Espoma

Millville, NJ

Espoma's range of products includes Holly-tone, the top-selling organic plant food and several new organic potting mixes.

Espoma's range of products includes Holly-tone, the top-selling organic plant food, Tomato-tone, Potting mix and new liquid organic fertilizers.

The extensive collection includes more than 48 organic products to cover most nutritional needs for plants. Espoma four-step organic lawn program does not include any pesticides or synthetic ingredients. Each bag contains 2.5x more slow release nitrogen than the leading conventional program and is specially formulated to optimize the health of a 5,000 sq. ft. lawn.

All of Espoma’s natural, organic products work in harmony with nature to safely grow beautiful plants, trees and lawns.

7 Ways to Promote Pet Health in the Backyard by Reducing Hazards

Safe Paws Campaign, ASPCA, and Canine Cancer Foundation Provide Pointers
December 2015

To some, pet care isn’t a natural fit for the About.com Lawn Care section, but columnist Kathy Connolly thought the topic was perfect for her audience. She wrote “7 Ways to Promote Pet Health in the Backyard by Reducing Hazards” that described the benefits of the Espoma Safe Paws campaign. She received our help in setting up multiple sources for the interview.

The Pet Show with Nancy Redd

Interview with Mike Mallon
April 2015

Safe Paws reached 65 people through the Huffington Post audience in this live interview we coordinated for Espoma on the dangers of chemicals on the lawn.

7 Tips for Pet-Proofing Your Yard

July 2015

A major target for our Safe Paws campaign, Espoma had multiple hits on website The Dogington Post. The Dogington post reaches millions of pet parents and in this article, Espoma expert Jaime Brunner explains how to create a pet-safe yard.

Espoma News

Espoma Teams up with The Edible Schoolyard Project for National Garden Month

Friday, April 1, 2016

Today kicks off National Garden month. To celebrate, The Espoma Company is touting the health benefits of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables through tips shared on the company’s Facebook page.

To show its commitment to organic food that is safe for the entire family, Espoma is helping to support school gardening efforts. For every new like to its Facebook page during the month of April, the company will donate to The Edible Schoolyard Project. The nonprofit’s mission is to create and sustain an organic garden and landscape that is wholly integrated into a school’s curriculum, culture and food program.

“Through the efforts of organizations like The Edible Schoolyard, kids are learning how to make healthier food choices,” says Jeremy Brunner, Vice President of The Espoma Company. “Together, we will help kids understand where food comes from and offer vital education about nutrition, cooking and horticulture.”

To help people of all ages grow their own healthy gardens, Espoma is sharing 30 tips in 30 days to drive awareness for the benefits of homegrown, organic food. Each tip will be posted daily on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #GardenMonth. Topics range from soil testing and seeding to planting and kid-friendly recipes.

Check Espoma’s Facebook and Twitter pages for 30 days of expert organic garden tips this April and learn how to have a lush, healthy garden. Visit Espoma.com to learn more about the initiative or for more information, tips and resources.

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic gardening.

The Espoma Company Shares the Easiest Tomatoes to Grow

Thursday, February 25, 2016

With more than 7,500 varieties of tomatoes, one has to know exactly what they want before deciding to grow.

So no matter if it's to-may-to or to-mah-to, choose the easiest tomato variety.

Variety is the Spice of Life – The Easiest Tomato Variety to Grow
Cherry Tomatoes are the easiest tomatoes for beginners to grow. They produce crop after crop and have very few problems! Here are a few of the best.

1. Super Sweet 100 – The name says it all – these are sweet and easy. Just one plant can bear more than 1,000 tomatoes. Super Sweet 100s grow in long strands or clusters of more than 100 tomatoes. Thousands of tomatoes that are high in Vitamin-C will ripen by the end of the season.
Disease Resistance: V, F and N
Growth Type: Indeterminate
Time to Maturity: 60-70 days
Taste and Texture: Super sweet and juicy with a firm texture
Light: Full sun
Plant Size: 8-12’
Spacing: 18-36” apart
Staking: Yes - Cage or stake

2. Napa Grape – This classic tomato tastes and looks just like its bigger rivals, but has a higher sugar content than any other grape tomato. Known to be one of the tastiest tomatoes out there, the Napa Grape produces sweet tomatoes that taste yummy in salads or as snacks.
Disease Resistance: Very disease resistant
Growth Type: Indeterminate
Time to Maturity: 65 days
Taste and Texture: Sugary with a firm texture
Light: Full sun
Plant Size: 4-6’
Spacing: 24-36” apart
Staking: Yes - Cage or stake

