PRACTICAL ADVICE FOR HORTICULTURE
SAVE THE PLANT IDENTIFICATION LABELS!
Keep a written file of the plants that are bought with identification, even date that it was bought. Labels usually have height of plant, width, exposure -sun, semi-shade, shade, water requirements, where it was purchased.
When sowing seeds, label the seeds and when seeds were planted.
“Forcing” flowering branches is the term used for bringing plants indoors to bloom. The term may be a tad too strong for cut branches. Forcing flowering branches requires more of a gentle encouragement than a strong arm.
Did you know that you can use the wood ash from your family bon fires and cozy holiday fireplace moments to bring life to your garden? Well you can! Wood ash is rich with potassium and many of the nutrients that plants crave. Here are a few of the benefits of supplementing your compost with wood ash-
- Provides potassium and other nutrients to your compost
- Naturally repels some insect pests, like slugs and snails
- Supports a sustainable closed-loop system between your home and your garden
Now let's walk through how to put your wood ash to use in your garden. A little goes a long way. Wood ash is alkaline (about 9 pH), while good soil is between 6.5 and 7 pH. We want to use enough wood ash to supply nutrients, but not too much to imbalance the soil pH. Add up to 1/4 pound of wood ash every 6 inches of compost material.
If you would like to use your compost on acidic soil loving plants (examples: Azaleas, Rhododendrons, Daffodils, Hydrangeas, Blueberries, Magnolia Trees) we recommend using under a pound or two in an entire season’s worth of composting. Now that you have an idea of how much to use, simply apply your dry ash to your compost pile and mix in with a shovel or pitchfork, and let nature do the rest!