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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Here is a breakdown of some of the nutrients in banana peels, and what they do for your plants:





       We live in a virtual mecca for banana compost... Easy to find and drying is never a problem.. Like every kind of compost, however, just be sure that it does not become anaerobic as you store it for use.. that aside here are the basic benefits of using banana in your garden or on your farm...

Because of these nutrients, banana peels also help plants resist many diseases. Here is a breakdown of some of the nutrients in banana peels, and what they do for your plants: Potassium – This is the main nutrient found in banana peels. 

Potassium helps with root development, encouraging a good flow of nutrients and water in your plants. It is also involved in regulating enzymes within a plant, which helps promote stronger plant stems and thicker cell walls in the fruit. Because of these factors, potassium helps your plants to become more drought-, disease- and pest-resistant. 

Phosphorus – The second highest mineral in banana peels, phosphorus is important in seed germination and viability. It is a necessary element for the production of blooms, pollen, fruits, and healthy roots. Because it is essential for good root and shoot growth, phosphorus lends to overall plant strength. 

Calcium – Calcium is another nutrient important for proper root and stem development. It helps with the breakdown of other necessary nutrients in the soil like nitrogen. Because it helps other minerals move throughout the plant,calcium can be called  the “trucker of all minerals.” 

Magnesium – The nutrient which helps with the production of chlorophyll, magnesium keeps plants green for photosynthesis. It is also used by plants for the metabolism of carbohydrates, meaning it helps to actually feed the plant.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Growing Mangosteen







Growing Mangosteen

Mangosteen, a delicious tropical fruit, is widely grown in Mindanao and is abundant during the months of July to September. It is one of the most praised of tropical fruits because of its amazing health benefits.

Mangosteen is eaten fresh. The white, juice pulp around the seeds can be made into preserves after boiling in brown sugar. It is reach in protein, minerals and carbohydrates. Mangosteen peeling, when dried and boiled, is a very effective cure to diarrhea and dysentery.
Soil and climate requirement. A warm, humid environment is ideal for growing mangosteen. Rainfall should be well-distributed throughout the year, unless sufficient irrigation is available. The soil should be rich in organic matter, porous, deep, moist and well-drained. Ideal type of soil is heavy clay with sand and silt.

Mangosteen can thrive at elevations of up to 500 meters above the sea level.
Planting. Mangosteen seeds can be planted whole or cut into pieces. They are first sown in seedboxes, seed plots or pots, bamboo tubes, or plastic bags. Keep them under partial shade for about two weeks and water four times a week. transplant after two years when plants are about 30 cm tall.
In the field, plant them at the distance of 7 meters in rows and 9 meters between rows. Place the seedling in holes 15 cm deep.

Cultivation. Weed at a distance of one meter around the plants. Apply nitrate or other nitrogenous fertilizer for longer periods of fruiting. Composts may also be broadcast to enrich the soil with humus.

Common intercrops with mangosteen are peanut and other legumes, abaca, banana , marang and lanzones trees. Dapdap and durian trees also serve as partial shades.
Insect and disease control. Control pests with Methyl Parathion and Diazinon at the rate of 2 1/2 tablespoon per five gallons of water. For disease, use Manzate and Dithane Z-78.
Mangosteen fruit  Harvest.

Mangosteen bear fruit after 10 to 15 years. Pick the fruits together with the peduncle or main stalk, then bind together in elongated cluster of 15 pieces.


Medicinal use of Mangosteen. For treatment of diarrhea, prepare 4 teaspoon of chop mangosteen peeling and boil with two glasses of water for 15 minutes. For children from 7 to 12 years, use two teaspoon of chopped mangosteen peelings; for children from 2 to 6 years, use one teaspoon. Cool the mixture and strain. Divide it in four parts and drink one part every 2 or 3 hours.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Gardening with Compost




Gardening with compost can be a tricky business. Consider the following:

Organic (Fermentation) Acids — Organic acids occur in compost that is immature (not sufficiently decomposed) or that has been processed or stored under anaerobic conditions (fermentation), even for a short time.

Many organic acids are phytotoxic, often producing nearly immediate injury to plants that shows white or chlorotic (bleached) leaves. In composts with a high C:N ratio (>40:1), acetic acid is the primary organic acid formed (along with some alcohols). In composts with low C:N ratios, anaerobic conditions yield ammoniacal products (putrid odors) that cause the toxicity. A drop or increase in pH often is not a reliable indicator of the toxicity problem because these compounds decompose quickly (24 to 48 hr) after causing injury.

The first line of defense is to use mature compost. However, even mature compost products can develop organic acids if stored or shipped under anaerobic conditions (the likelihood decreases with maturity). Many organic acids have a sharp odor that signals their presence.

Tests that indicate maturity and bioassays can be used to detect the presence of organic acids also. However, in a relatively mature compost, the organic acids will decompose or dissipate if the sample is aerated. As a precaution, allow compost stored in piles or in a sealed truck to aerate for several days prior to use or sale. Also, inform customers about proper storage...

