Harlequin’s Gardens Compost Tea: We are experimenting a lot this year with our own Compost Tea, which we are brewing on-site. It is non-burning, and by increasing the soil life (beneficial micro-organisms), it can bring more nutrients and water to the plants and make them stronger and better able to cope with stress. It can be used full-strength as a mild organic fertilizer, or it can be diluted in water up to 3 times as a soil inoculant. It can also be used to inoculate compost piles to make materials break down faster. We have observed some very good results and received positive reports from customers who have tried it. We would also love to get your feedback on this new product. Bring your own jugs, or use ours for a $1 deposit (refundable upon return).
Mile-Hi Rose Feed: Roses that bloom more than once a year need extra support if you want good repeat. This mostly organic rose fertilizer, formulated for Colorado soils,has proven itself for 10 years at the Boulder-Dushanbe Teahouse garden and at the private gardens of many rose society members. Its primary ingredients are alfalfa, kelp meal, bone meal, blood meal, cottonseed meal and fish meal. We recommend one cup per plant only twice (or 3 times) a year. For busy people twice a year is far better than the every few weeks for chemical fertilizers, and way better for the soil life.
Alfalfa Meal: Alfalfa was called the “In food for roses,” by famous rosarian Howard Walters. It is high in protein, acts a powerful plant growth stimulant, and supports soil microbes, releasing soil nutrients in plant-available forms. Although it is an ingredient in Mile-Hi Rose Feed, many rose growers like to use one cup of Rose Feed with one cup of Alfalfa.
Kelp Meal: This seaweed product holds moisture, improves soil structure, provides a wide range of naturally chelated (available) minerals, adds organic matter, helps plants in stress, supports soil life and adds vitamins and plant hormones. It has been reported to help prevent fungus diseases. For roses half a cup is recommended two times a year (with the Rose Feed). Also recommended for vegetables, perennials and shrubs.
GreenCure: Organic protection and correction of fungus diseases. This is a product that has been tested commercially for 9 years and is just out for homeowners. It is an alternative to toxic fungicides and has proved effective against powdery mildew, blackspot, rust and others. The research I have studied sounds like a genuine breakthrough, and well-proved in practice. Stan Griep of the Loveland Rose Society raves about it.
Hydrosource: this is a water-absorbing gel that absorbs 200-400 times its density in water. It is used as a soil amendment to increase the water-holding capacity of soils, reducing watering frequency by 20-40% in the ground and 50-75% in containers and hanging baskets. It greatly aids establishing of young plants, and improves soil structure, staying effective for 8 years. It has been used to help trees in drought and to reduce the water requirements of lawns. I have used this product for 12 years in producing plants from seed and found it very useful, needing very little in the soil. It is a synthetic polyacrylamide polymer that has been determined nonhazardous by OSHA, but has not passed organic standards by OMRI.
Quench: an organic-based water absorbing gel made from cornstarch. Anybody who does not feel confident in the Hydrosource polymer, can use this product. It seems superior to other starch-based gels in that it will last 3 years instead of 6 months. It is also reported to absorb 500 times its weight in water and to be able to release that water better than the synthetic polymers. It is supposed to be more effective in hanging baskets. Fully biodegradable and non-toxic.
Yum Yum Mix: a 2-2-2 organic fertilizer formulated in New Mexico for alkaline, nutrient-poor Western soils like ours in Colorado. It is made from alfalfa meal, cottonseed meal, kelp meal, rock dust, greensand and soft rock phosphate. It feeds the plants and the beneficial microbes that feed the plants. Far more effective than its 2-2-2 formula implies, especially when used in conjunction with humate. Vegan: no animal ingredients.
Humate: this is a fossilized organic matter concentrate. Our humate contains 50% humic acids which support plant growth and development and nourish a healthy soil life. I have used this for years in my seedling potting mixes with good results. David Salman from High Country Gardens says: “Use humate in conjunction with Yum Yum Mix to bring health and vitality to flower and vegetable gardens in lean, depleted or sandy, low-nutrient soils. We have had phenomenal results using the Yum Yum Mix/Humate combination in our display gardens.”
Planters II: this is a rock dust product containing over 30 trace minerals. When there is not a proper balance of trace minerals, deficiencies will cause problems with plant growth. In heavy clay soils, movement of these minerals is difficult. Therefore it is good to add Planters II when doing your soil prep. It can also be broadcast around established plants every two years. Very beneficial for vegetables, native plants, cacti and succulents and for supporting a healthy soil life.
