Every year gardens suffer from the "blight effect" on tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and eggplants. If left alone, the disease can prevent plants from flowering and maturing altogether. Here are 5 easy steps I encourage everyone to take before next year's garden even begins to sprout.
White rot is an invasive fungus that every garlic grower needs to be aware of!
Learn how to rotate crops with this helpful crop rotation video.
Garlic has been used medicinally for thousands of years, and ethnobotanist James Duke, Ph.D., one of the world’s leading experts in medicinal plants, places garlic among the best all-around plant medicines in the world. Learn about the host of ailments garlic can alleviate and prevent, and discover some of the added health perks of this flavorful, folklore-infused herb.
Giving your ornamental and vegetable garden a thorough cleaning in midsummer not only leaves the landscape looking better, but can help prevent damage from diseases and pests by removing the conditions in which they thrive.
A Precision Garden Seeder can make planting seed crops quick and easy!
Try these organic techniques to help prevent tomato early blight.
Brown rot is a serious disease of peaches, plums, and other stone fruits. For organic gardeners, spraying at-risk fruits with a milk solution can give good control.
Companion planting can be a great strategy for organic gardeners. Take our nationwide companion planting survey to help us gather useful information about this gardening technique.
Consider grafting your favorite tomato varieties onto disease-resistant rootstock to foil soilborne diseases.
What a nice surprise it can be to notice new spring babies emerging from where their parent plants grew the year before. Volunteer plants are a wonderful gift!
A reader asks about when to plant potatoes in Zone 9.
We took advantage of the unseasonably warm weather by planting potatoes, peas and beets in the garden outside our office.
Avian Influenza has been detected in five western states. There are several steps you can take to protect your backyard chickens, and one simple way to find out if you, as an urban hen keeper, are at risk.
Thoreau, Rachel Carson, Bill McKibbon, Terry Tempest Williams. Do you have a favorite nature or environmental writer? A book or story you can get lost in, that inspires you to action, or simply reminds you of how incredible nature is? Post a comment to share the titles that invite you into the wonder of the natural world — or have maybe even changed your life.
Is your patio short on space? Check out the Hot Pot BBQ, a grill that doubles as an herb planter.
Enjoy healthy blackberry and raspberry elixirs and teas, blessings from the brambles of Summer!
Tom Newmark won't rest until he's helped establish 10,000 seed sanctuaries--living gardens devoted to propagating and nurturing endangered plants--across the world. He came a step closer this week with the establishment of a sanctuary in India.
Ira helps you get started using nature's signs to plan your garden. Don't just rely on planting dates — easy observations of what's blooming, buzzing, and singing in your garden will help you see changing patterns from year to year.
Advice on good online plant and animal databases.
Save money by planting smaller trees and shrubs from mail-order sources.
The innovative garden seeder from Simple Seeder increases speed and ease of planting.
A sudden onset of a canine eye disease called SARDS leaves dogs totally blind very suddenly. Bruce McElmurray explains this disrder from a personal perspective.
This painless test finds heart disease before it turns deadly.
H1N1, or swine flu, didn't have to be the epidemic it is today. Are factory farms to blame?
Even as far north as Maine I can harvest produce from March to December with parsnips to dig from under the frost in February without the use of row covers or a greenhouse. In some beds I do two or more succession plantings that together with the root cellar keeps me with fresh produce all year.
On the eve of Southern Company (NYSE: SO) holding its annual meeting of stockholders in Pine Mountain, GA., the nonprofit Green America released a report ranking the major U.S. power producer as “the United States’ most irresponsible utility.”
Japanese beetles feed for six to eight weeks, and in that time, they are able to feed on over 300 plant species. Although collecting beetles may seem like an exhausting every day task, you're plants will appreciate it.
Pasteurizing your own compost can protect your new seedlings from damping-off and harmful bacteria.
