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Category Archives: Garden

Steps to Growing Strawberries in a Jar

The fixings are straightforward: a couple strawberry plants in addition to some essential earth, air, and water. Include daylight, and voila! After only a hour of work, you’ll have weeks of eatable garden delight for your porch or deck. For a practically moment strawberry fix, buy as of now blossoming plants. Attempt regularly bearing assortments like Ozark Beauty or Tribute for unfaltering yields of substantial, stout berries.

1. Make a built-in drain by filling the jar bottom with a 1-inch layer of gravel or broken pot shards. Separate the gravel from the soil with screen mesh cut to fit or a piece of nylon pantyhose. Next, add the earth. Fill the jar with potting soil up to the lowest pocket, firming the soil to eliminate trapped air spaces.

2. Starting with the lowest pocket, make a small hole in the soil. Thread a single strawberry plant down into the pocket so its roots spread toward the interior of the jar. Add more soil — firming it in with your fingers — until you’ve reached the next pocket level. Repeat planting process until all pockets are filled; leave space at the top for more plants.

3. For larger jars, drill holes into a length of 2-1/4-inch-diameter PVC pipe at 4-inch intervals. Before planting, insert the pipe in the jar’s center, down through the soil to the bottom pocket. This allows water to seep down, soaking lower plants. Finish with several plants at the top, spacing them tightly for a full, flowing look. Water well.

4. Keep moist. Container gardens dry out quickly, so water often, with plant food added. Moist soil and vitamins will keep your garden thriving. No extra maintenance is required except an occasional manicure. Pinch off dead leaves and overripe fruit to keep plants fresh-looking. Rotate the jar one-quarter turn every few days (try a plant caddy) to give plants and berries enough sunlight.

Know the Fruits You Can Grow Indoor

strawberry-plant-indoors

Most patio greenery enclosures concentrate on vegetables and herbs—in addition to the fact that they are anything but difficult to develop and stuffed brimming with supplements, they’re additionally adaptable, making them perfect for developing in expansive amounts. Be that as it may, don’t think vegetables and herbs are the main things suited for a kitchen plant. Natural product, Mother Earth’s blessing to the sweet tooth, is the ideal compliment to your other exquisite plantings. You can utilize them for jams, jams, pies, and best of whatever, you can develop it inside and out! Continue perusing for six delectable natural products that can turn out to be a piece of your next natural planting try.

# Strawberries

Enough with all of these fruits that require so much patience. Strawberries are an extremely popular fruit for home gardening because they produce fruits very quickly, and require a relatively small amount of space. Strawberries have a very high vitamin C content and are well suited to freezing and processing as jams. If you’re planting them indoors, browsing guide to create the perfect self-watering planter so you can enjoy sweet berries all year long.

# Watermelon

Watermelon is my desert island fruit. If I was stranded, I would wish to wash ashore in a place where watermelons grew like weeds. Think about it: You’d have delicious fruit that’s 98% percent water. Two birds with one stone! If you’re tired of paying outrageous prices for watermelon at the market, think about growing your own at home.

# Pineapple

I know what you’re thinking: There’s no WAY I can grow a delicious, sweet pineapple at my house. But yes, you can! In fact, not only is it possible, it’s actually quite easy. According to Tropical Permaculture, “That’s because the pineapple plant is one of the few tropical fruits that are really well suited to growing in pots.” Follow their handy guide that demonstrates what pineapple plants like and don’t like, and how to choose a starter that will fruit the fastest.

# Mulberry Tree

Unlike its similar sounding friends, the blueberry or strawberry, the mulberry is a tree. If you start one from seed, it could be 10 years or more before you see fruit, and that’s not very exciting. Speed up the process by purchasing an organically-raised dwarf or semi-dwarf variety from your local nursery. Place it in a large pot either outdoors in plenty of sunshine, or indoors in a warm, bright place. The mulberry produces large, long, black fruit similar in looks to a 3″ long blackberry. The fruit usually ripens in early summer.

# Meyer Lemon Tree

Speaking of tiny trees that produce delicious fruit, how about a lemon tree? Becky over at EatDrinkBetter.com recently experimented with growing a meyer lemon tree in her Atlanta home. Follow her detailed to tutorial for handy tips on how to care for your lemon tree all year round.

