Native Plants Journal article: Containers for restoration projects

Photo: Lake Wilderness Arboretum, Picasa

The lead feature in the fall 2010 edition of Native Plants Journal focuses on a collaborative regional effort to restore native plants to the south Texas area. Another article (available to subscribers or downloadable for a $13.50 fee) relates to propagating native plants :

The choice of container is one of the most important considerations when growing or ordering native plants for a restoration project. Container characteristics affect not only growth and production efficiencies in the nursery, they can also have important consequences after outplanting. The challenging conditions on restoration sites require containers with characteristics that are significantly different from standard containers used for horticultural crops. Unfortunately, plant specifications for many restoration projects are written using traditional horticultural pot dimensions, and we feel that this oversight is adversely affecting survival and growth after outplanting.

Read more here.

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Soil Cube seed-starting containers — explained and extolled

anetprophet — April 28, 2010 — The soil cube tool is a simple hand-operated garden tool that compresses soil into a cube which then is used as both the soil and the container for starting garden seeds. Once the seeds have grown into seedlings, the soil cube containing the seedling is easily transplanted into the garden. There are no peat pellets, peat pots, plastic pots, etc.
There are several advantages to using soil cubes instead of pots. One, the seedlings will not become rootbound. The soil cube “air-prunes” the roots, and the roots stay inside the cube. Two, because the roots are contained inside the soil cube, there is no transplant shock when they are moved into the garden. This makes the plants take off much faster once moved to the garden. When compared to purchasing peat pellets, peat pots, or other small plastic pots that will deteriorate over time, the small expense of a Soil Cube tool will be immediately offset in the first few flats of seedlings. If you purchase just two trays of peat pellet starting kits, you will have already spent more than the cost of the Soil Cube Maker which will continue to make unlimited soil cubes for seed propagation.

Read more here.

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How to make seed-starting pots from newspaper

To correct something related by the video: “Shiny paper,” known in the printing trade as enamel-coated stock, is made shiny-smooth by a coating of clay. Newspaper inks, whether black or colored, are made primarily from soy these days and pigmented by organic sources. In other words: not “toxic.” A plastic-looking coating on high-end printed pieces, known as “spot varnish,” is made from acrylic resins, which would not break down as quickly as you would want a seed-starter pot to do in the garden, so don’t use that Mercedes-Benz CL 600 brochure. ~ JB

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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Ben Cable chronicles his first use of Burpee’s “Ultimate Growing System”

Story posted April 18, 2010, from Phoenix, Ariz. Read more here.

Learn more about Burpee’s Ultimate Growing System here.

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