Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Spring gardening classes

We believe the more you know, the better your garden will grow and to help you continue to develop your gardening skills, we’re offering five classes this spring. All of our classes are free, but we do ask that you sign up in advance for each class. Sign up is easy. Call us at 303-772-3454 or sign up while you’re in the store.
The first class is Saturday, February 27th at 11:00 am. In this class, you’ll learn about growing and harvesting garlic from local organic farmer, Greg Vonn. Greg co-owns Purple Door Farm in Hygiene, where they focus on organic gardening techniques for growing garlic and vegetables.
At 1:00 pm, on Saturday the 27th, Don Eversoll will present his techniques for growing healthy heirloom tomatoes and vegetables.
Saturday, March 5th at 1:00 pm, Michael Morris will lead a discussion on getting the most from your garden this season.
Saturday March 12th at 11:00 am, Don Ireland will explore creating a healthy habitat for birds and pollinators right in your own back yard.
At 1:00 pm on Saturday March 12th, Kim Jackson will discuss how to select, plant and care for annuals in your garden.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Growing seeds under lights

If you've tried starting seeds before and been disappointed because the plants looked tall and leggy, most likely there wasn't enough light for your seedlings.
Light is essential for seedlings to grow and develop properly and even the best natural light can leave your young plants with thin, weak stems and pale leaves.  Supplementing the natural light in your home doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some of the different grow light options available to you. Incandescent bulbs usually come in low wattage (60-90) and tend to emit more heat than light. They will cover an area of approximately 2 feet, just about one standard seed starting tray.
A better choice would be one of these CFL’s. Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL) will fit a standard socket, just like your incandescent bulb, but they run cooler, so they can be closer to your seedlings and they tend to be brighter, and less expensive to run than incandescent bulbs. 
A 23 Watt CFL is equal to a 100 watt incandescent bulb. A 55 watt CFL is equivalent to 230 watt incandescent.   These CFLs are full spectrum bulbs. This means they produce light similar to natural daylight.
Fluorescent lighting is another option. Fluorescent grow bulbs come in two sizes, T12 and T5. T12 bulbs are the familiar “shop light” bulbs. They are available in full spectrum and work great for growing sturdy seedlings. T5 bulbs are smaller, run cooler and with this system, you may choose between a vegetation bulb and a flowering bulb, depending on what you are growing.
You can buy single T5 bulbs or T5 fixtures which can hold up to 8 bulbs.
This Jump Start system is an easy way to add light for your seedlings. Each 2' or 4' Jump Start system comes complete with a stand, a fixture and T5 bulb.  A 2' fixture will cover one standard seed starting tray.
A 4' fixture will accommodate two standard seed starting trays. Once your seeds have germinated, they need a lot of light in order to grow properly. Supplementing your natural light with full spectrum grow lights will help you produce a healthy crop of seedlings ready to go into your garden.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Colorful Plants for Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is the perfect opportunity to delight that special someone in your life with more than cut flowers and candy. A live houseplant is a very personalized gift and will remind them of you long after Valentine's Day is over. Some plants to consider for Valentine's Day include African violets, azaleas, bromeliads, cyclamen, cineraria and kalanchoe. Most of these plants will do well in bright, indirect light.
African violet plants like a spot that has bright, indirect light. They prefer to be watered from the bottom, but will do okay if you water them carefully from the top.
Azalea plants do best in a slightly cooler spot, so once Valentine's Day is over, place them in a cool (about 65°) bright spot.
For a more tropical look, choose one of the bromeliads. Bromeliads are low-maintenance plants related to pineapples. They don’t need much water and are fairly easy to grow.
Cineraria plants are available in red and purple colors.
Cyclamen will tolerate lower light and cooler temperatures and like to be kept moist.
Kalanchoe will do well in the low humidity of most houses this time of year. They like to dry out a little between watering. Place them in a bright room, out of direct sunlight.
With a little care and some fertilizer, these houseplants will bloom for many weeks after Valentine's Day.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Plant ideas for Fairy Gardens


Whether you're making a fairy garden or a terrarium, you can create some amazing miniature indoor gardens. Almost any plant will work in your garden, though some are more suited for small gardens than others. As with any garden, your plants will do better if they have similar light and water requirements. 
Serrisa is a flowering plant that will do well in medium to high light situations. Looks great on this mini trellis!
Matty's Silver Tree is easy to grow, especially in medium light.
Jack's Bronze Dutch Clover unique foliage will do okay in low light to medium light.
Lemon Scented Cypress Trees needs bright light, but no direct sun.
Tiny Limey Ficus perfect for terrariums and fairy gardens.
Ferns do well in miniature gardens. They mostly like bright indirect light.
Mini African Violets are a great way to add color to your garden.
You can use virtually any plant in your indoor garden. Some may require more pruning and maintenance to keep them small. Your other choice is to replace plants once they have outgrown your miniature garden. Choose a good potting soil and include some charcoal to help keep the container fresh. Add some bridges, houses, people and accessories of your choice and you really do have a unique indoor garden you can enjoy year round.