Urban Gardening School

Urban Gardening School
Urban Gardening School

Organic gardening tips & resources | Learn to grow your own food | Tag us to share knowledge or ask advice

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Although an annual, this German Chamomile made it through the winter and is looking better everyday. Typically chamomile doesn’t survive subzero temperatures, but there are a couple factors here that have kept it alive. For the coldest part of the winter, which is hopefully over, the area was heavily mulched. The chamomile you see here was self-seeded last year, but didn’t get a chance to flower before the fall frost came. Because the flower wants to complete it’s life cycle by reproducing, it fought extra hard to stay alive through the cold so that it can produce seed after it warms up. It will be amazing to have chamomile flowers in early spring, and very exiting to already be seeing so much green in the garden! 
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#chamomile #flowers #medicinal #annuals #selfseeded #organicgardenerschool #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #gardenlife #gardenerlife #wintergarden #wintergardening #organicgardening #nongmo #naturalgarden #coldhardy #gardentime #gardentips #germanchamomile #landscaping #plant #plants #planting #gardendesign #herbgarden #teagarden #herbaltea #medicinegarden

Urban Gardening School

Although an annual, this German Chamomile made it through the winter and is looking better everyday. Typically chamomile doesn’t survive subzero temperatures, but there are a couple factors here that have kept it alive. For the coldest part of the winter, which is hopefully over, the area was heavily mulched. The chamomile you see here was self-seeded last year, but didn’t get a chance to flower before the fall frost came. Because the flower wants to complete it’s life cycle by reproducing, it fought extra hard to stay alive through the cold so that it can produce seed after it warms up. It will be amazing to have chamomile flowers in early spring, and very exiting to already be seeing so much green in the garden! . . . . . . #chamomile #flowers #medicinal #annuals #selfseeded #organicgardenerschool #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #gardenlife #gardenerlife #wintergarden #wintergardening #organicgardening #nongmo #naturalgarden #coldhardy #gardentime #gardentips #germanchamomile #landscaping #plant #plants #planting #gardendesign #herbgarden #teagarden #herbaltea #medicinegarden

One of the first signs of spring is the Clematis leafing out. Although it may be tempting to pull off all of the dead, you need to be very slow and careful. Clematis vines, before they start leafing out, appear as they are dead. Not only are they the same color as the dead foliage, but they are extremely brittle and will snap right in half. The best way to trim back the dead on a clematis is to start from the very tips of the ends and work your way in. By starting from the ends, there is much less risk of cutting off living branches. If you accidentally remove something you thought was dead, there will be hardly any loss to the plant by not starting at the base or middle. A general rule for testing if a plant or stem is alive is to take your clippers or a knife and peel back some of the outer layer. If that reveals anything green the plant is still alive. If you peel back the outer layer and all you can see is dried up brown on the inside, the plant or stem is no longer viable. With Clematis, it is sometimes safer to let more green fill in before removing the dead, but waiting too long will make it difficult to reach. Either way, we are just happy to see the first signs of Spring!

Urban Gardening School

One of the first signs of spring is the Clematis leafing out. Although it may be tempting to pull off all of the dead, you need to be very slow and careful. Clematis vines, before they start leafing out, appear as they are dead. Not only are they the same color as the dead foliage, but they are extremely brittle and will snap right in half. The best way to trim back the dead on a clematis is to start from the very tips of the ends and work your way in. By starting from the ends, there is much less risk of cutting off living branches. If you accidentally remove something you thought was dead, there will be hardly any loss to the plant by not starting at the base or middle. A general rule for testing if a plant or stem is alive is to take your clippers or a knife and peel back some of the outer layer. If that reveals anything green the plant is still alive. If you peel back the outer layer and all you can see is dried up brown on the inside, the plant or stem is no longer viable. With Clematis, it is sometimes safer to let more green fill in before removing the dead, but waiting too long will make it difficult to reach. Either way, we are just happy to see the first signs of Spring!

Growing peppers this year? Seedlings should be around 7 or 8 weeks old before getting transplanted outside. Since a lot of seed starting cells are very small, you can’t leave the plants growing in them the entire time they’re inside for the 7-8 weeks. There’s just not enough soil in a small cell to support the root system. Since February/March is still way too cold to plant peppers outside in most zones, you’ll need to transfer them into solo cup sized pots for the remainder of their time indoors. Transplanting into too big of pot will take up too much precious space under your grow light or greenhouse and waste potting soil. Make sure you don’t transplant too early. Baby seedling roots can be very delicate, so wait until there are 2+ true leaves before removing peppers from their original seed starting cells. The peppers you see in this post are ready to be transplanted into larger pots now. They will stay in their new pots until May. If you’re thinking 3 months is a long time to keep seedlings inside, consider the gardening zone. In this part of the  Colorado Rocky Mountains it’s a zone 5, which means we still get snow or freezes in late spring/early summer. The problem with simply waiting an extra month or two to start pepper seeds is the high number of days to harvest. Hot peppers can take 150+ days until you can pick fruit. If you wait too long to start your hot pepper seedlings in a zone 5, your plants will succumb to the first fall frost before you ever get to pick a pepper. So if you’re in a colder zone and want to grow hot peppers, it’s a good idea to invest in a grow light. Happy seed starting everyone! Let the growing season begin!

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Growing peppers this year? Seedlings should be around 7 or 8 weeks old before getting transplanted outside. Since a lot of seed starting cells are very small, you can’t leave the plants growing in them the entire time they’re inside for the 7-8 weeks. There’s just not enough soil in a small cell to support the root system. Since February/March is still way too cold to plant peppers outside in most zones, you’ll need to transfer them into solo cup sized pots for the remainder of their time indoors. Transplanting into too big of pot will take up too much precious space under your grow light or greenhouse and waste potting soil. Make sure you don’t transplant too early. Baby seedling roots can be very delicate, so wait until there are 2+ true leaves before removing peppers from their original seed starting cells. The peppers you see in this post are ready to be transplanted into larger pots now. They will stay in their new pots until May. If you’re thinking 3 months is a long time to keep seedlings inside, consider the gardening zone. In this part of the Colorado Rocky Mountains it’s a zone 5, which means we still get snow or freezes in late spring/early summer. The problem with simply waiting an extra month or two to start pepper seeds is the high number of days to harvest. Hot peppers can take 150+ days until you can pick fruit. If you wait too long to start your hot pepper seedlings in a zone 5, your plants will succumb to the first fall frost before you ever get to pick a pepper. So if you’re in a colder zone and want to grow hot peppers, it’s a good idea to invest in a grow light. Happy seed starting everyone! Let the growing season begin!

The bougainvilleas are definitely not surviving this time around... When it’s below 40°F (4°C) the leaves will wilt, but if it’s stays below 32°F (0°C) for too long the plant will die. How quick it dies depends on how far below freezing it gets and for how long the temperature stays there. At 9°F (-13°C), this one ain’t makin’ it. 
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#bougainvillea #wintergarden #wintergardening #icicles #frozenleaves #organicgardenerschool #urbangardening #urbangarden #urbangardener #gardensofinstagram #gardenersofinstagram #instagarden #instagardener #instagardeners #offseason #gardenhelp #gardeningtips #gardentips #gardentipsandtricks #gardeningadvice #containergardening #decorativeplants #patiogarden #patiogardening #pottedplants #backyardgarden #backyardgardening #gardenmistakes #gardening #gardener

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The bougainvilleas are definitely not surviving this time around... When it’s below 40°F (4°C) the leaves will wilt, but if it’s stays below 32°F (0°C) for too long the plant will die. How quick it dies depends on how far below freezing it gets and for how long the temperature stays there. At 9°F (-13°C), this one ain’t makin’ it. . . . . . #bougainvillea #wintergarden #wintergardening #icicles #frozenleaves #organicgardenerschool #urbangardening #urbangarden #urbangardener #gardensofinstagram #gardenersofinstagram #instagarden #instagardener #instagardeners #offseason #gardenhelp #gardeningtips #gardentips #gardentipsandtricks #gardeningadvice #containergardening #decorativeplants #patiogarden #patiogardening #pottedplants #backyardgarden #backyardgardening #gardenmistakes #gardening #gardener

