Complementary Gardening – The Energy of a Vacant Lot

© chriscondello 2013

“Clover Sunset” – Summer 2013 – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Wilkinsburg, PA

So… I am in the process of writing a book… The name of which is yet to be determined… I actually like that… Yet to be determined… The book is a gardening book… It will include original photography… Poetry… And artwork… Though I see all my gardens as art… I guess my goal in writing this book is to make you see like that… You can be the judge… This is a piece of a chapter… It is currently unedited… This is just a preview… I may post another tomorrow…

Life and the events surrounding it create energy fields that accompany those who live it. These energy fields are a physical manifestation of the metaphysical realm that are commonly misinterpreted. The overall tone of this energy is a variable based on many factors, but is typically a snapshot of an individual’s emotions and spirit in life. Many people believe that this energy goes with you whenever you die. I personally believe just the opposite. I believe the energy remains here on earth. It is never destroyed and therefore has a continuing role in the lives of those left behind.

Soil, is a product of nature and death. Living organisms must be sacrificed to make it rich in nutrients. Metaphysical energy is similar in that it needs to be created by life. It requires a human to store it within themselves, and ultimately transfer it to something else. In its most basic form, the transfer of DNA into the soil when we are working with it is a physical connection from our bodies to the earth. When a human being touches a plant, a transfer occurs that not many people even think of. Our skin wears off onto the plant, and the plant rubs off on our skin. This direct connection is only scraping the outer layer of the concept, the depths of which are only limited by your beliefs.

Vacant urban lots are interesting in that they very often contained a house at one time. A home is an energy magnet, and most people immediately feel it upon entering a home. The energy that is found is a direct result of past events and emotions. A home that is one-hundred years old has built up a massive amount of energy. When a home is demolished, the energy remaining does not go the way of the house, it is rooted in the lot. This energy cannot be destroyed, and I don’t believe it has the ability to travel. So the energy just waits for someone to come along and do something with it, and that someone is you.

To facilitate rapid population booms, our urban centers developed rather quickly. Lots that were originally intended to include one house, were quickly sub-divided and often had four houses built instead of the intended single. Neighborhoods were eventually built so tightly, green space became almost non-existent. Flash forward to today and you will notice that although many of these urban neighborhoods still exist. You will still see the scars of past bad memories dotting the landscape. A home burning down, or a bank foreclosure are not happy experiences, therefore the energy created is rarely positive. This is not a reason for despair, negative energy can always be converted into positive energy through gardening.

Urban gardening is just one method of achieving this energy change. In my own experiences, this energy change has the ability to help people forget the events that lead to the bad energy in the first place. Abandoned homes and vacant lots often sit unused for years. These monuments of negativity are a part of the reason many of these neighborhoods can’t get out of the rut they are in. Blight and abandonment carry very negative energy. A home does not become abandoned for good reasons. Likewise, an empty urban lot often has a story to tell as well… And that story is never a good one…

Gardening is one of the few positive influences an individual can have on the negative energy created by blight. Though much of the general population believes the only way to change a blighted neighborhood is through demolition and rebuilding, or remodeling. One of the most important aspects of permaculture, is the inclusion of all species. Humans always seem to feel that they are the primary element, when in fact we are just a tiny part of the system as a whole. The empty spaces that pop up in our urban landscapes are there for a reason. This reason will vary, but in most cases over-crowding is evident. When a space does open up, it is of paramount importance that we claim it for nature.

When an abandoned house is demolished, the second and third floors are stripped and thrown in a dumpster. The remaining structure is crushed into the basement, and then covered over with cheap fill. For this reason a vacant lot is something of a graveyard. The memories and energy from the original structure have not left. Although the physical material has been buried, over time it is distributed through leaching and dust settlement. A vacant lot is sacred ground, and should therefore be treated as such.

When we walk on the remains of a home, we are walking on the residual energy of everyone who has lived there. At the very least, remnants of their DNA are present in the house. Therefore by extension, you are practically walking on a grave. Now, I’m not trying to say that it should be treated with the same respect as an actual graveyard what I am saying is that one needs to consider this to understand the true magnitude of what urban gardening can be. When you take the time to look at all of the individual connections, both physical and metaphysical the true meaning of gardening will become apparent.

The nutrients required to sustain life come from the decomposition of living organisms. Although soil can be created by the weathering of objects like rocks, the soil never truly becomes rich in nutrients unless decomposing organic material is added. This occurs naturally, and over time can turn even the most inhospitable soils into healthy loam.

