The Best Fertilizer on the Planet

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Unbelievable really, but Worm Castings are the greatest fertilizer on the planet and its FREE and Abundant.   Abundant if you have leaves or any other organic material laying around.  How cool is that.  I have decided to go back to using shredded leaves for my gardens.  I used to do it all the time, but then started mulching with the wood chips.   If you shred your leaves in the fall with the lawn mower, you are set to go.  just put the shredded leaves around your plants and use to cover them for winter as well.  Once spring comes around you will notice tons of earthworms in your soil.  I knew they were good, but not this good, until I read the article below.  So skip the synthetic stuff this year and try using leaves around your plants and see how well they do.  Would be great in your vegetable gardens as well.

What Are Worm Castings?
Worm castings are the material deposited by the earthworm after organic material passes through the digestive track of the worm. Essentially, we can call it “worm manure.” Worm castings are organic, nontoxic, and odorless and can be used as a high-power fertilizer on just about any plant in the garden!

Worm castings are a product manufactured by Mother Natures best soil tillers on Earth: the earthworm. Earthworms are fed and digest organic material. In its passage through the worm this organic material is beneficially altered both chemically and physically. The end product is an extremely powerful and fertile organic “super humus / organic fertilizer.” This humus contains all the elements and nutrients required of the earth for optimum plant nutrition and optimum growth.  Read more here. 

Another natural fertilizer is something called Milorganite.  Golf courses use this on their lawns to green them up and keep them tough.  Milorganite has also been used to deter the deer.  I used it around my vegetable plants last year and I also sprinkled this stuff around all of my flowers for added protection.

For decades, gardeners have reported that Milorganite has helped them to grow the biggest and tastiest tomatoes, the most succulent strawberries, and the crunchiest carrots. Milorganite can help you get the biggest haul of your favorite fruits and vegetables.

Milorganite’s slow-release organic nitrogen formula feeds plants evenly and gradually. This nurtures the roots, which in turn develop more robust stems and leaves. Other fertilizers force unnecessary top growth, which makes for skinny plants with reduced yields.

Apply at the proper rates and watch how Milorganite provides abundant nutrition, growing strong roots and great yields. Milorganite is safe to use in vegetable gardens, and complies with the most stringent EPA requirements. For additional information on Milorganite’s safety visit our Safety. more.

Happy Gardening and God Bless

I am going to post a few really great recipes for those who need to be grain free and sugar free.   will be up probably by tomorrow.

Gardening Alert!!!!

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My husband brought something to my attention not too long ago, and it is in regard to an insecticide being used for insect control, that may be killing our Bumble Bees.  I have an excellent research article here for you to look at if you are interested.  It is very likely that many of us are using some of these products that are killing off our bees.  We need the bees to pollinate our food so lets not use these chemicals anymore.  Please let others know as well.

Last year when I was purchasing some plants at some of the big box stores, I noticed a tag in the pot saying that they were sprayed with this chemical.  They were used on all of the knockout roses so I did not buy any last year.

ARE NEONICOTINOIDS KILLING BEES?

Clearly Documented Factsimage

Exposure of bees to neonicotinoids

  • ӧ  Neonicotinoid residues found in pollen and nectar are consumed by flower-visiting insects such as bees. Concentrations of residues can reach lethal levels in some situations.
  • ӧ  Neonicotinoids can persist in soil for months or years after a single application. Measurable amounts of res- idues were found in woody plants up to six years after application.
  • ӧ  Untreated plants may absorb chemical residues in the soil from the previous year.

ӧ  Products approved for home and garden use may be applied to ornamental and landscape plants, as well as turf, at significantly higher rates.  Read article here.  

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Examples of Neonicotinoid Products Used in the United States

Neonicotinoid

Registered use in the United States

Product trademark names

Agriculture

Turf, Ornamental, Residential

Acetamiprid

Application as foliar spray for leafy veg- etables, fruiting vegetables, cole crops, citrus fruits, pome fruits, grapes, cotton, and ornamental plants and flowers.

Assail Tristar

Ortho Flower, Fruit and Vegetable Insect Killer

Ortho Rose and Flower Insect Killer

Clothianidin

Seed treatment, application as foliar spray or soil drench for a variety of field and tree crops, also for turf and a vari- ety of ornamental trees and flowers

Arena Poncho Clutch Belay

Aloft
Arena
Bayer Advanced All-in-One Rose &

Flower Care granules
Green Light Grub Control with Arena

Dinotefuran

Application as soil drench or foliar spray to leafy and fruiting vegetables, turf, and ornamental plants.

