Gardening With BNT

Written by Terry Regling

******************************************************************************************* "Gardening With BNT"

Your source for gardening ideas including composting tips, pest control tips, attracting beneficial insects and other garden helpers, tips on growing vegetables, annuals and perennials, and much, much, more.

October 1, 2003 Volume 1, Issue 1

Bill and Terry (BNT) Regling, Editors


By subscription only! Welcome to your next issue of "Gardening With BNT." You are receiving this newsletter because you requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions are atrepparttar end of this newsletter.

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=> Four Tips for Designing Your Beds => Guest Column: Compostingrepparttar 116297 Easy Way => Garden Tool Nook => Hot Tips => Garden Nook => Be a Weed Eater => Reader's Questions => From Our Readers


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****************************************************************************************** 1. Plants with opposite textures, shapes and/or forms should by planted next to each other in your bed. They compliment each other better than having all ofrepparttar 116298 same kinds of flowers in one bed.

2. Keep track of which plants retain good foliage throughoutrepparttar 116299 season. You can plant them next to other plants that look scraggily after blooming.

3. Plan a focal point for each month that catchesrepparttar 116300 eye with bright color, shape or form.

4. Allow enough space for each plant to grow. Leave about 1 1/2 square feet around each plant. If your garden looks sparse beforerepparttar 116301 perennials bloom, plant some annuals to fill it in. But be careful of what you plant, some annuals can grow very large.

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Having an ample supply of good rich compost isrepparttar 116304 gardeners dream. It has many uses, and all of those uses will result in nicer plants. However, composting can be time consuming and hard work. I place a reasonable value on my time, so spending hours and hours turning compost piles doesn’t qualify as a worthwhile exercise, at least in my book. Nonetheless, I do compost, but I do so on my terms.

I built two composting bins. Each bin is five feet wide, five feet deep, and four feet high. I builtrepparttar 116305 bins by sinking 4” by 4” posts inrepparttar 116306 ground forrepparttar 116307 corners, and then nailed 2 by 4’s and 1 by 4’s, alternating onrepparttar 116308 sides. I left 2” gaps betweenrepparttar 116309 boards for air circulation. The 2 by 4’s are rigid enough to keeprepparttar 116310 sides from bowing out, and in between each 2 by 4 I used 1 by 4’s to save a little money. The bins are only 3 sided, I leftrepparttar 116311 front ofrepparttar 116312 bins open so they can be filled and emptied easily.

I started by filling just one ofrepparttar 116313 bins. I put grass clippings, dried leaves, and shrub clippings inrepparttar 116314 bins. I try not to put more than 6” of each material on a layer. You don’t want 24” of grass clippings inrepparttar 116315 bin, you should alternate layers of green and brown material. If necessary, keep a few bags of dry leaves around so you can alternate layers of brown waste and green waste. When we root cuttings we use coarse sand inrepparttar 116316 flats, so when it’s time to pullrepparttar 116317 rooted cuttings out ofrepparttar 116318 flats,repparttar 116319 old sand goes onrepparttar 116320 compost pile. In or little backyard nursery we also have some plants in containers that do not survive. Rather than pulling repparttar 116321 dead plant andrepparttar 116322 weeds out ofrepparttar 116323 container, and then dumpingrepparttar 116324 potting soil back onrepparttar 116325 soil pile, we just dump repparttar 116326 whole container inrepparttar 116327 compost bin, this adds more brown material torepparttar 116328 mix, and is a lot easier than separatingrepparttar 116329 soil andrepparttar 116330 weeds.

Oncerepparttar 116331 bin is full,repparttar 116332 rules of composting say that you should turnrepparttar 116333 material inrepparttar 116334 bin every few weeks. There is no way that I have time to do that, so this is what I do. I pack as much material inrepparttar 116335 bin as I can, before I start fillingrepparttar 116336 second bin. I pilerepparttar 116337 material as high as I possibly can, and even let it spill out in front ofrepparttar 116338 bin. Then I cover allrepparttar 116339 fresh material with mulch or potting soil, whatever brown material I can find. Then when I’m out working inrepparttar 116340 garden I set a small sprinkler on top ofrepparttar 116341 pile and turn it on very low, so a small spray of water runs onrepparttar 116342 material. Since I have a good water well, this doesn’t cost me anything, so I let it run for at least two hours as often as I can. This keepsrepparttar 116343 material damp, andrepparttar 116344 moisture will cause repparttar 116345 pile to heat up, which is what makesrepparttar 116346 composting action take place.

