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2020 Garden Guide: Sowing the Seeds for Big Dreams in the Garden

New edition’s bounty features the power of purple, growing hydroponic greens, the magic of mushrooms, tiny terrariums, stunning do-it-yourself table toppers, and more!

The latest edition of the Garden Guide welcomes readers back to the garden with an all-new crop of fresh ideas, expert advice, and words of encouragement. Now available in print and digital editions, this eagerly anticipated annual from the editors of The Old Farmer’s Almanac is the perfect year-round companion for seasoned gardeners or those who aspire to be.

“In every Garden Guide, we aim to plant seeds of inspiration and excite gardeners of all experience levels and interests to find satisfaction and success,” says Janice Stillman, editor of the 2020 Garden Guide. “Gardening is not just a pastime, but also an experience that brings pleasure and surprises every day. Whether indoors, outdoors, or in a small space, container, or family-size plot—we support and encourage any and all efforts—the opportunity to nurture nature is gloriously gratifying and fun.”

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According to the 2020 Garden Guide, every edible garden should embrace the power of purple! Purple- and red-pigmented vegetables and fruit not only are lovely to behold, but also can promote heart health and protect against chronic diseases. The Garden Guide offers a bounty of options, including blueberries, eggplants, cherries, black beans, and purple varieties of carrots, cauliflower, tomatoes, and more.

Keeping the soil nutrient-rich is a challenge that every gardener faces. The Garden Guide suggests getting a little help from mushrooms, which improve the health of the soil and nearby plants. Plus, growing edible types like oyster, lion’s mane, and garden giant is a cinch, even for beginners.

If space is an issue, try what the Garden Guide promises to be the easiest-ever hydroponic garden. This inexpensive take on a centuries-old method can be grown on an indoor table, is easy on the wallet, and takes minimal effort. The reward of this no soil, no toil technique? Lots and lots of salad!

While gardening apps are certainly useful (hint, hint: Almanac Garden Planner), cues from nature can provide just as much information. The Garden Guide dives into the wisdom of phenology and gives time-tested tips for when to plant and harvest and how to handle pests. For example, gardeners in the southern U.S. would do well to pay attention to pecan trees. Leafed out? Time to plant!

Indoor plants can add a new twist on interior design and perk up almost any space. For example, it’s easy to add color, class, and pizzazz to any indoor space in any season with the Garden Guide’s trio of DIY table toppers that take little effort and even less money. Prefer to grow bigger? Think about creating an indoor “tree house” by following tips on how to choose potted trees (or large plants) that can create a canopy of relaxing and inviting foliage anywhere!

Succulents, air plants, and mosses are increasingly popular, especially among busy gardeners who don’t have time to tend to fussier plants. Add a bit of flair to these favorites with mini greenhouses made from candy jars, brandy snifters, candleholders, cookie jars, or almost anything that offers proper ventilation. The plant options are also endless: African violets, dwarf impatiens, small begonias, jade plants, sheet moss, and so many more.

For an after-hours show, check out plants that promise to be at their best after the Sun has set and when the Moon is full. Plus: homegrown alternatives to chemical fertilizers, the best way to literally share the garden, and the secret to bug-free barbecues (it’s all about the rosemary …).

Finally, the Garden Guide reminds readers that there’s no wrong way to garden, except the one that stresses perfection over progress. “Whether tidy and well-manicured or wild and natural, the best garden is the one that the gardener truly enjoys!” emphasizes Stillman.

The 2020 Garden Guide is published annually—like its parent publication, The Old Farmer’s Almanac—and is now available for the budget-friendly price of $5.99 U.S./Can. at plant nurseries, home centers, and wherever books and magazines are sold. A full list of retailers can be found at Almanac.com/wheretobuy. A digital version of the Garden Guide, plus other resources, is available at Almanac.com/GardenGuide.

More and more people are taking up gardening to grow their own vegetables. The Old Farmer’s Almanac Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook is here to help every vegetable gardener—even those who have never touched a trowel and wouldn’t know mulch from mud. Featuring the best proven methods for sowing, growing, and harvesting—and now available for only $14.95—the 208-page, full-color, comprehensive Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook will be the one resource that vegetable gardeners never outgrow.

Finally, readers can share the joy of gardening with The Old Farmer’s Almanac Garden Guide by uploading planting photos and gardening shots and stories on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. Be sure to include #JoyofGardening or #GardenGuide.

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