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Don’t till the dirt!!! September 30, 2008

Posted by liajo in How to tips.
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I was web surfing last night looking for some advice on potato growing.  I ran across a great site with lots of useful information about potatoes and other vegetables and fruits.  I decided to look around the site a little more and clicked on an article about “how to start a garden.”  In the first paragraph the new gardener was told to till the earth as deep as they could.  I wanted to scream. 

When will well meaning gardeners stop giving such advice??  You should never till the earth.  There is an entire micro ecosystem under there that we can’t even see, but whose homes we are destroying.  These little critters are vital to the health of any garden. 

The easiest and quickest way to a new garden is to lay bags of potting mix on the ground open holes in them and plant directly in them.  Check this out on www.MotherEarthNews.com.  If you want a “traditional” garden then very lightly hand till the earth to a very shallow depth.  Next layer on a three to four inches of good composted soil and plant.  Never and I mean never till the earth as deep as you can.

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Pruning tomatos September 14, 2008

Posted by liajo in gardening mistakes.
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I make a lot of gardening mistakes and NOT pruning is one of them.  I should have pruned the tomatos about six weeks ago, I just couldn’t make myself to it.  I know pruning is good for the fruit, but the object is to grow plants.  Pruning doesn’t seem to agree with that objective.

I did prune the tomatos this weekend.  It took a good couple of hours but I am pleased with the results.  Now there is better air circulation around and between the plants, and light can get down to the soil.  I know that I will see the results in more and bigger tomatos.

Maybe next time something needs to be pruned I’ll remember this.