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All-Seasons Garden Guide

Submitted by on April 14, 2013 – 8:32 amNo Comment

old-farmers-almanac-calendar Special to Road Trips for Gardeners

The biggest trend in gardening for 2013? Less is more.

This is according to the new edition of The Old Farmer’s Almanac All-Seasons Garden Guide, which sees a movement toward gardeners demanding plants that require less of everything—water, space and time.

“Undoubtedly, this trend is being driven by the economy and schedules that don’t have the time they once did,” says Mare-Anne Jarvela, editor of the guide. “Of course, this doesn’t mean that gardeners are willing to settle for less than perfection — they’re just redefining what that means for their gardens, families and lifestyles.

The 2013 guide includes a crop of articles and seasonal advice, including how to:

*Use less water, but not sacrifice color. “Drought-resistant” doesn’t have to mean “dull,” and the Garden Guide has the plant possibilities to prove it!

*Pest-proof your garden. The number one question gardeners ask The Old Farmer’s Almanac is, “How do I protect my garden from [insert name of pest here]?” The Garden Guide tackles this question with tried-and-true methods to keep your garden free of everything from aphids and slugs to woodchucks and moles. For example, did you know that plants with hairy leaves might do the trick to deter deer?

*Grow low-space edibles. Consider new small-size blueberry, raspberry, and herb varieties. Or, think about growing your own mini-orchard with dwarf apricot, nectarine, peach, cherry, citrus, and fig trees—some of which can even be grown in containers.

*Be wise with water use. This means more than just choosing the right plant varieties. For example, did you know that early morning is best for watering because the evaporation rate is slower? As the day warms up, heat will help prevent the growth of molds or fungi.

*Get the kids involved! The garden can act as both playground and classroom, and it’s easy to get kids engaged with vibrant vegetable colors (purple string beans? red kale?) and unusual scents like that of Persian shield, which smells a bit like dirty socks!

*Grow your own edibles. Most gardeners don’t have to grow their own vegetables, but many choose to for all the health, financial, and environmental benefits. The 2013 Garden Guide offers a primer on how to choose the best varieties, minimize work, and optimize space.

*Plant the tastiest tomatoes. The most popular edible is tomatoes. Gardeners who grow their own never go back to store-bought! Find out more about heirloom varieties, including sweet, smoky ‘Cherokee Purple’ and citrus-flavored ‘Yellow Lemon’.

*Come harvest time, guide is ready with recipes from readers.

The All-Seasons Garden Guide — like its parent publication, The Old Farmer’s Almanac — is published annually. Its web site, Almanac.com/Garden, offers tips, advice, and green inspiration every day as well as hosting a community forum.

It is available for $4.99 at plant nurseries, home centers, and online.

Also available is The Old Farmer’s Almanac Garden Planner, an online garden planning tool that takes the guesswork out of planning, plotting, and planting any garden, no matter its size, shape, or layout.

(Photo of 2013 calendar courtesy of The Old Farmer’s Almanac)

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