Monday, February 15, 2016

Cinnamon For Your Garden


Cinnamon. It’s delicious AND nutritious for us. BUT did you know it’s beneficial for plants too? On behalf of your plants, you can share the cinnamon benefits with them too. Indoor and outdoor plants benefit from the generous use of cinnamon to keep them healthy...


 Here are six uses for cinnamon in your garden:

1-Seedlings
Imagine little sea turtles tucked away in their little sandy womb, breaking their little shells, climbing to the harsh surface, and running to the ocean for shelter. We’ve all seen the documentaries. The little turtles run, the predators enjoy a baby turtle sandwich. It’s the circle of life. But what if I told you that the same thing can happen to your little seedlings?

There may be no birds or sharks attacking the seeds, but there are diseases.  The gardening term “dampening off” covers an array of diseases that attack you little seeds and lead to their demise.  Dampening off can be caused by several different fungi and soil conditions. We know for sure that fungus is a huge problem here in Mindanao.  Cinnamon, believe it or not, is a proven fungus fighter. Dusting your fresh soil with cinnamon can prevent the seeds from dampening off. It will help them get off to a good start.

2-Wild Mushrooms
As mentioned earlier with my little seed -  turtle analogy, mushrooms don’t like cinnamon. Instead of spending a spring afternoon picking annoying wild mushrooms from your garden, give them a little cinnamon dusting and watch them disappear!

 3-Rooting Hormone
Rooting hormone stimulates root growth. Trying to remove chemicals from your household? Easy. Stop buying chemical rooting hormones; just apply cinnamon to the stem when you plant the cutting!

4-Ant Deterrent
We love cinnamon. Ants do not. Sprinkle cinnamon around your garden beds to kill the ants, and keep them away. Ants in the house? Sprinkle some cinnamon near your entrances and watch the ants flee!

5-Plant Wounds
Accidentally cutting or wounding your plants may make you feel guilty and apologetic to your plant. Instead of crying over spilt plant milk, dust some cinnamon on the wound to encourage healing and prevent infection (yes plants can get infections).

6-House Plants

Don’t forget about your indoor plants while pruning your outdoor ones. Cinnamon helps gets rid of mold and mildew in your plants. Sprinkle some cinnamon on the soil, and watch your plants flourish. Gnat problem? Not a problem. Cinnamon gets rid of gnats in seedlings and houseplants and keeps them away.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Growing in the Philippines-Companion Planting and Crop Planning





Companion Planting and Crop Planning - Agricultural Training Institute, Philippines


  1. 1.  CROP PLANNING Carbohydrates/energy Source Crop 

  2. Planning considers what, when, where Cassava, sweet potato. Taro (gabi), rice bean Crop and which plants to grow in relation to their (tapilan), dried hyacinth beans (batao, harabilla), requirements for space, sunshine, water, dried lima beans (patani), dried pigeon pea maturation, season of planting and tolerance for (kadyos), dried stalk beans (habas) and mung each other. It involves a cropping pattern in which bean. different categories of vegetables are raised, Planning followed by a system of crop rotation to keep the Vitamin A. 
  3. Sources cycle going and to provide a suitable, healthy environment for plants to grow. For a family food Amaranth (kulitis), hot pepper leaves, horse garden, crop planning means raising vegetables raddish leaves (malunggay), bittergourd that will provide for the nutritional needs of the (ampalaya) leaves, spinach, kangkong, sweet household members all year round. Crop plans must include potato leaves and squash. 
  4.  Backyard High Protein Sources gardeners are the best curators. Winged bean, lima bean, rice bean, hyacinth.
  5.  WHAT TO PLANT- bean, pigeon peas, string beans (sitao) and jack beans FOR FAMILY NUTRITION High Vitamin C Sources Plant vegetable crops that are nutritious and easy to grow, indigenous varieties that are Horseradish, bittergourd leaves, amaranth productive and tolerant to common insect pests and leaves, mustard, petchay, bittergourd fruit, diseases. 
  6. Raise more vegetables that will allow you kangkong and spinach. to harvest over a long range of time as compared to vegetables that have to be harvested all at one time. Iron-Rich Crops Mix short and long maturing-crops to ensure a well- distributed supply of nutritious vegetables. Place a Amaranth leaves, pigeon peas, lima beans, special emphasis on crops which have more than sweet potato leaves, winged bean, mungo, one edible part, e.g., roots and leaves, flowers and petchay, spinach, kangkong and pepper leaves. leaves, etc. Your family food garden should include vegetables that are rich in protein, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins.