Vacant lots are similar in that the soil used for fill is commonly the cheapest material available. The plants that do initially grow, are designed to thrive in inhospitable conditions. Many of these weeds flourish in recently disturbed clay soils. These plants are typically extremely fast growers, and although they are perennial almost always die back in the winter. The resulting plant material decomposes, and the following year the process repeats until enough nutrients have built up to allow a different cycle of vegetation to take its course. This process can take years, and if left to its own devices will eventually culminate in a forest… A small forest… But forest none the less…

As gardeners we can interrupt this cycle at any point. Although it is possible, I personally believe the best results are attained by letting a lot rest for a number of years before any kind of gardening is concerned. Any time food is to be grown, a settling out period of a minimum of ten years is what I recommend; followed by a rigorous round of soil tests and the proper remediation. If your intention is to grow only ornamental plants, you could probably skip the settling period and go straight to planting beneficial plants and trees.

It is very important to take note of what stage a lot is in before you begin working. Oftentimes, if you are working immediately after a demolition, the soil will be very hard and compacted from being run over by heavy equipment. You see, it takes time for nature to work through this type of soil. Although we can quickly power through it given the right tools and money, it can be done with a lot less effort if we just let nature do its thing.

Time or the availability of vacant lots will not always allow us the ability to wait for nature. In which case we just have to roll up our sleeves, and dig right in. If organic material is not available on site, then you will have to bring it on site from elsewhere. Leaves, grass clipping, kitchen scraps, hell even newspaper can be utilized to begin adding organic material. The bad energy created by a vacant lot wont ever go away, but it can be changed. This change always begins in the soil, in order to heal the energy of the lot we must first heal the soil. Everything that grows in this lot will grow from the soil, it should be treated as you would treat your own home.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 37 – Basil

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“Lemon Plumes” – Summer 2013 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Right next to my front walkway… A favorite of the neighborhood kids… And the secret ingredient to my world famous Lemon Beer Chicken….

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Basil… I absolutely love this plant… I grow as many varieties as I can get my hands on… Italian, lemon, cinnamon, lime, magic, sacred, Minette, Thai, globe, spicy, purple, red… And that is just in my front yard… Although Basil is considered a culinary herb… I actually use it as an ornamental plant that I have the option of eating…

I can’t even begin to convey how many times I have been told I should prune the flowers off of my Basil… And yes… If I was going for the edible leaves… That would be the case… And I do this to my “Italian Large Leaf” plants… But I like the way Basil looks when it is in flower… I always have… I believe it is one of the most underrated landscape plants available…

Basil is an annual… Plant it… Water it… Establish it… And leave it alone… It is a Mediterranean plant so it can handle drought… All that’s left is to enjoy it… Which I promise you will…

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“Dragon Basil” – Summer 2013 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – This variety is actually known as “Michael’s Magical”… But early on I noticed the flowers look like dragons so I made my own common name…

Basil in bloom is a beautiful thing… The plant suddenly begins to stretch toward the heavens… Slowly… Tiny flowers begin to form along each stem… They are a favorite of bees… Often attracting so many it will appear as a swarm… When the wind blows… The plant dances… In unison the flowers sway back and forth… This is often the only time I can get close enough to them to prune without disturbing the worker bees…

I always grow Basil along the walkway to my front door… Anytime I walk past I run my hand through the flowers… Because of this… My front yard always smells of either cinnamon or lemon…

Children also seem to appreciate the smell of basil… It does not burn the nose like Sage… Even the spicy varieties smell pleasant… Plus… There are so many varieties available… It makes it easy to keep the kids guessing…

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“Rubrum” – Summer 2013 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – A red variety… Well… It is actually a purple… But it is the reddest of the purples…

Woke up to a few inches of fresh snow… Expecting a few more this afternoon and then -30 wind chills tonight… Going exploring with my camera later… But because many of my readers are in parts of the world that don’t get snow… I am including a photo of last nights snow squall… As always… Taken with a shitty camera with a very shitty flash…

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“Sudden Squall” – January 25, 2014 – Looking at Hamnett Way – Wilkinsburg, PA

Garden Connections

I am dreaming of Spring… Planning my gardens… Well… Gardens and farm… Dreaming of Bees… Dreaming of chooks… Dreaming of watching the landscape burst forth… Shades of green… Shades of shade…

Dreaming of spending time with you… In our gardens… Because thanks to our friends the bees… Our gardens speak to each other… Therefore I see my gardens as yours… And your gardens as mine…

When your garden is healthy… My garden is healthy…

When my garden is healthy… I am healthy…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

