Gardens do not take care of themselves. Poor soil, pests, disease, fungus, and inclement weather can ruin plants and a gardener’s zeal. In When Good Gardens Go Bad, veteran author and pioneer organic gardener Judy Barrett offers safe, practical, and inexpensive advice for handling common garden problems and challenges. Plants thrive and fail for many reasons, but if you improve the soil, choose the right plants, plant them at the right time, and encourage them along the way, you will have far fewer failures and be able to take the credit when they flourish. Dispelling the belief that gardens should be perfectly controlled environments, Barrett encourages gardeners to embrace the imperfections. If you are frustrated because nothing seems to grow in your backyard or you can’t keep pests or plant disease away, this book offers organic solutions while banishing stress. Barrett encourages readers to learn more about their soil through observation and talking with neighbors and local experts in order to make smarter choices for their yards. Insects are another common frustration for gardeners. Here, Barrett differentiates the beneficial insects from the problem pests, and she offers homemade and store-bought solutions for keeping harmful pests away. She also provides frustrated gardeners straightforward advice for tackling other common hurdles such as weeds and composting. Barrett’s gardening philosophy is that the best gardeners are those who enjoy the process and can live with some dead plants, failed visions, and annoying bugs. A garden doesn’t have to be perfect, but it should be fun!
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