Composting & Compost Tea for Disease Control

Composting is the biological decomposition of organic material under controlled conditions. The heat generated by decomposer microorganisms during composting can destroy most pathogens, weed seeds, and invertebrates. Beneficial microorganisms inhabiting some composts control diseases. For disease suppression compost must have a diversity of bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and nematodes. Compost Starting Materials The greater the variety and size of materials the…

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Composting for the Garden vs. Home Orchard

Do not let the following discourage you from composting or just throwing plant material on the soil. Any organic matter added is better than none at all. As more knowledge is gained from nature we can then work with nature to maintain more of a natural balance. Ingham’s work at Oregon State University and Shigo’s work in Vermont, plus others,…

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Fifteen Reasons For Mason Bees: Let HOS Be Your Supply

If you have any apricot, peach, plum, cherry, apple, pear or other plants that require pollination in the early spring, you will want to consider mason bees for your pollinators. Here are fifteen reasons why: MASON BEES: are solitary, only one bee per nest not hundreds. do not sting. are early spring bees, about the time peaches and cherries bloom….

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Mason Bee Pictures

Mason Bee House

Cherry Harvesting Dates

One nice thing about growing fruit in your backyard (or any part of your yard) is that you can select varieties that will ripen over a period of time. This will let you and the birds enjoy an extended harvest. The following is a cherry harvest chart patterned after one developed by Lynn E. Long, Oregon Horticulture Extension Agent. I…

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Grow Double the Berries in Your Backyard!

According to most sources, trailing berries (i.e. Marion, Logan, Boysen, Cascade) should be planted 6 to 8 feet apart with 8 to 10 plants for a family of 4. For those of us living in cities, this requires too much space. Yet these luscious, soft, juicy, not easy to ship and store berries, are a premium if purchased in the…

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Haskap Arrives in North America

Haskap berries are native to Hokkaido, the northern Island of Japan. Historically, wild-growing plants provided one of the few fruits available to the Aniu people, the indigenous population on this island. They appreciated their taste and also recognized their high nutritional value. In 1967, the Japanese began a program to domesticate this fruit. They collected and propagated outstanding plants form…

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The Basics of Blueberry Culture

Of all cultivated fruits, blueberries are one of the best for the home garden. The beautiful bushes blend well into landscaping, growing four to eight feet tall with small, white urn-shaped flowers in spring followed by big crops of blue berries and lovely autumn foliage. Nutritional research has shown that blueberries provide more antioxidants for good health than any other…

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