Mulch can be beneficial in many ways on plant beds, around foundation shrubs and
other gardening locations in your yard, but mold can threaten its benefits.
In landscape beds and gardens, mulch helps control weeds, prevent extreme soil
temperature fluctuation, decrease water evaporation and improve drainage. Mulch also
reduces mower and string trimmer damage on shrubs and trees by suppressing vegetation near their trunks. As it decomposes, mulch produces organic materials to improve soil and otherwise benefit plants. Continue reading
Cut branches forced into bloom can help add sunshine to those gloomy winter days and it is not hard to coax many into flower. Branches from cherry, plum, forsythia, quince and viburnums can be forced into blooming and used in arrangements. Continue reading
When you measure your gardening experience in decades rather than years, you’ve adopted new techniques and eliminated some old ones. Over the seasons, one of the traditions I’ve changed is the long single rows of vegetables with wide spaces between rows. Due to easier maintenance and increased yield, I’ve changed to more intensive gardening. Intensive gardening reduces wasted space to a minimum; however, it isn’t just for people who lack land resources. An intensive vegetable garden concentrates work efforts to create an ideal plant environment, giving higher yields with less labor. This idea isn’t new as “Square Foot Gardening” has advocated these ideals for decades. Don’t get the idea there isn’t still work involved, as weeding by hand or with hand tools is still required, although due to closer plant spacing fewer weeds should be present. Mulching with an organic material between plants is an integral part of the intensive system. Continue reading