• May Sunshine Brings Out Flowers--and Gardeners in Southern California
    Friday, April 29, 2011 at
  • May sunshine in Southern California begins to bring out the best of summer flowers and vegetables. The generally warm weather will also keep gardeners busy as planting season is well underway, say experts at Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of earth-friendly soil products made from organic material collected from more than 50 Southern California communities.
    Plant Tomatoes: Tomatoes are the most popular vegetable to plant. They bear fruit quickly and continuously well into fall. Plant a variety of tomatoes. Most common are heirlooms, cherry, beefsteak and plum. Tomatoes come in two categories: "determinate" and "indeterminate." Determinate varieties grow in clusters on a vine and produce the most fruit for the longest period. Indeterminate plants grow tomatoes only at the end of a vine and will stop producing tomatoes once the weather cools. Be sure to support plants with wooden or metal cages so they can withstand the weight of growing tomatoes.
    Trim Rose Bushes: Keep rose bushes looking full and healthy all through the growing season by cutting dead flowers as soon as you spot them. Cutting dead flowers quickly before the flower petals have a chance to fall speeds up the next growing cycle of blooms. Some roses, including floribundas and shrub roses, bloom in clusters so gently reshape the rose bushes after blooms fade. This will keep the bushes full and stimulate new flower growth.

    An Herb Garden Is a Money Saver: Fresh herbs are some of the most expensive foods per ounce you will find at a grocery store. Plant your own herb garden and save money. For the cost of one bunch of basil or cilantro, you can purchase a plant that will produce useable leaves for months. Now is the time to plant basil, chives, cilantro, dill, fennel, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, tarragon and thyme. Italian basil is a perennial that, if properly trimmed, will last years.

    Plant Summer Annuals: Some of the most beautiful flowers only bloom in spring and summer. Plant your warm season annuals in May including begonia, chrysanthemum, geranium, marigold, petunia and verbena.

    Thin Fruit Trees: Fruit trees typically produce more fruit than can grow to full maturity. Some of the smaller fruit will fall naturally in May. Thin residual smaller fruit from branches. The remaining fruit will grow stronger, larger and tastier and the smaller fruit won't weigh down tree branches.

    Aerate and Dethatch Warm Season Lawns: Warm-season lawns including Bermuda grass and St. Augustine need attention in May. Rent an aerator from your local hardware store or rental equipment outlet. Manual aerator devices are also available for purchase. Aerate (making holes in the surface of your lawn) and dethatch (raking) lawns so water can easily penetrate to the roots. Aerating and dethatching a lawn enables deeper root growth and reduces soil compaction. Apply a light layer of lawn topping or mulch to keep in moisture and reduce water usage.

    For more gardening tips, go to www.agromin.com.

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  • Agromin To Give Away Compost at Upcoming Earth/Arbor Days
    Monday, April 11, 2011 at
  • Agromin will be giving away compost at upcoming Earth/Arbor Day celebrations. To get your free compost, you must be a resident of city holding the event. Here's the rundown:

    Thousand Oaks Arbor/Earth Day:
    Saturday, April 30
    11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
    Conejo Creek Park North on Janss Rd., just east of the 23 Freeway (behind the library)
    More than 100 vendors and exhibitors, animal shows, children's hands-on activities and entertainment. Agromin is an official sponsor and will be giving away three tons of compost in 1 1/2 cubic foot bags to TO residents.

    Simi Valley Earth Day:
    Saturday, May 7
    10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
    Veterans Plaza, Rancho Tapo Community Park
    3700 Avenida Simi
    Will feature hands-on educational workshops for kids and adults, displays by local gardening professionals and information on sustainable home and landscape practices. Agromin will be giving away 100 bags of compost (two tons) on a first come, first served basis for Simi residents.

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  • Agromin Products Featured on New DIY Show
    Thursday, April 7, 2011 at

  • Agromin soil products were supporting "cast members" of the premiere telecast of the new DIY Network show "Extra Yardage." Hosted by Billy Derian, the show transforms neglected backyards into great outdoor entertainment spaces. Agromin supplied 5 yards (about 2 1/2 tons) of our 50/50 soil blend and 5 cubic yards (1 ton) of walk-on bark for the show's first project, a Tuscan-styled retreat in Culver City.

    Agromin supplied another 10 yards of our 50/50 soil blend and 10 yards of mulch when Extra Yardage spruced up the backyard of another home in Simi Valley.

    To find out more about "Extra Yardage" including future show times, go to http://bit.ly/hWtZBJ.

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  • After Soggy March, Southern California Gardeners Are Ready to Start Planting
    Friday, April 1, 2011 at
  • March brought record rainfall to many parts of Southern California--keeping gardeners out of their yards for many days. Now that April is here and the sun is shining, it's time to play catch-up. That means prepping soil, planting summer color and vegetables and revitalizing lawns, say experts at Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of earth-friendly soil products made from organic material collected from more than 50 Southern California communities.

    Invigorate Garden Soil: Gardening in the same location over the years may mean your soil needs refreshing. Rotate your crops (i.e., plant tomato plants where peppers were grown last year) and this year introduce an organic soil blend into the garden specifically for vegetables followed by a two to three inch layer of mulch around plants. If a layer of mulch was not already covering your garden area, wet weather may have triggered weed growth. Pull new weeds and add a layer of mulch to keep the weeds in check.

    Plant Your Vegetables: Now is the time to plant most all vegetables. Don't forget peppers. They are easy to grow, get fewer diseases than other vegetables, produce with less warmth and bear into fall. Southern California coastal area residents still have time to plant cool-season vegetables including lettuce carrots and radishes. For inland valleys, it's time for warm-season vegetables such as tomatoes, squash, corn, cucumber, melon, potatoes, sunflowers and zucchini.

    Cover Lawn Bare Patches: Spring and fall are the two times of year to revive your lawn. Kentucky bluegrass and fescue will do well when started from seed. When using seed to cover bare patches, make sure the lawn is first mowed closely. Then apply grass seed and cover with a thin layer of lawn topper mix. Water twice a day for two weeks. New growth will begin in about three weeks. When you mow this spring and summer, consider leaving the small grass blades on the grass for a natural mulch.

    Color for Summer: Summer-blooming bedding plants should be planted in April. Annuals that bloom all summer include alyssum, bedding dahlia, gloriosa daisy, marigold, petunia, verbena and zinnia. Summer shade plants include begonia, forget-me-nots and impatiens.

    Plant a Kid-Friendly Garden: Make your garden a learning opportunity for kids. Most kids enjoy the wonders of watching vegetables grow and then eating them in a salad, vegetable dish or right off the plant. Ask your kids what vegetables they'd like to grow and let them help--planting, watering and harvesting.

    Container Gardening: If you don't have backyard space for a garden, consider container gardening. Herbs, peppers, tomatoes, lettuce and eggplant can all be grown in containers. Also, community gardens, located in most cities, enable residents to plant vegetables in designated plots. They are perfect for apartment and condo dwellers.

    For more gardening tips, go to www.agromin.com.

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