Onions are daylight sensitive and need to have plenty of time to put on top growth before the days start to get shorter and the plant pulls its energy into the bulb. If you like to start onions from seed, don’t wait! The best time is already closing in.
I separate the fact from the fiction with use of soluble fertilizers.
A tutorial on making a flower press with supplies that don't require heavy tools or a visit to the hardware store.
Learn how to breed corn in your own corn nursery, plus learn how to properly hand-pollinate corn plants.
If you think it's important to prevent Monsanto and other corporate giants from controlling the seed supply, you may want to consider donating to Organic Seed Alliance. Here is a short video about the work they do.
April 26, 2013 is National Arbor Day! Celebrate by planting a tree at home or enjoying trees where you live and learn about the many benefits they provide.
According to a report issued by the World Health Organization, diseases such as E. coli and staph are developing stronger resistance to antibiotics.
Tiny as they may be, olives are proving to pack a big health punch, particularly in keeping the mind in shape by preventing neurodegenerative diseases. Find out more nutrition facts about olives, and discover some olive-tastic recipes.
A solar-powered cooker made out of cardboard boxes, which aims to reduce carbon emissions, deforestation and the spread of water-borne diseases, took home the first prize at the Climate Change Challenge.
As H1N1 (also known as "swine flu") continues to spread, people are taking a variety of precautions to avoid catching or spreading the virus — from being more diligent about washing hands to cancelling long-awaited vacations. Tell us what you're doing, and find out more about H1N1 and how you can stay informed and healthy.
Trying to tend to kids AND a garden.
Learn what to do when you come across onion flowers and garlic flowers in your garden.
Planting a water-smart garden with native plants can help you save water when temperatures heat up.
A University of Georgia study finds that common houseplants can remove toxins and improve indoor air quality.
Tips on how to celebrate National Wildflower Week, May 6-13!
Though it reuses a waste material, fly ash concrete contains traces of mercury and other chemicals from coal-burning power plants. Do you want that in your home?
Creating tomato grafts may be a great way to grow tomatoes organically. Tomato grafting has emerged as one good way to bring resistance to soilborne diseases to susceptible heirloom varieties.
Diospyros virginiana, the wild American persimmon, is a native fruit that is ready to harvest in autumn and even early winter. Here's how to identify, gather, and eat wild persimmons.
Put together your own mini-indoor garden with these clever ideas.
Information on World Wetlands Day and their benefits and tips on how to protect your local wetlands.
The best low cost (semi-reliable) options for getting animals and plants onto your homestead!
Plan to plant garlic this fall, and enjoy unique varieties and their incredible health benefits.
I cure my spring fever by planting in a hoop house.
This blog post discusses growing enough produce for canning.
Growing the three sisters (corn, beans, squash) in the same plot of land actually helps yield healthier crops of each.
Use our popular When to Plant app to know when to plant each crop in your area.
Siegers Seed Company is attempting to patent and own a common cucurbit gene for warty pumpkins, and gardeners who know better are disappointed.
Growing pine trees from seed will allow you to produce lots of trees very economically. Follow these instructions to propagate pine trees from seed.
With so many good things that plants do in our life, would it be so bad to stop and appreciate them?
Seed Germination depends on Soil Temperature. Transplants need to survive a late spring frost. Here are some handy charts and a lookup tool that will help your timing for a successful garden.
This blog post shares some of the simple techniques learned through many years of experience by someone who grows vegetable seedlings for a living.
The USDA first published a plant hardiness zone map based on temperature in 1960. Hardiness zones are based on the average annual extreme minimum temperature. What's your zone?
This blog takes a look at the steps taken to propagate lavender by taking cuttings.
Odwalla's Plant A Tree program enters its third year with a donation of twice as many trees to be planted in all 50 states as well as participating state park programs.
The Rhombin, a desktop organizer made from a plant-based plastic (bioplastic), merges sustainability with convenience and cutting-edge design.
Adult males and post-menopausal women are quite likely to suffer from health problems caused by excessively high levels of iron in the blood. Donating blood is the safest and most useful way to deal with this potential problem.
