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Enjoy Creating and Growing a Sustainable Garden While Feeding Your Family
A sustainable garden means one that can be sustained over time, and would necessarily involve I) growing food you want to eat, so you are motivated to continue growing, II) growing economically, so that it is worthwhile doing, as well as III) taking care of environmental issues, so that the ground will continue to support growing.
I) The plants to be grown should be chosen primarily on what your family wants to eat, and what will grow in your locale. After that, Consider using heirloom seed rather than hybrid, if you are very concerned about losing the ability to replace seed each year from commercial sources. However, growing and saving your own seed is difficult and time consuming. An excellent answer to this dilemma is the Garden In A Can heirloom seed provided by Mountain Valley Seed Company (www.mvseeds.com). Other seed companies may have something similar. I recommend you buy a can of this triple-sealed seed, store it against the possible disaster, and then buy and use the best seed you can get and don't worry about trying to grow for and save your own seeds.
II) Using the best growing practices, such as those taught by the world-renowned Dr. J. R. Mittleider, (see www.growfood.com)assure you the greatest yield of healthy vegetables from the least space, and with the least amount of labor and financial inputs per unit of production. A family can be self sufficient in their food requirements from proper gardening of just a small fraction of an acre, and this is the greatest evidence of success in achieving a sustainable garden.
III) Gardening should always be done without injuring the land, but rather should improve the land, so that it will continue to support healthy plants indefinitely. Therefore, pesticides and herbicides should be used very judiciously, and wherever possible these issues should be handled by cultural practices as taught by Dr. Mittleider such as 1) eliminating all weeds from the garden area, 2) watering only the plants' root zone, 3) beginning plants in a protected environment for a fast, healthy and strong start, 4) feeding plants proper amounts of balanced natural mineral nutrients to assure fast and healthy growth, 5) harvesting all plants at maturity to avoid allowing pests and diseases to multiply, and 6) discarding any bug or disease infested plant parts away from the garden, and incorporating healthy plant parts into the soil to improve soil structure.
Jim Kennard, President of Food For Everyone Foundation, has a wealth of leadership, financial, business, teaching, and gardening training and experience upon which to draw in helping the Foundation in "Teaching the world to grow food one family at a time." He is a retired CPA, practicing as managing partner in a Salt Lake City firm since 1972, and has also owned and successfully managed several businesses, including hotels, shopping centers, apartments, and retail establishments during the past twenty five years.
Jim has been a Mittleider gardener for the past twenty-eight years, he is a Master Mittleider Gardening Instructor, and has taught classes and worked one-on-one with Dr. Jacob Mittleider on several gardening projects in the USA and abroad, including projects in Armenia, Madagascar, and Turkey he has conducted by himself. He assists gardeners all over the world from the website FAQ pages and free Gardening Group, and grows a large demonstration garden at Utah's Hogle Zoo in his spare time.
Orange Perennials For Your Garden
Perennials are wonderful because, they bloom year after year. Sometimes, I forget that I even have them planted and then they spring up to my surprise and delight! I like to add some zip to my garden with flowers that are orange in color. They add a vibrant touch and the brilliant colors attract birds and insects.
Understanding Weeds - But mostly How to Kill em
When I was a child, I loved to pick Dandelions. The pretty yellow flowers were small, colorful, and looked nice tucked behind my ear! However, if one had popped up in the front yard, my hair accessory would have been considered an atrocity!
Compost YES, Epsom Salts NO
You'll often hear garden writers recommending the use of Epsom salts in the garden as a general rule. First off, I'm not one of those writers. Secondly, Epsom salts are essentially magnesium so if your garden soil is magnesium starved, adding the Epsom salts will seemingly work miracles. If your soil is not magnesium starved, adding Epsom salts is a waste of time, effort and money.
Adirondack Furniture - What It is and Why You Want It
Adirondack is the name given to a style of furnishings that date back to the late 1800's. During this time period, immediately following the civil war, upstate New York gained notoriety as a popular tourist destination. People, mostly the rich, flocked to the lavish hotels and guest houses that dotted the rustic landscape of the Adirondack Mountain range to relax and enjoy the tranquility and atmosphere that could be found in these remote destinations.