  7. 2. WHEN TO PLANT - Crop planning can provide a family food and FOR A FAVORABLE PLANT ENVIRONMENT  
  8. The best advice ion the appropriate season to other essentials during staple crop raise which crop is best obtained from farmers shortages, plus a variety of quality nutrients Plant four categories of vegetables in your in the locality. to lessen or eliminate deficiencies in the diet. bed: leafy, root, legume and fruit. 
  9. Crop rotation - By raising seedlings in advance, transplanting requires that each category or type be planted in a can be undertaken upon harvest of an early planting.  

  10. TRELLISING different sub-division of the bed every season. maturing crop without keeping a portion of the Different plants have varying root depths and so bed vacant. A trellis is a structural support for climbing extract nutrients and moisture from different regions plants. Trellising of the soil profile. The cultivation of different plants  
  11. Here’s a guide chart to start with: - maximizes the use of limited space in the same part of the bed from season to season Vegetable Maturation by allowing several crops, like does not overburden the soil. However, within each (No. of Days) legumes and gourds, to be grown on of these four categories, you can interplant other Chinese cabbage 48-62 a single trellis. vegetables. (See companion cropping chart). Lima beans 50-65 - permits the growing of shade-tolerant Cabbage 58-68 crops under the trellis. Here are some examples of the four Sweet pea 65-70 - makes crop production feasible over categories: Tomato 70-100 canals and water-logged areas. Leafy vegetables : amaranth, lettuce, Kundol 80-100 - protects plants from stray animals. cabbage, kangkong, etc. Head Lettuce 85-100 Fruit-bearing vegetables: tomato, peppers, Bulb onion 90-150 Trees and tall crops, like papaya and okra, bitter gourd, eggplant, etc. Upo 100-120 banana, can also serve as trellis and “live fences.” Root crops: radish, ginger, gabi, cassava, Garlic 100-140 sweet potato, etc. Batao 60-80  MULCHING Legumes: winged beans, lima beans, Winged bean 65-75 cowpea, rice beans, etc. Kadios 90-150 During the initial stage of crop growth, the Petchay 30-40 space between the plants is covered with dried rice Cycle of the Stages of Each Bed Mustard 30-40 straw or grasses to conserve moisture. Later on, this Leaf lettuce 30-40 is removed (if not decomposed), since the plants Cucumber 35-45 themselves serve as “living mulch”,’ when their Leaf Root Legume Fruit leaves cover the soil surface. crop Crop Crop Crop String beans 40-70 Okra 50-60 During the hot months, the mulch should always be maintained. Root Leaf Fruit Legume Cowpea 55-75 Crop Crop Crop Crop Radish 60-70 In the rainy season, mulch should not be Sweet corn 68-70 used around young seedlings. Plants should be at Legume Fruit Root Leaf Ampalaya 70-72 least six weeks old before mulch is used as mulch Crop Crop Crop Crop Patola 75-80 can promote the growth of fungi, causing seedlings Squash 75-100 to rot. Fruit Legume Leaf Root Green onion 80-90 Crop Crop Crop Crop Sweet pepper 90-110 Season-1 Season- 2 Season – 3 Season - 4 Sweet potato 90-120

  12. 3. BIG Series: 01-05 By continuously raising vegetables from HOW PLANTS PRODUCE SEEDS 
  13. Season to season, you also preserve valuable Plants have to pollinate in order to produce seed varieties handed down from generation seeds. The pollen, the fertilizing powder in the to generation. Choosing good quality seeds anther of flowers, is to be conveyed to the stigma or Growing and from selected vegetables and then drying and pistil of the plant. Plants may either be self- storing them properly keep the seeds alive pollinated or cross-pollinated. Self-pollination occurs when the pollen of a flower fertilizes the and make them viable for two or more years ovary of the same flower or another flower on the Collecting to come. same plant. Cross-pollination occurs when insects or wind transfer pollen from the flower of one plant Even while they are stored, seeds are still to the flower of another. Cross-pollinated plants alive. However, all seeds eventually die if they are have incomplete flowers with only male or female Seeds not planted. parts but not both, while self-pollinated plants have complete flowers containing both male and female parts. Self-pollinated vegetables include beans, peas, eggplant, lettuce, okra. Cross-pollinated GROW YOUR OWN VEGETABLE SEEDS vegetables include cucumber, spinach, amaranthus.  You can produce high quality seeds at low cost.  One plant can produce enough seeds for your garden.  When the seeds that you want are not available in the market, you can still continue gardening if you raise your own seeds rather than buy them.  You help preserve traditional indigenous Remember: varieties of vegetables for the future generation.  Sometimes, self-pollinated vegetables can be cross pollinated by a different variety of the same vegetable grown close by. 
  14. So, CHOOSING GOOD PLANTS FOR SEEDS when you are saving seeds, do not grow two varieties of the same vegetable together.  Vigorous  Good to eat  Cross pollinated vegetables must be well-  Less prone to  Less insect separated to prevent variation. diseases attack  If some of the plants are not good, remove  Early-bearing  Good yield the plants before flowering so that they do  Good size  Late to seed not cross-pollinate with good plants. If you  Long storage life  Good color don’t remove them, you will not produce a  Produces large, good type of seed. healthy fruits