# Fig Tree

All varieties of fig fruit more heavily if their roots are confined to a large pot, but Negro Largo does particularly well as a houseplant. The other great thing about it is that it prefers indirect sunlight (good for apartments that don’t get a lot of direct sun) and you only have to feed it a few times during the growing season. Grow-Figs.com is a great resource for learning how to choose and take good care of your fig tree, especially if you live in a cold climate.

 

Simple and Easy Fruits to Grow

easy-fruits-to-growYou needn’t bother with a plantation to develop your own particular natural product at home. From strawberries to apple trees – there’s something to suit each measured garden. Where space is restricted have a go at developing natural product trees and plants in holders – you even develop strawberries in hanging bushel! Investigate our main 10 rundown of simple to develop foods grown from the ground developing natural products today.

# Strawberries

Everyone cherishes the new, succulent kind of sun warmed strawberries picked straight from the garden. So flexible that they can be developed in holders, hanging wicker container, Flower Pouches® and window boxes, or planted straight into the ground. Develop our ‘Amplify the Season’ pack to guarantee an abundant supply of succulent, sweet strawberries all through June and July.

# Raspberries

Autumn fruiting raspberries are self supporting so you can plant them in containers or in clumps throughout your garden. This undemanding crop can be harvested from late summer to early autumn for a delicious dessert. Autumn fruiting raspberries are simple to maintain – just shear the canes to ground level each February and look forward to another juicy crop!

# Blueberries

If you are keen on growing fruit in containers then try Blueberries. Scented flowers in spring, fiery coloured autumn foliage and nutritious crops of fresh blueberries in late summer – what more could you ask from a plant? All they require is an acid (ericaceous) soil, which you can buy in your local garden centre. Blueberries are low maintenance, fruiting after about 3 years – and in the meantime make a very attractive patio plant. If space is tight try the compact variety Blueberry ‘Top Hat’. Water blueberries with rainwater as the lime in tap water will reduce the soil acidity over time.

# Figs

For a taste of the Mediterranean why not grow your own figs? They will need to be grown against a hot, sunny south/west facing wall, and crop best when their roots are restricted – so they are perfect if you want to try growing fruit in containers. You will need a little patience though as figs begin to form in the autumn and won’t be ready to harvest until the following summer! But the taste of freshly picked, sun-warmed figs is well worth the wait.

# Rhubarb

For really easy fruit try growing rhubarb. Incredibly hardy in even the coldest of gardens! Rhubarb can be planted from crowns in spring or in autumn. Choose a sunny or semi shaded spot on rich, fertile soil. By the second year you will be harvesting succulent red stems, and once it settles in it will virtually look after itself.

# Apples

A well established apple tree is a real asset, and there is an apple to suit every size of garden. Choose your apple carefully to suit your tastes and the size of your garden. If space allows then choose two varieties that will pollinate one another. In smaller gardens try growing fruit trees in tubs. A dwarf Family Apple has 3 different varieties on the same tree – just perfect for a container on the patio. Or if you fancy something really different then a step-over apple tree will create a real talking point!

# Blackberries

Forage for hedgerow fruits in your own garden! Grow blackberries in that rough corner behind the shed, or let them scramble over an old unsightly fence – growing your own fruit couldn’t be simpler. These delicious fruits will grow almost anywhere and don’t need much attention. Train the stems onto wires to make them easier to harvest – if you are not keen on being prickled, try a thornless variety like Apache.

# Honeyberries

This unusual fruit is packed full of antioxidants and the blueberry-like berries make a delicious treat picked straight from the bush. Honeyberries are tough plants and incredibly hardy so you won’t need to pamper them. For the best yields on tasty Honeyberries grow them in pairs to increase pollination.

# Goji Berries

Often described as a ‘superfood’, Goji berries are rich in nutrients, with a sweet liquorice flavour. Despite their exotic name, these hardy shrubs are surprisingly tough and grow in almost any sunny position – even windy, coastal areas. Add Goji berries to cereals and juices for a delicious start to the day.

