Saturday, December 12, 2009

Mittleider garden phase 1 clean the area

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Squash Bugs Control

The best time to control squash bugs, along with almost all pests, is early by removing the eggs. Do this by rubbing them off the underside of the leaves, or cut out the section of the leaf they're on. The next best time to control them is when the nymphs are small. Adults are difficult to kill with pesticide, and pesticides are less effective in temperatures over 80 degrees.

Thoroughly destroy or remove all crop residues in the fall, and rotate your crops - in order to minimize the chance for re-introduction to next year's crop.


Planning Crop Rotation

Planning Crop Rotation
The Garden Designer portion of the Garden Wizard ($9.95) and the Garden Master ($29.95) CDs are the best thing I've seen for planning and creating your garden. And you can make your rotations just by renaming your file and entering in the new crops.

I've talked about crop rotation before, so I'll just mention briefly that there are three main reasons for rotating crops including
1) To replace certain nutrients because the planted variety uses more than the next variety to be planted.
2) To break the reproduction cycle of insect pests which feed on the planted variety. And
3) to stop a disease that has infected the crop.

The balanced natural mineral nutrients you feed your garden make rotation for #1 unnecessary. And a backyard garden is typically too small to accomplish #s 2 and 3, because the bugs and diseases can travel short distances.

Therefore, we recommend you work to avoid 2 & 3 by "cultural practices" such as:
1) Eliminating all weeds from garden and perimeter. This alone can do more to stop those things than anything - by making a hostile environment for your garden's enemies. And by the way, often the diseases are brought into your garden by bugs.
2) Water only the beds, and never use sprinkling.
3) Grow and transplant healthy, bug and disease-free plants into your garden, and then grow them fast by proper watering and feeding, so their immune systems can fight off any invasions.

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Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Tomatoes with wilted stems

Are the tops - above the wilted stems - still green? How much of the stem is wilted?

It may be mechanical damage. You must be careful as you guide the stems around the string, that you do not twist the stems.

If the plant above the wilted stem is brown, you might have a salt problem - try watering very heavily two or three times without any fertilizer being applied.

Is there any evidence of cutting, chewing, or boring on the wilted stems? There is also the possibility of insect damage. The tomato horn-worm usually attacks the leaves, rather than the stem, so that doesn't sound like it.

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