Monday, March 9, 2015

Home Grown: Cross-Pollinating Cherry Trees

If the fruit set on your cherry trees was a bust last year, the reason may be inadequate cross-pollination. Here's a little background so you can make big plans for the coming year.

Not all cultivars of sweet cherries will successfully pollinate all other cultivars. The more closely related they are, the less likely they are to cross-fertilize.

Continued at... Cross-Pollinating Cherry Trees

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Artwork: Kirschen plate in  Meyers' Konversationslexikon, published 1902-1920

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Here's How To... Grow Organic.

Home gardeners who want to try their hand at growing organic vegetables should lower their expectations just a little and be prepared to put in more "sweat equity."

Growing organic vegetables takes extra planning. If you use organic fertilizer sources or organic soil amendments, these need to be tilled into the garden well in advance to be effective. (Ideally, this process should begin in the fall prior to spring planting.)

Organic amendments don't provide nutrients as quickly as synthetic fertilizers. So, if you want to gain the benefits of organic fertilizers, give them plenty of time to decompose. Soil microbes have to convert them into a form that plant roots can absorb. An added benefit of organic amendments is that they can act as a slow-release fertilizer throughout the season. This improves soil structure.

Follow the link to... Grow Organic.
Here's How To...
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Artwork: Organic Garden by Roberta Staat