If you want some science – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basil

New To writing and never had to cite sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring when I start writing more… My source (where applicable) is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 34 – Watermelon

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“Watermelon Blossom – Male” – Summer 2013 – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Wilkinsburg, PA

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

I had originally intended this series to be written ahead of time… Scheduled… And released in series… Kind of like autopilot… Just in this case… Autoblog… A few weeks in I somehow managed to delete a few of them… So I wrote them on the fly… I like these better… So I have trashed the rest of the pre-written ones… I will be writing the rest first thing in the morning… I like the idea that each one is a reflection of a day… It allows me to choose a flower for the day based on my mood… I have been awake since 4:30 AM… I’m on my third cup of coffee… And I would have to describe how I feel right now as “Watermelonesqe”…

There is nothing in the world like a watermelon still warm from the field… Nothing… If you ever get the chance to harvest and immediately eat a watermelon… Take it… You will never be able to eat a store-bought watermelon again… But totally worth it…

Watermelon is a great plant to grow if you have some space… Though the bush varieties will work when space is at a premium… It is also a great “plant and forget” crop… It is also one of the best plants to grow with children because the fruits of their labor will almost always be among their favorite foods…

Watermelon is very easy to grow… Requiring three primary things…

1. Space… Lots of it… Depending on variety… We could be talking 50 square feet… Don’t be stingy… Watermelon requires breathing room because it is susceptible to a plethora of disease and fungi… It is important to not let the plant grow all over itself or others… Air-flow is key…

2. Water – Watermelon is like 90% water… Water requirements are relative to the size of the fruit you intend to grow… As a side note – I have noticed that you can sometimes taste “water based” fertilizers when used on watermelon… Probably best to not use them… Also – Don’t spray the entire plant with water… It just causes problems… Only water the base of the plant… This can be difficult when working with a large patch… In this case use survey flags to mark…

3. Sun/Heat – I am lumping these two together because I feel they go together… Watermelon requires full-sunlight… There are no ifs… Ands… Or buts about it… In the shade the fruit will never develop to the intended size… That is if it ripens at all… Likewise… Watermelon is sweet… The sugars required to make it sweet are reliant on heat… This is the case with most sweet fruits and vegetables…

As I write this I am dreaming of the garden… This year I am growing several varieties of melon… My options – “Bush Sugar Baby”, “Black Diamond”, “Black Diamond Yellow Belly”, and “Charleston Gray” for Watermelon… “Hales Best” Cantaloupe… And “Early Silver Line” Melon again (A small delicious gourmet Asian melon you won’t find at market)… This list will be added to in the next few weeks… That is just the seeds I have on hand at this point of the year… In a couple short months I will be swimming in seeds and plants as is the case every year… I would have it no other way…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

If you want some science – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watermelon

New To writing and never had to cite sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring when I start writing more… My source (where applicable) is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 33 – Pineapple Sage

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“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

The temperature right now is a cool 0 degrees… Wind chill of -20… And I have been awake since 2 AM because the cats were restless and disturbed… Immediately after waking up I could feel the “ripple” in the ambient energy around me (This may make me sound really crazy – I promise I’m only a little crazy)… Something wasn’t right… We were not alone… The cats knew it… And I knew it… I just understood it a little bit better than them… They were obviously afraid… But I find it interesting… Almost comforting to think there is more to life than just the physical…There is more to this life than just you and I…

Despite the lack of sleep… I am in a good mood today… How good of a mood you might ask… Like “Pineapple Sage” good… Anyone who knows me knows I am a fan of all things Salvia… I even love the word “Sage”… What a great name… Sage… I also like Lavender… Maybe I’ll combine them… Lavender Sage Condello… I like it…

Salvia elegans… Better known by the common name “Pineapple Sage”… Lesser known as “Tangerine Sage”… Is by far one of my favorite plants… It is one of those garden plants that I could not go a Summer without planting… I grow it right beside my front porch… When the neighborhood kids visit… I like to have scented herbs for them to play with… Gardening is meant to be hands on… And kids learn with their hands… Herbs and children just make sense…

Insignificant for most of the year… Pineapple Sage grows nothing more than foliage for 90% of the growing season… It is photosensitive… Meaning it flowers when the hours of daylight decrease to a certain point… This occurs as summer stretches into fall… This plant will double in size once it begins to flower… The end of the season stretch is what signals to me that the blossoms are not far away…