Patio Design ? Expanding Your Home Outdoors
A patio design can be as elaborate or as straightforward as you want it to be. Patios can be arranged in any shape and size and can be refreshed regularly just like the interior of your home. Outdoor entertaining is an increasing pastime ? enjoy it with family and friends!
You Say Tomato I Say Mosquito
Gathering tomatoes or other fruits of the garden might not sound like a dangerous occupation, but with terrorism running rampant these days, even a walk thru the garden can require pre-emptive measures. In fact if you left the screen door open for a minute or so and heard a whiny frequency accompanied by a slight tickle it may already be too late, if that slight tickle was the allergic reaction of your skin cells to the Culex, Aedes or Anopheles mosquito, one of the several species that prefer humans, and are capable of transmitting microbial organisms to living cells.
Here is Why You Should Use Gypsum in Gardening
Do you have clay or layer of hard subsoil problems in your garden? Then gypsum may be the answer to help loosen the soil structure. It is not considered a miracle substance and you will find that it doesn't work right away, but a 3 year program of applications should help improve the poor soil conditions. It is not expensive and is easy to spread where needed.
Light Up the Night! Quick Facts about Outdoor Lighting
When the days start to get shorter, the darkness may drive us inside from our porches, patios or decks. Don't despair ? outdoor lighting can lengthen the day and dramatically extend the potential of our outdoor living spaces.
The Importance of Garden Decor
The Quest for Significance
Planting Bare Root Roses
Before planting, the plants must be prepared. The following suggestions will help insure that your roses grow into healthy bushes, trees, etc.:
Growing Orchids as House Plants
One of the long standing myths that I still hear is that orchid house plants are difficult and finicky to grow. Well, plain and simple, the answer is No. In fact, orchids as house plants are easy to grow and will continue to bloom for years. Some orchid plants have been around for centuries.
Gardening is Good Therapy
Many of us garden just for the sheer joy of it. But did you know that all over the country the healing aspects of gardening are being used as therapy or as an adjunct to therapy? Although this might sound like a new concept, garden therapy has been around for decades. For example, the Garden Therapy Program at Central State Hospital in Milledgeville, and in regional hospitals in Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Rome, Thomasville and Savannah, has been helping people for over 40 years through gardening activities known as social and therapeutic horticulture. So what exactly is social and therapeutic horticulture (or garden therapy)? According to the article "Your future starts here: practitioners determine the way ahead" from Growth Point (1999) volume 79, pages 4-5, horticultural therapy is the use of plants by a trained professional as a medium through which certain clinically defined goals may be met. "?Therapeutic horticulture is the process by which individuals may develop well-being using plans and horticulture. This is achieved by active or passive involvement." Although the physical benefits of garden therapy have not yet been fully realized through research, the overall benefits are almost overwhelming. For starters, gardening therapy programs result in increased elf-esteem and self-confidence for all participants. Social and therapeutic horticulture also develops social and work skills, literacy and numeric skills, an increased sense of general well-being and the opportunity for social interaction and the development of independence. In some instances it can also lead to employment or further training or education. Obviously different groups will achieve different results. Groups recovering from major illness or injury, those with physical disabilities, learning disabilities and mental health problems, older people, offenders and those who misuse drugs or alcohol, can all benefit from the therapeutic aspects of gardening as presented through specific therapy related programs. In most cases, those that experience the biggest impact are vulnerable or socially excluded individuals or groups, including the ill, the elderly, and those kept in secure locations, such as hospitals or prisons. One important benefit to using social and therapeutic horticulture is that traditional forms of communication aren't always required. This is particularly important for stroke patients, car accident victims, those with cerebral palsy, aphasia or other illnesses or accidents that hinder verbal communication. Gardening activities lend themselves easily to communicative disabled individuals. This in turn builds teamwork, self-esteem and self-confidence, while encouraging social interaction. Another group that clearly benefits from social and therapeutic horticulture are those that misuse alcohol or substances and those in prison. Teaching horticulture not only becomes a life skill for these individuals, but also develops a wide range of additional