Rabbit Brush, Ericameria nauseosa, is native to the arid western areas of North America. Its big bright yellow blooms show up in late summer/fall, providing a lot of pollen for bees. Native Americans used it for yellow dye, medicinal tea, and chewing gum. The Navajo traditionally mashed the leaves into a lotion to treat headaches. Might be worth trying out? Back during WWII it was used as a source for rubber, and some folks are looking into starting that type of production again. It’s really easy to grow from seed! It’s a perennial but doesn’t need cold stratification for the seeds to germinate. It prefers full-sun and infertile soil. This extremely drought tolerant plant works great in a xeriscape garden #nativeplants

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Rabbit Brush, Ericameria nauseosa, is native to the arid western areas of North America. Its big bright yellow blooms show up in late summer/fall, providing a lot of pollen for bees. Native Americans used it for yellow dye, medicinal tea, and chewing gum. The Navajo traditionally mashed the leaves into a lotion to treat headaches. Might be worth trying out? Back during WWII it was used as a source for rubber, and some folks are looking into starting that type of production again. It’s really easy to grow from seed! It’s a perennial but doesn’t need cold stratification for the seeds to germinate. It prefers full-sun and infertile soil. This extremely drought tolerant plant works great in a xeriscape garden #nativeplants

This strawberry plant was dug up from the ground in early December, and transplanted into a pot. It now has several new leaves and a flower! By the time it’s warm enough to plant outside it will already be producing strawberries, and will continue to do so for years to come! .
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#organicgardening #strawberries #homegrownstrawberries #homegrownfruit #homegrownfood #growyourownfood #growyourown #growyourownfruit #permaculture #perennials #perennialgarden #perennial #foodforest #foragedfood #foraging #easytogrow #organicgardenerschool #garden #horticulture #gardening #gardener #mastergardener #fromthegarden #planttherapy #blooming #farmtofork #farmtoplate #flower #flowers #flowering

Urban Gardening School

This strawberry plant was dug up from the ground in early December, and transplanted into a pot. It now has several new leaves and a flower! By the time it’s warm enough to plant outside it will already be producing strawberries, and will continue to do so for years to come! . . . . . . #organicgardening #strawberries #homegrownstrawberries #homegrownfruit #homegrownfood #growyourownfood #growyourown #growyourownfruit #permaculture #perennials #perennialgarden #perennial #foodforest #foragedfood #foraging #easytogrow #organicgardenerschool #garden #horticulture #gardening #gardener #mastergardener #fromthegarden #planttherapy #blooming #farmtofork #farmtoplate #flower #flowers #flowering

#2020 Highlights! It was a big year for gardening, seed stores across the world were out of stock! It’s more important now than ever to learn the art of seed saving for ourselves and others. Now that the grocery store shortages seem to be over, let’s hope all the new gardeners of 2020 will become second year gardeners for 2021! I hope you enjoy these #top9of2020 as much as we did. Can’t wait to see what next year brings! .
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#gardening #gardeningtips #freshflowers #homegrownflowers #growyourown #growyourownfood #growyourownflowers #growyourownveggies #healthyeating #organicgardenerschool #organicgardening #organicgarden #organicgardener #organicfarming #gardentotable #farmtotable #fromthegarden #mygarden #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #instagardeners #nye2020 #newyear #newyearnewgoals #greenthumb #organicproduce #homegardening

Urban Gardening School

#2020 Highlights! It was a big year for gardening, seed stores across the world were out of stock! It’s more important now than ever to learn the art of seed saving for ourselves and others. Now that the grocery store shortages seem to be over, let’s hope all the new gardeners of 2020 will become second year gardeners for 2021! I hope you enjoy these #top9of2020 as much as we did. Can’t wait to see what next year brings! . . . . #gardening #gardeningtips #freshflowers #homegrownflowers #growyourown #growyourownfood #growyourownflowers #growyourownveggies #healthyeating #organicgardenerschool #organicgardening #organicgarden #organicgardener #organicfarming #gardentotable #farmtotable #fromthegarden #mygarden #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #instagardeners #nye2020 #newyear #newyearnewgoals #greenthumb #organicproduce #homegardening

Did you know that you can use aloe vera as a rooting hormone? Not only is it anti-fungal, antibacterial, and antiviral, but it gives nutrients needed to help your propagation root out. If you stick the bottom of your cutting into a chunk of aloe vera, or dip it into a gel and water mixture, you will increase your chance of success when it comes to making clones of your favorite plants. So get your propagation station ready if you’re looking for a wintertime plant project!

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Did you know that you can use aloe vera as a rooting hormone? Not only is it anti-fungal, antibacterial, and antiviral, but it gives nutrients needed to help your propagation root out. If you stick the bottom of your cutting into a chunk of aloe vera, or dip it into a gel and water mixture, you will increase your chance of success when it comes to making clones of your favorite plants. So get your propagation station ready if you’re looking for a wintertime plant project!

A note about LED lighting. A lot of the kinds you get, especially from Amazon, don’t actually put out the amount of wattage they advertise. Just because it is 10 10W bulbs doesn’t mean you are getting 100 watts to your plants. Sometimes you can find the real answer by checking the specifications for the power draw, and you will see how many watts are actually used. That’s only if they are honest about it if course. When it comes to these smaller $20-$30 range lights, even the advertised wattage is pretty low (36-80W). These need to be kept very close to the plants. This one pictured is only about 2.5 inches (6.3cm) above the seedlings. Some of the seedlings had been about 6 inches away from this small light and got leggy. That’s ok because they were mainly just for a germination test, but they might strengthen back up after being closer to the light source. 
It’s not just the inexpensive lights that falsely advertise, some of the $100+ lights do the same thing. So consider this and check the power draw as well as customer reviews before you go LED light shopping online. 
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#led #ledlights #ledlighting #ledgrow #ledgrowlights #ledgrown #indoorgrow #indoorplants #indoorfarming #indoorgardening #indoorgarden #growroom #organicgardenerschool #seed #seeds #fromseed #seedstarting #startingseeds #wintergarden #wintergardening #growtips #lettuce #kale #greens #veggies #sprouts #seedlings #seedling #firstleaves #babyplants

Urban Gardening School

A note about LED lighting. A lot of the kinds you get, especially from Amazon, don’t actually put out the amount of wattage they advertise. Just because it is 10 10W bulbs doesn’t mean you are getting 100 watts to your plants. Sometimes you can find the real answer by checking the specifications for the power draw, and you will see how many watts are actually used. That’s only if they are honest about it if course. When it comes to these smaller $20-$30 range lights, even the advertised wattage is pretty low (36-80W). These need to be kept very close to the plants. This one pictured is only about 2.5 inches (6.3cm) above the seedlings. Some of the seedlings had been about 6 inches away from this small light and got leggy. That’s ok because they were mainly just for a germination test, but they might strengthen back up after being closer to the light source. It’s not just the inexpensive lights that falsely advertise, some of the $100+ lights do the same thing. So consider this and check the power draw as well as customer reviews before you go LED light shopping online. . . . . #led #ledlights #ledlighting #ledgrow #ledgrowlights #ledgrown #indoorgrow #indoorplants #indoorfarming #indoorgardening #indoorgarden #growroom #organicgardenerschool #seed #seeds #fromseed #seedstarting #startingseeds #wintergarden #wintergardening #growtips #lettuce #kale #greens #veggies #sprouts #seedlings #seedling #firstleaves #babyplants

Do you know why oregano is ancient Greek for “joy of the mountain”? Because it was believed that cows that grazed in fields where oregano grew had much tastier meat. Makes sense!
Oregano is a perennial herb that’s hardy down to a zone 5. It’s foliage dies off in the cold but the roots stay alive so that it grows back in the spring. It produces small purple flowers (much like mint, because it’s part of the mint family) that the bees enjoy. 
To save dried oregano, hang the stems upside down in dry and dark place. If you put a paper bag around your oregano it will prevent dust from collecting and a mess from forming underneath. Drying takes about 2 weeks. 
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#oregano #dryingherbs #spices #homegrown #homegrownherbs #growyourownherbs #culinary #culinaryherbs #mediteranean #greek #ancientgreece #delicious #planttips #howtogarden #mygarden #organicgardenerschool #wintergarden #fallgarden #growingherbs #herbgarden #herbgardening #mint #floweringplant #floweringplants #gardensofinstagram #instagarden #instaherbal #folliage #cooking #homechef