# Currants

Redcurrants, blackcurrants and whitecurrants are perfect soft fruits for decorating desserts, makings jams and jellies, or adding to sauces. They freeze well too so you can savour the taste of summer during the winter months. If you are tight for space try our Redcurrant ‘Rovada’ which is trained as a cordon so it is a perfect soft fruit for growing in containers.

Planting Raspberry

Planning

  • Plant in late winter or early spring.
  • Select plants that are bare-root or rooted in soil.
  • Buy only certified virus-free plants. Black raspberries are especially vulnerable to disease, so plant resistant varieties when possible.
  • Summer-bearers should yield some berries in their second year and then full crops each succeeding summer. Everbearers may produce some fruit the first fall.

Preparation

  • Select a site in full sun; avoid frost pockets.
  • Eliminate perennial weeds, preferably with a cover crop planted 1 year in advance. Mix in 1 to 2 pounds of 10-10-10 fertilizer for every 20 feet of row or plenty of manure in early spring before you plant.
  • Destroy neighboring wild raspberries or blackberries to prevent disease from spreading to your plants.

Planting

  • Set plants in the garden an inch or two deeper than previously grown. Space plants 3 feet apart in rows 6 to 7 feet apart. Allow red and yellow raspberries to fill in a hedgerow not more than 2 feet wide (some purples will also create a hedgerow); blackcaps and most purples will remain as separate plants.
  • Cut black raspberry canes back to ground level; leave an 8-inch handle on others. Water well.

Care

  • Keep the aisles between rows tilled bare or plant grass and keep it mowed.
  • Cultivate to control weeds early the first summer, then mulch thickly. Once the plants are established, maintain a layer of mulch 4 to 8 inches deep year-round.
  • Dig or till up suckers that spread beyond row boundaries.
  • Erect a T-trellis if your canes don’t stand up on their own.
  • Prune during the dormant season. Remove dead and weak canes; thin out the healthiest ones. Blackcaps must also be summer-topped.
  • See our article Fruit Pests and Diseases for controls of common raspberry pests such as cane borers, crown borer, and anthracnose disease.

Harvesting

  • Berries usually ripen over a period of 2 to 3 weeks during early summer; everbearers yield again for several weeks in early fall.
  • When they slide easily off the small white core, berries are ripe.
  • Pick into small containers so bottom berries are not crushed.

Raspberries thrive in well-worked, well-fed, slightly acid soil (pH 5.5 to 6.8). Like most fruits, they crave sunlight and plenty of moisture, but adequate drainage is critical. Take the time to eliminate perennial weeds as much as possible, either by repeated tilling or by planting a cover crop a year in advance. Be sure to mix in some 10-10-10 fertilizer (1 to 2 pounds per 20 feet of row) or plenty of manure in early spring before you plant. Not even virus-free or tissue culture plants are immune to infection, so destroy any neighboring wild raspberries or blackberries (within about 300 feet) that might harbor disease.

Planting Raspberries

Early spring (late winter in the South) is the best time to plant raspberries. If you’re importing plants from a friend’s patch (or moving plants around in your own expanding patch), spring is the time to dig them. Keep bare-root raspberry roots moist by covering them with damp peat moss or soil until planting time. Soak the roots in a bucket of water for an hour before setting plants in the garden. Set each plant in a well-watered hole that’s wide enough and deep enough for the roots to spread out. Firm the soil over the roots and cover each cane an inch or two deeper than it was previously grown. Water some more. Cut each cane back to an 8-inch handle to give the roots a chance to get established. To prevent anthracnose disease in black raspberry canes, cut them right back to ground level. The handle usually dies back anyway unless conditions are perfect; it’s not a problem as long as the roots are all right underneath. Red and yellow raspberries multiply by root suckers that spread rapidly in all directions; they can be confined to a hedgerow but not to rows of individual plants.

Planting Black Raspberries

Blackcaps produce no root suckers at all and propagate only by tip-layering. They can be limited easily to isolated hills without crowding neighbors. Purple raspberries can be trained to a row of discrete plants, but some do produce root suckers which can fill out a hedgerow in time. In either case, set the plants about 3 feet apart in a row. Those that sucker can be allowed to fill out a hedge no more than 2 feet wide; those that don’t will stay in a single row of hills. Leave about 6 or 7 feet between rows to promote good air circulation for healthy plants and berries. You can till the aisles bare and mulch them heavily, or plant grass and keep it mowed.

