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Successful Composting

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Compost (photo by normanack  - Flickr)

As most Colorado gardeners know, the first step to growing strong and healthy vegetables is to have good soil; and the first step to having healthy soil is to add organic matter by way of compost. While there are many sources for purchasing finished compost, creating your own compost is often a more rewarding alternative that will allow you to divert plant material from the waste stream (compostable materials comprise a staggering one-fifth of all waste in landfills in the United States) and will improve your overall soil quality.

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Bringing World Water Day Home

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Bringing World Water Day Home

Friday, March 22, 2013 is World Water Day – it has been since the United Nations declared it so in 1993. As Denver and Colorado head into a seemingly imminent drought this summer, the typical global calls-to-action this day evokes may indeed be trumped by the need to act locally to conserve the world’s most precious resource. Denver Water has declared a stage 2 drought, which means mandatory water use restrictions for...

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Membership: Rewarding on So Many Levels

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Membership: Rewarding on So Many Levels

When you decide to become a member of Denver Botanic Gardens, you might be thinking about the many visits you will enjoy with friends and family: enjoying the Orchid Showcase and the Boettcher Memorial Tropical Conservatory on a cold blustery day in the winter, the warm evening strolls in the summer, getting delightfully lost in the autumn Corn Maze at Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield, the year-round discounts at The Shop at...

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Water-related events highlight Denver's unique challenges

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With the summer heat finally having subsided (after setting new records for the number of +90-degree days), Denver’s water use has started to wane. Landscapes that had relied on irrigation through the relatively dry summer can now largely count on Mother Nature and wait for the imminent frost. Outdoor water use accounts for about 55% of the average Denver Water residential customer’s consumption throughout the course of the year – with...

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July is Smart Irrigation Month

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July is Smart Irrigation Month

July – the month we celebrate America’s independence… and efficient irrigation? While the second occasion may not get as much attention as the first, there are plenty of ways to mark Smart Irrigation Month this July. The Irrigation Association (IA), which represents manufacturers of irrigation products, first declared July to be “Smart Irrigation Month” in 2005 to draw attention to the need to use earth’s most precious resource wisely. July typically sees...

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Floriade 2012: Theme Education and Innovation

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Floriade 2012: Theme Education and Innovation

The Dutch horticulture sector is a leader in innovation and a global trendsetter. Through agricultural education, the Netherlands spreads and exchanges skills and knowledge. This section showcases the interaction between education and innovation in horticulture through display gardens and hands-on activities. The main focus is on the commercial horticulture industry, e.g. fruit, flower and vegetable production. There are three greenhouses in this themed section. The first one is a tropical display...

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Floriade 2012: Theme Environment

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Floriade 2012: Theme Environment

  Throughout the Floriade Park, deliberately designed themed gardens are surrounded by large expanses of lawn interspersed with colorful flower borders. Though the season was just beginning with annuals just being planted, most of the borders were very attractive in a combination of purple and red from Nepeta (catmint) and Papaver orientale (oriental poppy). Alliums were in their last stages of flowering, though the flower heads were still attractive.

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Floriade 2012: An introduction

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Floriade 2012: An introduction

Floriade is the world horticultural expo that takes place in the Netherlands once every ten years. The Floriade 2012 exhibition is in Venlo, in the province of Limburg in the Netherlands, just west of the German border and about 180 km (112 miles) southeast of Amsterdam. The origin of Floriade dates back to 1818, when the first Dutch flower show was held. Since then the show has taken varying forms....

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Reviewed: "Waterwise Plants for Sustainable Gardens"

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Reviewed: "Waterwise Plants for Sustainable Gardens"

The following review comes to us from Maggie Lee, a New Mexico-based garden designer quite familiar with drought-tolerant plants. In their new book, "Waterwise Plants for Sustainable Gardens," Lauren Springer Ogden and Scott Ogden offer a unique resource of 200 adaptive plants ranging from trees to cacti. Accompanying the introductory page to each section, the authors’ beautifully-photographed garden vignettes illustrate accomplished examples of textural tapestries and well-proportioned compositions; gardens rich in species and relationships. I...

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Home Harvest Garden

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Home Harvest Garden

Growing vegetables can be one of the most gratifying gardening experiences.  It is amazing to watch seeds, bulbs, and small plants grow to become a productive food harvest. For children, this can be the first exposure to horticulture and a very educational experience in nutrition, health and science. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to design a vegetable garden space for the Mordecai Children's Garden.  I have a degree in Landscape Architecture...

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