*Bright lights… Including street lights and porch lights… Can interrupt this light cycle… This can result in the plant never coming into bloom… Similarly… This plant can be forced to bloom by controlling the hours of light and dark… Not that it provides a benefit to you or the plant… But 12 hours of light and 12 hours of dark will trick it into thinking it is fall and force it to stretch and bloom…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

If you want some science – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvia_elegans

New To writing and never had to cite sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring when I start writing more… My source (where applicable) is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 30 – DayLily

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“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Daylily happens to be one of my favorite plants… They can handle almost any conditions… I use them extensively in guerrilla gardening and would consider it a bomb-proof plant… By “bomb-proof” I mean invincible… Daylily’s never need water… They never need fertilizer… Hell… I have had entire patches mowed over by the borough employees… A couple of weeks later… The blooming resumes…

Daylily flowers only last a single day… Hence the name… Although it will appear like it the blooms last longer than a day… It is actually nothing more than blossoms that bloom on a daily basis…

My community has been taken over by an orange daylily with the local name “Ditch-Lily”… It was introduced to the Pittsburgh region along time ago… Today it can be found growing on abandoned land and in the ditches next to our local roads… The flower petals can be eaten… They are mildly sweet and surprisingly enjoyable… I find they are sweeter in the morning hours than in the evening…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

If you want some science – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daylily

New To writing and never had to cite sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring when I start writing more… My source is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 28 – Osteospermum

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“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Last Summer was the first time I ever attempted to grow Osteospermum… Mine liked full-sun and dry soil… I typically fertilize 3-4 times a year… This plant received no special treatment… It actually bloomed well beyond the first frost right on up until the first freeze… I did notice this plant stresses out easily early on in its life… When the stress level reaches a certain point the plant will stop flowering… It takes a couple of weeks for it to resume flowering…

Yesterdays mission was a complete success… Cuttings taken… Prepared… And planted… As a bonus I found $5 on the sidewalk… I’m getting bored with the “look” of this site… It may be time for a change… Anyway… I’m trying to focus on poetry today… I have started a bunch… But completion seems to elude me…

A lot of people wish they were happy…
Everybody wants to be free…
I often choose to pretend…
I am someone other than me…

Close my eyes and drift away…
… …

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

New To writing and never had to cite sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring when I start writing more… My source is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information… But much of this is just related from the web…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 25 – Raspberry

“Champagne Raspberry” – Spring 2013 – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Wilkinsburg, PA

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Seven Days of Fruit and Berries

Rubus is a large genus of flowering plants in the rose family… Rosaceae… Raspberries, blackberries, and dewberries are common members of the genus… Most of these plants have woody stems with prickles like roses… Spines, bristles, and gland-tipped hairs are also common in the genus… The Rubus fruit, sometimes called a bramble fruit, is an aggregate of drupelets… The term “cane fruit” (or “cane-fruit”) applies to any Rubus species or hybrid which is commonly grown with supports such as wires or canes… Including raspberries, blackberries, and hybrids such as loganberry, boysenberry and tayberry…

© chriscondello 2013

“Red Raspberry” – Spring 2013 – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Wilkinsburg, PA

Raspberries are traditionally planted in the winter as dormant canes… Although planting of tender, plug plants produced by tissue culture has become much more common… A specialized production system called “long cane production” involves growing canes for a year in a northern climate where the chilling requirement for proper bud break is attained, or attained earlier than the ultimate place of planting… These canes are then dug, roots and all, to be replanted in warmer climates where they quickly flower and produce a very early season crop… Plants are typically planted in fertile, well-drained soil… Raspberries are usually planted in raised beds/ridges…

The flowers can be a major nectar source for honeybees and other pollinators…

Raspberries are very vigorous and can be locally invasive… They propagate using basal shoots (also known as suckers)… They can sucker new canes some distance from the main plant… For this reason… Raspberries spread well, and can take over gardens if left unchecked… Raspberries are often propagated using cuttings… Using cuttings preserves the genotype of the parent and is the preferred method of propagation when making large plantings…

The fruit is harvested when it comes off the torus/receptacle easily and has turned a deep color (red, black, purple, or golden-yellow, depending on the species and cultivar)… This is when the fruits are ripest and sweetest…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

New To writing and never had to site sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring… My source is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information… But much of this is just related from the web…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 24 – Strawberry

FragariaSpp

“Berries Galore” – Spring 2013 – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Wilkinsburg, PA

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Seven Days of Fruit and Berries

