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By Lori


A “grows on you” alum has asked what I meant by “over fertilization”. Simply this: ignoring soil tilth and microdiversity with the short term fix of chemicals.
When I moved into my home and addressed the green mat that was my backyard with the ubiquitous round mouth shovel, I found a horror story just below the sod… there was a layer of “topsoil” that was approx. 3-4 inches in depth and below that was rubble from what must have been an industrial site and a gray soapy clay substrate. The grass was growing because it had been watered and coddled, and fed insecticide and the soil dosed with herbicide. It took two growing seasons for the earthworms to return. When I think of the frustration I felt because I did not have a large budget for my garden, I now laugh and marvel that it was an excellent lesson regarding what ones garden truly needs… LAISSEZ-FAIRE. I have produced my backgarden, with a budget that, averaged out over the last nine years, would amount to about $50per year. I should add at this point that I have received bulbs and plants as gifts.. But for the most part I’ve accomplished this on a shoestring. I buy seeds.
PLANT LIST – These plants I have added from seed, and bought at nursuries. (Some of the tulips were gifts)
Perennials: Japanese Spurge (Pachysandra), Violas, Vinca minor, Cinnamomea (fern), Cranesbill (geranium),parrot tulips, Echinacea (purple & white), Angelique tulips, Hosta (3 varieties), Bergenia, Ligularia, Ajuga, Heracleum (Hog Weed), Gaillardia, Lavender, Astilbe, Asiatic Lilies, Echinops ritro, Liatris, Dahlias, Delphinium, Campion, Spearmint and Peppermint,Chives, Explorer rose, Daylily, Artemesia (3 varieties), Monarda, Oregano, Narcissus, Daffodils, Globe Cedar, Raspberry, Aegopodium podagraria, Virginia Creeper, Thyme (French and Lemon), Sage, Dwarf Rose, Wild Strawberry, Heuchera (3 var.) Aquilegia, Korean Bell Flower, Lobelia, Salvia, Blue Flag, Honeysuckle, Arrowwood Viburnum, Elaeagnus augustifolia, siberian cypress, Burning bush, Irish moss, Lamb’s Ears, Sedum, Foxglove, Lemon Balm,Rhododendron, Clematis, Lupins, Concord Grape Vine, Peonies, Yarrow, I know I’ve forgotten some.

TREES: Cottonwood, Maple (2 Red), Amur Maple, Japanese Larch, Serbian Spruce, Crab Apple, Sumac, Hemlock & Colorado Blue Spruce.

ANNUALS: Cana (dwarf), Calla lily, Dahlias, Acidanthera, Cleome, Poppies, Petunias, Crocosmia (Scarlet)(Montbretia?) Zinnias, Flax, Ageratum, Alyssum, Egyptian Onions. Parsley, Heavenly Blue MorningGlories, Leaf Lettuce (Fish Food), Sweetpeas, Basil, Sunflowers. I’m too old for this…

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I must say that i'm no expert in the Garden. My efforts all go into the Greenhouse, 99% with Begonias - But i do know that if the Begonias are overfed it is likely to lead to stem rot, and tuber loss. I assume that similar would apply out in the garden as well!

28 Feb, 2008


First time I've been called an alum! I hope it's complimentary... Your blog says what I was trying to say in my previous comment. Digging in home-made compost and stable manure is a much better way of enriching the soil than chemical means and I also use bonemeal annually as well as chicken manure pellets dug in when I plant anything. The soil does need boosting every year to encourage good, healthy growth. Since I've done this, I have noticed the increase in earthworms, which has pleased me. As I said, I only feed my containers and tomatoes with diluted bottled feed, I am very impressed with your list by the way.

28 Feb, 2008

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