November 2016 | Garden Culture Magazine

Growing Thyme Anywhere

People have found value in growing thyme since the days of antiquity. Here’s everything you might want to know about this common herb, and why it’s a great addition to any indoor or outdoor garden.   PLANT HISTORY According to Greek mythology, we owe thanks to Helen of Troy for the many wonders of Thymus vulgaris. She shed a tear, and the plant appeared as a gift of courage to the soldiers of Greece, and so, carrying sprigs into battle became important. A practice the Romans took a step further, adding it to their bath to soak up this gift...

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What Is Fertilizer, Anyway? … Part 1

[column size=one_half position=first ]The technology of farming is what literally started humanity. That’s right, before farming we hunted and gathered with most of our attention paid to survival instead of specializing. The first documented use of fertilizer is of Europe’s earliest farmers applying manure on their fields around 8,000 years ago. No doubt these ancient farmers noticed the thriving plants in the dung heap, and realized that using manure in their fields will help their plants grow bigger, better, faster. Mined inorganic fertilizers have been in use for many centuries, whereas chemically synthesized inorganic[/column][column size=one_half position=last ][alert type=white ]Evan Folds from Progressive Farms...

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Vertical Farming Hits the Big Box

Not on the roof, inside the store. Target is testing vertical farming of fresh produce and herbs at select stores, followed by  across the U.S. plans. To some, this may sound great. It’s about time really fresh food went mainstream. However, Target’s little project seeks to ‘reinvent food’ as they put it, which is most unfortunate for the alternative food system. As in all those small growers and farmers markets, the big box chain has eyes on the grown local shopper’s dollars. This could put a big dent in emerging local economies that neighborhood urban farmers have created because they...

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The Cheap Online Hydroponic System Monitor

Connecting the high tech garden isn’t ridiculously expensive anymore. Say hello to the OsmoBot – the online hydroponic system monitor – everything you need to keep an eye on your crop(s) in a single box. It’s also capable of fitting aquaponic system monitor needs with just one add-on. And the price? Retail is set way lower than anything else like it on the market. So much lower, you’re sure to go from curious to excited in a jiffy, just like Kickstarter funders did. Osmobot’s campaign was 142% funded in 7 days flat, and here’s why… Get rid of all those...

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Gnome: Big Garden & Small Farm IoT

Here’s a smart garden system/small farm IoT designed by an urban farmer seeking a solution to monitoring his rooftop farm that no one was addressing. He needed more advanced capabilities, and a reliable connection over a longer distance than already existing systems offered. The Gnome is the result of Clement Lee’s frustrations of trying to grow big with gadgets designed for little gardens on small properties a few yards away from the WiFi hub. The average home garden is only 200 square feet… What about the small farm or the homesteader? How about the need for more accurate readings, for greater...

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