Ask a Gardener

Ask a Gardener

Burpee's Garden Forum is a unique hub for the garden community, a one-step-shop to get your questions answered from fellow gardeners!

I want to make raised beds. Is there a good size that is easy to manage to start with?

Asked by: Mamahavs
8' x 4'. 1.5" thick cedar. I use 10" tall boards and then put a finishing board on the top edge that is 2" wide just to add a little more height and to have something to sit on if I need to. Tie it all together with 4"x 4" posts on the corners. 
Answered by: Scotika
Date published: 2017-02-19

explain term, as in Butterfly bush wisteria ppaf    

Asked by: ute beate
ppaf stands for Plant Patent Applied For
Answered by: Countyhoosier
Date published: 2017-02-13

Hi I start tomatoes from seed every year but still have not figured out the trick to get strong thick stems on the plants. What trick or advice do you have? Thanks in advance

Asked by: donnab
So-called 'leggy' tomato seedlings can be addressed in at least two ways. One way is correcting inadequate light. Tomatoes are native to semi-arid almost desert-like conditions, and thus need lots and lots of light to grow well. It is best to place your seedlings under artificial lights, with the tops of your plants no more than two inches below the lights. (I use cheap 'shop light' T8 fluorescent fixtures with a 3,000-3,500K color spectrum bulbs to ensure adequate reds.) I prop mine up with bricks and boxes in order to get them close enough to the lights, and then remove these gradually as the plants grow taller. And I leave the lights on 24 hours a day. Contrary to what others may have told you, doing this will not cause any harm to your plants. Another way is to 'tickle' your seedlings, as was described in an article I read. Tomatoes have a gene that thickens the stems in response to vibration, as might be caused by the wind. I don't tickle mine, I just blow on them from time to time to simulate the wind. And lastly, they need adequate nutrition. I use a water soluable fertilizer and I add a teaspoon or two of vinegar per gallon of their water, since tomatoes are acid-loving plants. And as near desert-type plants, they do NOT like soggy waterlogged growing medium. Good luck.
Answered by: hessianguy2
Date published: 2017-02-18

We planted an orchard with a variety of fruit trees 6 each (apples, pears, peaches, apricots, and cherries). All spaced 15 feet apart with an irrigation system. Every last Cherry tree died, and the trees in the pots died. What are we doing wrong?

Asked by: awkansan98
Unfortunately, this new Burpee software no longer requires you to list your location. But can I assume you are in Arkansas? Cherries and Apples will probably not do well where you are unless you live in the high mountains of the Ozarks. Cherries in particular can't stand 'wet feet' so I will guess that too much water killed your cherry tree. You'll have better luck with your peaches and pears. Apricot trees will grow fairly well, but fruiting will often be ruined by late frosts killing the blossoms. Good luck
Answered by: hessianguy2
Date published: 2017-02-12

We are building a house in Manteo N.C. We want a vegetable garden and also to plant herbs and flowers and decorative plantings. The soil is predominately sand. Will vegetables, herbs and flowering plants grow in sand or will soil need to be brought in.

Asked by: JackHuh
Just add a lot of organic matter to your sand. That should be sufficient to grow most things.
Answered by: hessianguy2
Date published: 2017-02-12

How are days to maturity calculated - is it from seeds or from seedlings/transplants?

Asked by: JESmith
It depends on the variety. Tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and brassicas are usually from transplants. Most of the rest are from seeds.
Answered by: hessianguy2
Date published: 2017-02-12

I'm looking for a tomato about the size of a golf ball to grow in ark any help would be great

Asked by: Noluck
I think Burpee's 'Fourth of July' is your answer. And it is one of the earliest to harvest as well. Good luck.
Answered by: hessianguy2
Date published: 2017-02-12

I bought a home recently that has a storm drain that runs down the side yard which this past summer is was soggy all summer long. There is no privacy on that side of the yard and I would like to plant for privacy but also beauty. Any thoughts?

Asked by: Flower23
I would plant a privet hedge. They can tolerate soggy soil ok. Or if you can improve the drainage, maybe some roses?
Answered by: hessianguy2
Date published: 2017-02-09
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