Sustainability

Seeking to create a sustainable garden makes perfect sense as we age—it means less labor for you and it leaves something positive for the next generation. Below is a checklist of things you can do to make your garden more sustainable: ·       Go organic. Avoid using pesticides, herbicides, and inorganic fertilizers that pollute our soil and water. If you must …

Right Plant, Right Place

One of the many light bulbs that went off in my head when I became a Master Gardener was the concept of right plant, right place. When I began to speak and write about adaptive gardening, I knew I needed to include it. After all, we strive to save time, money, and energy, right? Using the concept of right plant, …

Toni’s Tool Tips | Hori Hori

There’s nothing quite like a hori hori knife to get the job done. If you don’t own one yet, put it on your list when you go shopping. Every gardener who owns one, loves it. The hori hori knife was created by gardeners in Japan, the word hori means “to dig” in Japanese and hori-hori is the onomatopoeia for the …

Toni’s Tool Tips | When in Doubt, Power Up!

I heard about this energy-saving tool from Master Gardener Rita Bernardi, who is in a pruning guild. After a talk I did for her group, she told me about when she was first learning her new skill. Her hands were hurting terribly, so she purchased a cordless lithium battery powered pruner and a hedge trimmer by Teho. Now she can …

Toni’s Tool Tips | The Hose Knows

Wrestling with heavy hoses is hard enough for a strong gardener, but when you have a bad back or arthritis, using and storing heavy hoses is literally a pain. All my original hoses were the wrong hoses. Maybe it was a function of what was available at the time, but still. I was always wrestling with them when I needed …

Simple How-To Success with Vertical Gardens

1. Fill each cavity halfway with the appropriate potting mix (or cactus mix, if you are planting succulents). 2. Add your plants and more soil, tamping the soil down as you plant. 3. Two or three times a week, tamp the soil down and water them thoroughly. This is where patience comes in handy—before you can hang the planters, they …

Seating in the Shade

Have you noticed one of the not so great joys of aging is how susceptible we become to temperatures? It’s because our bodies become less efficient at regulating body heat. When external temperatures rise, like when we’re exposed to direct sunlight or extremely hot environments, so does our internal body temperature. This is why seniors suffer from heat stroke more …

It’s OK to Make Mistakes

It broke my heart to see my beloved fig tree being carried out of my garden. I had made the ultimate gardening mistake: I did not pay attention to the concept of right plant, right place when I purchased my Black Mission fig tree. It was the right plant. My husband and I fell in love with figs in Italy …