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Planting Guide for Home Gardening in Alabama

Successful home gardening comes with careful planning and constant attention. Select the site carefully, plant at the correct time, use the right amount of fertilizer, use adapted varieties, and control pests.

Site. Select a site expose…

3 min read

Alabama Gardening Calendar

Follow this gardening calendar for the necessary activities to implement each month for lawns and shrubs, annuals and perennials, fruit and nut trees, and bulbs, roots, and tubers. Included is a timeline for activities such as soil…

8 min read

Water Quality in the Landscape

Home and garden pesticides and fertilizers can pollute Alabama’s waterways. Problems occur when garden chemicals are dumped down street or household drains and when chemical residues wash from paved surfaces into streams after a r…

2 min read

The Orchard Mason Bee

The orchard mason bee (Osmia lignaria) is a native nonsocial bee that is an efficient pollinator of early-season crops, including small and tree fruit, flowers, and vegetables. The female orchard mason bee is not a hive dweller; in…

2 min read

Vermicomposting: Worms at Work

Food scraps make up 14 percent (34.7 million tons) of all municipal solid waste in the United States. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that less than 3 percent of food waste is recycled compared to 62 percent of paper …

5 min read

Growing Lettuce in Spring or Fall

If you have a small place in your garden but can’t decide what to plant, why not plant lettuce? Lettuce is a cool-weather crop that grows best when the day temperatures are between 55 and 65 degrees F and the night temperatures …

2 min read

Backyard Composting

In Alabama, a family of four generates an average of 2.5 tons of garbage per year—nearly a half ton of which is yard refuse and kitchen waste that can be composted. According to the EPA, Americans recycle and compost about 33 perc…

6 min read

Nectar and Pollen Producing Plants of Alabama: A Guide for Beekeepers

Honey bees and plants have a special relationship. Each benefits the other. Flowering plants provide food for honey bees; in turn, bees provide pollination for many plants, enabling them to reproduce.

Honey bees visit flowers to …

5 min read

Backyard Tomato Production

The tomato is almost everyone’s favorite vegetable. Two or three well-managed plants for each member of the family will usually provide plenty of fresh, vine-ripened tomatoes from about late spring until the first frost in the fal…

6 min read

Home Gardening: Rabbiteye Blueberries

Rabbiteye blueberries are one of the most delicious fruits grown in the South. They are also one of the easiest of fruit plantings to grow. The plant is prized for its ornamental value of spring flowers and fall colors and is often…

5 min read

Rainwater Harvesting for Irrigation Water

While worldwide water consumption is rising at double the rate of the population, the amount of freshwater remains at only 2.5 percent of the world’s water resources. Rainfall replenishes much of the water we use; however, it is predicted t…

14 min read

Flowers For Beneficial Insects: Mountain Mint

*This is an excerpt from Top Ten Most Wanted Bugs in Your Garden, ANR-2283.
AKA: Pycnanthemum
This perennial plant grows 3 feet tall and branches frequently, often with a bushy appearance. Blooms in the summer to early fall. Each cluster…

Flowers For Beneficial Insects: Queen Anne’s Lace

*This is an excerpt from Top Ten Most Wanted Bugs in Your Garden, ANR-2283.
AKA: Daucus carota
This flower is a biennial herbaceous plant that grows 3 to 4 feet tall. Consists of one or several hairy, hollow stems, growing from one centr…

Flowers For Beneficial Insects: Goldenrod

*This is an excerpt from Top Ten Most Wanted Bugs in Your Garden, ANR-2283.
AKA: Solidago sp.
Long, wood-like stems with spiky, tooth-like parts that are widely spaced. Yellow flowers that grow in thick clusters. Blooms in the fall. Plan…