  15. 4. SEED COLLECTION Fermentation Process: Cross-Pollinated Crops  
  16. Select the plants to be used for seeds. Dump pulp and seeds into a jar with water. Mark the plant so that they are not Ferment for two to three days. Stir occasionally. The Vegetable When to Cleaning harvested by accident. pulp will rise to the top. The good seeds will sink to the Harvest  Harvest the plant at the right time. bottom. Pour off pulp, wash seeds carefully and dry on Cucumbers Pick when big Wash seeds clean Plants harvested early give thin seeds screen paper. and golden from pulp. Dry on that germinate poorly and deteriorate yellow. screen or paper , quickly in storage. Fruits and pods Self-Pollinated Crops stirring should be well-ripened when picked occasionally, or but not so old that they rot or blow Vegetable When to Harvest Cleaning use fermentation away. Beans and Pull up plants Shell beans or process.  Collect seeds during the dry season, peas when pods turn peas when very Onions When black especially on a sunny day after the brown and most dry. Store in a seeds on flower Rub seeds from dew has evaporated. This is to avoid leaves have fallen. ventilated heads become heads when dry many disease problems. Hang to Hang to container in a exposed, cut (will come off  Test the seeds long enough before dry in airy place cool, dry place. stalks. Dry easily). Remove planting time to make sure they are heads on chaff. viable. Eggplants Pick when very Wash seeds screen or  Seeds should be labeled soon after ripe, about to fall clean from the paper. collecting to avoid mixing them, up. off the stalk. pulp and dry Squash Remove seeds over. Use Pick at edible from pulp; wash fermentation stage. carefully and dry. process. Spread out the Okra Remove stalks Remove seeds seeds, stirring when pods are dry from pods. Dry occasionally. and almost further before splitting. storing. Mustard, Cut flower Remove seeds Tomatoes Pick fruits when Use fermentation Chinese stalks when from pods by fully ripe. process. Cabbage seeds pods are hand. Dry further brittle. before storing. HARVESTING AND CLEANING VEGETABLE SEEDS (From: Seed and Nursery Directory by Cary fowler and Elaine Chiosso, The Rural Advancement Fund, North Carolina, USA, 1983)

  17. 5. COMPANION CROPS 
  18.  Planting two or more crops that have mutual beneficial effect on each other is called companion Vegetables Likes Dislikes planting. Certain plants like each other! Others (companion) (enemies) dislike each other and aversely affect production. Beets Onions, garlic Pole beansCompanion Planting SHADE/MULTI-STORIED PLANT CANOPY Snap bean corn Onion, garlic Bush sitao Corn, mungo, Sweet potato Plant shade-tolerant vegetables, like gabi, sorghum (Vegetable) ginger, pepper, mustard and sweet potato Cabbage family Garlic, onion Pole beans underneath tall crops, like cassava, kadios and (cabbage, vines on trellis, like gourd, squash and winged beans. This will form a multi-storied plant canopy, cauliflower, which can efficiently use sunshine. Various crops broccoli) can be grown on limited space with little Garlic carrots - competition. Weed growth is also controlled through Corn Beans, squash, Potato shading by the upper canopy level and by trailing potao, vine vegetables. Since weed growth is also controlled, your vegetable crops get better cucumber, opportunity for growth. beans, corn Cucmber Radish If the bed is located in an East-West tomato Onion, lettuce Potato direction, the tall crops should be planted only at Eggplant Pepper, beans, - either end of the bed. lettuce Onion Lettuce MATURATION Mungo Corn, sorghum - Grow short-duration vegetables, like petchay Sweet potato Corn, mungo - and mustard, between slow-growing, long duration Radish Bush sitao, - crops, like tomato, sweet pepper, et. Long duration beans, vine vegetables, like cucumber, upo, patola, winged cucumber bean, squash, sweet potato and alugbati could be rooted at one side of the bed and allowed to creep on the ground and/or allowed to trail on a trellis constructed beside the bed.
  19. 6. SPACING Space plants closely, seeing to it that each planthas enough sunshine and space to grow. Plants arecorrectly spaced when the leaves of the fully-grownplants barely overlap with the adjacent ones. Plant in atriangular fashion. The seeds or seedlings are plantedat each end of an imaginary triangle, with the sides ofthe triangle being equal to the recommended spacing.This practice allows more plants to be grown within asmall area than the usual method of square or rowplanting. It also prevents the growth of weeds andmoisture evaporation as the plant canopy serves as“living mulch.”REPELLANTS Every bed must have a few spice plants andmedical herbs with strong odor to repel insects from thegarden. Examples: mint, onions, oregano, basil, garlic,etc. In addition, each bed should have 6 – 8 marigoldplants. The roots of marigolds secrete a chemical thatkill soil nematodes. The strong odor of marigolds alsorepel insects.

  20. 7. SUCKING INSECTS-
  21. When you have a vegetable garden, you get to  SUCKING INSECTS suck the juices out of the plant, know so many little live creatures you have never usually near the tender new growth. They usually too noticed before. These are insects. Most of them are tiny and too numerous. Examples: aphids, thrips, fliesBIG Series: 05-05 beneficial insects that do no harm at all to your plants. and scale insects. Very few are pests. Pest control means destroying only the harmful insects and providing a favorable Some Common Insect Pests and Controlling Them environment to keep plants healthy. Pest control APHIDS or BLACK or INSECTS AND THEIR HABITS GREEN FLIES In Your METAMORPHOSIS When the leaves and stems of your plants begin to look Insects undergo a metamorphic process, pale and spindly, aphids are present. Aphids can change color transforming from a tiny egg to a larva, then to pupa and to match plant parts and metamorphose from nymphs to adult, Garden finally into an adult form as bugs, moths and butterflies. both with wings and without wings. When the aphids in one plant become overcrowded, they develop wings and fly to As its larval form, an insect is commonly referred to another plant host of the same plant family. Aphids mature in as worm or caterpillar, larvae are voracious eaters, existing 12 days. only to eat. Pest control is usually directed at the larval stage because larvae are usually soft-skinned, slow,  Clay can control aphids. Prepare a fine clay solution vulnerable, visible parasites and predators. and spray over aphids to render their tender bodies lifeless. The larva soon develops into a pupa, an inactive form living on stored food acquired during its larval stage.  Atis (Anona Squamosa) seeds are pulverized and Pupa are usually tucked out of sight: in plant crevices, plant mixed with water. Use as spray against aphids, ants refuse and in the soil. An age-old way of disturbing and and other insects. destroying the pupae is by cultivating the soil. The pupa transform into an adult form to mate, reproduce and find a  Makabuhay (Tinospora Rumphi) – The roots, stems good place to stash its eggs. and leaves are pounded to extract the juice which is then mixed with water for use as a spray against If a particular insect does damage in one aphids, flies, moths, worms and other insects. metamorphic stage, it may be beneficial in another. If it can not be captured or controlled in one stage, it may be subject to predators in another stage. EATING HABITS BORERS The eating habit of insects give a clue to its identity, metamorphic stage, as well as its control. Insects feed in Borers hatch inside a stem and eat and grow there as two main ways: chewing and sucking caterpillars. The presence of borers is indicated by the sudden wilting of plant tops. Borers are of many kinds and attack various  CHEWING INSECTS bite or chew the leaves, plants. Whatever the plant, whatever borer is inflecting it, cut off the systems, roots and fruits of plants. Examples: injured stems and burn them to destroy the borers. caterpillar, beetles, bugs, worms.

  22. 8.  Go out at night with a flashlight. Handpick the cutworms and crush them.CATERPILLARS  
  23. When seedlings are nipped off at the ground level, scratch under the soil surface near the The larval stage of moths and butterflies, caterpillars plant to find the cutworm curled in a ring, LEAF MINERSare of many kinds. Usually developing from patches of eggs sleeping.on the underside of leaves, caterpillar feed on foliage and The leaf miner damage is not serious. Leaf Minerstender stems. NEMATODES attack spinach and many other plants. The leaf miner is a grub inside the leaf. Later, it will develop into a pupa and drop  Handpicking caterpillars and stepping on them is into the ground. an effective control measure.  Touch the caterpillar with a rag dipped in 

  24.  Let birds and chicken feed on the pupae in the ground. kerosene to kill it. Use the same rag to touch Nematodes are worm parasites that either  Strong smelling herbs could repel the adult fly. egg clusters so they will never hatch. stick their heads in a plant to suck the sap or actually  Dusting the leaves with ashes controls the leaf miner  Look for patches of eggs and clusters of young spend their lives inside the plant. Nematodes can be fly. caterpillars on the undersides of leaves and nip controlled by the following: off those leaves and burn them.  Crop rotation  Planting pest-free stock  Enriching the soil with humus can get you MEALY BUGS and CUTWORMS. 

  25.  Planting marigolds as their roots kill nematodes Mealy bugs are scale insects covering the stems of plants and sucking their juices. They are a serious pest and hard to control. Cutworm attack newly transplanted tomato,cabbage and other seedlings. Cutting them off at the FRUIT FLIES  Use a cotton swab dipped in denatured alcohol andground level during night time. One kind of cutworm touch each mealy bug. The alcohol penetrates theclimbs up into the plant to chew the leaves. waxy protective covering, killing the mealy bug. Fruit flies lay eggs which develop into tiny Large irregular areas are chewed out, starting maggots that burrow inside fruits. Maggots causefrom the edge of a leaf. slight depressions on the fruit surface and tiny holes where they emerge. These are hardly noticeable. ROOT  A collar of paper or a tin can with top and bottom MAGGOT cut out and the seedling planted in the center . 
  26. Catch the pest at its fly stage before it could FLIES can prevent the cutworm from reaching the lay eggs. Try this bait: Mix two teaspoons of stem. household ammonia and 1./4 teaspoon soap powder in a quart of water. Fill a jar with the The adult fly lays its eggs in the roots of corn, onions,  When transplanting, stick a toothpick or a mixture and put the jar right next to the sunny cabbage, etc. The maggots hatch out and live on the roots, matchstick, or tough twig directly down the side side of the plant. The bait should be changed thus weakening the plants. of the plant stem, touching the stem. The cutworm then can not encircle and cut the stem. once a week or when diluted with rain.  Collect dropped fruits and burn or dispose of them properly.

  27. 9.  Sprinkle wood ashes liberally around the stems of seedlings.
  28. If it rains and the wood ashes BOTANICAL PESTICIDES become soaked, replenish with clean, fluffy ATIS (ANONA Squamosa) CUSTARD APPLE TOBACCO (Nicotiana Tabacum) ashes, preferably fresh from the fireplace. All root maggots can be controlled by wood ashes. Boil the midribs and stem in water for a few minutes Pulverize the seeds and mix with water. Use as or soak for 3 – 4 days. Let cool. This is an effective a spray against aphids, ants and other insects. spray against numerous insect pests.SQUASH BUGS ADELFA (Nerium Indicum) TOMATO Boil the stems and leaves of tomato in water. Cool Cut and soak the leaves and bark in water for at it. Spray against caterpillars and black or green flies. least 30 minutes. Use as a spray against ants, T his will also serve to deter future attack. Squash bugs lay eggs which develop into gray flies and other insects.nymphs with fat bodies and black legs. They suck the KA MARYA (Artemia Vulgaris)juice out of squash plants. CHRYSANTHEMUM Cut the branches, dry and then burn near or below  Locate the eggs and crush them. Grind the dried flowers. Mix with fine clay loam plants. This will drive away insects.  Traps may be made by laying thin, flat boards and water. Spray against a wide range of slightly tilted, in the garden rows. The squash insects. SAPONIT (Lantana Camara) bugs assemble beneath the boards and may Proportion: six to seven tablespoons of dried then be easily crushed. ground flower for one gallon of water. Cut the branches, sun dry and burn. Apply the ashes to  Sprinkle the squash plant with hydrated lime the leaves to control various beetles and leaf miners. and wood ashes. TUBLI (Derris Sp.) LUBIGAN )Acorus Calamasus) 

  29. Pound the fresh bark and rods and extract the juice with water. Mix six tablespoons of juice to Powder the roots and add water. Use as an insecticide 3-4 liters of water. It makes an effective insect spray. Decoction of rhizome can also be used as aWHITE FLIES spray. spray. MADRE DE CACAO (Gliricidia) SOLASI or BALANOY (Ocimum Sanctum) Extract the juice from the leaves and Decoction of fresh/dried leaves can be used as an White flies are very small, aphid-like insects, stems. Mix with water and spray against insecticide.looking like very tiny moths. The nymphs are usually insects. Fresh stems with leaves can bedifficult to reach by sprays because they are on the placed between plants to deter insects. RED PEPPER (Capsicum, Solanaceae)underside of the leaves. Thus, treatments have to berepeated several times. MAKABUHAY (Tinosporo Rumphi) Dry several red peppers. Grind the dried peppers just before use. Liberally sprinkle the powder to repellants  Use tobacco dust. Pound the root, stem and leaves to  Spray with nicotine and soap solution. extract the juice. Mix with water. Use as  In very bad cases, use kerosene emulsion. a spray against aphids, flies, moths, worms and other insects.