Urban Gardening School

Do you know why oregano is ancient Greek for “joy of the mountain”? Because it was believed that cows that grazed in fields where oregano grew had much tastier meat. Makes sense! Oregano is a perennial herb that’s hardy down to a zone 5. It’s foliage dies off in the cold but the roots stay alive so that it grows back in the spring. It produces small purple flowers (much like mint, because it’s part of the mint family) that the bees enjoy. To save dried oregano, hang the stems upside down in dry and dark place. If you put a paper bag around your oregano it will prevent dust from collecting and a mess from forming underneath. Drying takes about 2 weeks. . . . . #oregano #dryingherbs #spices #homegrown #homegrownherbs #growyourownherbs #culinary #culinaryherbs #mediteranean #greek #ancientgreece #delicious #planttips #howtogarden #mygarden #organicgardenerschool #wintergarden #fallgarden #growingherbs #herbgarden #herbgardening #mint #floweringplant #floweringplants #gardensofinstagram #instagarden #instaherbal #folliage #cooking #homechef

English Lavender, a woody perennial, is hardy down to a zone 5. This baby was started from seed at the beginning of 2020, now it’s been transplanted into the ground. You can see it’s cool weather color change, which will look even better next year when it has grown. It can be challenging to start lavender from seed, and slow growing after it has been started, but once established it’s very easy to keep alive. It’s very drought tolerant and likes well draining (even sandy or pebbles) soil. The most common way to kill lavender is by over-watering, it doesn’t like to have wet feet. Be careful not to overdo the winter watering (if there is no rain or snow) because the shorter/cooler days will not be drying the plants out very quickly. 
It’s important to cut your lavender back every year so that it keeps its foliage from head to toe. If you go too long without trimming, it becomes very woody and the stems become too thick to be able to put out new foliage. Cutting back your lavender every year (we cut off about 2/3 of the plant) will ensure full purple blooms and aromatic foliage covering the entire plant. If you cut your lavender back after it is done blooming, you can get a second round of flowering in the same season. Not only will lavender roots survive subzero temperatures, but the foliage can stay alive for a lot of the winter too!

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English Lavender, a woody perennial, is hardy down to a zone 5. This baby was started from seed at the beginning of 2020, now it’s been transplanted into the ground. You can see it’s cool weather color change, which will look even better next year when it has grown. It can be challenging to start lavender from seed, and slow growing after it has been started, but once established it’s very easy to keep alive. It’s very drought tolerant and likes well draining (even sandy or pebbles) soil. The most common way to kill lavender is by over-watering, it doesn’t like to have wet feet. Be careful not to overdo the winter watering (if there is no rain or snow) because the shorter/cooler days will not be drying the plants out very quickly. It’s important to cut your lavender back every year so that it keeps its foliage from head to toe. If you go too long without trimming, it becomes very woody and the stems become too thick to be able to put out new foliage. Cutting back your lavender every year (we cut off about 2/3 of the plant) will ensure full purple blooms and aromatic foliage covering the entire plant. If you cut your lavender back after it is done blooming, you can get a second round of flowering in the same season. Not only will lavender roots survive subzero temperatures, but the foliage can stay alive for a lot of the winter too!

Starting self-harvested seeds next season? It’s a good idea to do a germination test before it’s actually time to sow. If the seeds, for whatever reason, end up not being viable and you don’t find out until it’s time to plant you could have problems. By the time it’s time to start planting, many companies are sold out of certain seeds already. So if your seeds don’t work you may not be able to get more in time. Now with covid, people are doing more at home activities and realizing the need to grow their own food. Seed companies are selling out faster than ever, making harvesting seeds ourselves even more important. Not only does harvesting your own seed save you money, but those seeds are acclimated to your specific climate. The seeds you buy from online or in the store almost never come from your local area and don’t have genetics as adapted for your conditions. It never hurts to ask a neighbor for some seeds if they have a plant you like! 
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#seeds #seed #seedstarting #startingseeds #startingseedsindoors #germination #indoorgardening #indoorgarden #seedstarts #organicgardenerschool #fromseed #earlybirdgetstheworm #sustainable #sustainability #growyourownveggies #seeding #nogmoseeds #nongmogardening #organicgardening #organicseeds #selfharvest #soil #seedtester #seeded #seedling #seedlings #babyplant #babyplants #plantbabies #peppers

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Starting self-harvested seeds next season? It’s a good idea to do a germination test before it’s actually time to sow. If the seeds, for whatever reason, end up not being viable and you don’t find out until it’s time to plant you could have problems. By the time it’s time to start planting, many companies are sold out of certain seeds already. So if your seeds don’t work you may not be able to get more in time. Now with covid, people are doing more at home activities and realizing the need to grow their own food. Seed companies are selling out faster than ever, making harvesting seeds ourselves even more important. Not only does harvesting your own seed save you money, but those seeds are acclimated to your specific climate. The seeds you buy from online or in the store almost never come from your local area and don’t have genetics as adapted for your conditions. It never hurts to ask a neighbor for some seeds if they have a plant you like! . . . . #seeds #seed #seedstarting #startingseeds #startingseedsindoors #germination #indoorgardening #indoorgarden #seedstarts #organicgardenerschool #fromseed #earlybirdgetstheworm #sustainable #sustainability #growyourownveggies #seeding #nogmoseeds #nongmogardening #organicgardening #organicseeds #selfharvest #soil #seedtester #seeded #seedling #seedlings #babyplant #babyplants #plantbabies #peppers

Thyme is one of the few things that can stay green in the garden during a zone 5 winter. With added protection, thyme will survive a zone 4 winter as well,  and grow back in the spring. In the summer this was green, but now that we have had multiple freezes it has turned purple. If the winter is extra cold the thyme will die off on top, but grow back as soon as the ground thaws. It’s very drought tolerant, but if the ground isn’t frozen and it doesn’t snow or rain over the winter you will need to water it. Much like lavender, it doesn’t like to have wet feet, so don’t over do it. Nothing like fresh herbs year round! 
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#thyme #herb #herbs #freshherbs #herbgarden #herbgardening #growingherbs #wintergarden #harvest #2020garden #organicgardenerschool #growyourownherbs #nongmo #organicherbs #garden2020 #howtogrow #growingfood #foodharvest #homegrown #homegrownherbs #homegrownfood #spices #spicerack #driedherbs #mygarden #ilovegardening #hardyplants #zone5gardening #gardenideas #gardeninspiration

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Thyme is one of the few things that can stay green in the garden during a zone 5 winter. With added protection, thyme will survive a zone 4 winter as well, and grow back in the spring. In the summer this was green, but now that we have had multiple freezes it has turned purple. If the winter is extra cold the thyme will die off on top, but grow back as soon as the ground thaws. It’s very drought tolerant, but if the ground isn’t frozen and it doesn’t snow or rain over the winter you will need to water it. Much like lavender, it doesn’t like to have wet feet, so don’t over do it. Nothing like fresh herbs year round! . . . . . #thyme #herb #herbs #freshherbs #herbgarden #herbgardening #growingherbs #wintergarden #harvest #2020garden #organicgardenerschool #growyourownherbs #nongmo #organicherbs #garden2020 #howtogrow #growingfood #foodharvest #homegrown #homegrownherbs #homegrownfood #spices #spicerack #driedherbs #mygarden #ilovegardening #hardyplants #zone5gardening #gardenideas #gardeninspiration

Breakfast kitchen scraps, coffee grounds and egg shells. Coffee is full of nitrogen and is extremely beneficial in your compost bin. Eggshells are a little more complicated. Although they are filled with calcium, they take a long time to break down. You can speed up the process by baking and grinding the shells, or you can grind them up and soak them in vinegar for a week to a month. This will extract the calcium from the shells. You can then take that vinegar and dilute it with water and spray it on your plants if you’d like to get more immediate use from your egg shells. Some people say if you crush up the eggshells and leave them on top of the soil around plants that you want to protect from slugs, it stops them. It may stop a few snails or slugs, but using diatomaceous earth is probably a better method. Much smaller and much sharper particles than eggshells. 
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#eggshells #compost #coffeegrounds #kitchenscraps #composting #compostable #compostbin #reuse #recycle #vermicompost #vermicomposting #organicgardenerschool #organicgardening #organicgarden #naturalgarden #inthegarden #biodegradable #pestcontrol #nopesticides #nitrogen #fertilizer #wormfood #nowaste #reducereuserecycle #greenthumb #chickens #chickencoop #gardenersofinstagram #gardenersofig #gardeners

