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Can I Use Black Walnut Leaves for Compost?

Can I Use Black Walnut Leaves for Compost?
“I have several black walnut trees in my yard. Would it be alright to use the leaves in the compost? Question from Raymond of Holt, Michigan
Answer: I would not recommend it. As you surely know, black walnut trees (Juglans nigra) excrete the toxin, juglone, which is deadly to quite a few ornamental plants. The toxin helps reduce competition, […]

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Can I Grow Vegetables Indoors in a Sunny Room?

Can I grow vegetables in this sunny room?
“Is it possible to grow any vegetables indoors in a sunny room with a grow light? I live in NE PA and we have long cold winters. I would love to grow veggies over the winter. I have a room that I think would work.” Question from Melanie or Susquehanna, Pennsylvania
Answer: What a nice space! You can certainly […]

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What Basil Grows Well in Florida Heat?

What Basil Grows Well in Florida Heat?
“How can I grow basil in South Florida? Every time I try the sun either burns it or I get it in too much shade.” Question from Deborah of Moore Haven, Florida
Answer: If you find that traditional Italian large-leaf basil (Ocimum basilicum) burns and blooms quickly in your Florida heat, there are other basils available that are better adapted […]

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How Do You Grow Cilantro Indoors?

How Do You Grow Cilantro Indoors?
“What is the best practice to ensure a window-sill cilantro plant will thrive? I have a green thumb and can grow or rehab practically any plant/flower/herb/garden. However, each time I’ve purchased a cilantro plant, it wilts after a few months. I only water when dry. Thank you!” Question from Ann of Raleigh, North Carolina
Answer: Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum) is a short-lived […]

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What Rosemary Varieties Survive in Southern California?

What Rosemary Varieties Survive in Southern California?
“Will rosemary plants survive a mild winter in Zone 9?” Question from Linda of Fresno, California
Answer: Yes! Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a drought- and heat-tolerant Mediterranean shrub made for California growing. Here are my top four favorite rosemaries that will grow beautifully where you live. Each is unique in its own way.
Top Four Favorite Rosemary Varieties

‘Blue Boy’ dwarf rosemary […]

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Should I Cut My Chives Back in Fall?

Should I Cut My Chives Back in Fall?
“[I] have a question regarding my chives. They have flowered. Should I cut them back now this time of year or leave them be?” Question from Jeanne of Coldwater, Michigan
Answer: The foliage of edible chives (Allium schoenoprasum) will remain attractive and clippable until the first frost causes the strappy leaves to flop. You can cut them back at […]

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What is the Best Way to Preserve Herbs?

What is the Best Way to Preserve Herbs?
“I have lots of fresh herbs in my garden. What is the best way to dry and store them?” Question from Anne of  Bloomington, Indiana
Answer: It’s an excellent question. Some herbs are best stored and used dry while others taste best when frozen. That is because some herbs do not retain their full flavor when dried. Here are […]

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Can You Recommend the Best Soils For My House Plants?

Best Soils For My House Plants
“I recently purchased a few house plants and would like to know what soil is best for them that you sell. What are the best soils for my house plants?” Question from Amanda of Leduc, Alberta, Canada
Answer: Here are our potting soil recommendations for each plant.
Aloe (Aloe spp.): Black Gold Cactus Mix – ideal for all succulents and cacti
Bird’s Nest Fern […]

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What Medicinal Herbs Grow Well in Central Florida?

What Medicinal Herbs Grow Well in Central Florida?
“What Medicinal Herbs Grow Well in Central Florida? I moved to Florida and I want to know which native medicinal herbs to look for and grow here at my new home.” Question from Susan of St. Pete Beach, Florida
Answer: There are lots of medicinal herbs that will grow well in your Zone 9 garden. I recommend that you […]

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How Do I Keep Spreading Herbs in Bounds?

Keep Spreading Herbs in Bounds
“I know a lot of herbs spread on their own. Do I need to put barriers in the ground to keep them from taking over?” Question from Glenda of Sewell, New Jersey
Answer: Barriers are required to keep spreading herbs in bounds. The worst spreading perennial herbs are mints of all kinds and oregano, another member of the mint family. They spread […]

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