On this week’s episode, Greg and Travis talk about some common garden myths and misconceptions. They explain the origin of these myths/misconceptions and discuss whether or not they have merit. The first common garden myth involves planting on a hill or an elevated planting bed. Greg mentions how this practice originated in large-scale agriculture and trickled down to backyard gardening. Planting on an elevated surface is an effective practice if you have drainage issues or problems with excess moisture. But if you don’t have those issues, planting on a “hill” is just an additional step that’s not necessary. They also discuss lunar planting which involves planting garden crops based on the 28-day lunar cycle. The proponents of lunar planting believe that it is advantageous to plant on the new moon or full moon because the gravitation force of the moon pulls water to the soil surface, increasing germination. Travis explains how lunar tidal cycles work and why small bodies of water don’t experience tidal forces like the open ocean. Based on this evidence, Travis concludes that soil moisture levels are not significantly affected by lunar cycles, and thus the lunar cycle has no effect on seed germination. Other common garden myths discussed on this week’s show include removing weeds by the root and compost tea.
On the Show & Tell segment this week, they talk about one of Greg’s favorite foods — the tomato sandwich. They discuss the difference between the heirloom and hybrid varieties that they grew. While the Brandywine tomatoes have a nostalgic look and have a deeper red color, they can’t tell a huge difference in the taste compared to the disease-resistant Bella Rosa variety. They conclude that the Bella Rosa is their favorite tomato because of the disease-resistant package and superior taste.
On the Q&A segment, they answer questions about using liquid 7 on sweet potatoes and how to control nut grass in the garden. While liquid 7 is an effective pesticide, it also can be fairly toxic and harmful to pollinators. The guys recommend some more environmentally-friendly solutions like Neem Oil or Take Down Garden Spray. Nut grass is an extremely persistent weed that can have an extensive root network. Control can be difficult, but frequent disturbance over time will eventually reduce the population. While some people use hogs, the Wheel Hoe is also a great tool for providing that repeated disturbance.