Garden Myths - Learn the truth about gardening

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The “Science Does Not Know Everything” Conundrum

What happens when science says one thing and you believe something different? Our brains are designed to fight such situations and we try to apply logic to justify our beliefs – we basically make stuff up so that we can continue to accept our beliefs.

One of the most common reasons to dismiss science, is to point out the fact that “science does not know everything”. If it does not know everything, then it might be wrong in all cases.

That seems logical, but it’s not.

If science proves facts that conflict with Buddhist understanding, Buddhism must change accordingly. We should always adopt a view that accords with the facts. - Dalai LamaLink to the source of this image

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10 Top Gardening Myths of 2016

2016 was a banner year for Garden Myths. We had over 1 million visitors this year, attracted by 34 new posts,  covering a wide range of topics. To celebrate the new year I have selected the 10 most important posts of the year and present them again for your viewing pleasure.

10 top garden myths of 2016

10 top garden myths of 2016

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Compost Tea – Does it Work?

Compost tea is all the rage but does it really work? Research studies so far have produced mixed results. A 2007 meta data review on compost tea by Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott concluded that “Clearly, the science is not strong for aerated tea use on crop plants, much less on lawns, shrubs, and trees”.

There seems to be a lot of work done in this area but much of it is not published in peer reviewed journals and most of it has been done in labs and greenhouses, not in the field. Until the work is repeated in the field we can’t conclude it works in gardens.

The other problem is that controls have been poorly selected. For example, in one study (ref 3) they compared ACT compost tea to water, using lettuce that had been under-fertilized. Guess what, compost tea improved growth. This only proves that adding nutrients, when they are deficient, will improve growth. The study never compared compost tea to adding nutrients in other ways.

In this post I will review one study that compared the use of compost to compost tea.

Effects of compost tea on the growth of trees, by Garden Myths (data from reference 2)

Effects of compost tea on the growth of trees, by Garden Myths (data from reference 2)

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GMO Myths – Understand the Truth About GMO Plants

GMOs are very controversial. It is one reason I have stayed away from the topic in this blog. Instead of discussing the topic in detail, I will present a number of GMO myths and if the reader is interested in more detail they can look at the references. Consider this to be a summary of facts.

If you have formed an opinion on GMOs based what you have read on popular web sites and in newspapers, you have probably reached the wrong conclusion. The anti-GMO movement is strong and based almost entirely on emotion and fear. Science does not back up most of their claims.

GMO Myths - Understand the Truth About GMO Plants

GMO Myths – Understand the Truth About GMO Plants

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Canada 150 Tulip – Confusion About Cultivar Names

Canada will celebrate its 150th birthday in 2017. To mark this celebration, Canada is launching a special tulip called ‘Canada 150’. The white and red colors of the tulip mimic the colors in our flag.

Where did the Canada 150 tulip originate? There are several stories floating around about its origin but much of this is not true. Canadians have been told that the tulip is only sold through a Canadian hardware stored called Home Hardware and is available in limited quantity. So it should be no surprise that ‘imposter tulips’ have been introduced into the Canadian market place. People will do anything for a loonie (the common name for our $1 coin).

Tulip 'Canada 150' aka Tulip ‘Carnaval de Rio’

Tulip ‘Canada 150’ is the same plant as Tulip ‘Carnaval de Rio’

Follow me as I try to unravel the mysteries of the special Canada 150 tulip and learn more about the confusing world of naming plant cultivars.

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