Get an up-close look at the buzzing, fluttering, and squirming life teeming in your garden. Bees, Bugs & Butterflies explores the world of pollinators: the bugs that help plants thrive. Discover ways to attract the fascinating creatures that pollinate your fruits and vegetables, control pests and diseases, and even get rid of your organic trash. Learn how to create an environment friendly to butterflies, bees, ants, and bats; build habitats for garden allies like ladybugs and lacewings; and gain an appreciation for the complex food web right outside your door.
Invasive species are everywhere, from forests and prairies to mountaintops and river mouths. Their rampant nature and sheer numbers appear to overtake fragile native species and forever change the ecosystems that they depend on. Concerns that invasive species represent significant threats to global biodiversity and ecological integrity permeate conversations from schoolrooms to board rooms, and concerned citizens grapple with how to rapidly and efficiently manage their populations. These worries have culminated in an ongoing “war on invasive species,” where the arsenal is stocked with bulldozers, chainsaws and herbicides put to the task of their immediate eradication. In Hawaii, mangrove trees (Avicennia spp.) are sprayed with glyphosate and left to decompose on the sandy shorelines where they grow, and in Washington, helicopters apply the herbicide Imazapyr to smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) growing in estuaries. The “war on invasive species” is in full swing, but given the scope of such potentially dangerous and ecologically degrading eradication practices, it is necessary to question the very nature of the battle.
Beyond the War on Invasive Species offers a much-needed alternative perspective on invasive species and the best practices for their management based on a holistic, permaculture-inspired framework. Utilizing the latest research and thinking on the changing nature of ecological systems, Beyond the War on Invasive Species closely examines the factors that are largely missing from the common conceptions of invasive species, including how the colliding effects of climate change, habitat destruction, and changes in land use and management contribute to their proliferation. Beyond the War on Invasive Species demonstrates that there is more to the story of invasive species than is commonly conceived, and offers ways of understanding their presence and ecosystem effects in order to make more ecologically responsible choices in land restoration and biodiversity conservation that address the root of the invasion phenomenon. The choices we make on a daily basis—the ways we procure food, shelter, water, medicine and transportation—are the major drivers of contemporary changes in ecosystem structure and function; therefore, deep and long-lasting ecological restoration outcomes will come not just from eliminating invasive species, but through conscientious redesign of these production systems.
Master Gardener Jodi Torpey offers all the information you need to grow champion vegetables: beans, beets, cabbages, cucumbers, eggplants, onions, peppers, pumpkins, squash, and tomatoes. She covers everything from choosing the right varieties and scheduling planting dates to harvesting, preparing, and transporting your produce. She also walks you through every aspect of competitive showing, with useful tips for thinking like a judge.
This is a practical and engaging guide to transforming an ordinary backyard into a productive farm.
Homesteading is experiencing a revival among both rural and urban residents who want to get back to basics and live closer to the land. With this book, homeowners will obtain both inspiration and instruction for transforming their grassy yard into a lush farm that can produce all the food they need.
The author is an experienced woodworker and homesteader who shows how to plan and design a backyard farm. He offers expert advice for making all of the essential hard-working structures that are needed to sustain small-scale agriculture.
Step-by-step instructions are provided for 10 projects including green houses, beehives, rabbit hutches, raised beds, potting sheds, trellises, fences, and more. Readers learn how to create an irrigation system, harvest rainwater, and keep their farms environmentally sound. Each detailed plan is accompanied by the author's clear, instructive drawings.
More than just a manual, the book also offers entertaining and enlightening interviews with both experts and “average Joe” farmers. We learn what motivates them to become backyard farmers, the lessons that they have to share, and maybe even a couple of funny stories along the way.
In an organic garden, plants in optimum health thrive abundantly, produce harvests with amazing taste, and possess the ability to fight off plant predators. When they don't, there's often something lacking in their proper nutrition. Maybe they are missing beneficial microorganism companions, or perhaps they are short of the energy needed to reach their full nutrient-dense potential. The solution is to "start with the soil," but healthy soil doesn't happen just by composting, fertilizing or companion planting alone. The solution can be found in Building Soils Naturally, which gives gardeners a hands-on plan for creating productive, living soil by using a practical, holistic approach - crafted right in your garden.