Using newspaper, learn how to craft easy, biodegradable pots to start seeds.
You may want to think twice the next time you reach for that cola. A recent study has found that one can of soda a day can increase chances of prostate cancer by 40 percent.
Pruning apple trees to a three by three central leader shape for strength against high winds and to prevent fungal infection.
We may find it overwhelming to know where to begin in teaching others to eat healthily. People attempting to eat healthier find it difficult to know where to begin. "The Dirty Dozen" fruits and vegetables gives us all a place to start.
Registered dietitian, Cheryl Harris, introduces gluten-free whole grains that add fiber and nutrition to the menu for those with celiac disease and gluten intolerance
Although the Centers for Disease Control has launched a vigorous nationwide public health campaign urging everyone, particularly elderly and vulnerable people, to get vaccinated against the flu, some researchers disagree with the message.
On May 4th in Washington DC a giant gluten-free cake will be built to raise awareness of the lack of labeling laws that would assure those with celiac disease and gluten intolerance a safe, reliable definition of gluten-free food labeling.
Rachel gets a scare with Daisy the goat - is it bottle jaw or something else? A trip to the vet provides some lessons.
Learn how to prevent Alzheimer's with diet. There is plenty of time for people to make brain-healthy lifestyle and dietary choices to potentially delay the onset of this dreaded and devastating disease.
The process of training and pruning blackberry plants is demystified by a gardening expert from Gurney's Seed.
Lamb's quarters, also known as wild spinach, is an abundant wild vegetable. It's a nutritional superstar with a delicious, mild flavor.
Birch trees are easy to identify in winter thanks to their distinctive bark, and they offer a hot drink, aromatic flour and sweet syrup to cold weather foragers.
Installing a rain gauge can help determine how much water your plants really need.
Do you love strawberries? It is hard to decide on the best way to manage them if attempting to grow them. I want strawberries bad enough to try to figure out what method works best for me.
The future of the Pavlovsk Station in Russia is in jeopardy due to a pending housing development project. Find out what you can do to help save the world’s largest holding of rare berries and trees.
Former first lady Lady Bird Johnson will be remembered for her significant conservation efforts, especially with wildflowers and the preservation of native plants.
How to avoid contacting poison ivy and poison oak.
Expert advice on adding single nutrients, such as Epsom salts, to your garden and house plants.
Many gardeners take lettuce off of their summer planting lists, but shade covers can put garden-grown lettuce on your table more than a month sooner this fall.
Michelle Corbett's grandmother and great-grandmother taught her to use a natural compost consisting of eggshells and coffee grounds.
Goldenrod is starting to bloom in the beeyard now that the cooler weather is on its way.
Hidden inside the stinky orange pulp of the fruits of the ginkgo tree is a delicious, pistachio colored edible seed. Here's how to identify and prepare ginkgo (without the stinky parts) by foraging for ginkgo nuts!
Ground cherries were once a popular staple in backyard gardens. Urbanization and lost space to grow our food led to ground cherries falling out of favor. Though older folks may remember eating ground cherry jam, they’ve only recently begun reappearing at farmers markets and in seed catalogs. Ground cherries are easy to grow and pack an unusual flavor punch in jams, pies, savory sauces.
"The Wild Wisdom of Weeds," by wild-foods advocate and author Katrina Blair, is the only book on foraging and wild edibles to focus on thirteen weeds found all over the world, which together comprise a complete food source and extensive medical pharmacy and first-aid kit. Blair’s philosophy is sobering, realistic, and ultimately optimistic: If we can open our eyes to see the wisdom found in these weeds right under our feet, instead of trying to eradicate an “invasive,” we could potentially achieve true food security and optimal health.
Birds are survivors. Learn about different adaptations birds have to thrive during the dark, cold winter days. And, what you can do to support winter bird survival in your backyard.
