Invite Amphibians into your Yard

Want to add some natural insect control to your yard?  Think amphibians.  This group of creatures include frogs, toads, newts, and salamanders. They are among the most beneficial creatures you can find in your garden. Most, like tree frogs, start life in water and then move to land. Some, like the California newt, remain in …

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World Pollution Prevention Day

World Pollution Prevention Day is observed around the globe on December 2, a day created to instill awareness on environmental pollution and its negative impacts on our health and the planet. International organizations such as the United Nations (U.N.), the World Health Organization (WHO), Greenpeace, and others have been urging countries all over the world …

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Creeping Garden Thugs do a lot of Damage

It’s likely you don’t need an introduction to snails and slugs, the bane to most gardeners. Loosely related to octopi and oysters, they glide along on their muscular foot, secreting mucus to facilitate movement, leaving their trademark glistening trail behind.  With similar biology, the snail carries an external shell while slugs have evolved without one. …

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Think about Planting Natives

Fall is for planting!  And no better time to add some native plants to your garden.  Why natives?  There are lots of reasons including conserving water, reducing chemical usage (no pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers are needed with natives) and encouraging wildlife. Want a colorful garden and don’t think you can do it with mostly natives?  …

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Prevention is the best Way to Manage Weeds

Do you have a “let them be” approach to managing weeds?  Why remove them when they’ll eventually die back?  Time to reconsider.  Some weeds are aggressive and invasive; tops may die down, but roots remain alive until conditions are right for them to grow. Many spread by seeds. That one little dandelion plant in your …

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The Ants Come Marching In

Ants on your artichoke plant? Your leafy vegetables?  Your house plants? They’re a prime indicator that sucking insects are feasting on your plants.  There’s a group of soft-bodied insects — aphids, mealybugs, soft scale and whiteflies that feed by sucking juices from plants. The direct damage they inflict on the plant can cause spotted, bleached, …

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Bats get a Bad Rap!

October is Bat Appreciation Month.  So, why would a whole month be devoted to these odd-looking creatures?  It has nothing to do with Halloween or vampires.  It’s more about getting to know these mysterious flying superheroes that help our environment, and aren’t as scary as you might think. Often having the undeserved reputation of nighttime …

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