Category Archives: Gardening

How to Grow Salvia

The ‘Salvia Plant’ also known as ‘Salvia Divinorum’ is a relatively easy plant to cultivate however it requires a lot of patience as it tends to be slow growing. The reality is however that many persons today spend loads of money to buy mint as they have no other sources of it. So today we are going to go walk through the steps to get you your very own salvia plant and in return saving you a lot of cash.

Required Materials

  • Salvia Cutting
  • Pots or other container to plant it in (a garden can also be used)
  • Watering Can/ Means of watering the plant.
  • Organic Fertilizer

Instructions

  1. Allow your salvia cutting to stand in a pot of water for about 2 weeks or until it begins to grow roots.
  2. Once the roots become visible, plant the salvia in rich soil (either in your pot or in your garden if preferred)
  3. Water generously to strengthen the roots.
  4. Apply the organic fertilizer to give your plant a boost. Repeat once a week.
  5. Monitor your plant on a regular basis.

Wow, now wasn’t that easy? Here are a few tips and warnings that may also assist you when growing your plant.

Tips and Warnings

  • Salvia Plants grow best with light watering and in humid temperatures.
  • If your plant should become heavy, breaking over into the soil, don’t worry as this will only cause a a new plant to bloom.

How to Grow Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is a nutritious fruit that is rich in vitamin C and potassium. To know how to grow butternut squash, start with choosing the best location and follow the simple steps in planting the seedlings, applying fertilizers and harvesting the fruits.

Do you want to grow a nutritious and healthy fruit in your backyard? Are you interested in planting a pumpkin-like fruit in your lawn? Do you want to save money by planting fruits in your own place? Then learn how to grow butternut squash and maximize the benefits from this special and delicate fruit.

Materials Needed

Learning how to grow butternut squash is very easy. To avoid having problems and difficulties in growing this fruit, get all the important materials and tools beforehand. Some of the materials that are needed in this activity are individual pots, general purpose fertilizers and seedlings. Another important material when growing butternut squash is well-rotted manure.

Steps

The first step in this activity is to search for a site where you will plant the seedlings. When choosing the location, it is important to look for a spacious area since the vines of the plant spread rapidly. After choosing the location, prepare the site. Mulching is a gardening method that is very helpful in preparing the soil. Do not forget to apply fertilizers in the soil to provide the needed nutrients and vitamins of the seedlings like nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and trace elements.

When planting the seedlings, remember to plant them at least half inch below the ground. It is also important to allot space in between them. The seedlings should be planted at least four inches apart with each other. To ensure that the seedlings will grow healthy, meet the watering requirements for growing butternut squash. Check the seedlings every day and ensure that the seeds are hydrated. If you do not have enough time to water the seeds, it is best to create an irrigation system in your backyard or lawn. As soon as the stems of the plants start to grow, apply insecticides in the area to protect the plants. To know that butternut squash is ready to be harvested, look at the rind and stem of the fruit. If the rind is hard and the stem is at least two inches long, then the fruit can be harvested.

Tip

After two weeks of planting, the seeds will start to germinate and after three months, the fruits can be harvested. Apply insecticides at night to avoid affecting bees because the insects are very essential to the pollination of butternut squash plants. Lastly, harvest the fruits of the plants before frost. When unexpected frost came, harvest the fruits and place in a cool and dry place.

How to Grow Tobacco

Tobacco is a tropical crop that grows well in subtropical and temperate zones. What it needs is a sunny location and well-drained soils. In poorly drained soils, growth is stunted and the plant may even die.

Seeds of commercial varieties may be found only in tobacco-producing regions. You can search the Internet for seed companies that sell tobacco seeds for home gardens.

Tobacco seeds are very small. You can grow them in a tray with damp soil, but be careful not to wash the seeds away when you water. The tray should be located in a greenhouse or a protected area. The seeds need fertilizer to grow into transplants. You can use the same fertilizer manufactured for tomatoes, peppers, and potatoes.