A new approach to conventional agriculture would unite not only row crops and prairie plants, but farmers and environmentalists.
How to use henbit, a wild green available most of the year even in cold-winter areas, to make a delicious fresh pasta.
Henbit and red dead nettle are two tasty leafy greens that are available even when there is snow on the ground. Here's how to identify them in the field and use them in recipes.
How to measure tomato seedlings for success before planting into your garden.
Find garlic seed stock for growing garlic.
Here are two helpful tips that will help you have a successful tomato plant.
How to Schedule your Planting by the Moon
Make a shelf or table into a growing space for starting seedlings.
Garlic is one of the easiest plants you can grow, and fall is the time for planting. Here are a few resources to help you get started.
This blog post tells about Barbara Lee's memories of her grandpa who built a two-holer outhouse for his family and surrounded it with peonies so that there would not be an unpleasant odor.
Barbara Pleasant offers a step-by-step plan to starting seeds.
It pays to spend time preparing your garden for winter. You can improve your soil, increase your harvest, decrease garden pests and make next spring's planting much easier.
To ensure we have a full productive garden, each spring I start a habit of carrying a packet of seeds in my pocket every time I head to the garden!
The actual footprint of a garden is only one of many factors for how much food that can be produced there. With succession planting, good soil and some planning the same garden area can produce substantially more food.
The staff at MOTHER EARTH NEWS plants tomatoes and peppers during a seed-planting project at the office.
Want lettuce and carrots all year round? Ira Wallace tells us her simple simple method for keeping track of succession plantings.
Mother Nature has a way of filling in the blank spots....
A new report from the Union of Concerned Scientists shows significant lapses in nuclear power plant safety.
'Tis the season for education and celebration, at this year's herbal gatherings.
How fast climate change will require you and your descendants to move north in order to keep farming and gardening a serious question you should be asking yourself.
Sun-Lite HP for greenhouse glazing provides excellent diffused light.
A new wastewater treatment plant in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, will use methane gas to produce energy.
This posting discusses how deforestation increases global warming and ocean acidification. It also discusses the role of deforestation in triggering severe flooding,aquifer depletion, soil degradation and animal and plant extinction.
This blog post describes the MOTHER EARTH NEWS staff's afternoon spent harvesting their homegrown garlic.
This is a fun story about planting seeds for future generations and not recognizing a gift when it is blooming right in your face.
Rosemary is known as a tasty condiment, but it has also long been used as medicine, and makes for a blissful foot soak.
Deciding which vegetables to grow can be an important step for any gardener. It is efficient to fill the space that you have with vegetables that keep for the longest periods of time, which can also mean a lot to the bottom line of any garden.
It's mid-February, time to start thinking about spring! Ira Wallace helps us make our garden plan, remember our perennials, and Plant a Row for the Hungry this year.
A new study finds that generating electricity from coal costs taxpayers $345 billion each year, making renewable energy start to look like a bargain.
Finca Luna Nueva's Sacred Seeds Sanctuary is a living laboratory to nurture tropical and native species through the next 10 years of climate change.
The mild winter has led to an earlier than usual spring growing season and plenty of surprises in the way of plants making it through the winter that normally would never survive the cold season. Here's a peek at what's growing in my spring garden.
A brief summary of the vast amount of data we've compiled over the last few years on experimenting with rotational chicken pastures on our homestead.
Hawthorn fruits are in season in late summer and early fall. They are delicious, and also heart-healthy — eat your medicine!
Heirloom vegetables are multi-use crops that have been passed down from gardeners for decades, sometimes centuries. Respected author and gardener, William Woys Weaver, discusses his reasons for using heirloom plants and saving seed.
I’d like to introduce the words farmden and farmdener into the English language. I wonder if there are any other farmdeners out there. And just what is a farmden? It’s more than a garden, less than a farm. That’s my definition, but it also could be described as a site with more plants and/or land than one person can care for sanely. A gardener and garden gone wild, out of control.
