30 years. They used to be disease-ridden, prone to give indigestion, etc. Now, however, there are TONS of varieties to experiment with and the problems have been taken care of.   **They like warm weather but not intense, dry heat. They are not frost hardy, but since they grow and mature quickly, it is easy to get a crop even with a short season as long as you plant them in the full sun.   Position: **You need to think carefully about where your cucumbers will grow. These plants have long vines that take up a lot of room. One plant, however, produces plenty of cucumbers, so you shouldn’t need more than a 6×9 foot plot for each six plants you grow (6 plants should be plenty for most families…unless you are cucumber crazy).  **It is often a good idea to grow these plants vertically to save space and also to give you healthier, cleaner...

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Posted by on Feb 21, 2012 in Carrots, Companion Planting, Vegetables | 4 comments

How to Grow Carrots

How to Grow Carrots

Name: Carrots **Carrots are a popular vegetable in most households. Not only are they loved by most people, they are loaded with nutrients and vitamins, including high levels of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, and others. **Not only are carrots a popular food to EAT, they are also a popular food to GROW.  **Carrots do not grow well in very hot weather. Coolness keeps them from turning woody and brings out their best flavor. Thus, in warm areas, you should grow them during fall, winter, and spring seasons. In cooler climates, you can plant them in early spring, then more every few weeks until early August, so that there are carrots in the ground even in the winter. **A few hard frosts makes the roots sweeter and tastier. Carrots are one of the few vegetables that you can actually leave growing straight through hard freezes of winter to dig up in early spring.   Position: **The best site for carrots is sunny and well drained, though carrots will grow in...

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Posted by on Aug 28, 2011 in Companion Planting, Herbs, Yarrow | 8 comments

Everything You Need to Know About Yarrow

Everything You Need to Know About Yarrow

Yarrow **Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) is a tough, hardy perennial as well as a potent medicinal herb. **Some people consider this an invasive, roadside weed. However, I have always loved Yarrow, even before I knew its’ medicinal value, and I have always left a place for it in my flower beds and herb gardens. I think that Yarrow flowers are beautiful, with their umbrella-type shape and varying colors from white to pinkish-red. I also LOVE their soft, fern-like leaves. **As long as you MAINTAIN your yarrow, they will not become an invasive plant in your garden, but instead they will know their place.   Medicinal Uses of Yarrow **Yarrow has many powerful medicinal purposes: It can be used to stop bleeding quickly. This includes treating heavy menstrual bleeding. It can be used to dilate peripheral blood vessels, which makes it good for the heart. (Check this post of mine for an Herbal Tea for the Heart) Yarrow is good for reducing inflamation. This herb helps with fevers and colds/flus by reducing body...

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Posted by on Aug 16, 2011 in Companion Planting, Herbs, Rosemary |

Rosemary

Rosemary

Name: *Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) Description: *evergreen perennial *best in zones 8-11 *many varieties that vary from bushes to hedges, etc. Parts Used: *Leaves, both fresh and dried *Flowering tops, both fresh and dried Position: *full sunlight *excellent drainage, though tolerant of any type of soil *In colder areas, grow plants in pots outdoors and take inside in the winter Propagation: *propagate by tip cuttings taken in early fall or spring. Use a rooting hormone and extra heat in order to germinate *the seeds germinate poorly, it is really best to propagate this plant through tip cuttings Maintenance: *regular light pruning helps shape the plants *if you are mulching your plants, use gravel, gritty sand, or pebbles next to Rosemary b/c organic mulches cause fungal rots *Do not over water b/c it causes rot/fungal issues *regular trimmings help prevent fungal problems Harvesting: *In milder climates, take clippings of rosemary at any time of the year, then air-dry in a well-ventilated place. When completely dry, strip the leaves from the stems...

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