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Breakfast kitchen scraps, coffee grounds and egg shells. Coffee is full of nitrogen and is extremely beneficial in your compost bin. Eggshells are a little more complicated. Although they are filled with calcium, they take a long time to break down. You can speed up the process by baking and grinding the shells, or you can grind them up and soak them in vinegar for a week to a month. This will extract the calcium from the shells. You can then take that vinegar and dilute it with water and spray it on your plants if you’d like to get more immediate use from your egg shells. Some people say if you crush up the eggshells and leave them on top of the soil around plants that you want to protect from slugs, it stops them. It may stop a few snails or slugs, but using diatomaceous earth is probably a better method. Much smaller and much sharper particles than eggshells. . . . . #eggshells #compost #coffeegrounds #kitchenscraps #composting #compostable #compostbin #reuse #recycle #vermicompost #vermicomposting #organicgardenerschool #organicgardening #organicgarden #naturalgarden #inthegarden #biodegradable #pestcontrol #nopesticides #nitrogen #fertilizer #wormfood #nowaste #reducereuserecycle #greenthumb #chickens #chickencoop #gardenersofinstagram #gardenersofig #gardeners

Urban Gardening School

Did your strawberries not produce as much fruit last year as the year before? They may need to be divided. These strawberries were just transplanted into the ground from a strawberry patch that hadn’t been divided in four years. The fruit had become sparse and everything was root bound. Now that it is a little more thinned out there should be a lot more strawberries in that patch next year. One small clump ended up making several separate plants. Some of them got planted into the ground in another area, and some of them are going into pots to see how they do under the light over the winter. We made sure and trimmed off all the old leaves and dead foliage in the pots so the plants can just focus on rooting and not keeping old stems alive. This is also why we cut a lot of the leaves in half. The plan is to be able to transplant them out next spring and see which ones do better, the December transplants or the spring transplants. Normally we would never transplant strawberries in December outside in Colorado but it’s been abnormally warm and supposed to get to the 50’s (10°C) almost every day for the next week. It’s not much of a risk anyway because there are still so many to divide and transplant. It’s nice still being able to do some outdoor gardening in December! Happy planting 💚

Urban Gardening School

Wanting a new raised bed for spring? It’s a good idea to get it ready now! These are filled using the lasagna method. This involves layering different materials that will break down into great soil. So much more economical than buying bags and bags of soil for your beds. Here’s what we did for most of the new beds: 1. Bottom layer has cardboard to smother out grass and weeds 2. Next is a layer of twigs and broken sticks to hold in moisture, promote aeration, and eventually add nutrients 3. Manure. We used horse manure, which is not something you should normally use. The reason why it was okay in this case is because we happen to know that the field these horses eat out of is never sprayed with herbicide or any chemicals. We know the horse owners and the field owner is a family friend. Otherwise you have to be very careful about where you get your straw. These days most fields are sprayed, so it’s usually better to just avoid all of it in general, including horse and cow manure. 4. Next we layered in crunched up leaves and pine needles alternating with regular dirt from the ground. (Note: If these beds would have been built sooner, we would do a layer of green matter. Because there have been multiple freezes already, there is no green matter left so we are skipping it) 5. More manure 6. A layer of dirt from the ground 7. Regular organic garden soil by @kellogggarden 8. Random kitchen scraps to feed the worms and break down 9. All natural organic plus soil by @kellogggarden 10. A layer of crunched leaves and pine needles to mulch 11. Chicken wire covering the top to keep out digging critters but still allow in moisture and sunlight. Also prevents mulch from blowing away if a strong storm comes before the snow. 13. Give it a water Now the beds are ready to hibernate until spring! Adding too much organic matter into your soil can burn your plants, but because this is being done several months in advance, things will have broken down by planting time. The only thing purchased in this bed was a couple of bags of soil, everything else was just laying around. If we would have just filled the whole thing with purchased soil it would have taken 4 times more bags!

If you have potted trees or other plants that you bring in for the winter, they are now getting very different light. This could affect the appeared of the plant by late winter or NYE. This Abutilon looks great right now, but by the end of winter it has a good chance of looking long and spindly. If you are in the northern hemisphere and you have south facing windows then a lot of your potted plants might be just fine, but not everyone has that luxury. A plant light is another way to go, but for this Abutilon it’s best to just prune. They want more light so they sprawl out far and skinny towards the light source. As the branches start to get long and weak, cut them back in a way you think looks nice. More leaves, and eventually branches, will  grow from what’s left of the branch. .
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#pottedplants #pottedtrees #pottedgarden #containergardening #containergarden #garden #gardening #organicgardening #organicgardener #organicplants #abutilon #plantcare #plantcaretips #overwinter #winterize #gardeningtips #gardeningtipsforbeginners #gardeningforbeginners #gardenhelp #planthelp #plantadvice #horticulture #horticulturist #horticulturetherapy #gardeningtherapy #botanicalgarden #lobotany #plantadvice #plants #plant #floweringmaple

Urban Gardening School

If you have potted trees or other plants that you bring in for the winter, they are now getting very different light. This could affect the appeared of the plant by late winter or NYE. This Abutilon looks great right now, but by the end of winter it has a good chance of looking long and spindly. If you are in the northern hemisphere and you have south facing windows then a lot of your potted plants might be just fine, but not everyone has that luxury. A plant light is another way to go, but for this Abutilon it’s best to just prune. They want more light so they sprawl out far and skinny towards the light source. As the branches start to get long and weak, cut them back in a way you think looks nice. More leaves, and eventually branches, will grow from what’s left of the branch. . . . . . . #pottedplants #pottedtrees #pottedgarden #containergardening #containergarden #garden #gardening #organicgardening #organicgardener #organicplants #abutilon #plantcare #plantcaretips #overwinter #winterize #gardeningtips #gardeningtipsforbeginners #gardeningforbeginners #gardenhelp #planthelp #plantadvice #horticulture #horticulturist #horticulturetherapy #gardeningtherapy #botanicalgarden #lobotany #plantadvice #plants #plant #floweringmaple

Want some tips when it comes to getting an extra manicured look in the garden this fall? It’s that time of year when everything needs to be cut down before the winter snow comes. Leaving old foliage can harbor pests over winter and increase the chance of disease. Not only that but it can cover the green and block photosynthesis, preventing the plant from gathering more energy for rooting. On the left side of this photo you can see the foliage has been cut off, green has been revealed, and the plant will be good to go for the winter. On the right side of the picture are the exact same plants after we cleaned up the clean up job. It’s only an aesthetic issue, but if you want your plants to look more like the ones on the right then keep reading. Each stem/stick that you see sticking up wasn’t cut far enough down. You want to follow it all the way down but not necessarily cut it all the way to the ground. Look for any new growth coming out and when you find the very last node, cut the stem right above it. As you go, you can more easily pull out the dead leaves and detritus caught in the mound. It may seem tedious but it really doesn’t take that long, just follow each stem down to the mound one at a time and your results will look like the right side of the photo! I’ll feature the first person to guess which plant this is on my story! 

