• What Are Weeds & What Do We Do About Them?

    What Are Weeds & What Do We Do About Them?

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    Long have weeds been seen as a degenerative force in the garden. They seem to be the face of the devouring mother nature herself, taking back the land that we borrowed from her. Yes, it seems that we’re doomed to pit ourselves against weeds, perpetually killing them off one by one while their flowers are going to fruit next door and seeds are jumping...
  • Fungal Plant Diseases & 8 Natural Ways To Defeat Them

    Fungal Plant Diseases & 8 Natural Ways To Defeat Them

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    As a gardener, there are few plant health problems that cause as much distress as a fungal disease. Unfortunately, fungi are one of the most common offenders that attack our plants, and they don’t discriminate between plants that belong to expert gardeners cultivating rare orchids, and novices nurturing their first tomato plant. Not all fungi are detrimental to plant health; in fact, there are...
  • What Is Healthy Soil, And How Can We Build It?

    What Is Healthy Soil, And How Can We Build It?

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    Healthy plants start with healthy soil, which is something we tend to forget when setting up a new garden or maintaining our existing gardens. We can hardly be blamed; it’s the beautiful plants that we are really interested in, not the boring brown dirt. But the best gardeners will tell you to “feed the soil and the soil feeds the plants”. Good soil will...
  • How To Prune Ornamental Trees & Shrubs For Natural Shape

    How To Prune Ornamental Trees & Shrubs For Natural Shape

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    The effect that pruning has on a plant is huge. We have the power to transform our plants for better or worse every time we make a cut, so it pays to be careful of why and how we make every single one. This article explains in detail how to prune ornamental plants for their health and shape. It doesn’t describe how to prune...
  • What Are The Water Needs Of Plants?

    What Are The Water Needs Of Plants?

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    Water is a big deal for plants, which require it to perform photosynthesis and to transport sugars and important nutrients throughout the plant. Ever since their ancestors first crawled out of the ocean plants have required water and without it, they are just deadwood. Watering with a hose is one way to do it. Image source Roots draw the water out from below the...
  • Identifying Insect Pests & 8 Natural Methods To Eradicate Them

    Identifying Insect Pests & 8 Natural Methods To Eradicate Them

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    Whether indoor or outdoor, all plants are potential prey for the right insect pest, and some plants are much more susceptible than others. Knowing how to identify and eradicate these pests is integral to ensuring our plants live long and happy lives while keeping their natural, beautiful aesthetic beauty. Due to the ideal conditions in indoor and ornamental gardens, insect pest populations can explode...
  • Bacterial Pathogens in Plants & 7 Natural Tips To Avoid Them

    Bacterial Pathogens in Plants & 7 Natural Tips To Avoid Them

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    Bacterial infections are one of a gardener’s worst nightmares: unlike most insect pests, bacterial infections are incredibly difficult to control. Often there’s little we can do by the time we are able to identify a disease caused by bacteria. Unlike humans and other animals, plants lack a proper immune system, so they’re susceptible to a variety of pathogens. However, they do have a molecular...
  • 17 Questions To Ask About A Plant Health Problem

    17 Questions To Ask About A Plant Health Problem

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    Plants get sick for all sorts of reasons. Before we run in like a bull at a gate with the first health treatment that comes to mind, we need to dig a bit deeper and figure out what’s actually happening to our plants if we have any hope of helping them. All plant health problems can be broken into two categories: biotic and abiotic....
  • What Are Plant Buds?

    What Are Plant Buds?

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    Plants aren’t always able to grow new shoots wherever they please. There usually needs to be an existing shoot, whether exposed in the axil of a leaf or hidden beneath their bark. Buds contain meristematic tissue that is necessary to grow new plant cells. A bud is a condensed shoot with tiny leaves and branch material including nodes and internodes that are much closer...
  • Nodes And Internodes

    Nodes And Internodes

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    Go outside, pluck a runner of grass from your back yard and take a close look at it. You will see that it is made of a system of connected “nodes” and “internodes”: the swollen linking points are called the nodes, and the skinny part connecting one node to another is called an internode. Usually if there is a bud, branch or leaf attached...
  • Meristematic Tissue: How A Plant Grows Larger

    Meristematic Tissue: How A Plant Grows Larger

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    Meristematic tissue isn’t a term that’s usually thrown around by gardeners, however all plants do have this type of tissue and understanding its function helps us understand plants a little bit better. Plants create new tissue through “meristematic” cells that are similar to stem cells found in animals. The “meristem” of a plant is made of undifferentiated (meristematic) cells that are able to divide...
  • Monocots vs. Dicots, With Diagrams

    Monocots vs. Dicots, With Diagrams

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    Flowering plants, also known as angiosperms, can be broken into two groups: monocotyledons (monocots) and dicotyledons (dicots). You’ve probably heard these terms being discussed by gardeners, and if you don’t know the difference it can be intimidating to ask. Grasses, onion, monster and palm trees are all examples of monocots and if you look closely you will start to see a lot of things...
  • Introduction to Vascular Systems

    Introduction to Vascular Systems

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    Plants must find a way to move energy and water around in order to survive, and the most sophisticated way plants do this on Earth is by using specialty cells to form a “vascular system”. Plant cells form veins that are extremely efficient at sending supplies up to the incredible heights that plants can manage to reach and back down again, hardening to also...
  • The Four Main Groups of Plants

    The Four Main Groups of Plants

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    A long, long time ago, a sea-algae, probably from the division called Charophyta, produced a new idea among the plant kingdom and crawled out of the sea to establish the lineage of land plants we know on Earth today. There are a wide variety of weird and wonderful land-dwelling plants out there today that have all evolved from this pioneering organism, but we can...
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