Green Thumb lessons
FREE

You've bought a bouquet of flowers at the store, but how do you take that jumble of stems and turn them into a beautiful flower arrangement? In this lesson, uBloom teaches a very literal shortcut: cutting the stems short to fit in a low vase, bunching all the blooms together and inserting stems at angles to support one another. This technique makes it easy and fun to arrange flowers nicely, and the lesson includes tips on tools you'll need and how to prepare the the water and flower food.

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Is your green thumb calling? Do you have some delicious recipes that use fresh spices and flavors? Growing your own herb garden has never been easier. In this quick and easy lesson, you’ll learn how to layer mason jars with pea pebbles and perlite to create a drainage system that keeps your plants healthy and happy. Then, you’ll just need to add some organic soil and a sprinkle of seeds. Follow along and you’ll soon be enjoying the taste of homegrown basil, oregano, and other herbs!

5:31
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Whether your significant other has just surprised you with a dozen red roses, or you are bringing a bouquet to an ailing friend, creating a balanced and beautiful arrangement can be a stressful experience! But there is a trick to creating the perfect bouquet of roses, whether you are working with a tall vase or a short cubed one. In this lesson from uBloom, learn the 7-4-1 method—in no time at all, your arrangements will look professionally perfect!

4:53
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Want to plant a container garden, but don’t have lots of room? Make use of empty wall space and install a vertical garden! Despite the challenges of growing vertically, there are a few products on the market that are capable of providing your plants with the water they need to stay healthy and beautiful for the long haul. Sunset Magazine lets you in on their vertical container gardening product: Plantasy, a grow medium made from peat moss and coconut coir.

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Want to keep your container garden looking fresh? While there is no single answer for how much you need to water and fertilize your plants, this lesson shows you a simple test to determine what your plant needs. As a bonus, get a few seasonal gardening tips: how to use a frost blanket in the winter months, and how to transition between seasons seamlessly with forward-thinking design and plant choices.

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Hydrangeas are not just gorgeous blooms perfect for cutting—they also provide the framework needed to create a unique, beautiful, and stable floral arrangement! In this lesson from uBloom, learn how to use a hydrangea bloom as an “armature,” a structure that will hold other flowers in place. J Schwanke demonstrates how to create a bouquet made from hydrangeas, carnations, and daisies before showing you how to bind the stems together, using craft wire, pipe cleaner, or a simple piece of ribbon.

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Did you know that transplanting plants at the wrong time of day or into dry soil conditions can send them into shock? For many plants, the trip from the nursery to your container garden can be a stressful experience. Sunset Magazine shows you how and when to transplant so that your plants thrive in their new home.

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Protect your tomato plants from wind, rain, pets, small children, or just weak stalks by constructing these homemade tomato cages. Why buy a flimsy cage from a garden center when How I Pinch a Penny demonstrates how to make a quick, easy, and sturdy cage with just gloves, bolt cutters, and five feet of steel re-mesh? See how to create and install these homemade cages.

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Want to make an easy and nutrient-rich garden bed without any digging? Discover sheet layering or 'lasagna gardening', a slow compost process that makes a bed with no tilling required. Grow Organic explains how layering nitrogen-rich and carbon-rich composting materials will create a nutritious and easily tended bed that will be ready in three to six months (or cheat and plant now by adding compost on top). This garden can be created at any time of the year.

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Whether you are starting from seed or seedling, Sunset Magazine shows you how to choose, grow, and harvest edible plants. Pick the right container, sow seeds, and transplant your crops without damaging the roots; before you know it, you’ll be feeding your family healthy veggies straight from the garden. This lesson features chard, beet greens, and lettuce.

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Don’t know what to do with the last of your fresh tomatoes? Try making your own tomato paste! With a stock pot, a food mill, and your harvest of tomatoes, you’ll never need to buy tubes or cans of tomato paste again. This recipe yields a rich and smooth paste that is perfect for pizza sauce, ragù, and various soups and stews. Use it immediately or freeze for future use.

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With your pots, soil, drainage, and irrigation ready to go, it’s time to design your container garden! Sunset Magazine shows you how to choose plants for your containers based on sunlight, water needs, and aesthetic principles. After learning these professional tips, head over to Sunset’s Plant Finder to start brainstorming the perfect garden!

6:17
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Do you want to reduce your landfill waste by 30% while making your garden grow healthier and more fruitful? If so, learn how to compost! In this lesson from Grow Organic, Trisha walks you through the process of creating your very own compost pile, beginning with how to select a container (if you want one), to what kinds of materials belong in your pile and which ones don’t. Take good care of your pile, and in a couple of months you’ll have beautiful, nutrient rich compost for your garden!

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Interested in cultivating a container garden? Sometimes the hardest step is choosing a container. Sunset Magazine breaks down the best container material, size, shape, and color for your space. You’ll also learn how to position your plants for optimal growth, set up effective drainage for any pot, and install irrigation with a drip system.

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Asparagus is a nutrient rich vegetable, and if planted correctly, can provide a harvest for a period of up to 20 years! Grow Organic demonstrates how to prepare a raised bed or garden for either asparagus seeds or crowns. Depending on where you live, you’ll want to plant between January and April. Though this crop won’t actually yield a harvest until the second year of cultivation, it’ll prove that patience is a virtue, and that growing great food is easier than you think.

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Can you jam to this? This lesson shows you how to make and can peach jam. Start by mashing peeled and seeded peaches, then mix with the other ingredients for a tasty topping. Follow Sarah’s jam recipe and boiling instructions carefully for the best results - even if you have never canned preserves, you’ll have properly set jam in no time. Use your choice of mason jars and be sure to listen for the popping lids to make sure your cans are sealed properly.

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Roasted red peppers taste delicious on sandwiches, pizza, and many vegetable dishes. Skip the expensive store-bought roasted peppers and learn how to make them at home on your gas stove! Place a pepper onto an open flame and turn it with tongs to char the outside and cook it all the way through. Wrap it with plastic or a paper bag while it steams and after about ten minutes, the outer charred layer will rub right off. Pull out the seeds, slice, and enjoy.

4:20
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There’s nothing quite like biting into a vine-ripened organic tomato—no store-bought fruit can compare! Tomatoes are not a high maintenance crop, growing quickly given adequate sun and water. But to ensure high fruit yields as well as a healthy plant, learn about pruning and diseases that affect tomatoes. In this lesson, California organic gardener Trisha teaches you when and how to prune your plant, and how to avoid common problems like cracking or leathery skin, blotchy ripening, and blight.

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Sarah pinches pennies by growing and drying her own oregano. You can, too! Find out when to harvest your oregano and how to clip the stalks into bunches. Tie them together and hang them upside-down, preferably outdoors. Cover them with a bed sheet and let the oregano dry for three days. Then strip off the leaves and sift your fingers through your personally dried oregano!

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