Also used as bait or granules in buildings for cockroach control.

Venom Scorpion

Green Light Tree & Shrub Insect Control with Safari 2 G

Safari
Transect
Zylam 20SG Systemic Turf Insecticide

Imidacloprid

Application as seed dressing, soil drench, granules, injection, or spray to a wide range of field and tree crops, as well as ornamental plants, trees, and turf.

(Also, topical use on pets for flea control and application to buildings for termite control.)

Admire Gaucho Imicide Provado Macho Malice Sepresto Widow Wrangler

Bayer Advanced 3-in-1 Insect, Disease, & Mite Control

Bayer Advanced 12 Month Tree & Shrub Insect Control

Bayer Advanced 12 Month Tree & Shrub Protect & Feed

Bayer Advanced Fruit, Citrus & Vegetable Insect Control

Bayer Advanced All-in-One Rose & Flower Care concentrate

DIY Tree Care Products Multi-Insect Killer Ferti-lome 2-N-1 Systemic
Hi-Yield Systemic Insect Spray
Hunter

Knockout Ready-To-Use Grub Killer Lesco Bandit
Marathon
Merit

Monterey Once a Year Insect Control II Ortho Bug B Gon Year-Long Tree & Shrub

Insect Control
Orhto MAX Tree & Shrub Insect Control Surrender Brand GrubZ Out

Thiacloprid

Application as foliar spray to cotton and pome fruit crops.

Calypso

Thiamethoxam

Application as seed dressing, soil drench, injection, granules, or foliar spray to a wide range of field crops, as well as ornamental plants and turf.

Actara Adage Crusier Centric Platinum

Flagship
Maxide Dual Action Insect Killer Meridian

Sources for registered use information (column 2): EPA 2002; EPA 2003a; EPA 2003b; EPA 2004

Make Your Own Bug Repellent

Well it is definitely that time of year once again…..Bugs and Mosquitoes coming on the attack.  I found a recipe that I would like to try.  You can see if this works for you.

Bug-Be-Gone Sprayimage

Add Distilled water to a spray bottle to the halfway mark.

Fill the rest of the bottle with witch hazel

Add 60 drops of essential oils and shake well.  The oils to use would be rosemary, clove or eucalyptus.

Mosquitos hate the smell of citronella, rosemary, catnip, mint, marigolds, basil, lemongrass and garlic.  Birds will eat hundreds of mosquitos a day, so put up bird houses as a natural preventative as well.

Mosquito Stings:  Mix 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar with 1 cup of water and apply to the sting with a soft and clean cotton pad.  Repeat as many times as necessary to reduce swelling and pain.

Weed Killer Recipes

1.  Spray weeds with undiluted Apple Cider Vinegar — thats it.  However, this will only kill them for a short time.

2.  Permanent Weed Killer Recipe: – (which I have tried before and definitely kills the soil so don’t use where you want other things to grow)

  • 1 gallon Vinegar
  • 1 cup table salt
  • stir the solution until all the salt has dissolved completely
  • stir in 1 tbsp of liquid dishwashing soap.  This will act as a surfactant and make the vinegar and salt solution adhere to the weeds more efficiently.
  • drench the weeds with the solution on a dry, sunny day.  Coat all surfaces well with the spray.  Any plants soaked with this solution will die within several days

Gardening Tips

I am putting in my first real garden ever.  Vegetables that is.  So, my husband built me five raised beds for me to start with.  I had read about companion planting for vegetables which helps keep many bugs away…..you can find the list here.

Blessings to everyone today

Saint Augustine of Hippo (354-430 AD) summed up our need for God’s help in the following prayer he wrote: “God our Father, we find it difficult to come to you, because our knowledge of you is imperfect. In our ignorance we have imagined you to be our enemy; we have wrongly thought that you take pleasure in punishing our sins; and we have foolishly conceived you to be a tyrant over human life. But since Jesus came among us, he has shown that you are loving, and that our resentment against you was groundless.”

God does not wish to leave us in spiritual darkness – in our ignorance and unbelief. He is always ready to give his light, wisdom, and truth to all who seek him and who hunger for his word. Through the gift of the Holy Spirit he helps us to grow each and every day in faith, knowledge, and understanding of his life-giving word. Do you want to know more of God and grow in his transforming love? Look to Jesus, the Light of God, and in his truth you will find joy, freedom, and wholeness of body, mind, heart, and soul. (rc.net)

 

Gardening Tips

IMG_0654Its that time of year again.  Yeah!  I think what I am going to do is categorize the tips on this page.  So, whenever I think of something I will just add to it.  You will have to check back and see if I have added anything new since you last visited.  The above picture by the way are William Baffin climbing roses with the blue catmint in front.