Anyone can grow some amazing white button mushrooms at home with this "just add water" countertop kit that comes complete with casing soil and easy to follow directions. You will never eat mushrooms fresher than twisting them from their growing media and cooking them up seconds later! White buttons grow on a composted straw media and fruit when covered with soil (included), so all you need to do is add the soil, water, and watch...It only takes a few weeks for the mushrooms to spring forth and merely days to mature before you are harvesting from your kit! Expect to harvest about 3-4 pounds of mushrooms! Kit measures 16x10x6 inches and comes complete with casing soil and directions, just add water!
If you're interested in growing your own fruits and vegetables, join the ranks of a blossoming group of DIY gardeners who place a premium on the idea of self-reliance. But like any other kind of gardening, growing edibles is not a one-size-fits-all pursuit: to be successful, you need to know not only which plants grow well in your state or region, but also how to grow them with careful methods and a schedule that caters specifically to your local microclimate. Fortunately for you, Carolinas Fruit & Vegetable Gardening is written exclusively for gardeners who want to grow edibles in North or South Carolina. Author Katie Elzer-Peters, the seasoned Carolinas gardener responsible for the best-selling Beginner's Illustrated Guide to Gardening, equips you with all the information you need to design your edible garden, tend the soil, maintain your plants throughout their life cycles, and-most importantly-harvest the delicious foods they produce. So whether you live in the Research Triangle, the Sandhills, the Outer Banks or anywhere else in the Carolinas, you'll discover the best fruit and vegetable plants for your garden in this beautiful step-by-step how-to guide ... and they'll be on your table before you know it.
History, literature, and botany meet in this charming tour of how humans have relied on plants to nourish, shelter, heal, clothe, and even entertain us. Did you know that during World War II, the U.S. Navy paid children to collect milkweed’s fluffy white floss, which was then used as filling for life preservers? And Native Americans in the deserts of the Southwest traditionally crafted tattoo needles from prickly pear cactus spines. These are just two of the dozens of tidbits that Tammi Hartung highlights in the tales of 45 native North American flowers, herbs, and trees that have rescued and delighted us for centuries.
An exceptional solution for weeding grass, the Mini gets in the slightest of areas with surprising precision, and it's perfect for lifting out smaller taprooted weeds intact. The sharp, narrow blade rips up tough soil, and the Mini’s small size makes it perfect for container gardening. Because it easily fits in your pocket, you can always have it with you when you are in the yard or garden. Built as tough as the original CobraHead, the Mini features a fully tempered forged steel blade and a nearly unbreakable composite plastic handle that is comfortable in almost any hand. Built to last, CobraHead tools can be counted on for years of service.
The combination of the specialized blade and the comfortable, ergonomic handle let you reach every weed in your garden without worrying about damaging your flowers. Whether you need to get in between rows of vegetables or cracks in your walkway, the Mini will get the job done. Please allow two weeks for delivery.
Hundreds of millions of tons of solid waste are produced in the United States annually, and landfills simply store it … they don't eliminate it. Recycling diverts significant amounts of waste, but the fact remains that the majority of landfill space is occupied by organic material. The good news is composting is a natural and beneficial way to eliminate this waste, and anyone can do it.
Whether you live on a farm, in the suburbs or a city apartment, composting is possible. Composting Inside and Out will introduce you to the essentials and explore various methods of indoor and outdoor composting to help you find the perfect fit for your lifestyle. Inside you'll find:
Enjoy beautiful container plantings with no stress or fuss. Container Theme Gardens offers 42 plans for container arrangements, each using just five specific plants that you can find at your local garden center.
Expert flower grower Lisa Mason Zeigler introduces us to the long-blooming stars of the spring garden, the hardy annuals – those flowers that thrive when they are planted during cool conditions (instead of waiting until the warmth of spring). Forget “Some Like It Hot,” she advises, and give them a cool start. Plant them in the right spot at the right time, nestle their roots deep into rich organic soil, and stand back. In no time at all, you’ll have a low-maintenance, vibrant spring flower garden that keeps on blooming when other annuals are dead and gone.