Edward's Garden Center

Forty Fort, PA

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Gardening 101 From Espoma

In honor of back to school time in NEPA, we are sharing a great article from our friends at Espoma.

Grab your books for a lesson in Gardening 101!

Going back to school is equal parts nervous jitters and genuine excitement for what could be. Remember what it was like to have a new backpack, a fresh outfit that makes just the right statement and your stack of empty notebooks waiting to be filled?

It feels like anything is possible at this time of year!

We’ve tapped into that feeling to help teach you gardening basics. Already an experienced gardener? Now is the time brush up on your lessons.

Espoma’s Gardening School 101

1. Build a Foundation for Success. For a garden to be great, superior soil is a must! Perform a quick soil test (by bringing a sample to Edward’s to have it tested), study the results and your garden will be A+ in no time!

soil test

2. Back to School Shopping. Examine your garden equipment to see what should stay — and what needs to go. Look for cracked handles, rust and missing or loose parts. Then, go shopping for replacements.

Plan your garden

3. Get a Whole New Look. A new school year means it’s time to reveal your new look. Do you want to be refined? Edgy? Colorful and bold? Sweet and simple? Define your garden look and do your homework —then start pinning!

Espoma Pinterest

4. Make a Plan for Success. The only way to improve this year’s performance is to analyze the successes and failures of last year’s garden. Your assignment: create a new garden plan or speak with the experts at Edward’s Garden Center and we can create a “We Plan, You Plant” design for you!

plan your garden

5. Meet the Teacher. Hi! It’s a pleasure to see you! At Espoma, we’ve been teaching organic gardening practices since 1929. Comment with questions below, post them to Facebook or tweet us. We’re here to make you the best gardener you can be.

Espoma Facebook6. Sharpen Pencils. Clean and sharpen your garden tools to get them ready for the new season! You can DIY or take them to your local garden center.

Garden tools

7. Find New Friends. Follow us on Facebook and check out our posts to find gardeners who are just as passionate about organic growing as you are.

Throw your cap (or gardening gloves) up in the air! You passed Espoma’s Back to Gardening School Class! Your garden will thank you for it later!

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Enter our Pet & Garden Lovers Photo Contest!

If you are familiar with Edward’s Garden Center at all, you know we not only love plants, flowers and trees, but animals too! Our pets are our pride and joy. We love sharing them with our guests and we love to spend time with them whenever we can. We also love to help the animals at Blue Chip Animal Farm in Dallas.

Edward's Garden Center Facebook Contest

Enter your pet and garden into our Facebook Contest!

To celebrate our love of animals and plants, we are holding a contest. We are calling all pet and garden lovers to enter! Here are the details.

The contest is two part.

Part 1
Take a picture of your pet or pets enjoying their favorite part of your yard or garden. Does Buddy like to lay under the Chinese Maple Tree? Does Misty like to roll in your flower beds? Maybe their favorite spot is on the bench with you. Where ever it is, take a picture and post it on our Facebook page. Part one entries must be received by 8 pm August 30, 2015. Click here to enter.

Part 2
Once all of the photos are posted to our Facebook page, we will out them all into a photo album and hold a “Cutest Picture” Contest. You can share the album and tell all your friends and family to vote for your pet and garden.

A winner will be chosen randomly from the entries in part one. Another winner will be chosen based on the highest number of votes for part two of the contest. Winners will each receive a $50 gift card to Edward’s Garden Center.

Make sure you enter and share the contest with your friends!


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‘Garbage gardening’: Recycled kitchen scraps can be plants

While reading some gardening news today, we stumbled upon this interesting article. Give it a read, maybe you’ll be interested in making tomorrow’s dinner scraps into a plant.

Edward's Garden Center Blog“Garbage gardening” is an easy and inexpensive way to grow flowers and edibles using kitchen scraps — the pits, seeds and roots that otherwise would be headed to a landfill. It’s a fun way to recycle. Educational for the kids, too.

“Almost every unprocessed fruit or vegetable can be grown into a decorative houseplant,” said Deborah Peterson, co-author of “Don’t Throw It, Grow It” (Storey Publishing, 2008).

“Some are perennials, others are annuals or biennials,” Peterson said. “You will be amazed as you discover how these beautiful plants can develop.”

Chickpeas, for instance, can be coaxed to flower in hanging baskets, and beets can be transformed into showy dish gardens with their colorful purple and green foliage surrounding contrasting blooms.

Start new plants on the windowsill by using the byproducts from roots, nuts, tubers, beans, bulbs, seeds or cuttings. The “garbage,” if you will.

