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Habitat Gardens

Articles: Habitat Gardens

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) and native strawberries (Fragaria vesca ssp. californica) create a dynamic and delicious groundcover. Photo: Teresa Renee Norris

Put your hands in the soil and feel the dark, moist, gritty earth; smell the aroma of soil and plants and wake up to your surroundings. Sweat a little and enjoy the beautiful, tasty fruits of your labor.

Gardening connects us to nature. It also invites us to think like scientists. The garden is our laboratory where experimentation, observation, and evaluation are a part of the process.

Conventional gardening advice teaches us to compartmentalize and evaluate the garden through the lens of each particular problem. Once the pest or disease has been isolated and identified a targeted treatment is applied. What can we buy to make the powdery mildew go away or combat pesky white flies? Yet isolating a disease or a pest problem and treating it with a product often means harming other living organisms, bacteria, and beneficial forms of life that support the health of the garden and its plants.

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