What is this tree and seed (nut?)? Eight or nine feet tall, growing next to a sidewalk and clearly intentionally planted. That seed is marble- or dime-sized, and I just picked this Friday, so it would have to be fruiting now in Austin, Texas. Don't worry, I'm not going to eat it. Just curious. Thanks!
I'm the co-founder of a developing food hub - any MeFites with experience or involvement with a food hub care to offer their thoughts or advice on best practices? [more inside]
I planted milkweed this year to provide a rest stop for Monarchs, and today I noticed these yellow bugs on several of the plants. They appear to be aphids, and I'm not sure if I need to get rid of them.
I need to learn something about landscape gardening. I'd like to find modern, American garden writers who lean toward, update, and localise the philosophy of Gertrude Jekyll and William Robinson - i.e. the use of hardy, perennial native plants to create persistent, low water use, naturalistic landscapes. Who should I be reading?
My sister and I are trying to figure out how to do raised bed gardening on the extremely cheap. I have proposed building the beds out of the cardboard boxes left over from our recent move. What are the likely consequences of this plan, and do you have a better and/or cheaper option? [more inside]
When cities change their landscaping in those center-boulevard planters for a new season, what happens to the old flowers? [more inside]
This might be kind of a dumb question, but I'm a new indoor gardener, I've been thinking about giving growing cherry tomatoes indoors a go, and almost every guide I've seen puts a lot of emphasis on the *technique* of starting plants from seed. I have basically zero gardening experience and I don't completely understand why we do this. [more inside]
I have become interested in self-sufficiency lately, especially the ability to feed my family from what I grow or produce myself, if not permanently, at least for an extended period of time should the necessity arise. I suppose it is similar to homesteading but I have zero interest in livestock (especially the slaughtering), so maybe it is closer to Depression era survival skills..? [more inside]
My flowerbeds are overrun with weeds, no matter how much I pull. Should I start completely over, and if so, what's the best way to do that? [more inside]
I live in Hawaii and will have access to lots of yard space in the next month. I'd like to turn useless grass into several raised beds to grow as much of my own food as possible. I'm looking for ideas on what grows well in our climate, what yields well to feed as many people as possible, and what plays nice in a polyculture bed. I'll probably use organic compost teas and a worm castings to start, but do tell if you have other nutrient ideas. [more inside]
Over many years of learning how to cook, I developed from slavishly following recipes (and often screwing up anyway) to being able to improvise with a decent success rate. Now I'm learning how to garden, and would like to make a similar transition. If you have done this, what helped? [more inside]
I'm looking for a gardening book with advice for a very low-maintenance natural yard in New Mexico for a non-gardener. [more inside]
As a child (back in the Jurassic Era), I saw an article in an encyclopedia about research into growing orchards and the like in the desert using clever techniques that made the natural rainfall sufficient to keep individual trees alive. I have no idea how to search for something similar online. Please help me. [more inside]
I live in Seattle. I have about 250 sq feet of boulevard in front of my new house that is kind of a mess. It's grassed, but it's rutted and uneven and there's a 2" wide by 6" deep trench between the turf and the concrete boundaries of the boulevard, so it's very difficult to mow cleanly. There are two trees planted in it -- I don't know what species -- and the mounds they're planted in contribute to the unevenness. [more inside]
My second year of square foot gardening has been extremely successful so far, after a disappointing first year. The productive spring had given me momentum and motivation - help me keep it going. [more inside]
We're going to build a greenhouse from a kit in the garden, around 16 sq meters (around 170 sq feet) in size, probably rectangular and with a regular peaked roof. It will be used mostly for herbs and vegetables, and starting the garden plants in the spring. We haven't owned a greenhouse before, so we need some assistance with the different design decisions: [more inside]
In the early spring I severely pruned some very large and very old Yew bushes. I cut them down to old wood, with no remaining green growth. I had heard they were hardy and would sprout from old wood, but it's been over a month now and I've still just got a bunch of shrub-shaped brown sticks out there. Did I kill them? [more inside]
We have two quotes from landscapers, and our decision is coming down to how they are proposing to deal with the drainage. How do we make this decision? [more inside]
I am currently growing pothos in a long planter in my bathroom with two four-ft. "grow light" fluorescent bulbs in a regular two-bulb fluorescent fixture. This is almost a joke, because... [more inside]
How can I kill a rampant infestation of wandering jew and black eyed susan? The weeds are making my dogs itchy itchy itchy! Manually pulling them out makes me itchy itchy itchy! [more inside]
This is my fifth year troubleshooting a balcony garden, but I always end up with either a jungle (where there's no longer any space to enjoy sitting at my small bistro table), or the plants just poop out because they can't handle the intense sunlight in the latter portion of the day. [more inside]
Is there any good reason why I can't grow tomatoes in area with grass? Snowflakes inside.... [more inside]
I would like to build a raised bed (for vegetables) on my lawn but I know nothing about construction and very little about gardening. [more inside]
