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Website Wednesday: Edible Yardworks

September 1st, 2010

Ever walked out to your garden with a big to do list full of great ideas, only to find yourself standing in the same spot ten minutes later thinking “Where do I start?” Well we think we may have found an answer to that question. The Edible Yardworks website is a great place to look for a starting point for various gardening projects. And did we mention it is a Northern California specific webpage! This website is an amazing resource for people looking for that starting place.  It has 15 different ‘How-To’ topics for those interested in finding out more about everything from composting to mushroom farming.

The creator of this site, Stacey, also offers private classes on how to grow organic and cook great meals. Even better, her price for a class with more than three students is $15 per person! We think that is so reasonable, so, for those of you in Northern California get some friends together and make a night of it!

Stacey also posts several great video from very reputable sources. Her videos are in the “Case for Edible Yards” tab at the top of the page which has 9 reasons why being sustainable is so important including Biodiversity, Industrial Agriculture, and Climate Change.

Stacey uses a clip from this movie in the Industrial Agriculture section
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WEBSITE WEDNESDAY: University of California Integrated Pest Management

June 23rd, 2010

Keeping your edible garden free of bad bugs can be difficult, especially if you are not even sure what type of pest is the problem! This common issue brings us to today’s ‘Website Wednesday’ recommendation–The University of California Integrated Pest Management (UCIPM) website specific to ‘Pests in Gardens and Landscapes–Vegetable and Melons.’

In February this year our gardener Arlene encountered this pest who’d taken up residence on the flip side of a cabbage leaf. We knew it was some kind of moth based on the pupae. Then we found this entry on the IPM website describing the color of the pupae by following the links associated with cabbage pests: “Pupae are green with faint yellow lines down the back and sides; there is no spun cocoon. The cabbageworm is active throughout the year in California.” Voila! We have a cabbageworm and now know the best way to manage them is by handpicking. Now that was easy!

It’s not always that easy, but regardless this website is awesome! You can delve deep, really deep into the various types of pest that may be affecting your garden. In addition tons of tips for identification, UCIPM also provides tips on various types of management. The UCIPM website is not just about pests either, it also provides cultivation tips and techniques, weather data, and top-notch publications useful for any home gardener!

Do you have any pests that you are having a difficult time identifying? Post a photo on our Facebook page under ‘Fan Photos.’

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Great Gardening Resources: UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES

May 12th, 2010

Here in California we have an amazing resource that I want to make sure you know about! It is known here as ANR or the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources and is comprised of a statewide network of University of California researchers and educators dedicated to the creation, development and application of knowledge in agricultural, natural and human resources. In other words, they do the research and all you have to do is take advantage of it!

They provide a wealth of information for our farmers, but also our home gardeners. You have got to check some of this out! The books they sell can’t be beat, plus they offer a ton of free resources you simply must read!

HOW ABOUT

The California Master Gardener Handbook
It is a whopping 700 pages–the definitive guide to gardening in California. All for only $30!

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Drip Irrigation in the Home Landscape
This easy-to-use reference guide answers common questions about components, materials, design, installation, maintenance, and troubleshooting. If you’re considering a drip irrigation system for your garden, for $5 you need this guide — don’t go to the hardware store without it!

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Browse all the FREE PUBLICATIONS from 21 pages about Slugs: A Guide to the Invasive and Native Fauna of California to 6 pages about Patch Budding: A Convenient Method for Top-Working Olives.

Do you have a similar resource in your state? If so, let us know!

Explore, learn and enjoy!

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