3. Golden Nugget – These sweet tasting tomatoes love cool weather and can withstand the heat. Looking more like tangerines than tomatoes, Golden Nuggets ripen early and produce lots of fruit.
Disease Resistance: V and F
Growth Type: Determinate
Time to Maturity: 55-65 days
Taste and Texture: Balanced, mild with a hint of sweetness and a thin skin
Light: Full sun
Plant Size: 2-3’
Spacing: 18-24” apart
Staking: No

4. Yellow Pear – Tangy, beautiful and tiny, Yellow Pear tomatoes look charming in salads or as snacks. A favorite of chefs, these dynamic tomatoes love to sprawl, so contain them with a cage or stake.
Disease Resistance: Not susceptible to blossom end, but can develop early blight
Growth Type: Indeterminate
Time to Maturity: 75-80 days
Taste and Texture: Tangy yet mild with a slightly firm and mealy texture
Light: Full sun
Plant Size: 6-12’
Spacing: 24-36” apart
Staking: Yes - Cage or stake

5. Sun Gold – These orange tomatoes taste like tropical fruit and thrive in hot, sultry climates. Grown in long clusters of 10-15 tomatoes, Sun Golds produce fruit well into fall. Plus, these cherry tomatoes can be grown in containers.
Disease Resistance: V, F and T
Growth Type: Indeterminate
Time to Maturity: 55-65 days
Taste and Texture: Sweet and fruity taste with a firm, crisp texture
Light: Full sun
Plant Size: 5-10’
Spacing: 24-36” apart
Staking: Yes - Cage or stake

Go forth, and grow! When organic gardening, be sure to feed tomatoes lots of Tomato-tone during the growing season.

Looking for more info on tomatoes, such as growing heirloom tomatoes, hybrid tomatoes or non-red tomatoes, please visit the Organic Tomato Gardening Guide for more tips and tricks.

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.

The Dirt on Improving Soil: Espoma Shares How to Improve Garden Soil

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Sunflowers bigger than the sun. Cherry tomatoes tastier than cherries. Yes! Flowers and veggies can be that good. All they need is healthy soil.

The Espoma Company shares how to boost the entire garden by starting from the ground up: the soil.

Soil, as one may have thought, is not dirt. Healthy soil is a collection of creatures, minerals and living material that holds water and nutrients like a sponge, making them readily available for plants. To continue to grow big, juicy fruits and vegetables, make sure to feed the soil.

Think of soil as a bank and continue to make deposits so withdrawals can be made when needed. Draw all of the nutrients out of it until it’s dry and clay-like, and a disappointing garden will follow.

Different Types of Soil
Soil can be clay-like, sandy or loamy. Ideally, loamy soil is well-draining and full of organic matter.

- Clay soil holds little water and air and is typically “heavy.” The particles are small and packed tightly, making drainage very slow.
- Sandy soil has large, loose particles. Although it contains lots of air, it doesn’t retain moisture well because it drains so quickly, allowing nutrients to leach through the soil.
- The ideal soil, loamy, is just the right mixture of clay, silt and sand. It holds nutrients and drains well, making it ideal for growing most fruits and vegetables.

To find out the kind of soil, thoroughly wet a patch of soil then let it dry for a day. Clay soil will remain in a tight ball and feel slippery. Soil that is gritty and crumbles is sandy. And slightly crumbly soil that stays in a ball is loamy.

The Golden Ticket to a Greener Garden: Compost
In organic gardening, compost is as good as gold! Scout’s honor.

1. Go for the Gold. There’s no such thing as too much compost. Compost adds nutrients, improves soil structure and helps retain water. Compost should make up 25 percent of each planting bed or container.

2. DIY the Good Stuff. Skip the bagged compost and make compost for free by recycling food scraps. Use a compost tumbler, and turn once a week.

3. Fashion It Faster. Jumpstart compost by adding our Organic Composter Starter, which speeds up decomposition. Then turn on the turbo by shredding scraps first.

4. Split the Spoils. Fill compost with an even split of brown and green. Green goods, such as food and garden scraps, add nitrogen while brown items, such as paper and leaves, complement with carbon.

Build Even Better Soil
Start with the composting tips above. Then take soil to the next level.

1. Take the Test. Before planting, test soil to see exactly what organic amendments it needs.

2. Curb the Chemicals. Step away from the chemical fertilizers – for the sake of garden and pets! Opt for organic fertilizers that improve soil as they break down.

3. Make It with Mulch. Now, protect golden soil with magic mulch benefits. Mulch helps moderate soil temperature, prevents soil compaction and stops weeds, too.

Hands down, the best gift for the garden is golden soil. Plants will be bigger, stronger and dare we say, happier!

Flip, Fill and Feed with Espoma’s New Liquid Plant Foods

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Organically feeding plants just got way easier – and faster. Say farewell to messy measuring and that fishy smell of other organic, liquid fertilizers.

And say hello to Espoma’s new line of liquid plant foods. Learn more about the new collection below.

Hello, Healthy. Espoma’s New, Liquid Organic Plant Food. Here are a few reasons Espoma's new liquid plant line will become an instant favorite:

  • Instant Nutrition. Espoma’s new liquid plant foods feed plants instantly – and organically.
  • Scientifically Magnificent. Espoma's new liquid fertilizers are scientifically proven to grow bigger, better plants with larger blooms. What gives them their mighty power? It's loaded them with kelp extracts, humic acids and beneficial microbes.
  • Less Mess. Ready, set, pop. The new Easy Dose cap on the Espoma liquid plant foods effortlessly measures each dose of fertilizer. No more messy bottles, measuring mistakes or spills.
  • Flip, Fill and Feed. Simply pop the lid, hold the bottle upside down and voila. The perfect amount of liquid fertilizer drops into a watering can.
  • Cause for Safe Paws. The new liquid fertilizers are 100 percent organic and safe to use around children and pets. Safe Paws approved.

Meet the New Liquid Plant Food Trio. Bigger, better plants are only a flip away.

  • Begin with Start. Flip open this starter plant food which helps plants get established fast while growing strong roots.
  • Go with Grow. Add this all-purpose, organic plant fertilizer to promote rapid root growth and encourage green foliage.
  • Boom with Bloom. Call in the super blossom booster which promotes and prolongs flowering while stimulating the growth of more blooms.

Try the Espoma new liquid organic plant foods with organic potting soil for super amazing results.

The Espoma Company is a fourth generation, family-owned business that has been the pioneer in organic gardening since 1929. Espoma products work in harmony with nature to grow beautiful lawns & gardens, preserve natural resources, and make a greener world for future generations. Espoma offers a complete selection of natural plant foods, lawn foods, control products, and potting mixes that are available nationwide. For additional information, visit http://www.espoma.com.

Garden Media Group Premieres New Vibrant Plants & Products for Spring 2016

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

The best way to reverse those winter blues is to get back in the garden. To get you excited for spring, Garden Media Group has released its 2016 Garden Superstars for Spring. This year’s list features delicious edible plants, safe organic fertilizer and innovative gardening beds.

“This season, let someone else do the work for you. These outstanding products make gardening easier and you more successful,” says Susan McCoy, president of Garden Media.

These superstar plants and products are sure to inspire everyone from the beginner gardener to the seasoned plant professional.

Here is Garden Media’s list of Garden Superstars for Spring 2016.

Double Cropper. Double Cropper. Plant BrazelBerries’® new Perpetua™ in the landscape or garden for a true double-cropping blueberry that sets one crop of delicious fruit in mid-summer and then flowers and fruits a second time to provide ripe fruit in the fall.

This landscape beauty is somewhat vase-shaped, growing upright to 4’-5’ tall. The leaves are a rich, glossy dark green and curly or twisted in the spring and summer, turning to deep reds and greens in the winter. New canes are bright yellow and red when dormant, which adds a blaze of color to the winter landscape. Enjoy Perpetua’s mild and sweet berries in the summer and fall. Grow in full sun in zones 4 – 8.

Learn more about Perpetua at www.BrazelBerries.com.

No Measure, No Mess. New, organic liquid fertilizers, Start!, Bloom! and Grow! by Espoma, are safer and healthier for plants. Plus, they won’t leave a fishy smell behind. And because they are liquid, they work immediately to give plants what they need most.

The new, innovative Easy Dose cap makes fertilizing less of a guessing game. Each dose gives a precise feeding of specially formulated nutrients. Simply open the flip-top lid, invert the bottle and release a pre-measured dose of product directly into the watering can.

Find the new fertilizers at your local garden center.