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#pruning #gardencleanup #plantcare #gardentips #gardeningtips #gardenhelp #urbangardeningschool #garden #gardening #gardener #gardeners #gardenersofinstagram #instagardeners #instagarden #fallcleanup #plantsofinstagram #plantsmakepeoplehappy #gardenaddict #ilovegardening #gardenactivist #gardeningactivist #activist #organicgarden #ifitsbrownitsdown #lawnmaintenance #frontgarden #plantmaintenance #gardenadvice #gardeningadvice #mastergardener

Urban Gardening School

Want some tips when it comes to getting an extra manicured look in the garden this fall? It’s that time of year when everything needs to be cut down before the winter snow comes. Leaving old foliage can harbor pests over winter and increase the chance of disease. Not only that but it can cover the green and block photosynthesis, preventing the plant from gathering more energy for rooting. On the left side of this photo you can see the foliage has been cut off, green has been revealed, and the plant will be good to go for the winter. On the right side of the picture are the exact same plants after we cleaned up the clean up job. It’s only an aesthetic issue, but if you want your plants to look more like the ones on the right then keep reading. Each stem/stick that you see sticking up wasn’t cut far enough down. You want to follow it all the way down but not necessarily cut it all the way to the ground. Look for any new growth coming out and when you find the very last node, cut the stem right above it. As you go, you can more easily pull out the dead leaves and detritus caught in the mound. It may seem tedious but it really doesn’t take that long, just follow each stem down to the mound one at a time and your results will look like the right side of the photo! I’ll feature the first person to guess which plant this is on my story! . . . . . . #pruning #gardencleanup #plantcare #gardentips #gardeningtips #gardenhelp #urbangardeningschool #garden #gardening #gardener #gardeners #gardenersofinstagram #instagardeners #instagarden #fallcleanup #plantsofinstagram #plantsmakepeoplehappy #gardenaddict #ilovegardening #gardenactivist #gardeningactivist #activist #organicgarden #ifitsbrownitsdown #lawnmaintenance #frontgarden #plantmaintenance #gardenadvice #gardeningadvice #mastergardener

Thankful that it’s been warm enough to keep the chamomile alive! There’s isn’t much that’s surviving these 20°F temperatures at night. I’m just happy the ground isn’t frozen and I can still build raised bed! 
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.#chamomile #herbaltea #medicinal #flowers #herbgarden #herbgardening #organicgardening #organicgarden #urbangardeningschool #nopesticides #naturalgarden #garden #gardening #gardener #selfseeded #fromseed #mygarden #mygardenlife #mygardentoday #inthegarden #growyourown #growityourself #fallgarden  #fallgardening #freshherbs #freshfromthegarden #mulch #leafmulch #blackleafmold

Urban Gardening School

Thankful that it’s been warm enough to keep the chamomile alive! There’s isn’t much that’s surviving these 20°F temperatures at night. I’m just happy the ground isn’t frozen and I can still build raised bed! . . . . . . #chamomile #herbaltea #medicinal #flowers #herbgarden #herbgardening #organicgardening #organicgarden #urbangardeningschool #nopesticides #naturalgarden #garden #gardening #gardener #selfseeded #fromseed #mygarden #mygardenlife #mygardentoday #inthegarden #growyourown #growityourself #fallgarden #fallgardening #freshherbs #freshfromthegarden #mulch #leafmulch #blackleafmold

Dandelions, an important perennial, are blooming again! I actually saw a bee out today. Dandelions in the spring are some of the only food available for bees. Not only that but their edible greens are great for humans! The roots can be made into a medicinal tea that is great for women. Why are we told they are weeds our whole lives? Who doesn’t like little yellow flowers anyway? 
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#dandelion #perennials #perennial #perennialgarden #medicinal #medicinalplants #herbaltea #medicinaltea #naturalmedicine #organicmedicine #urbangardeningschool #flower #flowers #flowersofinstagram #instaflowers #notaweed #gardening #gardener #gardenlife #organicgardening #naturalgarden #naturalgardening #inthegarden #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbangardener #gardeningknowhow #gardeningknowledge #gardeningisfun

Urban Gardening School

Dandelions, an important perennial, are blooming again! I actually saw a bee out today. Dandelions in the spring are some of the only food available for bees. Not only that but their edible greens are great for humans! The roots can be made into a medicinal tea that is great for women. Why are we told they are weeds our whole lives? Who doesn’t like little yellow flowers anyway? . . . . #dandelion #perennials #perennial #perennialgarden #medicinal #medicinalplants #herbaltea #medicinaltea #naturalmedicine #organicmedicine #urbangardeningschool #flower #flowers #flowersofinstagram #instaflowers #notaweed #gardening #gardener #gardenlife #organicgardening #naturalgarden #naturalgardening #inthegarden #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbangardener #gardeningknowhow #gardeningknowledge #gardeningisfun

Urban Gardening School

The Agave Marginata is an extremely drought tolerant succulent that does well in the heat. When in full sun it gets to about 4 feet tall and just as wide. Unlike its cousin the aloe, Marginata Agaves take decades to flower, which is at the end of their life cycle. Being in Colorado, I’ve never personally seen one in the flowering stage. If you live in a place colder than a zone 8, you’ll need to keep it in a pot (like I do) so that you can bring it inside for the winter. This can be tricky as the plant gets bigger, not only because of the weight, but because of the pokey blades. I myself have been cut by a large agave that I was trying to move, but that’s not as big of a deal as getting the acid from within the blades into your skin. Some people are allergic, me being one of them, but I have only been affected while trimming off old blades. It was fixed after putting on some Benadryl cream. Just something to watch out for incase you have sensitive skin or an allergy. Allergic or not, I’ll always have a Marginata Agave at my house. . . . . . . #agave #agaveplant #marginata #urbangardeningschool #succulents #desertgardening #desertplants #cactus #pottedplants #plantsinpots #overwinter #winterize #containergardening #planttips #gardentips #gardeningtips #gardeninspiration #gardeningideas #crazyplantlady #crazyplantpeople #plantmom #plantlady #plantlife #plantlover #gardeningaddict #planthoarder #plantaddict #gardenaddict #mastergardener #fallgarden

Look at this beautiful Purple Lady Pak Choy thriving in late November! Cold hardy plants are a must when you are in a colder zone. What are your winter plants this year?? 
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#pakchoy #choy #purplelady #purpleleaves #urbangardeningschool #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbanfoodgarden #urbangardener #urbanfarm #urbanfarmer #urbanfarming #suburbangarden #suburbangardening #organicgarden #organicgardening #organicgardener #nopesticides #nodig #gardenactivist #gardeningactivist #wintergreens #wintergarden #coldhardy #hardyplants #chinesefood #asiangreens #asianplants #veggiegarden #vegetablegarden

Urban Gardening School

Look at this beautiful Purple Lady Pak Choy thriving in late November! Cold hardy plants are a must when you are in a colder zone. What are your winter plants this year?? . . . . . . #pakchoy #choy #purplelady #purpleleaves #urbangardeningschool #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbanfoodgarden #urbangardener #urbanfarm #urbanfarmer #urbanfarming #suburbangarden #suburbangardening #organicgarden #organicgardening #organicgardener #nopesticides #nodig #gardenactivist #gardeningactivist #wintergreens #wintergarden #coldhardy #hardyplants #chinesefood #asiangreens #asianplants #veggiegarden #vegetablegarden

This bed has been seeded with some cold hardy plants: carrots, choy, radishes, and three types of kale. The layer of leaf mulch provides a little more insulation. Even though these are cold tolerant plants, it still gets a lot colder than they would like, which causes them to grow very slowly. A hoop house over the top would definitely help, but may not be enough during those subzero (-17°C) temperatures. If you are in a cooler zone as well, there is also the option of getting deicing cable and burying it in your beds for the winter to keep the soil warm! Using electricity is not the route I will be taking, so we will see what the winter brings!
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#kale #choy #carrots #vegetables #vegetablegarden #growyourown #growyourownfood #growyourownveggies #veggiegarden #freshgreens #saladgarden #growingvegetables #growyourownveg #vegangarden #growyourowngreens #harvest #fromseed #gardentotable #farmtoplate #wintergarden #wintergardening #urbangardeningschool #gardening #gardenersofinstagram #gardensofinstagram #instagarden #instagardeners #gardengram #raisedbedgarden #raisedbedgardening

Urban Gardening School

This bed has been seeded with some cold hardy plants: carrots, choy, radishes, and three types of kale. The layer of leaf mulch provides a little more insulation. Even though these are cold tolerant plants, it still gets a lot colder than they would like, which causes them to grow very slowly. A hoop house over the top would definitely help, but may not be enough during those subzero (-17°C) temperatures. If you are in a cooler zone as well, there is also the option of getting deicing cable and burying it in your beds for the winter to keep the soil warm! Using electricity is not the route I will be taking, so we will see what the winter brings! . . . . . #kale #choy #carrots #vegetables #vegetablegarden #growyourown #growyourownfood #growyourownveggies #veggiegarden #freshgreens #saladgarden #growingvegetables #growyourownveg #vegangarden #growyourowngreens #harvest #fromseed #gardentotable #farmtoplate #wintergarden #wintergardening #urbangardeningschool #gardening #gardenersofinstagram #gardensofinstagram #instagarden #instagardeners #gardengram #raisedbedgarden #raisedbedgardening

