Gardening tips & tools for newbies


Whether for the joy of raising your own food and flowers, for increasing your home’s curb appeal, or just for the love of getting close to nature, gardening is a great seasonal pastime. If you are a beginning gardener, the trusty Farmer’s Almanac is a great source for gardening resources, from planners, calendars and videos to gardening tips by month for your location.

Even if you don’t have a lot of space – maybe only a balcony – you might try vertical gardening. The LA Times features a variety of kits and containers designed to help you maximize space and still yield beautiful greenery, flowers and even a crop of veggies.

If you don’t have a garden yourself, New England has a wide range of gardens that make for great seasonal outings. VisitNewEngland.com offers a garden guide, noting:

Public gardens of all types are found from one end of New England another. They range from formal and traditional, like the Elizabeth Park Rose Garden in Hartford, Connecticut, to the wide and whimsical, like the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay, Maine. Rhododendrons bloom wild at a park in southern New Hampshire and butterflies have their own garden habitats in parts of Rhode Island and Massachusetts. In all the warm months, garden clubs host local garden tours of places as private and lavish as the homes of Newport, Rhode Island, and elsewhere.

Beginning gardeners – and even some pros – may find this infographic from TheFix.com on Essential Tools for Beginner Gardeners very helpful. The Be sure to click through for many helpful tips in the accompanying blog post.


Source: Fix.com Blog

Friday fun post: 1,000 working ducks with a job to do!


photo: Mike Hutchings / Reuters

Spring is in the air, so your thoughts may be turning to your garden. If so, you may enjoy this fascinating story about an army of working ducks. It’s a story that may have particular interest to gardeners who are thinking ahead to garden planting and maintenance, including the age-old battle of pest control. One South African vineyard has the ultimate organic solution to control slugs and snails: Ducks. Reuters features a must-see pictorial by photographer Mike Hutchings and correspondent Wendell Roelf, called Quacks Squad on the Hunt. The story includes an amusing video of ducks on the march – turn on your sound for the full effect – and a slideshow of photos.

Here is a clip narrated by the duck farmer that offers a little more detail.

If you’re getting started on your garden, but a thousand ducks don’t seem like a practical pest control solution for you, check out these great videos on gardening from local meteorologist and horticulturalist Dave Epstein – search for “pest” to get tips on controlling garden critters. It’s just one part of his site called Growing Wisdom, a one-stop shop for New England weather reports and gardening tips. You can also follow Dave on Twitter.