Many thanks to Tara Pattinson's class members who also sent to me this link which offers general information on berries.
Berry Fruit Guide
I have in my own garden 'Summit' red raspberries, a wide variety of blueberries, and lingonberries.
This "How to Grow Raspberries" article from Fine Gardening details growing the same variety that I have which provides a long and delicious picking season for me and my neighbors.
Below see my raspberry patch in April.
At right is the same raspberry patch in August last year.
Mossy flats, seeds not germinating
New to your website but really like what I see. Maybe you
can help me. I have searched and can't find
an answer. I have a greenhouse with gas heat, fan, etc. I am
bottom watering my flats but now they have moss. If I don't water as
often, they dry out and won't germinate. HELP!!!! What am I doing
seeds won't germinate and I'm having a family reunion this summer!
Hello, Brenda! Thank you for visiting my website.
I find bottom
watering to be fine for young plants, but not for seeds. Seeds
want moisture, but not to the exclusion of air!
Are you using a potting
mix that drains well but still retains moisture? The right balance
of ingredients such as peat (moisture
retentive) and perlite (drainage
and air) makes a difference. Seeds prefer a light mix. Try combining 4 parts
peat, 2 parts fine perlite, and 2 parts fine vermiculite, OR try just using
vermiculite (fine grade) alone. Remember that your little seedlings
will need some weak fertilizer
as soon as they show true leaves, as there is no food for them in perlite
I water my potting mix with warm water, plant the seeds,
then COVER THE FLAT with one of those clear dome covers. Most flats
I place on a heat mat. I check
daily and water only where needed using a bottled water bottle with a squirt
top (usually the cells on the edge dry out a bit first. Using the dome
is important-- it retains the original moisture longer. You could
use a plastic
bag and support it above the flat with small sticks or wire arches (so
don't touch the plastic directly).
IMPORTANT: As soon as the seeds sprout,
prop up one edge of the dome (or open the end of the plastic bag)
to let some air circulate; otherwise you
trouble with damping off fungus.
As soon as the seedlings are large enough
to handle (having 2 true leaves-- just enough to hang on to as
you transfer the seedling), you can pot them up in regular potting
mix and continue to feed a
fertilizer solution often.
Use a timer
to control your lights, which should be on over your seedlings
no more than 18 hours a day.
You can use
this link to the old website to
access its contents.
35 uses for plastic milk jugs
Make soil scoops,
watering cans, markers, or use them as weights to hold down row covers.
You can build your own add-on greenhouse.
How to build a greenhouse from used windows or storm doors.
Raised garden bed inexpensive min-greenhouse.
DIY, low cost and multipurpose greenhouses.
Build a greenhouse: the amazing, low-cost, multipurpose, solar-heated greenhouse/guesthouse.
You'll find this site very
useful.Typing in a plant name (I looked up Tomato 'Juliet') brings up its
entry and a thumbnail image. Clicking on either brings up more detail such
as height, spacing, days to maturity, reviews from other gardeners, and more
images that you can click on and enlarge to get a really good look.
Nonmembers may only search
10 times, but membership is free. Perhaps you could join and add to the database.
Plants Database currently contains 62,053 plants, 34,154 photos, 15,467
comments, representing 356 families, 2,416 genera, and 5,407 species.
database was collaboratively developed by gardeners around the world.
It is the result of the efforts of 4,718 individuals. It is the largest of
kind in existence.
You may search for entries
in several ways: by name (common or botanical); by characteristics (height,
hardiness, etc.) or browse
the database by
Build a potting
back will thank you for building this bench, and potting
plants up to the next size will be a pleasure. (My own
bench even doubles as a buffet table during the summer.
A smooth finish makes it easy to clean off.)
thanks to Mike McClure for his contribution of this bench
design, detailed and fully illustrated instructions,
Bessie (left) and little Alice exploring their
tiny grass park.
