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Grow2Zero:
Indoor Prep for Outdoor Growing

 

Bringing Gardening Knowledge To You Online, Safe At Home
 

Still Stuck Indoors? Use the Time to Prepare For Going Back Outside

 

If COVID-19 wasn’t enough to keep us all inside our homes, the atrocious air quality, smoke, and ash provide even more incentive. We realize many of us are starting to go a bit stir crazy, and the Smart Gardening program is here to provide a glimmer of hope for a return to the garden and a chance to make a positive impact upon climate change through regenerative practices.

Our instructor, Erin Harris, approaches every webinar with the intention of empowering and inspiring folks to develop healthy habits and become more self sufficient; to derive joy and satisfaction from connecting with the earth; and to start doing the essential work of healing our planet.

The schedule of upcoming webinars can be found here: pw.lacounty.gov/epd/sg/webinars.cfm 

Each workshop lasts approximately 45 minutes with 15 minutes of Q&A. Compost bins and worm bins are available for purchase at a discount at the conclusion of each webinar. Items ordered will be delivered to your doorstep. The topics are as follows:

  • Introduction to Composting: Learn the basics of using backyard and worm composting systems to create a rich soil amendment to nourish your garden.
  • Organic Gardening: How to build healthy soil, grow fruits and vegetables, and address common plant pests and diseases using organic methods. 
  • Water-Wise Gardening: Guidance on creating a beautiful drought-tolerant landscape, as well as grasscycling for responsible lawn care.
  • Small-Space Gardening: Learn to grow edible and decorative plants in containers and set up a small-space worm composting system.

All webinars are offered live and are free. If you’d like a sneak peek into what we cover in the Smart Gardening webinar series, check out some of these videos from our Smart Gardening team!

Everyone can compost! Learn the basics with this easy-to-understand video, Introduction to Backyard Composting.
Ever wonder about vermicomposting? Watch this quick video tutorial that provides an Introduction to Worm Composting.

Common Composting Questions, Solid Answers!

We hope you can join us for a webinar soon! In the meantime, here are some answers to some of our most commonly received questions about backyard and worm composting:

How can I keep animals away from my backyard compost bin? Animals are typically attracted to compost bins when they smell food. Your first step is to avoid putting in meat, dairy, processed foods or other food waste that isn’t suited to this type of composting system. You should also bury fresh food scraps and top with a layer of browns/carbon such as dried leaves, cardboard, or straw. If your bin is placed on soft or uneven ground and you are concerned about rodents digging in through the bottom, you can line the bottom of your bin with hardware cloth, a metal mesh that can be purchased at home improvement stores.

How do I make worm tea? There are different methods of making worm tea, which can be used as a liquid fertilizer and spray-on inoculant for all types of plants. The simplest method is to place a scoop of finished worm castings (aka vermicompost) into a porous bag (such as cheesecloth, a tea bag, an old t-shirt, etc.) and soak it in a 5 gallon bucket of water for 24 hours. The worm tea is ready when it’s light brown in color. It can be diluted to 50 percent worm tea and 50 percent water and used to water your plants or sprayed on plants to deter pests and disease.

Can animal manure be added to my compost bin? In some cases, yes. The manure of herbivores like horses, rabbits, chickens, goats, quail, and tortoises can be added to a backyard compost bin and are a source of nitrogen. The high nitrogen content in animal manure does contribute to the heating process in the compost pile, so it should be well balanced with carbon sources. It is not appropriate for worm bins. Cat and dog waste should never be added to the compost bin because it contains pathogens that may not be destroyed if the bin doesn’t consistently heat up to a sufficient temperature. 

How often should I add compost to my garden? You can add a 2- to 4-inch layer of compost or worm compost on top of your soil at the beginning of each planting season and then mix it into a depth of 6 to 12 inches. For perennials, you can add compost to the soil around established plants twice a year and dig in gently without disturbing the plants’ roots. For plants that appear to be deficient in nutrients or that appreciate more frequent fertilization, compost and worm compost can be added more often.

Can onions and garlic go in the worm bin? Yes. As long as they are added in moderation, onions and garlic do not bother worms. They may generate an odor before they are consumed, but that is the only real contraindication to adding them to a worm bin.

Can citrus go in the worm bin? Citrus fruits and peels should be kept out of the worm bin, as they can contribute to an overly acidic environment that is bothersome to worms and can attract pests.
Register soon to attend "Introduction to Composting", a FREE & LIVE Smart Gardening webinar. Register for October 2020 webinars right here.

Compost bins, worm bins, and garden tools are available for purchase at a discount at the conclusion of each online workshop.

All products are available for purchase exclusively to workshop attendees who live within the County of LA.

Items ordered will be delivered to your doorstep.

Available Only to Webinar Attendees in Los Angeles County:
Gardening Essentials & Accessories at a Discount.
Stay Healthy & Well!
- Your Smart Gardening Team -
Copyright © 2020 Go2Zero Strategies, LLC, All rights reserved.


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