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Garden

Bring Birds to Your Yard with These Plants

It’s only early March, but in Portland, Oregon, the cherry blossoms are in full bloom and the city has already had a few 70-degree days. Warming temperatures here and in many parts of the country are encouraging plants and trees to grow and flower earlier than usual; and while they’re lovely to look at, this

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Why Remineralizing Soil Is Important

If you’ve even heard of it, soil remineralization may not be the most pressing topic on your mind right now. However, its impact—specifically, the way soil remineralization can improve the nutritional quality of our food—is probably something you care a lot about. Did you know that a head of broccoli today contains a

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3 Summer Crops Anyone Can Grow

There are some crops that are so easy to grow and add flare to so many summer meals that they are worth planting—even if in a container. Here are three suggestions for crops that anyone can manage. Lettuce The great thing about a lettuce plant is that its leaves grow quickly and keep

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Keep Squirrels at Bay—the Nice Way

Squirrels are like furry, little circus performers—scaling to great heights and tightrope walking right in your own yard. And while their fluffy tails and playful antics can be a joy to watch, they can also disturb your lawn and garden, rooting up bulbs, eating plants and seedlings, and digging holes. If squirrels are

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Five Cool Things I’m Growing This Spring

By Barbara Pleasant, Calmful Living Garden Editor When you are a gardener, spring explodes with opportunities to plant things you have grown and loved, and to try new things that have caught your interest. It pays to be curious, because many veggies can be phenomenally successful when you find varieties that love your site

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Fallen Leaves for Rich Compost and Mulch

By Barbara Pleasant, Calmful Living Garden Editor Fallen leaves are more than something to be bagged and hauled off. They are sophisticated solar collectors designed to work for only one season for the trees, but then it’s the soil’s turn. Here we humans must lend a hand by distributing leaves to where they

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The Wonder of Winter Spinach

By Barbara Pleasant, Calmful Living Gardening Editor I had been gardening for years when I discovered something strange about spinach: It actually likes growing through the long, cold (and even snowy) days of winter. Seedlings started in September have the best chance of working winter to their advantage, which the little plants do by

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End-of-Summer Culinary Herbs Tips & Tricks

Not lucky enough to live in a warm, fertile locale with a garden year-round? When temperatures start to dip below 50 degrees, most fresh herbs start to wither and brown. But these lengthening fall nights don’t have to signal a return to packaged or bottled herbs. If you’re serious about bright flavor, try these DIY

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Create a Better Iced Tea with Garden Greens, Flowers and Herbs

By Barbara Pleasant, Calmful Living Gardening Editor During the summer when I’m craving cold deliciousness, herbal iced teas are my go-to thirst quenchers. I love making my own herbal iced teas by jazzing up tea made from packaged tea bags with herbs from the garden. For a tea to satisfy hot-weather thirst,

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Create a Butterfly Habitat in Your Yard

By Barbara Pleasant, Calmful Living Gardening Editor Butterfly babyhood is pretty secretive business, but everything changes when caterpillars emerge as butterflies, the peacocks of the insect world. Sporting bright colors in splashy symmetrical patterns, butterflies make no attempt to hide as they sip flower nectar on warm summer days. If you’d like to

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