You should plant your seeds at least two months before your desired date of transplanting. The seedlings are ready for transplant when they are 6 – 8 inches in height.

Prepare the soil before transplanting by cleaning the trash and burying it into the ground. You can rake leaves and muck, burn it and plough the ash into the soil.
Bedding will provide better drainage. Plants should be spaced two feet apart. It is best to transplant during wet weather. Otherwise, water the transplants immediately and as often as needed.

If you cleaned and selected the right soil, soil pest problems will be avoided. Weeds can be pulled out by hand. Tobacco should be protected from insect pests such as budworms and aphids. Consult your local pest guide.

If you are growing the tobacco for curing, you should top it, or remove the terminal bud, as soon as the flower forms. This allows the upper leaves to get larger and thicker.

Suckers will develop at each leaf soon after topping. They should also be removed by hand to prevent them from reducing yield quantity and quality.

When the plant seems fully grown and takes on a yellowish cast, it is ready for harvest. Curing tobacco needs to be done by adding heat, or it may be air cured. If you are a home gardener, you may not have the facilities for curing tobacco. You can try to locate other producers in your area who may have curing facilities.

You can cure tobacco without heat in a building with good circulation. It takes a few weeks to cure tobacco properly.

How to Grow Poppies

As soon as the shells of Poppy seeds seem like they will crack and the seeds turn black, it is time to harvest and sow them. Harden them before you put them out during spring or late summer. The seeds should be placed under partial shade.

Steps to Grow Poppies

  1. Gather the fresh seeds and plant them in nutrient-rich soil. Sow them sparsely so you will have less to thin. These seeds will take root in 10-21 days and will thrive best in cool and moist soil. They will not grow in very warm places.
  2. You should plant the seeds in individual pots to allow ample space for growth. Cover them with gentle and weightless sand and never allow them to dry out. Put in organic material like manure or compost.
  3. Keep the seeds cool. If you wish to grow them indoors, sow them from December to February and spray them with water in fine mist form. Germination shall take place from two weeks to a few months.
  4. While the seeds are just coming up, look out for fungus (when seeds are moist). To prevent this, make sure that the seeds are properly ventilated and that they don’t become too wet. One way to prevent this phenomenon is to lightly stroke your hand over the top of the plants every day.
  5. Mulch after planting to enrich the soil, prevent unwarranted erosion or evaporation, inhibit weed growth, and maintain moisture. Fertilize the poppies once a month to encourage steady growth.
  6. Poppies reproduce by division. Carefully lift out the mature poppy. Then delicately pull it apart and replant. Wait a few years before reproducing the plant.
  7. Seeds will not grow if the climate is too warm. If it’s warm, it’s good to plant the seeds in peat pellets and place them inside a refrigerator for seven days. They will not sprout inside, but they will when you take them. This is a great technique to make seeds develop well in warm climate.

Poppies grown indoors can be planted during fall, but they should be kept cool. Poppies grown outside should be cultivated in good soil that is not too wet. Poppy will grow fast and will blossom early on to mid summer. Poppies can also grow well outside during the winter.

How to Grow Onions

Onions grow best in well drained and firm soil that is not freshly manured.

Steps to Grow Onions

  1. Prepare your soil before planting onions. Add compost organic matter to your soil to enrich it, but do this a few weeks before the actual planting. You can also tread on the soil gently in order to firm it up.
  2. Choose the type of plant you want to use. Decide whether you would plant onion seeds or sets. Onion sets are small onion bulbs that have partly grown. Sets are generally more expensive but allow you to save on energy and time. You are sure that your onion plant will grow as well.
  3. Sow onions on moist soil. If the soil is dry, water it and do the sowing the following day.
  4. If you are using onion seeds, allow about an inch of space between seeds. Place the seeds about 2 cm deep in the soil.
  5. If you are sowing onion sets, provide a 10 cm space between each one. Make a small hole for every set. Place the set in the hole with the set’s neck facing upwards. When you are covering the set with soil, make sure that the tip of the bulb shows through the surface of the soil.
  6. Tend the plants by regularly weeding between the onions through shallow hoeing.
  7. If you used onion seeds, you need to thin the crops when they reach a height of 5 cm. Perform the thinning process until the crops are 10 cm apart.
  8. Onions can be harvested one week after their tops have fallen over and are yellowed. Using a fork, lift the crops from the soil. Be careful not to damage the onion skin. Decayed organisms could enter the onion flesh through damaged skin. Throw away the onions that show signs of decay. These will affect healthy onions when they are stored together.