Herbs are versatile plants that enhance our lives by adding beauty, aroma, nutrition, seasoning, and a varied landscape. Because they can be grown indoors, or outdoors in pots, as part of landscaping or in the garden, everyone has room to grow herbs.
Spring is here and those tomato plants that were started in January are settled into their new hoophouse home. I have hopes for early tomatoes; will a late freeze stifle this goal?
The week-long STIHL Tour des Trees is an international cycling tour combining natural beauty, camaraderie and fundraising for the benefit of urban trees.
Ira shows how you can keep sowing and planting through late summer and into fall. Learn how to keep your garden producing abundantly through the cold months ahead.
Basil is a versatile herb that can be used for companion planting, bee forage, year-round herb as well as delicious pesto.
Description of garlic planting on a two-year cycle: from tiny topset bulblets, to large single bulbs, to large heads.
Grow calcium in your garden with collards, kale, and parsley. Suggestions are given for including these crops in your meals. Learn about companions to plant among your collards and kale to deter harmful insects.
The Garlic Gurus at Seeds from Italy give you the scoop on growing your own garlic. This post answers questions of when and where to grow garlic, what varieties to grow, how much to grow, where to buy garlic, and how much to plant.
Maddy Harland explains how to make light work of establishing the ground layer in a forest garden, create a wildlife habitat and control pests all at the same time.
How-To Build a Hoop House; a collection of resources for growers.
Hints for harvests all summer long - don't just sow once! Ira helps you plan summer successions for your garden. Plus, discover culinary secrets of okra you never suspected - okra coffee and okra oil - and a recipe for a simple okra lunch.
There are many logical reasons for adding flowers to your vegetable garden: attracting beneficials, crop diversity, companion-planting, barriers and healthy soil. But perhaps their beauty does not need to be rationalized at all!
If the DEA can't tell the difference between hemp and marijuana plants, says a former Kentucky governor, how can it distinguish between powdered sugar and cocaine? Hempsters: Plant the Seed is a must-see movie that gives pro-hemp activists a voice.
Chris Kilham—founder of Medicine Hunter, TV personality and author of 14 books on natural health and plant-based medicines—speaks about three plants he's disovered that could make a profound difference in our health -- naturally.
Comparing different home made do it yourself chicken carriers for the Tractor Supply animal swap this past Saturday. Reporting on edible mushroom cultivation harvest and what it takes to pick the right disease resistant apple variety.
Pruning perennials is essential for plant health and vigorous production.
A National Resources Defense Council analyst calls proposed standards “the most important actions to clean up air pollution from dirty coal-burning power plants since the Clean Air Act was last updated in 1990.”
It may be sweltering hot outside, but we're still busily sowing seeds at the Southern Exposure farms! Learn how to plant your bountiful fall and winter garden, with abundant harvests through Thanksgiving and beyond.
This is a fun story about planting seeds for future generations and not recognizing a gift when it is blooming right in your face.
Sorting through seed catalogs is one of the most entertaining tasks we have here at MOTHER EARTH NEWS. These garden seed catalogs come in handy when searching for just the right variety of heirloom veggies to grow, and they're fun to look at too!
So, what do you do if you neglected to start your veggies way back in January or February? You had good intentions but there always seemed to be something that stole your attention. Now it’s the planting season and you have nothing to plant...
I am especially concerned with the electricity hogs that keep us burning coal.
In Oak Park, Michigan, a mother of six faces 93 days in jail for planting vegetables in her front yard. People across the country are rallying to her defense.
My first blog for MOTHER EARTH NEWS takes me back to a time when I didn't know I had a love of gardening. One of my first gardening experiences came during an unlikely encounter with my curmudgeon grandfather.
Breaking down the last week of homesteading we've done over at WaldenEffect.org, and the Top Bar project we started as well as talk on Brix, biodynamics, and Plant Secondary Metabolites. Also have details on an external frame backpack modification.