Composter and Garden Bed in One. An African gardening technique to grow food in severe drought and sweltering heat, Vita’s Keyhole Garden is a modern version of this raised bed. By capturing the same spirit, the Keyhole Garden is both a growing and composting bed that turns kitchen scraps and other household waste into rich soil. It uses up to 80 percent less water than traditional garden beds and produces more vegetables in less time.

The Keyhole Garden has a 20-year warranty and is constructed from attractive and rot-proof food-grade vinyl (BPA- free) with stainless steel fasteners.

Learn more about the Keyhole Garden at www.VitaGardens.com.

For more exciting new plants and garden products for spring 2016, visit www.gardenmediagroup.com.

Garden Media specializes in home and garden, horticulture, outdoor living, lawn and landscape industries, offering innovative PR campaigns designed to secure top media placements and partnerships. For more information visit: www.gardenmediagroup.com

The Espoma Company Launches Pumpkin Decorating Photo Contest for Halloween

Saturday, October 17, 2015

There are many ways to decorate for Halloween and pumpkins have become, for some, a way to express their creativity. Whether painting, carving an intricate design or dressing up a gourd, the creative masterpiece showcases individual style.

This year, The Espoma Organic Company wants to know how fans are upgrading the classic jack-o-lantern during its Pumpkin Decorating photo contest.

Carve, paint or decorate a gourd or pumpkin and enter Espoma’s Facebook contest for a chance to win a $250 VISA Gift Card.

To enter, contestants should like Espoma on Facebook , click on the contest tab and post a picture of their very own masterpiece from October 13 through November 3, 2015.

Then, contestants should share the link with friends and family and encourage them to vote with a “like.” One winner will be selected through an evaluation of the most “Liked” photos.

“The most fun fall family activity is decorating pumpkins,” says Jeremy Brunner, Espoma vice president. “Especially if it’s one grown from seed.”

Espoma fans who love pumpkins but haven’t decorated one of their own can participate in the contest by voting for their favorite designs. All are welcome to take part and encouraged to share posts with family, friends and coworkers.

“Painting pumpkins is a special tradition at my house,” says Brunner. “I can’t wait to see how other families get creative with their pumpkins.”

The Pumpkin Decorating photo contest ends at 9:30 a.m. EST on Tuesday, Nov. 3 and the winner will be announced by 5 p.m. Full contest details and rules are available on Espoma’s “Pumpkin Decorating” contest tab.

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.

5 Tips to Help Your Lawn Prepare for Next Season

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Cool temperatures, light rainfalls and beautiful autumn leaves signal that fall is nearly here. These same signs tell lawns that fall has come and winter is on the way, too. End the season with a bang by rejuvenating the lawn and prepping for the cooler season ahead.

Early autumn is the best time to repair damage, browning or dead spots, fertilize and improve the yard. Follow these five tips from experts at The Espoma Organic Company to have a greener, lusher and healthier than ever yard next spring.

Help The Lawn Hang On All Winter Long

1. Know How to Mow. Continue mowing as needed throughout the fall months. Keep the mower blades high (3” or higher) to encourage healthy roots.

2. Rake it up. Remove fallen leaves as soon as possible. Leaves that haven’t been cleaned up tend to become a soggy mess that can suffocate grass and breed diseases. Either rake or use a lawnmower with a collection bag to keep on top of the leaves. Compost leaves to use as mulch in the spring.

3. Agree to Reseed. If the entire lawn looks dry and brown, overseed the whole thing. If only certain areas look bare, reseed only those spots. First, perform a soil test and improve if needed. Then cut grass lower than normal and remove clippings. Level, rake soil smooth and spread Espoma Organic Lawn Starter. With a broadcast spreader, apply a seed that best suits your region and weather. Finally, water.

4. Prepare with Care. Get the lawn ready for the cooler weather ahead by fortifying it with nutrients. Fertilize now with Espoma’s organic fall winterizer. A fall feeding will promote growth, increase winter hardiness and helps lawns recover from drought. Apply organic fall winterizer to a dry lawn after seeding and mowing. Use a drop or broadcast spreader and be certain to overlap slightly to prevent striping. For best results, water lightly after the application if rain is not expected within 24 hours.

5. Fido First. Always use organic products. Harsher, chemical lawn products can be eaten, ingested or passed on to pets (and brought into the home). This exposure has been linked with a higher risk of canine cancer. Keep pets alive longer by making sure their paws are safe by using organic lawn products.

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.