How to Grow Ginger

The first step in growing ginger is to prepare the things you will need. Here is a list of the materials for the task:

  • Ginger roots
  • Potting soil
  • Planting containers
  • Garden trowels and garden spades
  • Fertilizers
  • Compost makers

Steps to Grow Ginger

  1. When all the materials are ready, prepare your planting container. It should be able to hold around three average-sized gingers. You can use a container that is around 12 inches deep and 14 inches across. Your container should have good drainage.
  2. Fill your container with potting soil. Make sure that you use the right amount of compost. Then, soak the ginger overnight in moderately warm water. The following morning, set the ginger in the pot, just below the soil surface. Provide even spaces between the gingers and make the buds face upwards.
  3. Spring is the best time to plant because ginger likes warm temperatures. Place the container in light shade. During this stage, monitor the temperature. Water the plants lightly. Increase the amount of water when the ginger starts growing. Keep the plant dry during the winter season. This should be done because the ginger plant is dormant during the cold season. When the temperature reaches 50 degrees F, you will need to move the plant outside.
  4. You also need to provide the plants with protection against strong winds. This will prevent the plants from being damaged. The plants will reach maturity within ten months to one year. During this stage, they will be around two to four feet.

How to Grow Clematis

    Select the area where you will plant it. Generally, you need to choose a place that gets much sunlight. Also, you should find an area where there is sufficient air movement.

  1. Make sure that the soil you have is well-draining and rich with a pH that is close to 7.0. You must prepare an area of soil with a depth of 24 inches and a width of 3 feet. Ideally, you can add in fertilizers to improve the soil’s quality.
  2. Provide the support needed. This depends on the type of clematis you will plant. You need to install a support that is thin, so it is a good idea to use a set of wires for this structure. If you choose to grow clematis on a fence or a wall, you can use plastic coated wire to form 6-12 inch squares. You should fasten the squares to the fence or wall using eye bolts.
  3. Start planting, dig a hole in the soil for the root system of the clematis. Cut the stems back to a height of 12 inches. This will promote branching and prevent stem breakage. Plant the crown of the clematis one to two inches below the surface of the soil. Once the clematis is in the right depth, fill the hole with soil. Then you need to firm and water the soil to make it settle.
  4. Place a collar of wire around the plant’s base. This will protect the plant against animals and other elements. During the growing season, the clematis will need one inch of water every week.

How to Grow Butternut Squash

Plan Your Site First

Butternut squash vines tend to spread and cover a large area. Look for a place big enough for your butternut squash to grow and spread freely.

Prepare Your Site

Before you plant your butternut squash, mulch the soil properly so that it can accommodate enough air needed for healthy plant growth. Mulch the soil for quite some time so that you can add fertilizers to the soil weeks before you plant your butternut squash.

This process will ensure that you will be planting your butternut squash in fertilizer-enriched soil. Treating the soil with fertilizer beforehand will also minimize the need to add fertilizer once the butternut squash has been planted.

Appropriate Seasons for Growing Butternut Squash

Butternut squash needs warm and humid soil for it to thrive. The best time to plant butternut squash is during hot, humid months because it would give the plant enough time to ripen before the ground turns cold.

Materials for Growing Butternut Squash

  • Individual pots (venue for germinating seedlings before transferring them to the garden soil)
  • Seedlings
  • Well-rotted manure
  • General purpose fertilizers
  • Standard gardening tools

As mentioned earlier, butternut squash needs warm soil for it to grow. If you plan to plant butternut squash during cold season, you can plant them first in peat-filled individual pots and plant them after the ground has already thawed.