Water, pebbles, soil or peat can be used as a growing medium.

“Every plant you grow should go outside for five months or so, depending upon where you live,” said Peterson, from Scituate, Massachusetts. “Winter becomes a holding pattern (for perennials), just keeping them alive. But once they’re out again, in summer, they’re wonderful.”

Marianne Ophardt, Washington State University Extension’s Benton County director, added, “Garbage gardening is done more to teach children about plants than it is to create new gardens.”

“Most of your kitchen scraps will be thrown away, but some can be used to provide a unique learning opportunity,” she said.

Children often want instant gratification, so keep things simple. Choose quick-sprouting plants like potatoes, beans, carrots, melons and radishes. “Pineapples wouldn’t be a good idea,” Peterson said; it takes pineapples two or more years to fully mature and produce flower stalks.

Beware trying to grow plants from imported fruits or vegetables, like the papaya, kiwi or pomegranate commonly found in grocery stores during the winter, Peterson said. Study labels for the fruits’ origin. Many have been irradiated, making them sterile, meaning they won’t sprout.

“I love mangos and every year try to get one to grow, but they just don’t,” Peterson said.

Also, avoid hybrid fruits and vegetables because their seeds won’t deliver the same taste.

Choose self-pollinating produce, like tomatoes, Ophardt said. “You can save those seeds and get the taste you want.”

Citrus seeds are capable of becoming flourishing houseplants because they tolerate home temperatures and dry, indoor air. But under most home conditions, citrus plants started from seed will not flower or bear fruit, according to a University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension fact sheet.

“Indoor citrus plants seen with flowers and or fruits are special miniature varieties,” it said. “Plants grown from standard eating varieties will make decorative foliage specimens and attractive floor plants.”

Some recycled remnants can do double duty as ornamental and edible. Take sweet potatoes, for instance.

“I use them in my window boxes as decorative vines,” Peterson said. “I have a collection of small (sweet) potatoes about the size of my thumb when I take them out of the box in November. They really taste good.”

For more, see this University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension fact sheet: https://extension.unh.edu/resources/files/Resource000526_Rep548.pdf

The original article can be found at: http://www.azcentral.com/story/entertainment/home/2015/08/13/recycle-kitchen-scraps-plants/31454709/

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Enjoy Beautiful Water Features Throughout the Year

We all work so hard on our gardens during the spring and summer, we deserve to enjoy them all year round. Unfortunately, in NEPA we can’t enjoy flowers and our yards too much during the winter. We can have the next best thing, though! Enjoying our gardens three quarters of the year.

Edward's Garden Center sells fire fountains

Photo credit: aquascapeinc.com

There’s nothing more relaxing and enjoyable than sitting in your garden, listening to the water trickle from your fountain. There are so many stunning water features on the market today. From pond-free streams and waterfalls to bubbling boulders and water gardens. In sizes big and small, shapes long or round, these pieces can fit into any space. And the best part….All of these items can be enjoyed from the beginning of spring to the end of fall (depending on when the below freezing temperatures arrive).

Not sure if a water feature would fit into your space for (nearly) year long enjoyment? Take a look at all the different kinds and reconsider!

Fountains come in all shapes and sizes. If you have walked around Edward’s Garden Center lately, you know what we mean: large vases, stone fountains, small urns and so many more. The fountain kits by Aquascape that are sold at the Garden Center, make adding a fountain to your garden quick and easy. Ask one of our experts about it!

Patio Ponds
If you don’t have enough room for a large in-ground pond or you just want to enjoy a water garden on your deck, than a patio pond is exactly what you need. Creating a beautifully planted water bowl or container water garden has never been easier. Aquascape Aquatic Patio Ponds have all the natural beauty of real rock with the added durability and light weight of fiberglass. You can even add fish! Take a look at this video to find out how creative you can get.

Fire Fountains
Self-contained water and fire features have been gaining popularity over the last few years. Edward’s is proud to say, we have brought the trend to NEPA! These beautiful units are very easy to set up and are a great feature for the cool autumn nights that are soon to arrive. Stop in to the Garden Center to check out our fire fountain selection or watch the video below.

Spillaway Bowls and Basins
These pieces are probably the most artistic of the bunch and they may not fit in with every garden, but they sure are cool looking. Spillway Bowls and Basins can be installed as a standalone disappearing water features or several spillway bowls can be linked together for an amazing display.

Edward's Garden Center sells water features

Photo credit: Aquascapeinc.com

Hopefully we have inspired you to add a water feature to your garden so you can enjoy (nearly) year round relaxation and beauty.