Espoma Wins 2015 Award of Excellence from ECGC Distributors, Ltd

Monday, August 17, 2015

The Espoma Company has received the ECGC Distributors, Ltd 2015 Award of Excellence. The award recognizes Espoma for superior customer service and high product satisfaction.

Up against 65 other vendors, Espoma is the first to win the Award of Excellence twice. The award measures all companies in ECGC’s Preferred Vendors program.

“Each year, companies are evaluated by their commitment to customer service and effectiveness of products by our 12 garden center members,” explains ECGC chair, Cathy Fucci from Martin Viette Nurseries. “The company who we all agree rises to the top is selected to win.”
 
For more than 85 years Espoma has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions.  Espoma continues to develop new products and programs to help the independent retailer drive foot traffic into stores.  Recent additions include their organic lawn program, mycorrhizae enhanced soil line, online certified digital training program, and the new Safe Paws campaign to help educate pet parents with tips to create a safe outdoors by avoiding the dangers of common lawn hazards.

“Vendors such as Espoma are leading the way to redefining the garden center experience,” says Fucci. “We congratulate Espoma on their second and much deserved award in this category.”

Jeremy Brunner, Espoma Vice President, says, “We are honored to be receiving the Award of Excellence from ECGC and think of them as true partners.”

The Award of Excellence will be presented at the IGC Show in Chicago on August 19 at 10:00 A.M in Booth 1811.
For more information about Espoma Organic products visit www.espoma.com

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.

ECGC Distributors, Ltd is a LLC of the twelve of the largest independent garden companies in the United States.  Owners include:  Al’s Garden Center, OR; Armstrong Garden Centers, CA; Calloway Nurseries, TX; Green Acres Nursery & Supply, CA;  English Gardens, MI; Homestead Gardens, MD; Mahoney Garden Centers, MA; Martin Viette Nurseries, NY; Molbaks, WA; McDonald Garden Centers, VA; Petitti Garden Centers, OH; Pike Nurseries, GA and Southern Homes & Gardens, AL.

Espoma Organic Introduces a Revolutionary ‘No Measure, No Mess’ Liquid Plant Food Line

Saturday, August 1, 2015

A new line of liquid plant food is about to shake up the gardening world. The Espoma Company, pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929, will introduce Espoma Organic Start!, Bloom! and Grow!, at this summer’s IGC Shows.
 
“These new liquid plant foods will produce results head and shoulders over any other brand on the market,” says Jeremy Brunner, Espoma vice president.
 
Start!, Bloom! and Grow! are low in salts and made with all-natural ingredients.  They are safer and healthier for plants and don’t leave a fishy smell behind.  And because they are liquid, they work immediately to give plants what they need most.

Providing the right balance of natural proteins, kelp extracts, humic acids and a proprietary blend of beneficial microbes, Start!, Bloom! and Grow! each help plants grow bigger, better, and more beautiful.

Plus the new, innovative Easy Dose cap makes fertilizing less of a guessing game. Each dose gives a precise feeding of specially formulated nutrients. Simply open the flip-top lid, invert the bottle and release a pre-measured dose of product directly into the watering can. “There is no need to measure and no more mess involved,” says Brunner. “Consumers are going to love how easy it is to feed their plants a healthy drink and get great results.”

Espoma Organic’s liquid plant foods are safe to handle. Apply directly to the roots for fast-acting results. The products are also safe for use around children and pets.
 
Pre-order the new liquid plant foods now. They will be available to consumers January 2016.

The Espoma Company is a fourth generation, family-owned business that has been the pioneer in organic gardening since 1929.  Espoma products work in harmony with nature to grow beautiful lawns & gardens, preserve natural resources, and make a greener world for future generations. Espoma offers a complete selection of natural plant foods, lawn foods, control products, and potting mixes that are available nationwide. For additional information, visit www.espoma.com.

Espoma Organic Launches Garden to Table Photo Contest

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Homegrown vegetables take meals to a whole new level. Espoma Organic wants to know what fans are creating with their backyard summer harvests during the “Garden to Table” photo contest.

Food lovers across the country can enter Espoma’s Facebook contest for a chance to win one of three prizes from July 30 through August 12, 2015.

To enter, contestants should like Espoma on Facebook, click on the contest tab and post a picture of their homegrown fruit and veggies with a description of how they will be used for dinner. Or share a picture of the finished dish.

