Category Archives: Pets & Pests In The Garden

Safer Slug Solutions

This has been a banner year for slugs; yesterday I counted over 40 babies and moms in a single flat of 4-inch pots. I’m more laissez faire than I used to be and won’t kill slugs or bugs unless they’re doing obvious damage, but this little herd was mowing down my veggie starts before they could get started. Sorry, critters. It’s doom time for you. So what’s the best way to off a slug without cruelty? Ecologically speaking, it’s the oldest; predators. Toads, frogs, moles, shrews, and songbirds are all slug eaters, as are ducks and chickens. In an organic garden, predators can safely feed on slugs and bugs, and the balance of nature rarely gets out of hand. Continue reading

Posted in Gardening With Children, Health & Wellbeing, pests and pesticides, Pets & Pests In The Garden, Pollination Gardens, Pollinators, Sustainable Gardening, Sustainable Living, Teaching Gardening | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

Food Or Fodder

Yes, deer fencing that is both effective and long lasting is not cheap, but if we plan to grow and harvest much of our daily food, fence we must. It’s worth taking some time to investigate effective fencing materials and techniques, from double-fencing to peanut butter wire. Double fencing can trick (some) deer into thinking a site is inaccessible by creating a baffling space between two relatively low fences. Usually, this involves two five-foot fences five feet apart, a model both farmers and gardeners report (at least some) success with. A peanut butter fence partners electrified wires with bait, and according to the ICWDM,
“The peanut butter fence is effective for small gardens, nurseries, and orchards (up to 3 to 4 acres) subject to moderate deer pressure. Deer are attracted by the peanut butter and encouraged to make nose-to-fence contact. After being shocked, deer learn to avoid fenced areas.” Continue reading

Posted in pests and pesticides, Pets & Pests In The Garden, Sustainable Gardening | Tagged , | 2 Comments

The Magic Of Mushrooms

Print PDF  Mycological Exploring These days, almost everyone I know is talking about Fantastic Fungi, a film celebrating the role fungi play in all life on earth. Much of the film focuses on the lifework of Paul Stamets, founder of … Continue reading

Posted in mushroom hunting, Pets & Pests In The Garden, Recipes, Sustainable Living | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Filling A Tiny Garden

Though the old wood fence is sagging and rotting, I love the weathered look. Indeed, I’m considering lifting the panels off the ground and hanging them in sturdy frames like artwork, so they help screen our space from the neighbors but aren’t rotting from soil contact. One section is already gone; when I was discussing ideas with my clever house contractor (the uncle of my long-time garden guy), my neighbor popped her head over the fence and said her elderly mother loved to grow tomatoes but this section of fence blocked her light. In response, Jorge simply lifted the 8-foot panel away. Poof! We’ll replace that section with stockade wire and build out a bed to hold my three-way espalier apple tree, which I’ll train on the wire. Continue reading

Posted in Annual Color, Drainage, Garden Design, Health & Wellbeing, Pets & Pests In The Garden, Pollinators, Soil, Sustainable Gardening, Sustainable Living, Tomatoes | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments