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Turn a wet, poorly drained spot in your yard into a colorful landscape feature with these perennial flowers and ornamental grasses.

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Fall Veggies to Plant Now

Grow these cool-season vegetables and herbs to extend your garden's harvests in spring and fall. This list of vegetables includes seasonal vegetables, green vegetables, non-starchy vegetables, winter vegetables, green leafy vegetables, fall vegetables and more.

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Improve Poor Drainage

Follow these tips to transform a poorly drained area into an easy-care garden.

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Tips and Tricks to Keep Plants Blooming

Deadheading is a popular practice ¿ but do you know all the ways to keep flowers on your plants longer? Follow these easy tips for keeping your favorite shrubs and flowers blooming longer.

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Top Plant Picks for Late-Summer Color

Keep the color coming on strong through the end of the growing season with these easy-care, reliable annuals and perennials.

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Plan for a Gorgeous Fall Landscape

See how two great gardeners -- one on the East Coast and one on the West -- created knock-your-socks-off fall yards -- and learn how you can do the same.

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Best Plants for Rock Gardens

Transforming an unsightly slope or mound in your backyard into a colorful rock garden is easy when you chose the right plants. These amazing, low-maintenance ground huggers don't mind poor soil but do need good drainage to survive. Here's a list of our top plants for rock gardens.

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Tips for Growing an Organic Vegetable Garden

Enjoy healthy, tasty, organic vegetables fresh from your garden. Try these tips for success.

Starting Out Right

For the healthiest plants, make sure you have good growing conditions. For most vegetables, that means full sun (at least 6 hours of direct sun a day). If you have poor soil, amend it with lots of organic matter, such as compost.

Choose Plants Sensibly
Some plants, such as tomatoes, are naturally more susceptible to pest and disease problems than others. To reduce problems, look for disease-resistant varieties. (Disease resistance is usually mentioned in catalog listings, seed packets, and plant tags.)

Feed Your Plants Naturally

In most soils, fertilizing your vegetables isn't necessary, but it will help them grow faster and give better crops. If you feed your plants, choose natural products. Well-rotted animal manure from plant-eating critters (rabbits, horses, sheep, chickens) is a great source. Or look for prepackaged organic materials online or at your local garden center.

Note: If you have rich soil already, you may be best off not fertilizing. Too much of a good thing can make your plants put on lots of lush, soft growth that's loved by pests. Slower-growing plants often resist insects and disease better.

Practice Rotation

If you plant the same vegetables in the same spot every year, disease can build up and be ready before your plants have much of a chance. Keep the element of surprise against your disease foes and try to plant your crops in different parts of the garden each year.

Because many closely related plants are affected by the same diseases, avoid planting them where their relatives were the year or two before. Two of the biggest families are the tomato family (tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, eggplant) and the squash family (squash, pumpkin, cucumber, watermelon).

Does disease trouble your tomatoes? Find out how to protect your crops.

Mulch Well

A layer of mulch over the soil not only helps reduce weeds, but it creates a barrier that can prevent fungal disease spores from splashing up onto plant leaves. In most cases, a layer of mulch 1 to 2 inches thick is best.

For an extra bonus, use a mulch made from an organic material that will decompose (such as cocoa hulls or weed-free straw). As it breaks down, it adds organic matter to the soil for you.

Learn about the best types of mulch!

Declare War on Weeds

Weeds not only compete with your plants for water and nutrients, but they may also attract insect pests. And many insects spread disease as they feed from one plant to the next.

Learn about the most common weeds in gardens.

Keep It Clean

Many diseases spread rapidly in dead, fallen foliage. Regularly -- once a week or more if you have time -- walk through your garden and pick up shed foliage.

Also: You can sometimes prevent a disease from spreading through an entire plant just by picking off an infected leaf. Throw dead or diseased leaves in the trash, not in your compost pile.

Water Wisely

Wet leaves, especially in the afternoon or evening hours, can attract disease. Avoid watering your plants with a sprinkler. Instead, use a water-saving soaker hose to deliver water directly to the roots.

Give Them Some Air
While jamming plants in is a great way to get the most from your plot, it can also cause problems. Avoid planting your vegetables too close together. Good air flow between the plants can help prevent many types of fungal diseases.

Plant Some Flowers

A few flowers will not only help your garden look prettier, but they may also attract beneficial bugs. These good guys in the garden attack insect pests such as aphids and tomato hornworms. Don't worry about these good bugs: Most types are small enough that you'll hardly notice them in the garden.

Best plants for attracting beneficial insects

  • Bachelor's Button
  • Cleome
  • Cosmos
  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Daisy
  • Marigold
  • Nasturtium
  • Purple Coneflower
  • Salvia
  • Sunflower
  • Yarrow
  • Zinnia

Learn more about these flowers with Plant Encyclopedia!

Be Realistic

One of the hardest lessons for first-time organic vegetable growers is that organic gardens don't look perfect. They've achieved a balance where there's usually some form of damage from pests and diseases. Nature comes to the rescue before that spotted leaf becomes a plague.

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