Category Archives: Gardeners’ Guide

Vermicompost for your veggies

They’re slimy and wriggly and gross looking. But worms might just be one of the best things you can have in your garden. Many gardeners gauge the health of their soils by the number of worms living in them. And the reason? Worms make worm castings – vermicompost – a highly valuable plant food that…

Get a head start to your Garden with Seedy Saturdays

It’s never too early to start thinking about your garden. Late January is the time to think about which kind of seeds you’ll plant and where to get them. A Seedy Saturday is a great opportunity for gardeners to get their hands on a diverse selection of seeds and get excited about the next gardening…

Sprouting Fresh Greens in the Winter

As gardeners, it is easy to miss the enjoyment of eating fresh-from-the-garden food throughout the winter. The anticipation and hope for a distant spring lingers during the cold and long winter nights. But eating fresh, home-grown and nutritious foods isn’t an impossibility during Ontario winters. Sprouts can satisfy the gardener’s love of seeing and guiding…

The Value of Seeds and How to Save Them

Why are seeds worth saving in the first place? The potential success of a seed depends on the specific growing conditions that a plant has adapted to. If growing conditions change too drastically, the seed might not successfully grow into a strong plant. For example, if a plant has adapted to the conditions in a…

End of season garden maintenance

The end of summer is a time of celebration with an abundant harvest of fresh produce. It is also a critical time for gardeners. Throughout the spring and summer, organic matter has been accumulating in your garden. Whether it’s the stems and leaves of tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, or bolted lettuce and spinach plants - all…

Maintaining your Backyard Tomatoes

July is Tomato Month. Actually Bill 179, Tomato Act is a recent piece of Ontario legislation that declares July 15th as Tomato Day and the tomato the province’s official vegetable of Ontario (even though it is technically a fruit) for its substantial economic contribution. Tomatoes are prolific and they grow fast in the heat and…

Controlling Pests: An Organic and Holistic Approach

Knowing your garden and the food you produce is free of harmful pesticides is one of the main motivations for gardeners. But what if you have pests? There are natural, organic, and non-intensive ways to control unwanted organisms from your garden. In fact, you don’t even do any of the controlling, the garden itself does.…

The brown thumb: compost and life

Compost is full of life. A single spoonful of compost can contain hundreds of millions – even billions of organisms, and tens of thousands of different species. The biodiversity and life within compost is so immense and your plants depend on it. What does this life have to do with gardening? Gardeners often pride themselves…

Reduce your garden water footprint

Southern Ontario is blessed with ample access to fresh water. Unlike many places suffering from drought, water is plentiful here. But this is no reason to treat this precious resource as free. As you have learned in this issue, the food we eat requires enormous amounts of water. Any gardener will know that vegetables do…

The Science of Seedlings

Seeds are a wonder of life. The nutritious and flavourful food we enjoy every day is somehow derived from a small, seemingly insignificant capsule. There are many stages in the journey a seed takes to eventually satisfy a stomach. One of these, of course, is the transition from seed to seedling – but how does…