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Latest Gardening Video

For close to a decade, Dave has produced and published a regular video blog of topics relevant to diy home gardeners.  The entire, searchable GrowingWisdom library of gardening videos are available right here on this website or by visiting our YouTube Channel. Below is Dave’s latest video.


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Most anyone that grows any plant knows it needs certain nutrients in order to thrive. The challenge if often knowing what type of fertilizer to give what plant and when.

One of the most important things you can do in understanding what your plants need is to have your soil tested every year or two.  Soil testing is the only sure fire way to know what nutrients are missing  and what you should be supplementing.

The reality is most of us don’t have the soil tested and therefore just apply fertilizer anyway.  A few basic rules about fertilizer will help you know what and when to apply it.  

Nearly all fertilizers have 3 numbers on the bag or container.  These numbers represent the amount of nitrogen, phosphorous and potash, by weight in the bag.  The reason the numbers won’t add up to 100 is there are other fillers and micro-nutrients also contained in fertilizers.

Use this saying when you think about those three numbers-Up, down and all around.  The first number, the nitrogen allows plants to grow more green and grow faster.  Too much nitrogen can burn a plant or cause it to grow too quickly.  

Slower growing plants like conifers need less fertilizer than faster growing ones like annual flowers and vegetables.  Too much fertilizer, even organic types can be lost into the atmosphere or washed away if the plants don’t use it.

Always water your granular fertilizer immediately after applying to the soil.  The nitrogen in fertilizer can undergo a process by which the bacteria in the soil react with the nitrogen and release it to the air before a plant gets a chance to use it.  This is called denitrification and basically wastes your fertilizer.

The second number represents phosphorous. This nutrient helps

Several years ago I watched The Bee Movie, (DreamWorks) an animated full-length feature staring the voices of Jerry Seinfeld, Renée Zellweger and Mathew Broderick to name a few of the stars.   I love the movie and the humor is fantastic, but the main point of the movie is to illustrate the importance of bees and how humans should care of these critical insects.

The Bee Movie (DreamWorks) has an important message about bees and their connection to the entire food chain

The Bee Movie (DreamWorks) has an important message about bees and their connection to the entire food chain

My passion for plants and their pollinators is powerful and extends back over 40 years. As an elementary school student, I began learning about the inner connections of the natural world and how the survival of the planet depends on the success of the individual pieces.

To help the bees, I am teaming up with the Bee Sanctuary, a non-profit program in collaboration with The Best Bees Company’s beekeeping services. In short summary, this is a sponsor-a-beehive program, where select corporations, family foundations, groups of individuals or individuals themselves may sponsor honey beehives.  The donation will allow full beekeeping management services throughout community gardens, schools, libraries, non-profits, farms, and low-income communities. This brings more pollinators to each area and with them more fruits, vegetables, and honey.  Bees are dying nationwide and this is a way to get more bees out there.

I now have been on my own property.

I now have bees on my own property.

We live in a time of the world when it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and frankly nearly impossible to make a difference.  Further, so many organizations can use your time, talent or treasure it’s hard to know who to help.

Philanthropy in itself isn’t something easily taught.  I donate my time to a couple of different organization and my treasure

Here’s what the weather will be like for Allston Christmas

When you’re moving your stuff into a new building—double-parked with a couch sitting on the sidewalk and trying to lug a mattress up three flights of stairs—you don’t want it to be miserably hot and humid. You definitely don’t want it to rain. The good news for the many of you moving in or out this […]

Weekend weather: What you need to know for every activity you have planned

For thousands of students this is the final weekend of the year before school begins next week, and the weather looks fantastic. A cold front is passing through the area this morning. This is important to our weekend forecast as it will push the very humid air out to sea and take the clouds and any […]

It felt like fall this morning, but summer weather isn’t over by a long shot

Most of us awoke Tuesday morning to temperatures in the 50s, with readings in the upper 40s in the coldest spots. Even Boston’s low temperatures fell to around 60 degrees, giving us that feeling of fall. It felt autumnal because of both the cool temperatures and the very dry air. Low dew points in the 40s […]

This morning’s tornado in Concord, explained

A cold front — and an associated line of showers and storms — swept through the area early Monday morning, bringing briefly torrential rain to many areas in Massachusetts. This severe weather did spawn a tornado inside an area of very strong winds. The strongest part of the line of storms was in the Marlborough to […]

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Dave Epstien

David Epstein
David EpsteinMeteorologist & Horticulturalist
David Epstein has been a professional meteorologist and horticulturalist for three decades. He spent 16 years on-air at WCVB in Boston and currently is a meteorology professor at Framingham State University Colby College.

Dave’s weather, climate and gardening content can seen/heard/read regularly on the following media outlets: boston.com, Portland Press Herald, WBUR Boston, WBZ-TV, WGME CBS 13 Portland and here at growingwisdom.com

Link to Dave’s home weather station in Natick Ma

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