By: Emily Shirley, President, Beauregard Master Gardeners Assoc.
Happy June! If you live in the South, you know what we do in June and it does not necessarily have anything to do with gardening. We prepare for hurricane season. This month’s newsletter will toss in a little reminder of things to do for this season. As with all our newsletters, we publish with the new gardener in mind, while also reminding seasoned gardeners of things they already know.
This month we give you articles on composting and even share that now not-so-secret “Master Gardener soil recipe” developed by Advanced Master Gardener, George Giltner. And you say, what else is there to learn about composting? It really is science and I am one of those people that have to let science soak in. Composting really is such an important topic not only for the home gardener, but for everyone involved in tending the earth and growing crops, whether you live on thousands of acres or on a tiny plot. If you are going to garden, “it all starts with the soil.”
Soil must be replenished. And adding compost, (organic matter), is how soil is replenished. There is no substitute for adding back organic matter to your soil. If you are gardening and you aren’t composting, make it a resolution to start a compost pile, or two or three, somewhere in your garden area. You’ll be a better gardener and have better soil too.
The AgCenter has been getting calls about these “tiny worms” that are coming inside the home so we are also sharing information on these “Millipedes”. And, oh the confusion between the leaf-footed bug and the milkweed assassin –we will try to clear that up for you too. Probably the last thing a gardener would want to do is kill off a beneficial insect, like the Milkweed Assassin Bug, that is controlling pests (flies, mosquitoes, caterpillars, cucumber beetles, the Asian citrus psyllid, aphids, army worms, and other prey 6x their size).
We know that next to tomatoes and peppers, the next vegetable that most gardeners always grow is squash. But growing squash means there are many questions to ask about what is going on when you do have issues. The article “Six Reasons Squash Fails and What to Do About It” will hopefully help you with all your squash issues.