The Urban Gardener Archives | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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The Urban Gardener

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Natural farming emphasizes observation over chemicals

Natural farming systems are universal, practiced since mankind first began growing food crops. Read More

Keep cool about gardening during hot summer months

The days have been getting pretty hot recently. Not just the heat, but clear sunny skies and steady breezes have really dried things out. Read More

Insects can offer pest control without chemicals

At the Urban Garden Center in Pearl City, University of Hawaii master gardeners offer a help-line service. Often, we get a picture or a sample of a plant with the question, “What is eating my plant and what can I spray?” Read More

Wet weather challenges Hawaii gardeners

The wet and unpredictable weather this spring has been challenging for local gardeners. Read More

Buzzworthy tips to attract more garden pollinators

Most flowering plants in our gardens rely on pollinators to produce fruit and seeds. These plants depend on insects or other animals to move pollen from one flower to another. Read More

Celebrate fungus among us during wet winter weather

Fungi and bacteria are highly prevalent in gardens and soil. Although a few hundred bacteria show themselves as plant diseases that wreak havoc on manicured lawns and prized plants, millions of beneficial bacteria exist to create a healthy soil food web. Read More
 

High temperatures, less rain take toll on home gardens

Hawaii’s home gardens and landscapes are revealing signs of stress, signaling just how much high summer temperatures have taken a toll on plants in our backyards. Read More

Melon fly, pickleworm could be infesting cucumbers

Local gardeners have noticed their cucumbers are being attacked by pests. One culprit is the melon fly, which is a type of fruit fly. Another possibility is the pickleworm. Read More

Chayote proves simple to propogate

Originally from Central America, chayote is grown and eaten traditionally in many cultures throughout the world. In Hawaii it is called pipinola. Read More
 

Ancient organism masquerades as land ‘seaweed’

Cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, are single-celled bacteria that can photosynthesize like plants and are thought to be one of the oldest organisms on earth. Read More

Controlling rats, slugs, snails key to preventing rat lungworm

To minimize your risk of rat lungworm disease in your garden, it is important to control and exclude all hosts of the parasite — rats, snails and slugs. Read More

Fly bean maggots cause plants to wilt, die

Sometimes when gardening in Hawaii it can feel like we need a college degree in science to be successful. Read More

Agroforestry can offer cooling shade, nutritious food

Agroforestry is the integration of trees and shrubs into farming systems for economic, environmental and social benefits. You can use tropical agroforestry practices in your garden to provide shade, recycle nutrients and grow nutritious food. Read More

Keep plants watered to ensure health

The amount of time needed to sufficiently water your plants depends on how much and how often you water, the root-zone depth, the weather and the type of soil. Read More

Speak the language of flowers for Valentine’s Day

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, flowers will be seeing one of their busiest seasons, as colorful blossoms are one of the most widespread ways we show affection. Read More

Trees might bloom, but getting fruit is another matter

Mangoes, lychee and longan usually flower around the beginning of the year. Read More

Sustainable pest control limits environmental risks

Instead of always reacting to the latest pest or disease outbreak by reaching for pesticide, farmers and gardeners should practice integrated pest management. Read More

Safe gardening practices to avoid food-borne illnesses

Imagine a thriving home garden. What do you see? Juicy tomatoes and green lettuce, sustainable practices such as a rain catchment system or maybe homemade compost. Read More

Coconut palm trees thrive, with a long history in isles

There are several types of palm trees, including the type often used in landscapes in Hawaii, coconut palm trees. Many can be found in resorts, along beaches and even in some gardens. Read More

School gardens prove a rich classroom for young minds

The state Department of Education school year begins today, which means all across Hawaii, shovels will soon be turning the soil, hands will be getting dirty and seeds will be sown. Many public and private schools have garden programs, but what purpose do they have? Read More

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