Then, contestants should share the link with friends and family and encourage them to vote with a “like.” Three finalists will be determined through an evaluation of the most “Liked” photos.

“We want to know what gardeners are cooking with their harvests,” says Jeremy Brunner, Espoma vice president. “Here’s an opportunity to turn green thumbs into ‘green’ prizes.”

Espoma Organic will award three prizes. The first place photo entry will receive a $100 gift card, second place will receive a $50 gift card and the third place winner will receive a gift set of Espoma Organic Potting Mix, Tomato-tone and Garden-tone.

Full contest details and rules are available on Espoma’s “Garden to Table” contest tab.

“There’s nothing more satisfying than caring for a garden that provides healthy, organic vegetables,” says Brunner. “We want our fans to share their success stories.”

Espoma fans who aren’t kitchen savvy can still participate in the contest by voting for their favorite dishes. All are welcome to participate and encouraged to share posts with family, friends and coworkers.

The “Garden to Table” photo contest ends at 9:30 a.m. EST on Wednesday, Aug. 12 and the winners will be announced by 5:00 p.m.

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.

Celebrate National Blueberry Month with Recipes and Planting Tips

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recognizes July as National Blueberry Month! If any fruit deserves its own month, it’s the all-American blueberry.

Take advantage of peak fruiting season to celebrate this delicious little berry.
 
Health Benefits
Not only delicious and popular, blueberries are one of the top 10 healthiest foods.
 
These nutritional powerhouses are packed with antioxidants that help guard against cancer and heart disease. Blueberries are low in calories, but rich in fiber and vitamins. One serving of blueberries serves up almost 25 percent of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C. Plus, blueberries have a favorable impact on blood sugar regulation in persons already diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
 
Convinced? Now it’s time to start growing blueberries. Follow with these simple tips to help bushes flourish year after year!

How to Have Planting Success
First, plant the right variety. Compact, ornamental blueberry shrubs, like those from BrazelBerries®, are perfect for growing in containers, raised beds or even directly in the garden. They’re simple to grow, beautiful in landscapes and delicious to eat.

Once a blueberry bush variety has been chosen, plant it in a sunny spot with at least six hours of sun each day.

Next, consider the soil. Blueberries love acidic soils. A pH of 4.5-5.5 is ideal. A simple soil test indicates acidity, which can easily be adjusted with a balanced organic fertilizer. Soil kits and amendments are available at any local garden center.

Give the plant’s roots plenty of growing room when planting in a container. Plant bushes in pots 16” or more in diameter and water deeply and regularly to make sure all of the soil within the pot is moist.

Caring for a Blueberry Shrub
Cutting branches off any plant can be daunting, but it’s best for the plant. Pruning gives berries more space between branches, allowing air to flow freely and preventing disease.

The best time to prune blueberries is in late winter when the plants are still dormant.

Fertilizing is recommended in early and late spring. Choose a balanced, organic, slow-release fertilizer, such as Espoma’a Holly-tone, for acid-loving plants.

Protecting
A little protection ensures the blueberry bush will thrive for another bountiful season. Keep critters away by covering bushes with bird netting in the spring.

Winter weather poses the biggest risk to berry bushes. Apply a thick layer of mulch around the base of the bush to protect its roots.
Blueberries in pots are easiest to protect from the cold — just move the pots into an unheated garage or against a building and cover with thick mulch, burlap or a blanket.

The Fun Part – Picking!
With planting and pruning in the bag, the next step — picking — is the pay off. Be sure to keep an eye on the berries and pick them before the birds do! Or, buy one berry for yourself and one for the birds.
 
Berries are delicious in cereal, oatmeal, pancakes and pies. And, they are great frozen, too. Wash, dry and place them in an air-tight plastic bag. Store them in the freezer for up to 6-months.

Here are some more ideas to enjoy July’s blueberry bounty:

  •  Try a twist on traditional pie with Whole Foods delicious Blueberry Sour Cream Pie.
  •  Puree with a squeeze of orange juice, a little mint and a favorite spice or two for Southern Living’s surprising blueberry soup.
  •  Add them to smoothies. Freeze to make popsicles.
  •  Make a leafy green salad, toss with blueberries, nuts and lemon vinaigrette.
  •  Stir blueberries into hot cooked couscous, rice, quinoa or any favorite hot cooked grain.
  •  Got company coming? Serve a Blueberry and Pine Nut Nougat.

Visit BrazelBerries.com for more information about BrazelBerries line of compact berry shrubs. For more information about organic plant food and potting soils, visit Espoma.com.