Lava Sand: this soil amendment has a cellular structure that provides aeration and porosity to the soil and does not break down very quickly like organic matter will. We think this will be good for people who want to grow cacti and other xeric plants in clay soil where the roots would otherwise rot or the plants would decline from insufficient oxygen.
Squeegee: this is a fine gravel that rock gardeners use to top dress their plants. It makes a great mulch for plants that do not like to have their “crowns” wet, like penstemons and other drought tolerant and alpine plants. It does a good job of holding in moisture. In 2002 during the worst drought in 200? years, we planted two gardens in July and as they began to decline we mulched them with 2″ of squeegees. It worked!
Mushroom Compost: from a local organic mushroom “farm”, this is dark and rich. I used to think the mushrooms had used up all the nutrients, but now I know that the sawdust and other nutrients feed the mushrooms, and the broken down sawdust and miles of their mycelium remain. Sandy Cruz, a local teacher of Permaculture, loves this stuff, and we put it on the Boulder-Dushanbe Teahouse rose garden last fall. The rosarian known as ‘RoseDoc’ says in testing different mulches over 25 years, mushroom compost was the best for roses.
Liquid Fence: 100% Guaranteed to work to repel deer and rabbits with once a month application. If they are really hungry, or if it rains more than 1″ per week, spray more often. It does not have a strong odor after it dries, is environmentally safe and also stimulates growth. NOW there is a formulation for moles and voles.
Alpha One: a locally made organic fertilizer: 7-2-2. It is an alfalfa-based product with a high organic matter content, very high humic acid value, low pH for Colorado alkaline soils, and is non-burning. It also contains blood meal, cottonseed meal and bone meal. Excellent for vegetable gardens and lawns. Slow releasing over a long time. Feeds soil microbes.
Soil Pep: this is a semi-fine mulch made in Colorado. Jamie Steelman who gardens in Denver with 1600 roses says, “The most important thing in my garden culture is the Soil Pep….I put about 10″ of it on top of each garden after everything is growing, and it keeps my garden almost work free.”
Age Old Liquid Fertilizers: organic fertilizer concentrates with good history of success in Colorado Age Old Kelp: this seaweed concentrate is a very mild fertilizer, good as a foliage spray for small plants and for plants in stress and to use in the fall to help prevent frost damage. As a soil drench, it helps to restore biological life to depleted or poisoned soils. I’ve used it for years.
Age Old Bloom: 5-10-5 organic fertilizer concentrate that stimulates early growth, greater flowering and better fruit set. Use as a foliage spray or soil drench. It is odorless so can be used on house plants.
Age Old Grow: 12-6-6 fertilizer concentrate that stimulates vegetative growth. The higher nitrogen content enhances plant growth. Good forgetting vegetables up to size before fruiting and for grasses and foliage plants. First use Grow, then switch to Bloom for flowering and fruiting.
Age Old Fish and Seaweed: 3-3-2 a good quality fish emulsion with kelp. Loaded with macro nutrients, trace elements and bio-stimulants. It is effective to reduce plant stress and to stimulate root development.
Age Old Dry Fertilizers: organic fertilizers that are slow release and long lasting. They are designed to build soil fertility and increase the soil life. These can worked into the soil at planting or used as a side dressing.
Dry-Grow: 8-4-1 with 1% Calcium This is good for enhancing plant growth. Like liquid Grow, but longer lasting support for plants. Most of our soils are low in nitrogen. Contains meat and bone meal, rock dust, composted poultry manure, blood meal, and humic acid.
Dry-Bloom: 5-10-5 with 1% Calcium. This increases seed germination, supports transplanting and aids in flower and fruit development. This is also slow release and long lasting. Contains rock dust, meat and bone meal, composted poultry manure, and blood meal.
Dry-Fruit: 2-10-20 with 1% Calcium. This is formulated for flowering plants and fruit-bearing bushes and trees. This combination builds stronger root mass and stems, produces healthy foliage and larger fruits. Contains meat and bone, composted poultry manure, blood meal and potassium sulfate.
Corn Gluten Meal: non-toxic pre-emergent weed suppressant and fast-acting organic fertilizer. It inhibits seed germination, but harmless to plants with root systems, people, worms and microorganisms. The effect can last up to 6 months and is especially useful in lawns.