What is the best thing that I can do for my vegetable garden plots if I don't want to do any gardening this year? [more inside]
My mint plant has broken free of its constraints and has utterly taken over my planter box. It's EVERYWHERE, with runners I can't seem to fully eradicate. I'd like to reclaim the box (4' x 4') and encourage the other herbs (chives, parsley, lemon thyme, etc.) I have started there. But how? Is there a way to get a mint-free clean slate? [more inside]
What do I do about the cat poop in my raised beds if I don't want to get rid of the cats? I have a little feral/community cat colony in my (urban) backyard. They have chosen two of my raised beds as their toilet. Now that the snow has melted the smell is kicking in. I don't want to drive the cats away, but I would like my backyard to not smell of sewage and maybe even use those beds for non-edibles. Anyone have ideas? [more inside]
Hoping there are some US Mefites who are literary gardeners and might have an answer to this one: is there a US online retailer or other source for Tagetes erecta "Man-on-the-moon" (aka Man-in-the-moon) seeds? [more inside]
I am very curious about WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) exchanges, as a prospective volunteer for short-term periods of time. Before I spend $40 to become a member, can anyone who has worked with WWOOF (either as a volunteer or as a host, but especially as a volunteer) shed light on what to expect? What to do versus what not to do? I'm in the US and will probably want to first consider locations here, but am by no means looking to rule out opportunities abroad! [more inside]
I need a light meter for gardening in our yard and, eventually, in a small greenhouse. Ideally, I'd like to know the number of hours of light a specific area gets each day, although full sun / partial shade etc. readings that can be converted are also acceptable. Looking for something durable and for recommendations from folks who have used a specific model successfully for at least a few growing seasons. Bonus points if readings can be downloaded for reference.
I can't seem to find a planter like this anywhere. [more inside]
I'm an apartment dweller with an extensive container garden and I'm moving into an apartment without access to outdoor space. [more inside]
I want to grow vegetables and herbs on my apartment terrace. I am feeling overwhelmed, as I've never had a garden before. I need help! [more inside]
My husband goes through a pair of gardening gloves every 2 months because they fall apart. There must be a better way. [more inside]
I have a backyard that has been troubled ever since we moved in. It was clear at that time that lawn of some sort was not doing very well. We tried adding new good soil and starting grass from seed that supposedly was the right kind for our area and the fact that the back gets little direct sunlight. [more inside]
First winter in our new house, and the first real (but probably short lived) snow will come Wednesday (USDA Hardiness Zone 6A). We won't have to to prep for this snowfall, but what should we be doing longer term for the plants in our garden during the winter? [more inside]
I thought that we had harvested all the peppers that were going to ripen. I was wrong. [more inside]
Last night a neighbor very sweetly brought me this little plant - a stub of what seems to be a succulent, about 3 inches high, potted in a tiny glass pot. I have no idea what it is or what it needs, and I'd like to keep it alive. Please help! [more inside]
I've seen the Food Justice Movement referred to a lot but I don't have a clear idea of what it means. I'm also wondering what opportunities are out there. [more inside]
I've been growing artichokes here in Michigan off and on for close to two decades. I've never successfully wintered over any of the plants and am wondering if there are any Zone 5 Mefites with a thumb greener than mine that can help with my overwintering strategies. [more inside]
I'm looking for something like ivy or wisteria than can survive in harsh heat and sunlight.
When we picked up the small, wooden compost bin in our community garden plot, a group of mice ran out from underneath it. Then my spouse flipped the bin face down, probably kicking up some dust. I am concerned about hantavirus exposure when the bin was upended, and also about how to clean up the site. [more inside]
Our awesome new flat has a large garden area attached to it. It's primarily all paving stones, excepting the borders and what appears to be an untamed lemon tree in the corner. I need help with some plant identification and basic lemon tree triage. Difficulty level: Rome, Italy [more inside]
I'm new to gardening and throughout the spring have been vigilant about keeping my flower beds clear of weeds. Then a few weeks ago, this started coming up and has completely taken over. [more inside]
What to do with a rock path in our yard that is almost covered in grass? [more inside]
I get seed packets that (usually) give a germination rate. How do I calculate how many seeds to plant to give me a 'y' probability of getting 'z' seeds to germinate? [more inside]
I'm now in charge of a non-profit greenhouse that utilizes the square foot gardening method. How can I closely replicate Mel's Mix without breaking the bank? (And other greenhouse gardening advice happily accepted within!) [more inside]
I have outdoor space for the first time in my life at my new house. But as a lifelong apartment dweller and city boy, I have virtually no horticultural knowledge. Can you recommend resources to help orient me in my little yard? I'm pretty much at square one. [more inside]
Scene: yardwork in progress. I notice a tree where no tree has gone before, having sort of popped up in our Rose of Sharon patch. 1. What is it and B. Should I cut it down? It's already 12-15 ft. tall.
Garden peeps: any idea what this might be? [more inside]