Redesigned Espoma Website Empowers Gardeners

Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Espoma Organic Company is pushing its digital face forward by improving its efforts to inspire and educate consumers through the re-design of its website. Visitors will find inspiration and knowledge to plant their dream gardens on the easy to navigate site.

With traffic coming from mobile devices approaching 50 percent, the website’s responsive design allows users on any device to have an optimized experience.

Visitors to the visually pleasing website receive more than just information on plant food, they have access to a vast library of gardening know how. It’s simple to find directions for every Espoma product on the site. Gardeners seeking tips, plant care advice or to find a community with other gardeners can find it all on Espoma.com. Guests visit the site with questions and leave with the confidence to complete their gardening projects.

“We have something for everyone, from the novice to the master gardener,” says Jeremy Brunner, Vice President of Espoma. “Our new site is a community where everyone feels comfortable sharing their planting successes as well as empowered to ask questions and offer advice.”

Users will also be able to join the Espoma community right from the home page, allowing them to comment on blog posts, write reviews and rate Espoma products. They will automatically get emails with timely gardening tips and Espoma’s new monthly newsletter.

Additional new features include:

  • Easy to navigate “Plant Food Finder” from the home page.
  • Expanded “Learn and Grow” section with fun and educational videos, gardening projects, fact sheets, plant nutrition tips, resources and more.
  • One step “Find a Retailer” link on the home page.

    
“Just like a garden, our website has a peaceful, inviting and warm look and feel,” says Brunner. “Visitors feel compelled to explore page after page, as they look for gardening advice, plant feeding recommendations, and community with other gardeners.”

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.

Celebrate National Lawn Care Month with Espoma Organic

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Today kicks off National Lawn Care month. To celebrate, The Espoma Company is helping people make the switch to organic lawns and create “Safe Paws” environments through tips shared on the company’s Facebook page.

To show its commitment to chemical free lawns that are safe for pets, Espoma is hosting a #SafePawsChallenge. The company is donating $500 to the National Canine Cancer Foundation for every 5,000 new likes to its Facebook page during the month of April. The foundation funds research and raises awareness to fight cancers that affect dogs.

Since canine cancer affects one out of every three dogs, Jeremy Brunner, vice president of Espoma, said the Canine Cancer Foundation was a natural fit for its Safe Paws initiative.

“People want green grass but they also want to feel confident their yard is safe for their kids and pets, too,” says Brunner. “The Canine Cancer Foundation is on a mission to help dogs live longer and healthier lives. That’s our goal with Safe Paws, too. Together our efforts promote awareness of healthy pets.”

To help people understand how easy it is to have a safe lawn, Espoma is sharing 30 tips in 30 days to help green up the 30 million acres of grass across the nation and drive awareness for canine cancer. Each tip will be posted daily on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #LawnCareMonth.

These insightful tips provide information to create lush, chemical-free lawns in just 30 days. Topics range from soil testing and seeding to fertilizing and creating Safe Paw environments.

Brunner says that feeding a lawn a healthy diet of natural ingredients offers benefits not just for your grass, but for you, your family, pets and the environment, too.

The Benefits of an Organic Lawn
An organic lawn is easier and, in the long run, less expensive than conventional lawn programs. In fact, organic lawns take less time and effort watering, fertilizing and mowing all summer.

“Getting a lush green lawn means making sure the soil is healthy,” says Kathy Connolly, lawn care and lawn alternative expert for About.com.

Healthy soil begins with a soil test, compost and the right diet of natural food. Organic plant food, full of natural ingredients, feeds the microorganisms that, in the end, feed the plants.

Lawns grown in healthy soil develop stronger, larger root systems that, in turn, grow more vigorously. Lawns become more resistant to insects and diseases. More importantly, a healthy lawn can withstand a drought.

Check Espoma’s Facebook and Twitter pages for 30 days of expert lawn care tips this April and learn how to have a lush, chemical free lawn and help fight canine cancer, too. Visit Espoma.com to learn more about the Safe Paws initiative or for more information, tips and resources.

The Espoma Company has been the pioneer in natural gardening solutions since 1929. Espoma provides an extensive selection of natural products that work in harmony with nature and are safe for people, pets and the planet. The company produces more than 100 products to cover the nutritional needs of plants and to grow beautiful lawns and gardens. Visit espoma.com for more information and tips about organic lawn care.