Planting Plum Trees

Planning

  • Some plums are self-fertile but all plums will yield better if planted with a second variety for cross-pollination. Japanese plums need to cross-pollinate with other Japanese or American hybrid plums.
  • Order bare-root, rather than potted trees, if possible.
  • A well-established tree will yield up to 2 bushels of plums.

Preparation

  • Select a site that offers loamy, well-drained soil in full sun.
  • Avoid frost pockets.

Planting

  • Set the tree in the prepared hole keeping the graft union an inch above the soil line.
  • Space standard-size varieties 20 to 25 feet apart, dwarfs 15 to 20 feet apart.

Care

  • Water young trees heavily every week through the first season.
  • Train Japanese trees to an open center shape; train European trees to a conical shape with a central leader.
  • Japanese plum trees benefit from a moderate fruit thinning; do not thin European plums unless the crop is especially heavy.
  • Plums are relatively pest-free, but may be visited by the plum curculio, black knot disease, and brown rot. See our article Fruit Pests and Diseases for controls of these problems.

Harvesting

  • Harvest European plums when they are tree-ripe. They will be a little soft and should come off easily with a slight twist. Late maturing varieties should be near ripe with firm flesh for storing for a few weeks.
  • Pick Japanese plums slightly early and allow them to ripen in a cool place.

Planting Pear Trees

Planning

  • Choose fire blight-resistant varieties and rootstocks, especially in areas outside dry western regions.
  • Most varieties will start to bear significant harvests after 5 to 6 years.
  • Plant at least two different varieties for cross-pollination.

Preparation

  • Choose a site with full sun, moderate fertility, and good air circulation and water drainage.
  • Pears will do well in a wide range of soil types.

Planting

  • Space standard-size trees 20 to 25 feet apart; space dwarf trees 12 to 15 feet apart.

Care

  • Pears do best with a small amount of fertilizer early in the year. Heavy doses of nitrogen will make the tree more vulnerable to fire blight.
  • Use spreaders to encourage horizontal branching and earlier fruiting spurs.
  • See our article Fruit Pests and Diseases for controls of common pear pests such as pear psylla, codling moth, plum curculios, and fire blight.

Harvesting

  • Don’t let pears ripen on the tree. Harvest them when they reach a mature size but are still hard.
  • Early pears will ripen at room temperature in a few days to a week. Storage varieties will keep 1 to 2 months or more in a cool (40° F), dark place.

Planting Peach Trees

Planning

  • Plant peach trees in the spring.
  • Plant large, vigorous 1 year-olds. Standard-size trees will bear fruits at 3 years of age, dwarfs at 1 to 2 years.
  • Most varieties are self-fertile, so it is not necessary to plant more than one tree.
  • Choose varieties that are right for your area and resistant to disease.
  • A standard-size peach tree will stand 15 feet at maturity if kept pruned, 25 feet if left unpruned. Dwarf trees reach 6 feet in height.

Preparation

  • Choose a site with well-drained, sandy soil. Avoid low-lying areas that can become frost pockets.

Planting

  • Plant standard-size trees 15 to 20 feet apart, dwarf trees 10 to 12 feet apart.

Care

  • Fertilize young trees with nitrogen in early spring and early summer. Fertilize older trees at a rate of 1 pound of actual nitrogen per year. Do not fertilize within 2 months of the average first fall frost date or when fruits are maturing.
  • Prune trees to an open center shape.
  • Thin fruits to 6 to 8 inches apart 4 to 6 weeks after bloom.
  • See our article Fruit Pests and Diseases for controls of common peach pests such as peach tree borer, plum curculio, brown rot, and peach leaf curl.
  • Prune trees, thin fruit, and pick fruit when ripe to increase resistance to fruit diseases.

Harvest

  • Pick peaches when fully ripe. There should be no green on the fruit, and fruit should come off the branch with a slight twist.
  • Store peaches in a cool place.

Planting Grape

Planning

  • Choose a variety that is recommended for your climate. Grapes require a long, frost-free growing season.
  • Grapes start to bear 2 years after 1-year-old vines are planted. Established vines will yield up to 15 pounds of grapes per year, 30 to 40 pounds from amuscadine.
  • Plant grapes in the spring.