Urban Gardening School

Wondering when it’s safe to get rid of a hornet nest? After the first couple frosts, the nest will be totally empty. They never reuse the previous year’s nest. Once the season ends, the old queen, the workers, and the males will all die in the cold. The new fertilized queen hibernates underground for the next year and then the construction of a new nest begins. Nests built up high in the trees aren’t a bother to humans, but if it’s near a doorway or patio it might be a problem. . . . . . . #hornet #hornets #wasp #wasps #yellowjacket #yellowjackets #insects #beehive #nest #fallgarden #fallgardening #urbangardeningschool #winterization #wintergarden #wintergardening #inthegarden #mygarden #mygardenlife #gardenlife #nopesticides #organicgarden #naturalgarden #fallvibes #november #thanksgiving #autumngarden

Silver Ragwort, or Dusty Miller, is a great plant for xeriscaping. It is extremely drought tolerant, heat tolerant, and frost tolerant. .
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#dustymiller #ragwort #urbangardeningschool #organicgardening #organicgarden #organicgardener #organicplants #garden #gardenlife #gardening #gardener #urbangardening #urbangarden #nopesticides #naturalgarden #notill #nodig #nodiggarden #nodiggardening #notillgardening #gardenbeds #raisedbed #raisedbeds #raisedbedgarden #raisedbedgardening #containergarden #pottedgarden #pottedplants #planter  #xeriscape

Urban Gardening School

Silver Ragwort, or Dusty Miller, is a great plant for xeriscaping. It is extremely drought tolerant, heat tolerant, and frost tolerant. . . . . . #dustymiller #ragwort #urbangardeningschool #organicgardening #organicgarden #organicgardener #organicplants #garden #gardenlife #gardening #gardener #urbangardening #urbangarden #nopesticides #naturalgarden #notill #nodig #nodiggarden #nodiggardening #notillgardening #gardenbeds #raisedbed #raisedbeds #raisedbedgarden #raisedbedgardening #containergarden #pottedgarden #pottedplants #planter #xeriscape

Colorado
Planning out next year’s crops with @bakercreekseeds before Thanksgiving like true gardening addicts. Baker Creek has a wide variety of rare and heirloom seeds, and that’s why it’s our favorite place to buy seeds. We absolutely can not wait to see what this beautiful red okra tastes like, being suckers for anything exotically colored. With 2020 being the way it is, more and more people are starting to get into gardening, so order your seeds before they all sell out! #bakercreekseeds #urbangardeningschool

Urban Gardening School

Planning out next year’s crops with @bakercreekseeds before Thanksgiving like true gardening addicts. Baker Creek has a wide variety of rare and heirloom seeds, and that’s why it’s our favorite place to buy seeds. We absolutely can not wait to see what this beautiful red okra tastes like, being suckers for anything exotically colored. With 2020 being the way it is, more and more people are starting to get into gardening, so order your seeds before they all sell out! #bakercreekseeds #urbangardeningschool

Urban Gardening School

Lichen is a symbiotic relationship between fungi and algae. Fungi decompose other organisms and algae make their own food through photosynthesis. When they work together, the fungi provide protection from environment and the algae provide the food. This is how it can survive on a dry rock in the desert. When everything around seems to be dying, it’s nice to see some green around! . . . . . #lichen #lichens #algae #fungi #fungus #alga #symbioticrelationship #rocks #naturephotography #urbangardeningschool #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenlife #gardeningislife #gardeninglife #instagarden #instagardener #instagardeners #gardeners #botanical #botany #horticulture #horticulturist #horticulturetherapy #horticulturelife #plantlife #crazyplantlady #plantlove #plantlover

Urban Gardening School

Sumac is an attractive and easy to grow tree, but did you know it’s a popular spice for cooking in the Middle East? It has a tart lemony flavor. All Sumacs are edible except poison Sumac, but it’s easy to spot the difference. Poison Sumac has white or light green berry clusters that sag down on the branches while harmless Sumac has red clusters that sit upright. Also, harmless Sumac has jagged leaves and poison has smooth leaves. This berry cluster, called a bob, came from a tree that has lost its foliage for the winter, a good time to harvest seeds. Each furry red ball is a seed pod (scroll to see what the seed looks like). To harvest as a spice, you’ll need to separate the fluffy red pods from the seeds with a strainer. Once you have removed the seeds, you can dry out the red fluff in the oven at 300°F for around 5 minutes. You can then store this to use for about a year. It’s kind of insane that more Americans don’t use this spice considering these trees grow all over the country. Although it’s a fine time to harvest the seeds, people usually prefer to harvest as a spice in August. Has anyone ever cooked with Sumac? . . . . . . . #sumac #homegrownspices #spice #spices #cooking #culinaryspices #urbangardeningschool #tree #trees #sustainablility #sustainable #harvest #seed #seeds #seedharvest #seedcollecting #seedsaving #seedsavers #nativegarden #nativetrees #growyourown #growyourownfood #freefood #foraging #foragedfood #forage #forager #gatherer #huntergatherer #foodie

Yarrow is a great pollinator (blooms until winter) and incredibly easy to grow, perhaps a little too easy. A lot of people consider it to be an invasive weed. Want it in your garden without it spreading? I suggest Moonshine Yarrow! As you can see pictured, it has bright yellow flowers and a greenish silver leaf. This variety stays in a nice neat little mound and doesn’t spread like regular yarrow does, which tends to end up like a carpet that stretches over your entire garden. My personal favorite is the pink yarrow, but I don’t plant it in my garden because it tends to shift back into white and it spreads like crazy. If only there was a pink moonshine variety... 
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#yarrow #pollinators #pollinatorgarden #pollinator #pollination #pollinatorfriendly #pollinatorplants #forthebees #savethebees #butterflies #flowergardening #flowergarden #urbangardeningschool #gardenideas #flowerideas #horticulture #permaculture #permaculturedesign #permaculturegarden #flagstone #yellowflowers #gardenbed #gardeningislife #gramyourgarden #growyourownflowers #moonshineyarrow #plantcare #gardenchat #inthegarden #flowergardening #flowersofinstagram

Urban Gardening School

Yarrow is a great pollinator (blooms until winter) and incredibly easy to grow, perhaps a little too easy. A lot of people consider it to be an invasive weed. Want it in your garden without it spreading? I suggest Moonshine Yarrow! As you can see pictured, it has bright yellow flowers and a greenish silver leaf. This variety stays in a nice neat little mound and doesn’t spread like regular yarrow does, which tends to end up like a carpet that stretches over your entire garden. My personal favorite is the pink yarrow, but I don’t plant it in my garden because it tends to shift back into white and it spreads like crazy. If only there was a pink moonshine variety... . . . . . . #yarrow #pollinators #pollinatorgarden #pollinator #pollination #pollinatorfriendly #pollinatorplants #forthebees #savethebees #butterflies #flowergardening #flowergarden #urbangardeningschool #gardenideas #flowerideas #horticulture #permaculture #permaculturedesign #permaculturegarden #flagstone #yellowflowers #gardenbed #gardeningislife #gramyourgarden #growyourownflowers #moonshineyarrow #plantcare #gardenchat #inthegarden #flowergardening #flowersofinstagram

Urban Gardening School

Depending on the variety, rose hips can be even prettier than the flowers. Not only do they provide a point of interest during winter, but rose hips have many health benefits. They are packed full of vitamin C and antioxidants. This is thought to help the immune system, protect against heart disease, aid weight-loss, and help prevent type II diabetes. People Use it to reduce inflammation and pain, as well as aging skin. Although people do eat them, it’s more common to make a rose hip tea. It’s very easy to brew and usually has a tart flavor. Some rose hips are actually very sweet tasting. Some people even claim consuming rose hips has cured their cancer. Keep in mind that if you have a medical condition or are pregnant, you might consult your doctor before making it a part of your daily diet. . . . . . . #rosehip #rosehips #rosehiptea #rosehipoil #rose #roses #rosegarden #rosegardens #rosegardening #urbangardeningschool #healthfood #naturalmedicine #medicine #nativeplants #winterplants #wintergarden #wintergardening #naturalgarden #organicgardening #organicgarden #organicgardener #gardeninglife #garden #gardening #nopesticides #gardener #instagardener #instagarden #gardensofinstagram #gardenlife