  30. 10. Aromatic Herbs and SoapSORO-SORO (Euphorbia Neriflora) 
  31. Chop or grind one garlic, one onion, one NOTES . . . . tablespoon hot pepper and mix with one quart water. Use the latex as an insecticide. Let it stay for one hour then add one tablespoon liquid soap detergent. Place the mixture in a tightlyMINT, OREGANO and OTHER AROMATIC HERBS covered jar and store in a cool place for one week.  Healthy, organic soil grows healthy plants that resist This spray makes use of the repellant qualities of pests. In a garden fed with humus, manure and compost, Plant these crops all around the garden garlic, onion and hot pepper. The soap serves as the soil hosts a wide variety of beneficial micro-flora that plot. Their strong odor repels insects. sticker. trap nematodes and destroy or keep in dormancy disease They can also be used as spices and organisms, thereby encouraging beneficial insects. Other medicine. For every 100 square meter Soap and Water Spray means of pest control: bed, plant 8-10 marigolds in the border Mix 3 tablespoon of soap flakes and gallon of water. - Tilling promotes healthy soil exposes pests that and intercrop 20-25 garlic or onion Spray against insects. live in the soil, increases soil aeration and oxygen bulbs. supply to promote root growth of plants and Kerosene and Soap Spray permits better root penetration.ONION BREW - Crop rotation dissociates micro-organisms Mix ¼ cup soap water, ¼ tablespoon of kerosene building up around plant roots as each crop has a This brew should contain roots, stems and and 1 liter of water. Use as a spray only when insect characteristic microbial association.leaves of as many aromatic herbs as possible: onion, infestation is serious. - Crop combinations such as legumes andgarlic, horseradish, red pepper, mustard, mints. Chopfine. Add a quart or more of water and some liquid potatoes, control nematodes. WOOD ASH - Aromatic herbs like marigolds, mint, garlic onions,detergent. Pour a generous amount of the mixtureover plants infested with insects. If the brew ferments, oregano control nematodes and repel insects and  Root maggots in radish, onions, cabbage and should, thus, be raised as companion crops init is more effective in repelling insects. other brassicas can be controlled by your garden. spreading fresh (not hot) wood ash aroundALL PURPOSE INSECT SPRAYS the plant roots. Ashes are then covered lightly  Keep the garden small and the plants varied to preventGarlic and Marigold Mixture with soil. insect infestation. Take 3 – 4 cloves of garlic, 2 handfuls of marigold  Snails, slugs and cutworms can be controlled  A principle of pest control: Plant any crop at a time whenleaves, 2-3 onions, 2-3 small peppers. Add water and bring by encircling plants with a 3-4 inch-wide its particular pest is in an inactive stage.mixture to a boil. Let cool. Dilute with 4-5 times the trench, 1-2 inches deep. Fill this trench withquantity of water and pour over or spray to infested plants. fresh wood ash. These pests will avoid  Plant indigenous varieties of vegetables. They are crossing this trench. resistant to pests and adapt very well to the localAromatic Herbs and Soap environment.  Flea beetles on tomatoes can be controlled Chop or grind one garlic, one onion, one by spraying a mixture of wood ash and water.tablespoon hot pepper and mix with one quart water.Let it stay for one hour then add one tablespoon liquid  Cucumber beetles can likewise be controlledsoap detergent. Place the mixture in a tightly covered by spraying a mixture of equal quantities ofjar and store in a cool place for one week. This spray wood ash and powdered lime mixed withmakes use of the repellant qualities of garlic, onion soapy water.and hot pepper. The soap serves as sticker.

  32. 11. BIG Series: 02-05 STORING SEEDS CLEANING Store only well-dried seeds. They will live longer than the not so thoroughly dried ones. Remove any small, DRYING misshapen or broken seeds, as well as dirt, stones, straw or any rubbish. Keep the good, well-formed seeds. This Seeds respire, producing water and carbon will assure you of a good crop of large, healthy plants. dioxide. The more moisture in the seeds, the faster it respires. The water produced from PROTECTING SEEDS FROM INSECTS Storing respiration makes the seeds damp, moldy and vulnerable to insect attacks. Dry Wood Ash For every kilogram of seeds to be stored, gather How to Dry Seeds 500 grams of fresh, dry ash that has already cooled. After Vegetable the ash has been mixed with the seed, add a little more to 1. Lay a mat or plastic sheet on the ground cover the seed in the container. where the sun shines all day. Lime Seeds For every kilogram of seeds to be stored, you need 50 grams or 15 teaspoonfuls of lime. Mix the lime thoroughly with the seed by shaking it in the container in which it is to be stored. Vegetable Oil Coconut oil or any vegetable cooking oil stops bruchid beetles from damaging bean seeds. 2. Spread the wet seeds thinly over the mat. 1. Have two teaspoonfuls of vegetable oil for one 3. Stir and turn the seeds four to five times a kilogram of beans day. 2. Mix the oil with about a quarter of the bean seeds. 4. Before it rains or gets dark, cover the seeds 3. Take a clean, dry plastic bag, tin bottle or glass jar. and take them indoors. Make sure it is large enough to hold all the seeds. 5. In the succeeding days, do the same 4. Place a quarter of the seeds into the container. procedures (1, 2, 3, & 4) until the seeds are 5. Mix well until all the seeds are coated with oil. well-dried. 6. Add the rest of the seeds to the container. 7. Mix well until the rest of the seeds are coated with How to Determine If Seeds are Well-Dried oil. 8. If the seeds appear to be shiny, the seeds are  Large, thin seeds will break with a “snapping” ready to be stored. sound when twisted between the fingers.  Large thick seeds will break with a “crack” when bitten between the front teeth.  Small seeds will break with a cracking sound when squeezed between the fingernails.

