Put in the ef­fort

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - HOMES -

Food gar­den­ing re­quires time, com­mit­ment and ef­fort. This may be a re­al­ity that even­tu­ally causes some time-starved gar­den­ers to re­con­sider their ini­tial en­thu­si­asm. The fol­low­ing prac­tices will lead to greater suc­cess: Grow a range of plants. This cre­ates a health­ier, more bal­anced en­vi­ron­ment where pests and dis­eases are less likely to get out of con­trol. Monitor your crops reg­u­larly. Hand-pick green­fly and black­fly, slugs and cut­worms. This is also the way to stay on top of weeds. When you thin rows of radishes and car­rots, al­ways clear away your thin­nings. Leav­ing them to rot on the ground next to healthy plants opens the door to dis­ease. Give com­pan­ion plant­ing a go. Peas like car­rots, but not be­ing next to onions and gar­lic. This is not sci­en­tific, but it does seem to work for a lot of gar­den­ers. Grow car­rots near toma­toes, rose­mary next to sage, radishes next to let­tuce, peas and car­rots. Here are a few oth­ers to con­sider: Bush beans with cel­ery and beets; corn with pump­kins and beans. Plant marigolds around car­rots, nas­tur­tiums around broad beans to con­fuse rust fly and black fly. Poached egg plant (Li­man­thes dou­glasii) at­tracts hover­flies, which feed on aphids.

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