Report Back From The Independant Garden Center Show

Thursday, August 13th, 2015

11828677_958960137496121_5410234578092638939_nWe spent the week at the Independent Garden Center Show, in our own Baltimore, MD, showing our products to lots of garden center managers and buyers throughout the east coast.  We got a lot of interest, and even a few orders on the spot.  We’re excited to be picked up by the Bay Ridge Nursery in Annapolis and Twin Ace Hardware in Fairfax.

The pinnacle (that might be a too strong of word) of our display was a Plinko board, hand made at our shop, that buyers would use to get one of three really great prizes.  We look forward to reusing the Plinko board at other events we’ll goto in the future.

I was impressed with the quality of the talks and workshops, focusing on all aspects of running and operating an independent garden center.  What resonated with me was that successful independent garden centers attract customers by being unique, high quality, and differentiating themselves from the large box stores.  We want to focus on independent garden centers because they take the time to explain our products to customers, and prefer a quality product that isn’t available everywhere over a boring and ubiquitous product that available everywhere (probably for cheaper!).

All in all, a great show, although it was hard to be in the Baltimore Convention Center during such a beautiful week!  It was great to meet everyone there, and look forward to growing those relationships.

Lush Summer Gardens with Compost Tea

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

It summer!  Your garden beds are made, your garden in planted, you’ve mulched, and you’ve probably started harvesting the fruits of your labor. You’ve done all you can to make the best soil for you plants, but there is still one important tool in the organic gardener’s toolbox to add precious microbiology to your soil – teas made from compost or, better yet, worm castings.

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The Results Are In! Potting Soil trials

Friday, May 16th, 2014

We launched Chesapeake Potting Soil over the winter after developing our recipe and testing it at the Cylburn Arboretum greenhouses.  We tried different ingredients and different ratios, and compared results to see what would grow the best seedlings and healthiest plants.  We added organic fertilizers also to see if that would further improve our recipe and results.

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Preventing Erosion in Garden Mix

Friday, May 16th, 2014

Erosion and separation of Garden Mix topsoil and compost components. Simple steps will prevent this.

As I write this, Baltimore is experience another torrential downpour, the second very heavy rain event we’ve experienced in as many months.  Heavy rains can erode and change the structure of soils, and this can often happen with freshly laid down soils such as Garden Mix.  Our Garden Mix is used a lot by Blue Water Baltimore and Tree Baltimore to plant trees and other native plants in newly made tree boxes and concrete removal projects throughout the city.  We talked with the Bryant “Spoon” Smith, head of Blue Water Baltimore’s landscaping team on how to they use Garden Mix and tips for gardeners to prevent common problems.

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Compost Application for Lawn Care: An interview with Eric Hart

Monday, May 12th, 2014

“With your compost, I’m getting wonderful results” – Eric Hart

We recently had the opportunity to talk with Eric Hart of Hartscapes Landscaping, Hardscaping, and Organic Lawn Care. Hartscapes is a landscape design and build company that uses Chesapeake Compost to maintain turf and lawns throughout the region.  The conversation was about how and why he uses Chesapeake Compost and any suggestions or recommendations he might have for others. His observations were fascinating and hope-inspiring. We thought that we might take this opportunity to share some of these with you.

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Using Worm Castings to Plant Your Garden

Monday, April 28th, 2014

Now that you’re ready to plant your garden you have a few options. The first would be direct seeding into the prepared beds. The next is taking your seedlings (bought or grown,) and moving them out to your prepared beds. You can help these guys take root and grow by adding a little Chesapeake Compost Worm Castings to the hole when transplanting or seeding, or sprinkling above the closed holes. The boost of nutrients will aid establishment, and help your garden take root.

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Building Raised Beds

Monday, April 14th, 2014

Raised bed built in Remington, Baltimore using Chesapeake Garden Mix.

Spring is here, and we’re delivering soil to lots of community, school, and backyard gardeners that use raised beds to grow vegetables, herbs, flowers, and other plants.  A while back, we knew we needed to blend a soil specifically for raised beds.  We’ve created Chesapeake Garden Mix to provide a high quality fertile soil that performs great in raised beds, and this blog will provide some help for gardeners that are choosing and designing their raised bed garden.

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Starting Seeds With Chesapeake Potting Soil

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Spring is finally here! After a long winter we’ve finally made it, and that means preparing for the growing season. While it may be still too cold to plant outside, there’s no better way to feed that gardening bug than starting your own seeds.  You can plant the cultivars that interest you the most, and its much cheaper to plant seeds compared to buying seedlings.  The average last frost date around the greater Baltimore area is about April 22nd and most seeds need about four to six weeks to grow into a seedling, so now is the time to get your seeds started.

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Comparison to LeafGro

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

We’ve always known that compost is only as good as what you put in it, and we wanted to know Chesapeake Compost compared to LeafGro.   But, does it compare to the quality of what we’re making? Continue Reading »

The Benefits of Using Compost

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

We learned in our last blog post the many social and environmental benefits of composting, and the reasons why we should be developing regional composting infrastructure.  But what about you and your landscape?  How does using compost benefit your garden and the plants that are growing there?

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