  33. 12. STORAGE CONTAINERS KEEPING SEEDS DRY
  34. INSIDE LARGE CONTAINERS HOW LONG WILL SEEDS KEEP Use a seed storage container that is just Whenever a storage container is opened, the There are seeds that remain alive muchlarge enough to hold all your seeds. Do not put a seeds can absorb moisture from the air. So open a seed longer than the others. Seeds can remain usablesmall amount of seed into a large container. If you storage container as quickly as possible and then reseal and viable even in a period of ten years,do, the seeds may become moist and then get the container. depending on the variety of the seeds and themoldy. storage conditions. Store seeds in a cool, shaded place. Heat Seeds Number of Years Itkills seeds, so do not place the seeds directly over Toasted White Rice Could Remain Alivethe fire or in the sunlight. String Beans 4 Toasted white rice can draw moisture out of the Cucumber 5 air. Have enough toasted rice to quarter-fill your container. Put the toasted rice into the storage jar as Onion 2 soon as it is cool, then put the bags or packets of seeds Pea 2 in and close the container. Each time you open the container, remove the old toasted rice and replace it with Radish 3 freshly toasted rice. Squash 4 Tomato 3 Dry Ashes Dry ashes from your wood fire collected in the morning before the fire is lit again can also be used in place of toasted white rice. Use only white ash. Any wood or charcoal mixed with ash should be removed. Quarter–fill your container with ash. Cover it with a little dry paper or a small piece of plastic then put the bags or packets of seeds in and close the container. If you have many types of seeds to store, Each time you open the container, remove the old ashthey can be put in a large tin or glass jar. and replace it with fresh ash.Whatever container you are using, be sure thatthe seeds remain dry and cannot be attacked byinsects, rats or birds. Air and moisture – proof Repackaged and Reproduced by:glass containers with tightly fitting lids are most Agricultural Knowledge Management Sectionappropriate for storing your seeds. ATI-RTC X El Salvador, Misamis Oriental 08822-755687 .


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

How To Grow Potatoes In 4 Square Feet



I like this well enough to give it a try


How to Grow 100 Pounds Of Potatoes In 4 Square Feet

One of the great things about growing potatoes is they are fairly low maintenance and they can be grown in pots or massively in the ground.
Some home gardeners grow their potatoes above ground using chicken wire and some straw to hold in the dirt. Others use a stack of old tires.

According to an article from the Seattle Times all you need is 4 square feet to grow 100 pounds of potatoes. That’s a lot of french fries!
On many occasions, we've been tempted to grow our own potatoes. They're fairly low maintenance, can be grown in a pot or in the ground, last a fairly long time if stored properly, and can be very nutritious (high in potassium and vitamin C).

Here's more incentive: according to this article, you can grow 100 pounds of potatoes in 4 sq. feet. 
According to this article from the Seattle Times, potatoes planted inside a box with this method can grow up to 100 pounds of potatoes in just 4 square feet.
All that is required:

Lumber
Seed potatoes
Soil
Careful attention to watering

The Times' guide for building a potato growing box yields up to a 100 lbs. of potatoes in a mere 4 square feet is shown below:

Plant as early as April or as late as August 1, with an approximated 3 month till harvest turnaround time. Plant anytime here in Mindanao.

Here are some pointers from the article

Cut apart larger seed potatoes, making sure there are at least two eyes in each piece you plant.
Dust the cut pieces with fir dust, which seals the open ends from bacteria.
Fertilize with 10-20-20 fertilizer at planting and a couple of times during the season.
Water so that the plants are kept at an even level of moisture.
Don't plant in the same area in consecutive years or use the same soil to fill your potato box, as potatoes can attract various diseases.

"To save space, the author recommends building a box and planting inside it, adding sides to the box as the plant grows and filling the new space with mulch or soil. When the plant blossoms, it starts setting potatoes in this added soil. Soon after that, you can start removing the bottom boards from your box and "robbing" the plant, reaching in carefully and pulling out new potatoes." sounds cleaver to me.

And if you're unsure of the nutrition content of potatoes, there is  a handy info, compliments of the US Potato Board: http://www.potatoesusa-philippines.com/uspb/index.php

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The black "Bean Aphid"





The black bean aphid (Aphis fabae) is a tiny black insect with a broad, soft body, a member of the order Hemiptera. Other common names include blackfly, bean aphid and beet leaf aphid. In the warmer climates like ythe Philippines it is found in large numbers on the undersides of leaves and on the growing tips of host plants, including various agricultural crops and many wild and ornamental plants. 
Both winged and wingless forms exist and  they are all females. They suck sap from stems and leaves and cause distortion of the shoots, stunted plants, reduced yield and spoiled crops. 

This aphid also acts as a vector for viruses that cause plant disease and the honeydew it secretes may encourage the growth of sooty mold.

It breeds profusely by live birth but its numbers are kept in check, especially in the later part of the summer, by various predatory and parasitic insects. Ants feed on the honeydew it produces and take active steps to remove the aphid's enemies. It is a widely distributed pest of agricultural crops and can be controlled by chemical or biological means. Winged forms move to different host plants where both males and females are produced. This can contaminate your entire rapidly..