If you’re a gardener, you should never throw away your fallen leaves, they will help your garden tremendously! Each growing season we harvest food that takes nutrients from the garden, so each year we need to put it back. I’ve taken to gathering the neighbors leaves up as well (who didn’t want them). Not only will they protect your soil from the sun and hold in moisture, but as the leaves break down over winter they add nutrients back into the soil. Before you place the leaves on top of your garden beds, it’s best to crush them and break them up into smaller pieces. This will allow water and melted snow to reach the soil, which is sometimes prevented by leaves creating a barrier when they are not crushed. By the same token, uncrushed leaves can also create a barrier that holds in too much moisture and can cause rot. It is best to have crushed leaves to promote easy water and airflow. Crushed leaves won’t always replace the need to use fertilizer or other methods of amending, but it’s a great help and it’s free! 
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#leaves #fall #autumn #fallgarden #urbangardening #urbangardeningschool #urbanfoodgarden #urbangarden #garden #gardening #gardener #soil #soilhealth #soilamendments #soilnutrients #novembergarden #raisedbed #raisedbeds #raisedbedgarden #raisedbedgardening #freemulch #mulch #mulching #learntogrow #learntogarden

Urban Gardening School

If you’re a gardener, you should never throw away your fallen leaves, they will help your garden tremendously! Each growing season we harvest food that takes nutrients from the garden, so each year we need to put it back. I’ve taken to gathering the neighbors leaves up as well (who didn’t want them). Not only will they protect your soil from the sun and hold in moisture, but as the leaves break down over winter they add nutrients back into the soil. Before you place the leaves on top of your garden beds, it’s best to crush them and break them up into smaller pieces. This will allow water and melted snow to reach the soil, which is sometimes prevented by leaves creating a barrier when they are not crushed. By the same token, uncrushed leaves can also create a barrier that holds in too much moisture and can cause rot. It is best to have crushed leaves to promote easy water and airflow. Crushed leaves won’t always replace the need to use fertilizer or other methods of amending, but it’s a great help and it’s free! . . . . . . . #leaves #fall #autumn #fallgarden #urbangardening #urbangardeningschool #urbanfoodgarden #urbangarden #garden #gardening #gardener #soil #soilhealth #soilamendments #soilnutrients #novembergarden #raisedbed #raisedbeds #raisedbedgarden #raisedbedgardening #freemulch #mulch #mulching #learntogrow #learntogarden

Who says everything has to be brown all winter? This ornamental kale doesn’t start getting vibrant until night time temperatures are between 20°F-60°F. For some of us winter is already here, but we don’t want to stop gardening! Keep in mind, although it’s called ornamental, the leaves are technically edible but not tasty. This variety is grown for its color and not for its flavor. As with all kale, don’t eat the roots, they are poisonous. This plant thrives in cooler weather, but once temperatures stick around 0°F (-17°C) it becomes too cold for even ornamental kale. You never know how the seasons are going to be in the Rocky Mountains so we’ll see how long it survives! 
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#kale #winterflowers #ornamentalkale #ornamentalplants #winterplants #hardyplants #urbangardeningschool #gardentips #gardeningtips #gardeningisfun #gardeninglife #zone5 #zone5gardening #organicgardening #nopesticides #patiogarden #patiogardening #gardendesign #gardendesigner #plantideas #gardenideas #gardeningideas #gardeninspiration #gardeninginspiration #colorfulplants #plantsmakepeoplehappy #plantsofinstagram #instaplants #instaplant #hardyplants #horticulture

Urban Gardening School

Who says everything has to be brown all winter? This ornamental kale doesn’t start getting vibrant until night time temperatures are between 20°F-60°F. For some of us winter is already here, but we don’t want to stop gardening! Keep in mind, although it’s called ornamental, the leaves are technically edible but not tasty. This variety is grown for its color and not for its flavor. As with all kale, don’t eat the roots, they are poisonous. This plant thrives in cooler weather, but once temperatures stick around 0°F (-17°C) it becomes too cold for even ornamental kale. You never know how the seasons are going to be in the Rocky Mountains so we’ll see how long it survives! . . . . . . #kale #winterflowers #ornamentalkale #ornamentalplants #winterplants #hardyplants #urbangardeningschool #gardentips #gardeningtips #gardeningisfun #gardeninglife #zone5 #zone5gardening #organicgardening #nopesticides #patiogarden #patiogardening #gardendesign #gardendesigner #plantideas #gardenideas #gardeningideas #gardeninspiration #gardeninginspiration #colorfulplants #plantsmakepeoplehappy #plantsofinstagram #instaplants #instaplant #hardyplants #horticulture

Dragon’s Blood Sedum will keep your garden interesting in the winter by turning red, this one is in the middle of transition and giving a rainbow effect. The leaves are green in the summer with pinkish red flowers. The best part about this stonecrop is it’s very low maintenance and pest resistant. It doesn’t need much water in the winter time, and prefers dry rocky soil. It is hardy in zones 3-8, the foliage usually sticks around through winter. In very cold areas it will die off but then grow back with a vengeance in the spring. Dragon’s Blood Sedum works great as a ground cover or in a pot! With a succulent this tough, you can’t go wrong!
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#sedum #sedums #succulents #succulent #succulover #succulentsofinstagram #instasucculent #groundcover #pottedsucculents #dragonsblood #hardyplants #winterplants #colorchange #rainbow #urbangardeningschool #easytogrow #naturalgarden #organicgarden #organicgardener #plantlover #gardenlife #gardenideas #gardeninspiration #gardeninglife #nodig #nodiggarden #notill #notillgardening #wintergarden #inthegarden

Urban Gardening School

Dragon’s Blood Sedum will keep your garden interesting in the winter by turning red, this one is in the middle of transition and giving a rainbow effect. The leaves are green in the summer with pinkish red flowers. The best part about this stonecrop is it’s very low maintenance and pest resistant. It doesn’t need much water in the winter time, and prefers dry rocky soil. It is hardy in zones 3-8, the foliage usually sticks around through winter. In very cold areas it will die off but then grow back with a vengeance in the spring. Dragon’s Blood Sedum works great as a ground cover or in a pot! With a succulent this tough, you can’t go wrong! . . . . . . #sedum #sedums #succulents #succulent #succulover #succulentsofinstagram #instasucculent #groundcover #pottedsucculents #dragonsblood #hardyplants #winterplants #colorchange #rainbow #urbangardeningschool #easytogrow #naturalgarden #organicgarden #organicgardener #plantlover #gardenlife #gardenideas #gardeninspiration #gardeninglife #nodig #nodiggarden #notill #notillgardening #wintergarden #inthegarden

To some it may seem counterintuitive, but cutting back the green iris foliage in the fall can really benefit the plant. Leave around 6-8 inches of the blades and then the plant can focus it’s energy toward rooting instead of keeping foliage alive over winter. That also leaves plenty of room for the new growth at the bottom to be safe from being cut back. Leaving all of the foliage over winter can attract pests like borer eggs. The plant will be more prone to disease as well if you leave yellowed or spotted foliage. Chopping the top of the irises looks pretty unnatural, but those blades will end up dying off anyway and it makes for healthier plants! 
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#iris #irises #perennials #beardediris #fallgarden #autumngarden #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #gardenersofig #gardeners #gardenerslife #outdoorplants #planted #growyourown #growyourownflowers #flowercare #iriscare #gardencare #mastergardener #organicgardening #organicplants #organicgarden #organicgardener #lobotany #botany #horticulture #horticulturist

Urban Gardening School

To some it may seem counterintuitive, but cutting back the green iris foliage in the fall can really benefit the plant. Leave around 6-8 inches of the blades and then the plant can focus it’s energy toward rooting instead of keeping foliage alive over winter. That also leaves plenty of room for the new growth at the bottom to be safe from being cut back. Leaving all of the foliage over winter can attract pests like borer eggs. The plant will be more prone to disease as well if you leave yellowed or spotted foliage. Chopping the top of the irises looks pretty unnatural, but those blades will end up dying off anyway and it makes for healthier plants! . . . . . #iris #irises #perennials #beardediris #fallgarden #autumngarden #garden #gardening #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #gardenersofig #gardeners #gardenerslife #outdoorplants #planted #growyourown #growyourownflowers #flowercare #iriscare #gardencare #mastergardener #organicgardening #organicplants #organicgarden #organicgardener #lobotany #botany #horticulture #horticulturist