Once I haverepparttar 116347 first bin completely full, I start usingrepparttar 116348 second bin. Asrepparttar 116349 material inrepparttar 116350 first bin starts to break down, it will settle, andrepparttar 116351 bin is no longer heaped up, so I just keep shovelingrepparttar 116352 material that I piled in front ofrepparttar 116353 bin, up on top ofrepparttar 116354 pile, until allrepparttar 116355 material is either inrepparttar 116356 bin, or piled on top ofrepparttar 116357 heap. Then I just leave it alone, except to water it once in a while. The watering isn’t necessary, it just speedsrepparttar 116358 process.

Because I don’t turnrepparttar 116359 pile, I can’t expect all of repparttar 116360 material to rot completely. The material inrepparttar 116361 center is going to break down more thanrepparttar 116362 material onrepparttar 116363 edges, but most of it does breakdown quite well.

The next step works great for me because I’ve got a small nursery, so I keep a pile of potting soil on hand at all times. But you can really dorepparttar 116364 same thing by just buying two or three yards of shredded mulch to get started, and piling it up near your compost bins. If you do this, you will always have a supply of good compost to work with.

The Equine Cushings Cure

Written by Nina Arbella

Equine Cushings disease is caused by a tumor inrepparttar pituitary gland, which is responsible forrepparttar 116296 production and regulation of hormones. Symptoms include a long, shaggy coat that does not shed, excessive drinking and urination, laminitis, a tendency for recurring infections inrepparttar 116297 hoof (foot abscesses), and a loss of muscle mass, especially alongrepparttar 116298 topline and rump. At Eye ofrepparttar 116299 Storm Equine Rescue, we’ve discovered what appears to be a cure for Cushings disease in horses. We’re not licensed nor are we doctors, but we know what has worked for our horses and for lots of others, so we wanted to share our experiences in case it helps cure your own horse of equine Cushings disease. While looking through a nutritional healing book at Debra’s Natural Gourmet in West Concord, Mass., I came across a sentence that said “Chasteberry feedsrepparttar 116300 pituitary gland.” Chasteberry in recent times has been used mainly for “women’s complaints.” I know it works because it beatsrepparttar 116301 crap out of PMS, you feel better in 20 minutes. “Hmm,” I say, “I like chasteberry, let’s see what it can do for our two Cushings horses.” Bess, our 26 year old Shetland had obvious symptoms: long hair that didn’t shed and she was a sway back. Not as bad as some, but still obvious. I couldn’t wait forrepparttar 116302 vet to take some blood to find out her “numbers.” The results were positive for Cushings. I put her on one teaspoon twice a day, three weeks on and one week off. Though she began to shed her coat of “buffalo” hair almost immediately, she never was a very slick pony. But I was determined to keep her onrepparttar 116303 chasteberry one year before testing her blood again. If I saw results then, I would tellrepparttar 116304 world.

One year later, after Bess’ test results came back,repparttar 116305 vet said, “I don’t know what you’re doing, but keep on doing it.” Bess’ numbers were down 33 points! I don’t know exactly what these numbers represent, but evidently this never happens in real life! After one year of feeding her pituitary gland, had I managed to reverse her Cushings disease? I was very excited as this ailment affectsrepparttar 116306 lives of millions of old (and not so old) horses in so many negative ways. This disease is more common now than it has ever been inrepparttar 116307 past. No one really knows why, though I have my theories. That is another tale for another day.

I was getting whole chasteberry in one pound bulk bags from Natural Gourmet and running it through a coffee grinder. The seeds are very hard and I figured it would come outrepparttar 116308 other endrepparttar 116309 same way they went in, unless we knockedrepparttar 116310 shells off them. You runrepparttar 116311 grinder until most ofrepparttar 116312 pinging of hard berries can’t be heard anymore. You cannot grind them up completely, but that’s okay. Horses are made to digest roughage. They handlerepparttar 116313 chunks just fine. You should have a grinder for this purpose only, as your coffee might taste funny if you userepparttar 116314 grinder for both.

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