Deborah Nicolls

Grow For It! IPM and beneficial organisms in the garden

Some of you may have heard the phrase IPM or Integrated Pest Management. But what does that mean and what does it have to do with beneficial organisms? IPM focuses on long-term prevention of pests or their damage by managing the ecosystem. This includes using resistant plant varieties, biological controls, cultural practices, habitat modification and […]

Grow For It! Sheet mulching 101

After four years of drought your lawn may be in the same condition as many others in this county: that is, dead or dying. Do you really want to go to the trouble and expense of reviving a moribund sea of grass or have you decided it’s finally time to switch to a truly drought […]

Grow For It! How to be a lazy gardener

Do you avoid gardening because you feel that you do not have the time or energy to get involved in yet another project? Well, you don’t have to be a bundle of energy and resolve to garden — you just have to take up a few gardening practices that will make your gardening life less […]

Grow For It!: Growing California native wildflowers

Blooming wildflowers are a little bit of natural California and looking ahead two seasons — signal that spring has really arrived after a wet and chilly winter. The seeds from annual California native wildflowers can be planted in fall or spring. If you plant in the fall you let Mother Nature do the watering and […]

Grow For It! Growing olives in the foothills

So you have planted all the usual fruit trees and even have a few citrus, but now you want to try something a little different. One tree you could consider if you enjoy a challenge is olive. Olives are native to the Mediterranean and have been cultivated for thousands of years. In the Mediterranean, they […]

Grow For It! Putting the right plant in the right place

One of the Master Gardeners’ guiding principles is putting the right plant in the right place. This means ensuring that the plant you buy will fit the environment you put it in, so that it has the greatest chance of success. To be able to do that, it’s important to know the cultural demands of […]

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