Incorporating Edible Plants into the Landscape

A nice landscape of a few trees and shrubs, some flowers and well-tended turf has value. Our landscapes help define our outdoor living space, provide shade and help screen unwanted views. A well-maintained landscape may add as much as 5 to 10 percent to the value of our property. But landscapes can provide another resource that we don’t often consider–food. What if it were possible to introduce edible plants to your landscape? Continue reading

Harvesting Blueberries & Blackberries for Full Flavor

It’s almost summer, and that is prime harvest season for blueberries and blackberries, both of which have the potential to grow very well in Kentucky. Blueberries, which are native to North America, are ready to harvest from early June through early August. Blackberries are ready to harvest from mid-June to early October. These delicious fruits offer health benefits, but best of all, they capture the essence of summer in their sweetness. Continue reading

Economical Cold Storage for Market Growers

Fruit and vegetable growers who sell through farmer’s markets, farm stands and community supported agriculture know that work associated with being a successful market grower does not end with the active growing season. The colder months are an ideal time to launch projects to improve efficiency, product quality and economic return for the season ahead. One viable project that can accomplish all three of these goals is the construction of a cold storage room. Continue reading

Mulching Strawberry Plants

Hopefully, you had a chance to mulch your strawberry plantings before the early winter cold.

Mulch helps reduce the freezing and thawing of the soil that breaks off the small roots and in some cases can lift the plants partially out of the ground, translating into smaller berries and reduced yields. Continue reading

Fall Gardening Cleanup Controls Spring Diseases

You can reduce the risk of some common problems next year by getting rid of leftover plant debris in vegetable, flower and fruit gardening areas this fall.

Several disease-causing fungi and bacteria spend the winter on plant debris, and can cause diseases the following growing season. Proper garden sanitation can combat such diseases as early blight, mildews, gray mold fungus and various root rot and wilt problems. Continue reading