Diseases, Pests and Weeds
Fertilizers, Manures and Feeding
Flowering Plants
Garden Design and Planning
Gardening Terms (Glossary)
Gardening Tips
Gardening Tools
Indoor, Foliage and Shade Plants
Leaves, Roots and Flowers
Light Requirements
Planting and Transplanting
Pots and Potted Plants
Pruning and Pinching

Gardening Tips

  • Leftover dals make good fertilizer. The high protein in pulses provides nitrogen.
  • Grease hands before gardening, to prevent soil from sticking to them.
  • Lemon can be used for cleaning dirt in the fingernails.
  • To prevent soil splotches, and to waterproof pots, the inside and outside can be coated with wax or oil. The pots can also be lined inside with a plastic bag, in which a hole has been made at the bottom.
  • Rain is a treat for plants.
  • Ash, being rich in potassium, can be used as a fertilizer. It can also be used as a slug killer and seed preservative.
  • Take indoor plants outdoor at regular intervals for natural growth, as then they get adequate light.
  • To prevent seeds from scattering while they are being watered, the flower bed can be mulched.
  • Cuttings can be kept moist and alive in plastic bags, till they can be planted. For longer shelf, life, they can also be refrigerated.
  • Plants should be brought only in spring or early rains, never in winter, specially in the north Indian climate, as the winters are cold and the plants will not grow.
  • Plants are dormant in hot June, when the temperature rises to plus 40°C, and during cold winters when the temperature is near freezing. Do not expect plant growth at this time of the year. Also do not feed.
  • As a general rule vegetables growing underground need less sunlight than those which grow above ground.
  • Grape and bottle gourd can be used as sun cover because they have extensive foliage making a good canopy when made to climb on any trellis. The advantage of grape is that it sheds its leaves in winter and grows new ones in summer, while bottle gourd plants simply die off in winter.
  • Cracked and broken pots can be wrapped in plasticbags and then tied.
  • A stiff plastic bag makes a good temporary pot.
  • Pedilamhus-variegated and plain varieties-make great all,year round vase plants.
  • Trees should not be grown on the south side of a garden because, during winters, they give shade to the rest of the garden, preventing growth of grass and other plants, unless they are deciduous tress.
  • Sow gourd, cucumber and okra indoors in February, where it is warmer than outside, and then transplant from polybags when it gets warm outside. This way you get an early crop.
  • If the lawn gets heavy traffic, the roots can be made resilient by applying superphosphate at the rate of 300 grams for every 10 square feet.
  • Spinach and lettuce can be cut to two inches, instead of uprooting the plants. They will grow again and again.
  • Pea roots should be left in the ground. Green beans can be planted near these roots, and again the roots of the beans should be left in the ground. The next season's crop can be planted here without using any nitrogen fertilizer because all bean plants enrich the soil as they have nitrogen, bearing nodules in the roots.
  • Planting marigolds among beans, spinach, tomatoes and celery protects the vegetables from root nematodes (root damaging soil pests) and other insects. The roots of marigolds produce a chemical that kills nematodes.
  • After spraying or misting the leaves of plants to wash out dust, shake the water. If the leaves remain wet for too long they pick up dust which shows as muddy splotches.
  • A pinch of bavast:in with 5,10 drops of malathion in a glass of wa ter makes a broad spectrum of fungicide and insecticide.
  • The next season's seedlings can be planted next to standing flower plants. When the plants are removed at the end of flow-ering the new plants will be ready.
  • Holeless pots and containers can be used to grow plants if pebbles are put at the bottom to hold residual water.




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