Colorado
Even though the salvia has some new purple blooms, it is important to cut it down to the mound (this is a before and after shot) in autumn. Leaving all the dried up foliage for winter makes habitat for unwanted visitors in the garden. It could even cause an infestation. I’m desperately trying to get things cut back and raked up before tomorrow’s snow. Any foliage not removed will get smashed down by the snow and possibly frozen there for quite a while. This will make it much more difficult when you finally do decide to remove it. I’m trying to collect all the leaves to spread as mulch across the garden as well, because after they get snowed on it will take 10 times longer to remove. Putting fallen leaves on top of your bed for the winter will protect the soil from the sun and break down to add beneficial nutrients and help amend the soil. Less than 11 hours of daylight in a day to garden, is there even time to eat!?
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#autumngarden #fallcleanup  #plantcare #salvia #nativeplants #urbangardeningschool #gardenmaintenance #mastergardener #gardentips #gardeningtips #organicgardening #organicgarden #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbangardener #urbanfarm #urbanfarming #urbanfarmer #perennials #inthegarden #mygarden #gardenlife #gardenaddict #gardeningaddict #gardeninglife #instagardeners #instagarden #instagardener #gardensofinstagram #gardenersofinstagram

Urban Gardening School

Even though the salvia has some new purple blooms, it is important to cut it down to the mound (this is a before and after shot) in autumn. Leaving all the dried up foliage for winter makes habitat for unwanted visitors in the garden. It could even cause an infestation. I’m desperately trying to get things cut back and raked up before tomorrow’s snow. Any foliage not removed will get smashed down by the snow and possibly frozen there for quite a while. This will make it much more difficult when you finally do decide to remove it. I’m trying to collect all the leaves to spread as mulch across the garden as well, because after they get snowed on it will take 10 times longer to remove. Putting fallen leaves on top of your bed for the winter will protect the soil from the sun and break down to add beneficial nutrients and help amend the soil. Less than 11 hours of daylight in a day to garden, is there even time to eat!? . . . . #autumngarden #fallcleanup #plantcare #salvia #nativeplants #urbangardeningschool #gardenmaintenance #mastergardener #gardentips #gardeningtips #organicgardening #organicgarden #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbangardener #urbanfarm #urbanfarming #urbanfarmer #perennials #inthegarden #mygarden #gardenlife #gardenaddict #gardeningaddict #gardeninglife #instagardeners #instagarden #instagardener #gardensofinstagram #gardenersofinstagram

Urban Gardening School

Autumn is a good time to transplant overgrown strawberries. With the days being so short now, I had to resort to night gardening or else it wouldn’t get done. Is anyone else insane enough to garden at night in the fall? As you can see, the overcrowded strawberry patch was infested with grass. When I made the transplant I pulled every single grass rhizome out of each clump. To me there is no worse weed than grass, aside from campanula that is. There were some carrots popping up but I went ahead and left those be. Anyway, I am very excited to see how these strawberries produce next season, it might be necessary to build a cage over the top to protect from birds and raccoons. This can be cheaply done with spare wood, chicken wire, and a couple of hinges. It is supposed to snow on Sunday with a major temperature drop, so I am trying to get as much done as possible in the next two days when it comes to cutting things back and harvesting seeds. It’s a race against time! #gardening

Urban Gardening School

If it’s the best tasting tomato you’ve ever had, then you may need to save the seeds. The cold has killed off all the tomatoes (swipe to see frost bitten yellow pear) so it’s time to start thinking about next year’s tomato plants. This tiny tomato only needs to be cut in half once to access the seeds. If you want to save all of the seeds from a larger tomato, like a beefsteak, you will have to cut it more than one time. Keep in mind that you can harvest the seeds and still eat the tomato. After you collect the seeds you soak them in water for a couple days to help remove that outer membrane that keeps the seeds from germinating. Then strain the seeds out to dry completely, after a couple of weeks they should be ready for planting! I can’t wait to grow this variety of cherry tomato. Another gardener in the neighborhood has been growing them for years, but I didn’t try one until this fall. It was the sweetest most delicious tomato I have ever had, tasted like candy. They are really small and have the tiniest seeds I’ve ever harvested from a tomato, and I only grabbed two. Hoping for a high germination rate, wish me luck! .. #organicgardening #tomato #seedsaving #tomatoes #seed #seeds #urbangardeningschool #harvestingseeds #nogmoseeds #heirloomseeds #organicseeds #nongmo #nopesticides #nongmoseeds #nogmo #naturalgarden #organicgarden #organicgardening #organicvegetablegarden #vegetablegarden #vegetablegardening #growyourownfood #tomatoplant #growingtomatoes #sustainable #sustainability #gardenactivist #urbangardening #horticulture #horticulturist

Prickly Pear Cacti, the water reserve of the desert. This is a great cold hearty no-maintenance plant for a xeriscaped garden. It forms one pad per year, and a pad lives for about 10 years. Each pad has the ability to root out for surviving after the older ones die off. This cactus produces a red fruit that tastes similar to an apple or pear! It’s needles are sure to keep out unwanted guests. 
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#cactus #cacti #pricklypear #desert #desertlife #desertplants #hardyplants #urbangardeningschool #plantfacts #growyourown #xeriscape #desertgardening #desertgarden #perennial #perennials #perennialgarden #nativeplants #naturephotography #naturalgarden #organicgardening #epicgardening #cactusgarden #coloradogardening #cactusofinstagram #instacactus #gardening #howtogarden #howtogrow #learntogarden

Urban Gardening School

Prickly Pear Cacti, the water reserve of the desert. This is a great cold hearty no-maintenance plant for a xeriscaped garden. It forms one pad per year, and a pad lives for about 10 years. Each pad has the ability to root out for surviving after the older ones die off. This cactus produces a red fruit that tastes similar to an apple or pear! It’s needles are sure to keep out unwanted guests. . . . . . . #cactus #cacti #pricklypear #desert #desertlife #desertplants #hardyplants #urbangardeningschool #plantfacts #growyourown #xeriscape #desertgardening #desertgarden #perennial #perennials #perennialgarden #nativeplants #naturephotography #naturalgarden #organicgardening #epicgardening #cactusgarden #coloradogardening #cactusofinstagram #instacactus #gardening #howtogarden #howtogrow #learntogarden

Mums are tough enough to make it through some of this cooler weather, but the chickens need their heated coop. Normally mums don’t like freezing temperatures too much but I think these potted ones are getting heat from being so close to the house, so they are still here when other flowers are long gone. I love perennial flowers that are hardy enough for the harsh and unpredictable winters! The snow is almost melted, hoping for another few weeks of fall. 
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#mums #chicken #farmlife #urbanfarm #urbanfarming #urbanfarmer #urbangardeningschool #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbangardener #instaflowers #instagarden #instagardeners #pottedgarden #pottedplants #pottedflowers #containergardening #patiogarden #patiogardening #fallflowers #chickencoop #garden #gardening #gardeninglife #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #mygarden #containergarden #gardendesign #highgarden

Urban Gardening School

Mums are tough enough to make it through some of this cooler weather, but the chickens need their heated coop. Normally mums don’t like freezing temperatures too much but I think these potted ones are getting heat from being so close to the house, so they are still here when other flowers are long gone. I love perennial flowers that are hardy enough for the harsh and unpredictable winters! The snow is almost melted, hoping for another few weeks of fall. . . . . . #mums #chicken #farmlife #urbanfarm #urbanfarming #urbanfarmer #urbangardeningschool #urbangarden #urbangardening #urbangardener #instaflowers #instagarden #instagardeners #pottedgarden #pottedplants #pottedflowers #containergardening #patiogarden #patiogardening #fallflowers #chickencoop #garden #gardening #gardeninglife #gardener #gardenersofinstagram #mygarden #containergarden #gardendesign #highgarden