The garden strawberry (or simply “strawberry) is a widely grown hybrid species of the genus Fragaria (collectively known as the strawberries)… It is cultivated worldwide for its fruit… The fruit (which is not a botanical berry, but an aggregate accessory fruit) is widely appreciated for its characteristic aroma, bright red color, juicy texture, and sweetness…

Technically… The strawberry is an aggregate accessory fruit… Meaning that the fleshy part is derived not from the plant’s ovaries but from the receptacle that holds the ovaries… Each apparent “seed” on the outside of the fruit is actually one of the ovaries of the flower, with a seed inside it…

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“Ready Berry” – Summer 2013 – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Wilkinsburg, PA

Strawberries are popular and rewarding plants to grow at home… They can be grown almost anywhere in the world… The best time to plant is in late summer or spring… Plant in full sun or dappled shade… In somewhat sandy soil… The addition of manure and a balanced fertilizer aids strong growth… Alternatively they can be planted in pots or special planters using compost… Fiber mats placed under each plant will protect fruits from touching the ground…

Strawberries are tough and will survive many conditions… During fruit formation, moisture is vital, especially if growing in containers… Protection must be provided against slugs and snails which attack the ripe fruit… The fruit matures in midsummer and should be picked when fully ripe…

Propagation is by runners… which can be pegged down to encourage them to take root… Or cut off and placed in a new location… Established plants should be replaced every three years or sooner if there are signs of disease…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

New To writing and never had to site sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring… My source is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information… But much of this is just related from the web…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 22 – Astilbe

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“White Astilbe” – Summer 2013 – Chicks in the Hood – Pittsburgh, PA

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

I thought I had more photographs of this plant as it is one of my favorites… Many bloom in almost “neon” colors… The lighter varieties literally glow in the shade… Astilbe also adds interest in the winter… Prune the foliage in the fall… But leave the dried flowers… They will add interest to the garden right up till spring when they are removed to allow for the new growth… Anyway… Happy Saturday everyone… It was -10 degrees here 5 days ago… And it is 50 degrees today… That’s Pittsburgh for yah…

Astilbe is a genus of rhizomatous flowering plants within the family Saxifragaceae… Native to mountain ravines and woodland in Asia and North America… Some species are commonly known as false goat’s beard and false spirea…

These hardy herbaceous perennials are cultivated by gardeners for their large often fern-like foliage and feathery plumes of flowers… They are widely adapted to shade and water-logged conditions… They are particularly associated with water feature planting… They also tolerate clay soils…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

New To writing and never had to site sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring… My source is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information… But much of this is just related from the web…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 18 – Columbine

PinkWhiteColumbine

“Pink Columbine” – Spring 2013 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Aquilegia… But much more commonly called “Columbine… Is a genus of perennial plants found in woodlands and meadows of the Northern Hemisphere… The genus name Aquilegia is derived from the Latin word for eagle (aquila)… Because the shape of the flower petals… Which are said to resemble an eagle’s claw… The common name “columbine” comes from the Latin for “dove”, due to the resemblance of the inverted flower to five doves clustered together

Columbine is a hardy perennial which propagates by seed… It will grow to a height of 15 to 20 inches… It will grow in full sun… However… It prefers growing in partial shade and well drained soil… But it will tolerate average soils and dry soil conditions… Propagation is simply done by broadcasting the seeds over prepared soil… This is best done in late-summer or early fall… Columbine does not bloom the first year… Sowing in late-summer allows the plant to get the vegetative cycle out of the way… Allowing the blooms to commence the following year…

The flowers of various species of columbine were consumed in moderation by Native Americans as a condiment with other fresh greens… They are reported to be very sweet… And apparently safe if consumed in small quantities… The plant’s seeds and roots are highly poisonous however… And contain toxins which cause both severe gastroenteritis and heart palpitations if consumed as food… Native Americans used very small amounts of Aquilegia root as a treatment for ulcers… However… The medical use of this plant is better avoided due to its high toxicity… Columbine poisonings may be fatal…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

New To writing and never had to site sources before… These “Plant a Day Till Spring” posts are simply intended to kill time until spring… My source is Wikipedia.org… The photography is all my own… And I am adding my own information… But much of this is just related from the web…

This website and all of the information presented within is provided free by the author… Me… It is my sole opinion and is not representative of anyone other than myself… Although this website is free… I sell prints of my photography here – www.society6.com/chriscondello – or you can contact me directly with questions at – c.condello@hotmail.com – Although it isn’t a requirement… It helps…

Remember to tip… My Bitcoin digital wallet address is – 1JsKwa3vYgy4LZjNk4YmPEHFJNjPt2wDJj

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.