Did you know that soil needs nutrients
to properly feed growing plants?
Imagine with me - if you will - bringing
home a brand new puppy. Puppies need a lot of different, essential
nutrients to grow into healthy dogs, but you can't feed the puppy a
steady diet of vitamins. You need to supplement the vitamins with puppy
food, water, bedding, baths, adequate play time, and lots of love.
Similar principals go into keeping your
soil healthy and productive. Vitamins and essential nutrients are all
well and good, but healthy soil also contains wriggly critters and
micro-organisms to help break up organic matter, furrow tunnels (free
aeration!), and more complex (science-y) tasks.
Along with letting nature run her
course, we are obligated to do our part, too. In order to help our soil
do its best to help our plants grow healthy and strong, we need to make
sure it retains the wriggly critters and micro-organisms.
When you turn
soil on a small or large scale, essential nutrients are rotated to the
top layer. Tilling helps to distribute the nutrients, but they are also
more susceptible to being washed away by rain, wind, and irrigation
What Should I
If you find
yourself in a situation where you need to till the ground, be sure to
introduce nutrients through fertilizer and cover the area affected with a
stabilizing force. Ground covering cloths and garden bark are a great way
to keep the nutrients right where you want them.
What about the
Creepy Crawlies and the Micro-Organisms?
they will thrive in the most habitable environment. When you clear out
the weeds and dead plant life from your garden, make sure to incorporate
some of the dead plant life (just from the plants you want in your
garden!) back into the soil. This will provide the creepy crawlies the
food they need to thrive, and the micro-organisms will be able to
re-establish themselves fairly easily in this friendly environment.
Even though these seem like small steps,
especially in most of our home gardens, soil degradation is a big issue
in the United States. According the the article on Associated Landscape
Contractors of Colorado (ALCC) below, "Experts estimate that since
colonial times, U.S. soils have lost more than half their organic
matter" (2018). Small steps we take now and the information we gain
and share may help to spread the word about this increasingly scary
In observance of
Labor Day, your pickup schedule will be delayed by one day following the
holiday. Please put carts out for service one day later than usual.
Remember to position your cart four feet from any other objects,
including fences, mailboxes, parked vehicles and other carts, so that we
can service it safely.
critical to Waste Management every day of the year. The holiday is a good
time to remind children to give our trucks plenty of space to operate.
Encourage kids to watch safely from the front step. Help them understand
what it means to stay 15 feet from a truck.
children never to try to touch a working trash truck, even if it’s
stopped. They should never try to add something to a cart while it’s
being serviced. If a ball (or pet!) disappears under the truck, they
should not chase it. Get the driver’s attention and wait until the driver
indicates it is safe to approach the truck.
If you are
hosting an outdoor celebration over the weekend, remember to designate a
separate container to gather bottles and cans. Place it near the trash
but clearly label as recycling only (“Recycle empty bottles and cans”).
Keep food, liquids and trash out of the recycling.
Thank you for
doing your part to help keep our community safe, clean and green!
In Colorado, what starts out as a regular
rain storm, may turn into a full blown hail storm faster than you can
react. Not only does hail cause major property damage to your residences
and vehicles, but your gardens suffer, too!
<-- Golf Ball sized hail; picture from the Mid-June hail
storm in Centennial.
The bigger the hail, the faster it falls,
the worse off us ground dwellers and our property will fare.
"Terminal velocity of hail, or the speed at which hail is
falling when it strikes the ground, varies. It is estimated that a
hailstone of ... 0.39 in in diameter falls at a rate of ... 20 mph, while
stones the size of ... 3.1 in in diameter fall at a rate of ... 110 mph." (2018).
Hail happens, so what can you do about
Invest in hail resistant plants!
According to this author from CSU
CO-HORTS, these plants fared well after a rather intense hail-storm:
small-leafed trees (honeylocust, linden, maples and crabapples/apples)
trellised to fences/structures (honeysuckle, silver lace vine)
These plants bit the dust (literally):
cucumbers and other cucurbits
(but may recover, since edible part grows below ground)
Wikimedia Foundation, 23 July 2018,
Agents, CSU Hort.
“What the Hail!? Plants That Stood Up to the Ice Bombs.” CO-Horts,
11 Aug. 2013,