Preparation

  • Select a site with deep, well-drained, loose soil in full sun.
  • Set up a trellis system before planting.

Planting

  • Space vines 6 to 10 feet apart (16 feet for muscadines).
  • For each vine, dig a planting hole 12 inches deep and 12 inches wide. Fill with 4 inches of topsoil. Trim off broken roots and set the vine into the hole slightly deeper than it grew in the nursery.
  • Cover the roots with 6 inches of soil and tamp down. Fill with the remaining soil, but don’t tamp this down.

Care

  • Prune the top back to two or three buds at planting time and follow the first-year training steps.
  • Prune annually when the vines are dormant according to the training system you select.
  • Do not fertilize unless the soil is very poor or the plants show poor foliage color or signs of nutrient deficiencies.
  • Cultivate shallowly around the base of plants to control weeds.
  • Drape netting over vines to prevent birds from destroying your harvest.
  • See our article Fruit Pests and Diseases for controls of common grape pests such as aphid, scale, anthracnose, and black rot.

Harvesting

  • Grapes will only ripen on the vine. As they ripen, the sugar content rises to about 20 percent.
  • Harvest table grapes when the flavor is right; harvest wine grapes when they reach the appropriate sugar content.

The fall before you plant, mark the location for your vines. Get rid of all weeds, especially perennial ones, as your vines can easily survive 30 years or more in the same location. Grapes don’t require superior soil, but good drainage is a must. Although you won’t start training the vines until the second year, set up the trellis system before spring planting so you don’t damage the roots later.

Planting

In the spring, work the soil again and plant the vines 6 to 10 feet apart. (Double this spacing for muscadines.) For each vine, dig a hole 12 inches deep and 12 inches wide to accommodate the roots. Shovel in a 4-inch layer of topsoil. Then prune the top of your grapevine back to two or three buds and trim off any broken roots or roots too long to fit into the hole without crowding. Set the vine into the hole, slightly deeper than it was grown in the nursery, and spread its roots. Cover the roots with 6 inches of topsoil, keeping the buds above the soil line. Tamp down the soil, then fill the remainder of the hole with topsoil but don’t tamp it down. Water the new plants well. Although grapevines are known to be drought tolerant, they need plenty of water right after planting so roots can get established.

Planting Cherry Trees

Planning

  • Tart cherries thrive in zones 4 to 6, sweet cherries in zones 5 to 7.
  • Plant cherry trees in early spring.
  • Tart cherries are self-fertile. Sweet cherries need a compatible variety for cross-pollination.
  • Choose sweet cherry varieties that are especially adapted to your climate and resistant to the major diseases in your area.
  • Standard-size trees start bearing in about their fourth year, dwarf trees in about their third year.
  • One mature, standard-size tart or sweet cherry tree will produce 30 to 50 quarts of cherries each year; a dwarf tree, about 10 to 15 quarts.

Preparation

  • Choose a sunny site with good air circulation and deep, well-drained soil. Avoid low areas or places surrounded by buildings or shade trees, where cold air settles.

Planting

  • Plant sweet cherries on standard rootstocks 35 to 40 feet apart; dwarfs, 5 to 10 feet apart. Space tart cherries on standard root stocks 20 to 25 feet apart; dwarfs, 8 to 10 feet apart.
  • Set trees on standard rootstocks with the graft union a few inches below the soil level. Set trees on Colt dwarfing rootstock with the graft union several inches above the soil level.

Care

  • Train dwarf tart cherry trees to a central leader. Train semi-dwarf or standard-size cherry trees to a modified leader.
  • Prune trees every year in late winter to encourage the growth of new fruiting wood. Don’t prune in the fall.
  • Fertilize each spring until trees start to bear, then fertilize only after harvest each season.
  • See our article Fruit Pests and Diseases for controls of common cherry pests such as plum curculio, cherry fruit fly, brown rot, and cherry leaf spot.
  • Prevent birds from eating your harvest.

