Home The Garden News A few gardening facts

A few gardening facts PDF Print E-mail
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Friday, 01 August 2008 07:57

My friend, Gail M. Lang, Ph.d. has written a book, "Horticulture", (Chelsea House Publishers). Summarized from it here are a few ideas you might not be familiar with:

1.) Plants have evolved to use the red and blue wavelengths of light for the photosynthesis process. Blue light has shorter wavelengths and greater energy. Far red light can cause thinner stems and alter growth from vegetative to flowering. The quality of sunlight that reaches the plant is affected by the plants location in relation to the sun's rays. Light coming from an angle closer to the horizon has less high energy than sunlight from directly overhead (more blue light).

2.) Rainwater is slightly acidic because of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and may become more so due to pollution. Microbes swept into the atmosphere can travel in rain drops.

3.) If you have poor soil or are suspicious of what may have been dumped in it, containers and commerical soil may be a better bet for you. The benfits are less prep and maintenance than beds and in addition they can be moved to take advantage of light conditions. They also won't be as prone to weeds or soil invaders. Plastic retains moisture more so than clay and dark colors absorb more heat.

4.) Staggered planting is a strategy for planting crops earlier or later in the season to confound the usual suspect insect pests. This works for plants that are day neutral and do not rely on length of day for flowering.

5.) Watering too late in the day or close to dusk or at night can create a fungi problem. Spores can reproduce in cooler moist conditions.

6.) Don't work in a wet garden, you can inadvertently spread microbial disease in the water droplets. Spores can adhere to shoes, gloves and tools and spread to healthy plants. Soil can be compacted when wet and stepped on.

Garden on, folks...

Last Updated on Friday, 01 August 2008 08:26

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photo: Jeannie Cote


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