benefits. Social and therapeutic horticultures gives these individuals a chance to participate in a meaningful activity, which produces food, in addition to creating skills relating to responsibility, social skills and work ethic. The same is true for juvenile offenders. Gardening therapy, as vocational horticulture curriculum, can be a tool to improve social bonding in addition to developing improved attitudes about personal success and a new awareness of personal job preparedness. The mental benefits don't end there. Increased abilities in decision-making and self-control are common themes reported by staff in secure psychiatric hospitals. Reports of increased confidence, self-esteem and hope are also common in this environment. Prison staff have also noticed that gardening therapy improves the social interaction of the inmates, in addition to improving mutual understanding between project staff and prisoners who shared outdoor conditions of work. It's interesting that studies in both hospitals and prisons consistently list improving relationships between participants, integrating with the community, life skills and ownership as being some of the real benefits to participants. But in addition to creating a myriad of emotional and social benefits, the health benefits of being outdoors, breathing in fresh air and doing physical work cannot be overlooked. In most studies, participants noted that fresh air, fitness and weight control where prime benefits that couldn't be overlooked. Although unable to pin down a solid reason, studies have shown that human being posses an innate attraction to nature. What we do know, is that being outdoors creates feelings of appreciation, tranquility, spirituality and peace. So it would seem, that just being in a garden setting is in itself restorative. Active gardening only heightens those feelings. With so many positive benefits to gardening, isn't it time you got outside and started tending to your garden? Next time you are kneeling in fresh dirt to pull weeds or plant a new variety of a vegetable or flower, think about the tranquility you feel while being outdoors in your garden. Let the act of gardening sooth and revitalize you. Soak up the positive benefits of tending to your own garden. If you have someone in your life that could benefit from garden therapy, contact your local health unit to find out more about programs in your area. Not only will the enjoyment of gardening help bond you together, but it will also create numerous positive mental and physical benefits for both of you. So get gardening today for both your physical and mental health. You'll enjoy the experience so much that you'll immediately thank yourself.
Tips For Successful Backyard Grape Growing
Growing grapes in the backyard or garden can be a rewarding experience. It can also be quite a failure if not done properly. Grapevines are perennial plants and will grow for years to come. There are a few things to consider before you just jump in and start planting your grapevines. Otherwise, mistakes made at planting will haunt you in the future.
Amish Furniture on the Front Porch
While shopping on line the other day at www.stoveramishfurniture.com, I looked at the Amish Hickory Rocker. Now I have looked at this rocker many a time, but I have never thought about it. Think about how many times a rocker like this, over the generations, has rocked a baby to sleep, or a grandpa. Think about those spring, summer and autumn nights on the porch watching the kids play on the streets, or just drinking a glass of cool sweet tea listen to the crickets. How many times has one of these rockers sat in front of the fireplace, and comforted someone to sleep on a cold night.
How To Attract Hummingbirds
Yes! You can attract hummingbirds to your home. Even if you live in the middle of the city, and even if you've never had any luck getting them to come in the past.
Build a Rain Garden
There's a new garden in town. It is (mostly) easy to install, looks good year-round, requires almost no maintenance and has a terrifically upbeat impact on the environment. No wonder rain gardens are such a great new gardening trend!
How to Buy a Porch Swing
The Porch Swing is enjoying a surge in popularity thanks to the latest Home & Garden trend towards building "Garden Rooms". Patio Furniture Retailers have responded by flooding the market with so many options that making a choice can be a daunting task. Here are some factors that you should consider to help you make the best Porch Swing choice for you:
Patio Swings Spruce Up Your Outdoor Space with Comfort and Style
Are you looking for a way to spruce up your patio while providing additional seating at the same time? Are you tired and bored of the same old stationary patio seating that can be purchased in most stores? If so, maybe you should consider furnishing your patio with a unique patio swing.
Mulch Your Spring Bulbs In The Fall For A Beautiful Spring Display
Flower bulbs need a good, long, winters sleep. Like some people we know, if they wake up before they are fully rested, they get kind of cranky, and then they don't bloom well at all.
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