Organic Gardening

Organic Control for Pillbugs

Gardening Question from Judi: I recently attended a talk by you on soil, and I have a question. We prepared our beautiful raised beds and planted our zucchini, cucumbers, lettuce, etc. before the rain came. Discovered dozens of pill bugs that have eaten mainly the zucchini and cucumbers. We read on the internet that one […]

Raised Bed Planting

Question from Chad: I am just installed a raised 13 1/2 foot by 5 1/2 foot veggie bed in mu back yard that will get great amounts of south facing sun. I have filled the bed with good quality organic soil. I am using a soaker hose that is hooked into the irrigation timer. I […]

Early Blight on Tomatoes

The company that makes Probiotics 4 Plants Defensor Bacterial Inoculator told me they have temporarily taken their products off the market while they create a new marketing strategy for the general public. I suggest you use Serenade(r) Garden Disease Control instead. Serenade(r) is widely available in nurseries and it is fully organic. This is biological […]

Clover Attracts Ladybugs

Gardening Question from Olivia: Do you think Lady Bugs are attracted to clover? I am a landscape designer and landscaper. I have a client in Clairemont, California. I just finished her garden. She told me that her garden was overgrown and not taken care of for many years. (She just bought a foreclosure house.) She […]

Do Not Dig Chipper Materials into the Ground

Question from Harry: I have heavy clay soil. When it gets wet, it sticks to my shoes. Recently I got a load of chipper materials from a local tree-pruner. I have been wheelbarrowing it around and spreading it on paths and beds and around my fruit trees. Would it be okay to dig it into […]

Southern California Gardening: Month by Month Guide, 2000

This much-loved book, often called ‘the gardener’s bible” is now completely revised and updated with an improved format, new cover, all-new photographs by Steve Gunther and much added material. Covers all the basic plants and plant groups grown in Southern California, including lawns, citrus, avocados, deciduous fruit trees, vegetables, herbs, roses, annual flowers, wildflowers, perennials, […]

Plant Zinnias Seeds

Plant seeds of zinnias now. “Benary’s Giants” (sold as “Parks Picks” by the Park Seeds) is immune to mildew. Choose a spot in full sun, till the ground to spade depth, work in organic soil amendment and balanced fertilizer into the top six inches. Soak the soil, let settle overnight. Plant seeds one by one, […]

Southwest Smart Garden Regional Guide

Over 2,500 spectacular identification photos, many taken by Pat Welsh, illustrate 250 plant category lists helping you choose plants for particular purposes, such as color, solid shade, near swimming pools, in a firescape, a boggy spot, for drought, heat, smog, or disease resistance, for fragrance, for hillsides, for ocean front, a narrow side yard, or […]

Beginning an Organic Garden

Question from Dan: I just spent the past four hours reading your website looking for answers to several questions. My wife and I bought a house in Banning and moved in June 3rd. Since then I’ve been digging holes for blueberry bushes (6), raspberries and blackberries (4 each), and two 3×7 pits for vegetables. I’ve […]

Coffee Grounds

Question from Curtis: We love your book and are encouraging our neighbors to garden organically. I’ve heard many anecdotal stories of coffee grounds helping acidic plants such as blueberries. However, I’ve have not seen a garden book recommend them. I would appreciate your advice. Answer from Pat: It is beneficial to throw coffee grounds (and […]