- Author: Betsy Buxton
At the Farmers' Market in Vallejo, I hear the title of this blog a lot. Usually that comment is followed by “Wow, you know a lot!” The simple answer to that is no, I don't know a lot; but I usually can find out where to look for the answers to plant question puzzles. It's really very easy – anyone can do it – by looking on-line for answers OR by looking in books.
I've been told that I have a number of books in the tub at my feet – 10 to be exact – and I use them often. Question about plant diseases: the questions come back as to whether the ailing plant is a veggie, ornamental, or a tree. By paring the question down to particulars, the book selected will be the edibles book, diseases of ornamentals, or about small farms and orchards. If I can't find an answer for the asker, I can then point them in the direction to the UC Davis/UCANR websites which are arranged into various categories according to the problem and the plant.
You can do the same thing at home using various nurseries' websites. My favorites that I follow are Peaceful Valley, Green Acres, and our own local Midcity Nursery in American Canyon. They want to sell their merchandise and plants, sure, BUT their FREE (!!) blogs are loaded with information about growing and planting. There are others from out of state such as Plant Delights Nursery on the East Coast, Bluestone Nursery, and, slightly north of us, Digging Dog Nursery. I find Digging Dog quite helpful for planting for shady, drier areas and drought resistant plants.
Now, that I've suggested those, 2 of the websites, I love (and don't try to sell you stuff) are The Garden Professors and Horticulture on line. These offer fabulous gardening techniques, information by folks with Dr. and PhD., after their names with is down-loadable and is based on scientific, as opposed to blog by a person who loves to garden and is merely tossing out “words of wisdom” from hearsay.
Just last week, I copied out a 12-page blog about plant fungal diseases and then asked the author if I could share it at the Master Gardener booth. I received back a lovely thanks from the author for sharing the information.
Remember, all the information is free and available to you; just remember read any formation thoroughly and check in other places to make sure that it is based on science – your plants depend on you to stay healthy!