How to Fertilize Roses Co-authored by Lauren Kurtz

Lauren Kurtz, Horticulturist

Growing beautiful roses requires care and lots of nutrients. You can grow your roses best with a food balance that’s high in nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, as well as some secondary nutrients and minerals. Natural fertilizers provide steady nutrients to the soil long-term, and there are many types to choose from. Chemical fertilizers are fast-acting and need only 1-3 applications for the year. Many rose gardeners prefer to combine the two types of fertilizer for the best results.

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Learning to Use Natural Fertilizers

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    Use natural fertilizers before planting and before your rose’s first bloom. For new and small rose plants, it’s best to use organic fertilizers to avoid burning their delicate roots. Add nutrients to the soil before planting your rose bush, and after you first plant them, with natural fertilizers. Wait until after they bloom the first time before using any chemical fertilizers.[1]

    • In early spring, before roses come out of dormancy and start to bloom, using natural fertilizers is the best way to get roses accustomed to new nutrients in the soil.
    • Look for fertilizers labeled organic at a local garden supply store, or use the recipes in the homemade fertilizers section.
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    Apply natural fertilizers every 4 weeks during high growth season. To keep a steady amount of nutrients flowing into your roses’ soil, use natural fertilizers every 4 weeks from early spring until 3-4 weeks before they enter dormancy. Work whatever fertilizer you choose into the upper soil levels.[2]

    • Spread solid or granular natural fertilizers in a circle around the top of the soil about 6 in (15 cm) from the base of the bush and work it into the top 2 in (5.1 cm) of soil with a small cultivator.
    • Liquid natural fertilizers can be poured in a circle about 6 in (15 cm) from the base of the bush.
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    Stop all fertilization 35-40 days before the first frost date. Applying fertilizers too late in the growing season could cause young, soft growth that’s easily damaged by the first frost. To encourage your roses to begin preparing for winter dormancy, stop fertilizing them 35-

READ MORE HERE:  https://www.wikihow.com/Fertilize-Roses

Garden Magic: Welcome to my magical garden BY RACHEL PATTERSON

Rachel Patterson is amazing!!  Have a peek…

rachel patterson magical garden

Whether you only have a window sill with a pot plant on, a small city terrace, a playing field or several acres, you can always work with the magic of your garden.  I think the kitchen extends into the garden anyway, so a Kitchen Witch will often be found pottering around in amongst the plants.

Being in regular contact with your garden and what you grow, even with your house plants or a few pots of herbs, can help you to connect with the spirit of nature and recognise the subtleties of the changing of the seasons and your garden can also provide you with food and magical ingredients.

Magical gardening does take time, focus and attention.  You can’t just plant something and leave it in the hope that several months later it will have grown, flourished and be covered in fruit or flowers (OK on the odd occasion it does happen but not often!).

My gardening memories date back to my childhood.  My dad is and always was a keen gardener, organic before it was fashionable to be so.  He has always had an allotment and a greenhouse which provide a bounty of wonderful fruit and vegetables.  Apparently even as a toddler I would disappear down the garden with him and come back covered in mud.

In my early teens I experienced food production on a large scale as I lived on a farm for a few years. Then in my late teens I had the opportunity of working for a specialist glasshouse company.  Both of those life events added to my love of the garden, food and nature’s bounty.

Once I owned by own house, the garden became key.  It is my sanctuary, a peaceful place to escape to and a space in which to create magic.

For the past twenty or so years we have lived in the same house; it is on the edge of a large city and only has a small walled garden, but it is ours and we have packed it full of as many plants, flowers and herbs as we can cram into it.  We even have a very small (i.e. teeny tiny) grow house just big enough to over winter a few pots and grow some seeds.

Even on my busy days I try to step out into the garden, if only just for a few minutes to relax and connect with Mother Earth.

Your garden, whatever size it is, opens up a whole new world of magic for you to delve in to.  Warning: Gardening is addictive and will improve your health, spirit and mental wellbeing.

Not only is a garden your direct line to a natural source of energy, it can also provide you with a whole shopping trolley full of free magical and often edible ingredients. Whether it is in the form of fruit and vegetables or flowers, petals and seeds.

Let’s open the magical box

You may imagine you need to have a beautiful picture box garden laid out in front of a thatched cottage to have a witch’s garden but really that isn’t the case.  You can style the garden in any way that suits your taste, size of garden and your budget.

Many hours and much money can be spent in garden centres and whilst they are brilliant sources for plant and design inspiration you can spend more money than you need to.  Oh…and a lot of them have a café…with cake.Plant nurseries often tend to be cheaper than garden centres but ask around.  Lots of family and friends will probably be willing to share cuttings and seeds with you.  And once your garden has a few plants in you can propagate more from those you already have.

Gardening does take time and effort.  You will need to dig, plant, weed, dead

READ MORE HERE:  https://www.patheos.com/blogs/beneaththemoon/2018/05/garden-magic/

Vegetable seeds to sow in March By BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

There are lots of vegetable crops that can be sown in March, when the days are beginning to lengthen and become warmer.

Some crops, such as chillies and tomatoes, need to be sown early in the year in order to give them the long growing season that they need. Others, such as fast-growing beetroot and salads can be started off early so that you can enjoy them in late spring and early summer – keep sowing them to extend the harvest.

Tender crops like aubergines need to be sown under glass, either in a greenhouse or on a sunny windowsill. Hardier crops like beetroot and broad beans can be sown directly into the ground outdoors; do not sow if the ground is frosty or covered in snow.

Find out which crops you can sow in March, below.


Aubergines, chillies and tomatoes

In the unpredictable British climate, tomatoes, chillies and aubergines need a long growing season in order to produce a good crop – so start them off early. Sow under glass for the best results.

