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Author: Siamack Sioshansi

Mulch and Water Conservation

We are past California’s rainy season. This year, we are suffering from drought again, with soil moisture, snow packs, and water reservoirs all at very low levels with no rain in sight. If forecasts are correct, we are entering an even longer extended period of dry weather and water use will be an issue for a year or longer. In addition, factors like population growth will further necessitate our doing more with less water. This reality prompts the backyard gardener to panic slightly, concerned with the inevitable: how do we grow more food with less water? This article marks the...

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Peach Leaf Curl

Peach Leaf Curl is a common disease of peaches and nectarines. This video is intended to show what the disease looks like, how it spreads and the impact of the disease on the tree. This video does not discuss how to treat peach leaf curl. Inspecting your fruit tree for this disease takes a few minutes. While you can not do anything about the disease after the tree is infected, it’s important to make a note so in late fall, when you can treat the trees, you know it had...

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Why Plant an Orchard?

The Athenian School is a visionary organization with a well-defined set of values. For example the faculty and staff have been teaching, modeling and practicing values such as environmental stewardship and community service for a long time. Community Service The school helps the students achieve a delicate balance of self-improvement and self-sacrifice for the benefit of others. For example The Athenian students on a regular basis volunteer at The Food Bank, Monument Crisis Center and help us harvest backyard fruit. Environmental Stewardship The list of environmental project at The Athenian is long and impressive. The students are involved with...

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Why Grow a Fruit Tree

There are a lot of reasons to plant fruit trees. With your own fruit trees you know exactly what you’re getting: no sprays, no wax and no chemicals. A fruit tree filters the air, conditions the soil, provides shade and attracts pollinators to your garden. Beyond the obvious, there are five reasons why you should consider planting a fruit tree: 1. For Your Health – Some of the fruit that grows easily in northern California – such as apples, pears and plums – are among the most heavily sprayed crops. For example USDA has found 42 pesticide residues on Apples where 5...

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What Grows Well Here

Consider growing trees that are easy to plant, easy to look after and when grown commercially, are heavily sprayed with pesticides. For our area these include: Apples Plums Pears Peaches Figs Persimmons Pomegranates Quince With some knowledge and care you can also grow: Cherries Apricots If you are new to growing fruit trees choose one of the 12 fruit trees that are listed on the The Easy...

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