Harvesting

  • The sugar content of cherries rises dramatically in the last few days of ripening, so wait until they turn fully red, black, or yellow (depending on the variety) before harvesting.
  • Harvest as the cherries ripen over the course of about a week.
  • Pick the cherries with the stems attached, being careful not to tear off the fruit spur that will produce fruit year after year.

Cherries need a sunny site with good air circulation and deep, well-drained soil. Although cherry wood is as winter-hardy as some apple varieties, the flower buds are tender once they start to swell. An elevated site will minimize frost-killed blossoms. Avoid low areas or places surrounded by buildings or shade trees, where cold air settles. Poorly drained soils can cause trees to die in a wet year even though they may have lived through several years of drier weather. Cherries are susceptible to verticillium wilt and other diseases, so don’t plant them where verticillium has infested the soil or where tomato family crops, melons, or strawberries grew the previous two seasons. Also avoid planting where peach orcherry trees once grew.

Planting

Plant sweet cherries on standard rootstocks 35 to 40 feet apart; dwarfs, 5 to 10 feet apart. Space tart cherries on standard rootstocks 20 to 25 feet apart; dwarfs, 8 to 10 feet. Set trees on standard rootstocks with the graft union a few inches below the soil level. Set trees on Colt dwarfing rootstock with the graft union several inches above the soil line.

Planting Blackberries Trees

Planning

  • Choose virus-free plants.
  • Plan a training system to match the growth habit of your variety – either upright or trailing.
  • Plant in early spring in most areas; in mild-winter areas of the South and Pacific Coast, plant in fall or winter.

Preparation

  • Choose a well-drained site in full sun at least 300 feet from any wild blackberries.
  • Construct trellises for trailing varieties before planting.

Planting

  • Plant upright varieties at 3-foot intervals in rows 8 feet apart. Set trailing varieties 5 to 8 feet apart in rows 6 to 10 feet apart.
  • Set plants 1 inch deeper than they were grown in the nursery.

Care

  • Cultivate shallowly; the roots are near the surface.
  • Mulch with a thick layer of shredded bark, wood chips, leaves, or hay.
  • Plants usually don’t require pruning the first year. Prune out fruiting canes as soon as berries are harvested each summer, and select replacement canes for the following year.
  • Fertilize early each spring with 1/2 to 3/4 cup of a complete fertilizer such as 5-10-10 or 8-8-8 per plant. Sprinkle it in a band 12 to 24 inches from canes and hoe it lightly into the soil.
  • To prevent chilling injury in the winter, lay the canes of trailing types on the ground in winter and cover with a thick layer of mulch.

Harvesting

  • Berries should be harvested every 2 to 4 days when ripe.
  • Pick berries in the cool of early morning. Refrigerate berries immediately after harvesting.

Blackberries need full sun. They aren’t fussy about soils, although good drainage is important. If the soil has a good amount of humus, so much the better, but average fertility is all they need. Do not plant blackberries where any other brambles have been growing; diseases can build up over time and one of the easiest ways to avoid problems is to start fresh on a new site. Because wild blackberries and raspberries can harbor diseases and pests, try to keep your garden plants at least 300 feet from any wild relatives. Also avoid planting where any nightshade family members – tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, peppers – grew in the last 2 years, as they can transmit verticillium wilt to blackberry plants.

Planting Particulars

Plants should be set out in early spring. If you get your plants from a mail-order company, order them at least a month or two before planting time and indicate the week you’d like the plants to arrive. If you can’t plant the day they arrive, keep plants, well wrapped, in a cool place. If they are loose and unpacked, set them temporarily in a shallow trench at the edge of the garden and fill it with soil so the roots don’t dry out. Nursery plants may have a 6- or 8-inch dormant cane extending from the root ball. You can use it as a handle in moving the plants and later as a row marker. Set the plants in the ground 1 inch deeper than they were grown in the nursery, then firm moist soil around the roots.

Plant upright varieties at least 3 feet apart in the row, with 8 feet between rows. For trailing types, allow 5 to 8 feet between plants and 6 to 10 feet between rows. The plants are relatively drought tolerant, but they’ll need a steady supply of water to get them established. In the second and subsequent years, plants need 1 to 2 inches of water per week during fruit development, especially if the weather turns dry and windy, a bit less once the crop is harvested. Drip irrigation is a good watering method for blackberries.