Garden Myths - Learn the truth about gardening

Hydrangea Myths

Hydrangeas are very popular shrubs for the garden, but they can be a bit tricky to grow if you listen to all of the hydrangea myths on the internet and in books. In this blog I will look at the truth behind some of the more common hydrangea myths. Once you have the facts, you will find that hydrangeas are easy to grow.

Hydrangea myths, is it blue or pink?

Hydrangea myths, is it blue or pink?

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Are Flower Pots a Fire Hazard?

It has been a dry summer and flower pots are being blamed for several fires. The news headings are everywhere!

  • “Fire Chief Gord Weir stands outside of a home damaged by a fire …. He suspects the fire may have been caused by peat moss left in an old flower pot” (ref 1)
  • “Flower pots became a major Montreal fire hazard” (ref 2)
  • “Des Moines fire officials said a flower pot spontaneously combusted Wednesday, causing more than $80,000 in damage to a home” (ref 3)


The facts seem simple. Flower pot soil is made mostly of peat moss, something that burns easily. When it gets too hot it ignites and starts to burn. If the pot is near a home, the house also catches on fire.

What is the real story behind all this? Can peat moss spontaneously combust? Lets have a look at the facts.

Flower Pots Fire Hazard

Are flower pots a fire hazard?

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Eggshells – Decomposition After One Year

A year ago I started a study to see if eggshells decompose in soil; Eggshells – Decomposition Study. It is now one year later and time to have a look at the buried eggshells.

eggshell decomposition study - year 1

Eggshell decomposition study – year 1

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Hummingbird Nectar Food – Should You Buy It?

I was in the local hardware store and spotted some hummingbird nectar for sale. Bottles of red stuff and bottles of white stuff. Odd that they would have it in two colors. What is the difference, and is one better than the other?

The label on the bottle was interesting. This was a bottle of Perky-Pet Hummingbird Nectar Concentrate and the label clearly says it is ‘100% High Energy Sucrose’. Is that different from regular sucrose? I did not know that pure sucrose was a liquid! My myth busting antennae went up and I had to have a closer look.

Do you need to buy this product? I have been using a DIY solution for a couple of years and it seems to be working. Maybe I am short changing my hummingbirds? Should I fork out $7 for a better product?

Hummingbird Nectar Concentrate made by Perky-Pet

Hummingbird Nectar Concentrate made by Perky-pet

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Fish Fertilizer is Damaging the Environment

I always thought that fish fertilizer was an acceptable product. As a nitrogen source it is very over priced as explained in Fish Fertilizer – Is It Worth Buying? but at least the fertilizer is being made from a resource that is a waste product, namely fish guts (offal) , bones and heads. It seemed like a good use for this waste product.

But a comment left on my other post, by Cynthia E. Olen, June 12, 2016 made me rethink things. Thank you Cynthia.

Did you know that companies are harvesting whole fish to make the fertilizer? I didn’t believe it myself, but is is true.

Catching fish to make fish fertilizer

Catching fish to make fish fertilizer

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