Glossary Of Common Gardening Terms

Acid soil Soil with a pH of less than 7.0, containing little or no lime. Aerate To relieve soil compaction and improve underground ventilation by hoeing, forking, or digging. Alkaline soil Soil with a pH of more than 7.0, containing more than an average amount of lime. Ameliorant Any material added to the soil which … Read more

Fruit Growing In Smaller Areas

Fruits can be successfully grown in confined spaces, and produce crops within one to three years after planting. While they generally crop best in sunny positions, gooseberries, blackcurrants, raspberries and strawberries grow satisfactorily in light shade. Shelter from cold north and east winds, particularly at flowering time, is necessary to ensure pollination and fruit set. … Read more

Gardening For Food

The cultivation of vegetable and fruit crops provides healthy exercise, helps the housekeeping budget and produces good, wholesome food. For ease of cultivation and crop-rotation planning, vegetable crops are divided into three types; pod, bulb and stem crops (beans, peas, onions, leeks and celery); root crops (potatoes, turnips, carrots, beetroot); and green crops (cabbage, Brussels … Read more

How To Grow Walnuts

Soil and Situation. Walnuts will succeed in most soils that are not waterlogged, or very poor and liable to dry out severely in summer. Prefer open, sunny places. Planting. As for apples. Space trees at least 30 ft. apart. Forms of Training. Almost invariably grown as standards. Often planted for ornament as well as utility. … Read more

Best Soil and Conditions For Strawberries

Soil and Situation. Strawberries succeed best in rich soils. They will grow well in heavy loam if good winter drainage can be assured. Phosphates have a marked effect on growth. Soil should be deeply dug, enriched with manure or compost at 1 cwt. to 12-15 sq. yd., and dusted with basic slag at 6 oz. … Read more

How To Get Good Crop of Raspberries Every Year

Soil and Situation. Raspberries succeed in most soils except those of a very light, dry nature. They appreciate moisture while in growth. Soil must be dug deeply and should be dressed with well-rotted manure at the rate of 1 cwt. to 12 sq. yd., and sulphate of potash at 1 oz. per square yard. Lime … Read more

Growing Plums And Damsons In Cooler Climates

  Soil and Situation. Plums And Damsons succeed best on rather rich, loamy land. Plums and damsons require more nitrogen than apples and are therefore less suitable for ,grass orchards, though certain vigorous varieties, such as Blaisden Red and Pershore, succeed. Lime is beneficial. Sour, poor, and dry, sandy soils are unsuitable. Plums flower early … Read more

Best way to Grow Pears In Cooler Climates

Planting and cultivation Success with pears depends largely on your choosing the best possible varieties for your district. The world famous ‘Conference’ and ‘William’s Bon Chretien’ are the best choice for cold, higher altitude areas or exposed coastal districts. The soil should be improved by the addition of plenty of compost. Every early spring feed … Read more

Tips on Peach and Nectarine Cultivation

Soil and Situation. Both peaches and nectarines require a warm, sunny position and good, well-drained soil. In these respects they resemble apricots, and the same general treatment should be observed. They are equally suitable for sunny greenhouses or walls and fences. Planting. This may be done at any time during the dormant period as for … Read more

Cauliflower Quick Growing Guide

CAULIFLOWER Sowing to harvest time: 18 to 24 weeks for summer and autumn varieties; 40 weeks for winter varieties. Yield: 1 kg (21b) per plant. Climate preferred: Cool temperate to subtropical. Aspect: Open, but sheltered from cold winds. Soil: Rich, fertile loam, but sandy soils are suitable if plenty of organic material has been incorporated … Read more


Cardoons are ornamental plants grown for their blanched stems, which are used, both cooked and raw, in salads. Plants may be raised from seed sown in a warm greenhouse or in a frame in April, two or three seeds in each 3-in. pot. Reduce seedlings to one per pot and harden off for planting out … Read more

Choosing and Using Fertilizers: The Ultimate Guide To Alternative Fertilizers For Homesteaders

green plant sprouting at daytime

Basic Slag A slow-acting phosphatic fertilizer which also supplies lime. It is a steel-industry by-product and must be ground by machinery; the coarser the grinding the slower its action. Slag may remain in the soil for several years. Quality varies, and analysis may show anything from 8 to 22% phosphoric acid. Also the solubility, and … Read more

Best Organic Manures

Manure from Stable and Byre. Bulky manures of this type contain nitrogen, phosphates, and potash, but not in the right proportions for all plants. Consequently it is necessary to ‘balance’ these animal manures with appropriate chemicals. Animal manures, by virtue of the humus they produce, improve the texture of the soil, making light soils more … Read more

Plant Propagation

Plant propagation is one of the most exciting of all forms of garden activity. To the pleasure of planning and planting—the arrangement of beauty—can be added the thrill of raising Fresh plants from seed and multiplying cuttings; and, when we become experienced gardeners, of raising new varieties by cross-breeding Before describing details of the various … Read more

Trees and Self Sufficiency

I think most would agree that the self sufficiency scene is incomplete without the inclusion of a tree or, if space permits, a number of trees. Perhaps the most noble of all nature’s creations, trees add stature and grace to the garden as well as remarkable interest and variation of both colour and form in … Read more

Clearing Land For A New Garden

Faced with a virtual wilderness, the quickest way to demolish weeds is to use chemical weed-killers. But this is only to be advocated where the garden is so large that the more laborious methods of scything, burning, thoroughly digging over and fertilising would take too long. A large neglected garden often falls naturally into several … Read more

Setting Up A Herb Garden

Herbs fascinate me. I find romance in their histories and take delight in their names. Think, for example, of Rosemary: Ros-marinus, from the Latin ros, dew, and marinus, the sea. The common rosemary, R. officinalis, was most probably introduced to Britain in Roman times and has been widely grown here ever since as a culinary … Read more