The New Look for Gardeners Freaked out about Lyme Disease by Susan Harris

Apparel for today’s gardener? News about the rapid spread of tick-borne diseases, especially the life-changing-if not-treated-in-time Lyme Disease, has me so freaked out that I’m now afraid to tend my garden, much less take a walk in the woods. I won’t stop gardening, but at least for my peace of mind I’m determined to take reasonable precautions from now on. (Does my suburban location mean I don’t have to worry? A close neighbor was recently diagnosed with Lyme from a tick she got in her own garden.) In my online research, the best sources I found were LymeDisease.org, TickEncounter.org and a Tick Management Handbook by the State of Connecticut. Here’s what they advise: Wear light-colored clothing with long pants tucked into socks to make ticks easier to detect and keep them on the outside of the clothes. Wear long sleeves. Don’t wear open-toed shoes or sandals. (Sources seem to agree that ticks start low and crawl up. They do not jump, fly or drop from trees.) Tie back long hair ..
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Backyard Carbon Farming by Thomas Christopher

If there was a twelve step program for gardeners like me, I would begin each session of course by introducing myself to the room and then admit to my addiction: I love the look of a freshly dug and raked bed. The fine, brown loam, all the clods broken into crumbs, the smooth, billiard-table-flat surface, is synonymous with spring in my mind. I picked up this appetite as a student at the New York Botanical Garden, from the old world gardeners who had brought it with them from Italy and Germany. Theirs was a tradition that extended back to the 18th century at least. That’s when Jethro Tull (the farmer not the rock group) popularized the notion that the fertility of the soil depends on pulverizing and aerating it. In fact, such cultivation can lead to a temporary boost in fertility, for incorporating more air into the soil will speed the decomposition of its organic portion, which releases a short-lived surge of plant nutrients. Long term, however, the effect of such practices is to dep..
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