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Broad beans

Broad beans are a welcome crop in early summer, and can be sown outdoors in March. Watch out for blackfly as the plants grow – pinch out the growing tip, where they congregate.

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4 Easy Raised Beds You Can Make In Under Two Hours By Susan Patterson

Gardening is much easier with raised beds. They make many traditional gardening chores like deep tilling, weeding and amending the soil redundant. If you have poor soil, if it is too acidic or clayey, if the ground is rocky or uneven, raised beds can come to your rescue.

You can fill the raised beds with good quality compost and soil so the plants get to live in the best of soil conditions. Filled-in beds ensure good soil aeration and drainage. Plants can have excellent root run and they will escape competition from tree roots in the ground.

pH of the soil can be easily adjusted to suit the plants you’re growing. Adjacent beds can have ericaceous plants growing in one and have sweet soil in the next. Troublesome creepy crawlies are less likely to find their way into your raised beds. It is easier to fix protective hoops and supportive structures. When you top dress the beds occasionally, the rains won’t carry it away. You can grow more food in less space because closer planting is possible. Also, crawling plants can hang over the sides of a bed, leaving the space inside for other crops.

Well, the benefits of raised bed gardening are numerous. But what is even more heartening is that it is quite easy to make raised beds. You can make simple structures using locally available materials. The whole family can pitch in and get it done in just an hour or two.

Here are some quick and easy DIY raised beds to get you started.

1. Raised bed with sandbag for sides

To start with the easiest, this raised bed requires just sandbags. Ready-to-use sandbags could be available in many disaster management centers. Sand is usually available from many nurseries and building supply companies in case you want to make your own, but it might be illegal to collect sand from beaches. Garden soil does not work as an alternative.

To make a 4ft x 8ft raised bed, you may need 20 sandbags measuring 1ft x 3ft. A width of 4 ft is ideal for beds since you will be able to plant and harvest crops without stepping into bed. Walking on the bed results in soil compaction, which is something you want to avoid.

Mark the outline of a 4ft x 8ft rectangle on the ground. Place sandbags in a single file on all sides, making sure that the corners have a snug fit. Now, build a second layer and tamp it down.

Line the interior of the bed with cardboard or several layers of newspaper to make a barrier against weeds in the ground. Fill the bed with several layers using high-quality garden soil, grass clippings, crushed leaves, and compost.

If you have recently cut down some trees in the property or have old logs lying around, you can build a raised bed in no time. Sourcing straight logs of 1 ft diameter from a local lumberyard is not a bad idea either. Three 8 ft long logs would be sufficient if you have a chainsaw to cut one of them into two 4 ft long pieces for the shorter sides. You can easily get it done in lumberyards.

Mark 4ft x 8ft rectangle on the ground and place the two long logs 4 ft apart and parallel to each other. Place the shorter logs on the remaining two sides. Move the logs slightly towards one another to complete the bed. Wedge a few rocks in the space between the logs and the ground to keep the logs from shifting as you fill the beds. Alternatively, you can use 2 ft long sections of rebar to give strong support to the logs. Hammer them down close to the logs, 2-3 each to every side, until they are flush with the top of the logs.

3. Raised beds with

 

READ MORE:  https://www.naturallivingideas.com/4-easy-raised-beds-anyone-can-make-two-hours/

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The 8 Best Greenhouses of 2019 By: Erica Puisis

Garden year-round with these smart sheds

If you have a green thumb, or just want to try your hand at horticulture, a greenhouse can be a great choice for protecting plants during chilly weather, starting new plants or raising high-humidity plants like cactus. Gardeners love the ability of a greenhouse to trap heat and humidity, and it can help your vegetation to weather unseasonable temperatures or adjust to life outdoors after being raised from seeds in an indoor climate. There are greenhouses of all sizes — ranging from small pop-up units or simple shelving covered with greenhouse PVC to larger and more elaborate polycarbonate and aluminum or cedar structures. When you choose the best greenhouse to buy, consider your gardening needs, whether you want a freestanding ‘shed-style’ greenhouse or a lean-to, and if features such as built-in gutters and self-opening vents are important to you. Once you purchase a greenhouse, you can look forward to enjoying a ‘greener’ getaway right in your own backyard! Here, the best greenhouses for you and your garden.

  • If you are looking for a greenhouse that will keep your plants humid and happy through almost any type of weather, the Ohuhu Large Walk-in Plant Greenhouse is our top overall pick.

    This greenhouse offers plenty of space, but also has a small enough footprint that it won’t take over your entire backyard. The greenhouse measures a little over four feet long and four feet wide but offers over six feet of headroom inside — making it easy to tend to your plants without having to bend over or feel cramped. Inside, you’ll also have 12 shelves, with six on each side positioned in three rows.

    Our top pick for a greenhouse is also easy to put together. Most people agree that the design is relatively simple and can be completed in about an hour. A few users added additional tie-downs to stabilize the structure in the event of high winds. People comment on the fact that the greenhouse accomplishes its purpose of keeping plants in a warm, humid environment – even when outside temperatures begin to dip. If you’re looking for an easy-to-assemble greenhouse with plenty of space for your plants and room to move around inside, order the Ohuhu Large Walk-in Plant Greenhouse.

  • This portable greenhouse is easily assembled in a matter of minutes and comes in a few different sizes depending on your needs. The PlantHouse 3 is 3.5″ x  3″ x  3″ so it can easily be positioned over existing shrubs, or place your containers inside of the greenhouse to protect from cooler temperatures. Another nice feature that sets this budget greenhouse apart is the fact that

     

    READ MORE:  https://www.thespruce.com/best-greenhouses-4157678

 

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