Western Mountains and High Plains
Botany for Fun
Young gardeners or those interested in knowing the inner workings of plants will enjoy Botany for Gardeners (Timber Press, 2005, $19.95). It explains what goes on inside a tree trunk, seed, leaf, stem, or root and other facts like what a spine is and how it differs from a thorn. A section on plant adaptations tells how plants are survivors . This book makes a great addition to the reference shelf or just for fun.
Clever Gardening Technique
Ridding Houseplants of Excess Salts
Some potting soils and water sources will cause salts to build up on the rims of porous clay pots and on the surface of the soil. Accumulations of soluble salts can damage the roots of houseplants and result in browning of leaf margins or plants will die. Prevent salt burn by periodically leaching the salts from the soil mix. Set the containers in a sink and apply water slowly from the top. Allow it to run out the drainage holes for a few minutes.