Soil Tips

  • First thing is to wait until the ground thaws before you uncover your plants.  Once it is thawed, then you can remove your straw/leaves/burlap so that the plants can get some sunshine.
  • One thing I try to encourage others to do is use organic compost.  If you have not used it before, dig it in around your plants.  They will thrive.
  • You can make your own compost by piling up dry green plant material, brown leaves and straw,  fruit and vegetables, etc.  you would layer it, then water it a bit, stir it and hopefully put it in a spot where it will get some sun.
  • do not ever add fats or meats to your compost pile
  • Something I really like to do every spring and fall is add a layer of chopped leaves around my plants.  Why, because worms love them.  and Worms are great for the soil.  They not only break up the soil, but  worm droppings are super, super powerful fertilizer.  And, if you were to purchase worm dropping fertilizer it would cost you a bundle.

Plant care

  • Usually first thing in the Spring I look over all the plants, such as the roses and prune them.  You should remove all the dead canes as well as canes that are criss-crossing each other.  I also trim the canes back now, if you haven’t already done so.  Especially, if there is any dieback on them.  (black parts).
  • When you prune your roses you should always cut 1/4 inch above an outside facing node.
  • Another tip for generating more roses is to tie the canes back horizontally on your trellis, rather than letting them grow vertically.  This will produce more roses.  The picture above, you can see the roses growing horizontally along the fence.  I tied them to go along the length of it.
  • Water the Roses really well.  They need at least one inch of water per week.

Fertilizing:

  • Fertilize your plants in the Spring – I always use organic fertilizer.  the popular fertilizers such as miracle gro removes the nitrogen from the soil.  This isn’t so bad if you are growing plants in pots, because annuals are only growing for one season.  But for perennials, you don’t want to be leaching your valuable nitrogen out of the soil.
  •  Epsom salts are great for your plants and your lawn.  high in magnesium.  I usually mix 2 tablespoons of epsom salts to a gallon of water, add a drop of dish soap and pour around the base of the plants.  You can spray this on your lawn as well.  Sometimes I will also add a little fish emulsion fertilizer to the epsom salt and water.
  • the organic plant fertilizer I use is called Spray N Grow.  Really, really good stuff.  find it  here.
  •  Did you know banana peels are great for roses too.  just put the banana peel an inch or so under the soil next to the plant.  Has lots of potassium.

Vegetable Garden 

  • I don’t know much of anything about vegetable gardening, but, since I will have to do so in the near future I have been doing some research on this subject.  What I found is kind of cool.  Those who have very little space for gardens can do so with a method of either growing them vertically or in a square foot method.  I will give you a link here to do your research.  Square foot gardening here.
  • vertical gardening here.

 

Preparation Time

I am being led to let you know that it might be wise to purchase Heirloom Vegetable Seeds.  Do not purchase the hybrid ones as they will not be able to reseed.  The Heirloom seeds will provide many years worth of plants for you.  I believe I found a pretty decent site where you can purchase these seeds…. plus there is information on the site explaining how to can and store your food.

http://www.anniesheirloomseeds.com/seed-banks/

Some of the items that I have been instructed to have on hand is as follows:  You can pray about it and see what the Lord is telling you.

  • Canned foods
  • rice
  • beans (navy beans)
  • barley
  • water
  • meat, canned
  • oatmeal
  • peanut butter
  • oil (I have coconut oil)
  • protein bars
  • nuts
  • flour, yeast, sugar
  • baking soda
  • lemon juice
  • vinegar
  • Sacramentals
  • clothes soap, dish soap
  • rags, towels
  • paper plates, cups
  • bleach
  • cast iron pots
  • essential oils
  • waterproof matches
  • lanterns with oil
  • warm blankets, sleeping bags
  • heat source
  • cooking stove
  • toiletries
  • medicine
  • first aid supplies
  • tent
  • beeswax candles

Egg Preserver
You can extend the shelf life of fresh eggs by applying a thin coat of coconut oil to the unbroken egg shell. Liquefy the coconut oil (but don’t make it hot), dip the egg into the oil or brush on a coat of oil over the egg surface then store in a cool place. The oil creates a seal that keeps oxygen from penetrating into the eggs. Eggs prepared this way are reported to remain edible for 9-12 months.
by healthywaysnewsletter/bruce fife