Hollyhock seeds won't grow
Hi IM new to this gardening and I love hollyhock's but the
problem with that is I have not been able to get them to come
up. I have planted them
in the spring around last year and they didn't do anything. So my question is
is the best time to plant Hollyhocks? Thank you for all the information you
have all ready post to us. ---Summer.
Hollyhocks (aka Althaea) should be easy to grow. If you plant them outside,
do so after the last frost.
If that has not been working for you, I would try planting them indoors. You
will then have more control over the environment. Althaea seeds need light to
germinate, so just press the seeds into the soil-- don't bury them. They will
germinate best at 60 to 70 degrees Farenheit soil temperature in about 10 to
Go to the seed starting page for
may prefer a different shape for your greenhouse. Geodesic domes
offer another possibility. From Ernie Aiken of Worldflower Garden
Domes, connector kits are available --cut your own lumber and
save money, or purchase a complete ready-to-assemble garden dome
Garden Domes are not
free, as the above resources are, but are certainly interesting.
You can easily make a paper model from Ernie's website graphics
to preview any of the dome models, or just look through the extensive
photos in the site.
Build a garden cloche & raised bed
For those plants you've set out early and
want to protect from frost, eartheasy offers plans for building
garden cloche. Very clear instructions and drawings.
Make a cloche to their specifications, or make one to fit over
a raised garden
bed (more good info. from eartheasy).
By the way,
I highly recommend raised beds. I put in 8 small (about 4 feet
square) raised beds last year. Of course, I was staining,
installing, and leveling them during a particularly rainy period,
but it was well worth it. I did not use treated lumber, just deck
stain on plain fir lumber.
My near urban lot is hilly, small, and
just about solid clay soil. The raised bed structure takes
necessary to get any flat ground around here. In the beds I have
perfectly drained fluffy soil at all times. In our cool soggy
winter and spring, the soil temperature in the raised beds is
higher. All to the good.
Vegetable production last year was far beyond what I had ever
gotten in a traditional ground level garden. It helped to have
a definite edge to everything also.
Producing transplants in the greenhouse is so much more satisfying
when you know they will continue to thrive when set out into the
Spider mites in the greenhouse
enjoy your site! We are new to the greenhouse world and
have ordered seeds and started some greenhouse tomato recently. We
struggle with temperature, but maintain about 50 at night.
We have noticed “mites”. What should we
do? I have heard we need to strip the greenhouse, spray
with bleach? Any advise would be great.
tomatos I am growing are only
costing me about $40 per month
in electric… haha. I hope they are worth it. Please provide
your thoughts and keep the information
on the site coming.
Daryl! Thank you for visiting my website.
you have a spider mite problem, your greenhouse atmosphere
is TOO DRY. Damage
caused by spider mites shows as numerous
tiny white or yellow speckles on leaves,
progressing (in severe infestations) to fine "silk" or webs on leaves
which collects dust, and so many mites on the plants that they are easily spotted.
first thing to do is spray your plants with jets of water.
Be sure to get the undersides of the leaves also. It would
indeed be a good idea to clean up the greenhouse. I would
not use bleach, however. Bleach is a very harsh chemical
and will kill everything.
have an important place in a greenhouse. I especially appreciate the good
work that my greenhouse spiders do. Use mild soap and warm water and scrub
(This reminds me that I need to do just that in my own greenhouse.)
second thing I would do is get some neem oil or horticultural
(Ultra Fine), mix with water and spray on all plant surfaces.
These work by smothering
insects and their eggs, but are not toxic to beneficials such as spiders,
ladybugs and bees. Be sure to spray the undersides of the leaves. This
will get any
spider mites that were not destroyed by the jets of water. These are available
Greenhouse You may need to repeat applications to maintain control.
(Follow instructions provided with the oil.)
if you have a really bad infestation, get some predatory
mites such as Phytoseiulus persimilis
to release in your greenhouse. BioControl
Network and GrowQuest.com are
a couple of possible sources. (Also they
are available at Charley's Greenhouse.)
since I installed a mist system in my greenhouse, I have
not once had a
spider mite problem, plants thrive, and my orchids bloom abundantly.