Butternut squash seeds should be planted about ½ to 1” deep into the soil. The seeds must also be placed at least 4” apart from each other.

Required Nutrients

When purchasing fertilizers, you may want to check to see if it has the following nutrients that butternut squash needs: phosphorus, nitrogen, potassium, and other vitamins and trace elements.

Watering Requirements

The butternut squash is considered to be a thirsty plant. It needs a lot of water for it to thrive and survive. The leaves of the butternut squash plant tend to lose moisture every now and then that’s why they need to be rehydrated every so often.

If you want to, you can develop you very own irrigation system to make the job of watering the plant easier.

How to Grow Asparagus

Asparagus grow best in full or partial sun and in soil with a pH of 6.5 to 7. They also need good drainage. Select an area where asparagus won’t be disturbed for 10-15 years, until they must be discarded from your garden.

This vegetable can be planted by using one-year old crowns or seeds. Seeds will take longer to grow and are more prone to sickness. If you will use crowns, buy plump, healthy-looking, grayish-brown ones at a reputable nursery.

In cool areas, start planting asparagus in early spring, when soil temperature is 50° F. In warmer areas, plant in the late winter season. Once you have crowns, prepare the soil early. Make a V-shaped furrow that is 7 inches deep. Enrich the soil with well-rotted manure, wood ashes, or bone meal. Dig deep to turn the soil around and make it lighter. These plants will stand tall, so choose a site where no other plants need full sun.

Immerse the asparagus crowns in compost tea for 10 minutes or so. Put them down on their sides over the organic matter, 12 to 16 inches away from each other, in rows 4 feet apart. Fill in the soil so that the roots of the asparagus plus half an inch of the crowns are completely covered. Set a layer of mulch containing straw or chopped leaves.

In late summer, side-dress the asparagus with an organic fertilizer. Lay over a mulch in the fall. The plants have to be watered regularly for about three times a week in the first month of planting. In the succeeding months, water only during dry seasons. Trim some parts of the bushes for ornamental reasons.

Do not harvest the asparagus in the first year because it still needs to establish its spears. The roots will also have to grow stronger .If the harvest is too early, the entire plant might become weak. In the second and third year, you can harvest only for about 2-3 weeks in the spring. When the plant has established itself in the fourth year or so, the asparagus may be harvested for six to eight weeks, or until the spears are thin and spindly. Pick the 6-8 inch spears. The vegetables can be harvested every day of the harvesting period.

How to Kill a Tree

Killing a tree does not mean that you are against Mother Earth. Sometimes, trees have to be killed because they are infested with tree beetles or fungus, are becoming obstructive, or are left damaged by storms or typhoons.

The most common and obvious way to kill a tree is by using a chainsaw. If you don’t own a chainsaw, you can buy one at your nearest hardware store.

Steps to Kill a Tree

  1. Start cutting the tree down, most preferably just a few inches above its stump.
  2. Cut it into smaller sections because you can not readily dispose it as is. This process will take about just an hour or two if you will use a chainsaw.
  3. You can get rid of the chopped tree by either putting it in the local dump or using it as firewood. You could also get rid of the remains of the tree by burning it, but check with the local authorities first before you start an open fire. Open fires are not allowed in many counties.

A More Eco-Friendly Way

The use of herbicides is another way to kill a tree. Although this method may be more time consuming than other tree killing methods, it is known to be more eco-friendly.

Studies have shown that herbicides are really safe in removing or killing a tree. Herbicides come with instructions. Be sure to follow them accurately to prevent harming nearby vegetations with chemical spray.

Stump Removal

After cutting down a tree, you will be left with its stump. It is really difficult to get rid of a stump all by yourself so the best thing you can do is to contact stump grinders who will do it for you.

However, hiring stump grinders may cost you some money. If you don’t really want to shell out money, you might as well be creative and find a use for the stump. You can start by hollowing out the center of the stump and then filling it with soil. After you have filled it with soil, use the tree stump as a natural pot.