Ecological * Native Species * Organic Gardening

Tips for growing a biodiverse garden that supports your local ecosystem. Ideas include growing native plants to support wildlife including pollinators, and best…
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Spinach plants bolting in garden.
Why Vegetables Bolt & How To Prevent It — Empress of Dirt
Wondering if your plants are bolting? Learn how to recognize bolting, find out if bolted vegetable plants are edible, and use our tips to prevent it in the future. You may notice this happening more and more during unusually hot summers.
Woman watering trashcan planted with flowering native plants including sunflowers, echinacea, and black-eyed susan.
How to Create a Pollinator-Friendly Container Garden
You don't need a large space to benefit the local ecosystem. This DIY pollinator garden is in a repurposed trashcan and loaded with native, flowering perennials and annuals.
Collage with Empress of Dirt in garden with bird nest, bunny rabbit, pussywillow branches, and bee.
2024 Spring Gardening Checklist (Free Printable)
Even if you're waiting for the risk of frost to pass, there are plenty of important tasks to get done in the spring garden. Use this free printable list to guide the way.
Garden bed planted with an assortment of perennials.
Buying Soil For Your Garden? Read This First
Whether marketed as topsoil, black soil, black earth, or some other catchy phrase, it’s not easy to know what’s in the bag. Use these tips to help guide your soil shopping decisions.
Brick pathway before and after weed removal. Design, Ideas, Growing Vegetables, Gardening, Diy, Weed Removal, Herbicides, Diy Weed Killer, Growing Plants
How to Remove Weeds Between Bricks (Without Herbicides) — Empress of Dirt
If your brick patio or path has weeds in the gaps, these practical tips will help revive the space and stop regrowth with resorting to herbicides.
Ladybug on plant leaf. Bugs And Insects, Garden Care, Garden Pest Control, Pests, Garden Pests, Garden Insects, Organic Insecticide, Pest Prevention
Ladybugs: A Guide For Gardeners — Empress of Dirt
Whether you call them “ladybugs” or “lady bird beetles” or “lady beetles,” native species are welcome garden predators. They feast on various insect pests including thrips, scales, aphids, and spider mites. In recent years the sale of ladybugs has become popular at plant nurseries. Sold as natural predators, it sounds like a good pesticide-free way to deal with pests. Unfortunately, there are drawbacks that may cause more harm than good.
Butterfly landing on yellow flowers in garden Pollinator Garden, Wild Bees, Bees, Wildlife Habitat, Habitats, Butterfly Garden, Wild Birds
How to Identify Butterflies in Your Garden — Empress of Dirt
Need help identifying butterflies? These quick tips show how to recognize the differences between various groups of butterflies.
Collage showing wildlife fence created from tree branches. Nature, Garden Containers, Garden Decor, Garden Items, Backyard Garden, Diy Garden, Backyard Birds
Create a Wildlife-Friendly Fence with Old Branches & Trimmings — Empress of Dirt
Hang onto old tree branches and shrub cuttings and create a dead hedge or hedgerow. It’s both a low-cost privacy barrier plus habitat and nourishment for countless creatures.
Animal pollinators incuding bees, bats, birds, and lizards. Bee Friendly, Bug Control, Bee Friendly Garden, Mammals
Welcome Bees—But Don't Forget These Other Pollinators
In recent years we have seen a greater awareness of the importance of pollinators like birds, butterflies, and bees. But what about all the other pollinators that form our ecosystems? Find out what we’re overlooking with this selection from The Pollinator Victory Garden by Kim Eierman.
Wildflowers growing in a garden. Outdoor, Fruit, Porches, Organic Gardening, Camper, Invasive Plants, Invasive Species
Grow No Harm: How Gardeners Can Help Avoid Invasive Plants
Tips for growing native plants instead of invasive species that out-compete with existing habitat.
Composite image of butterfly and caterpillar on garden plants. Plants, Bees Plants, Plant Species, Planting Herbs, Bee Garden
60 Plants Butterflies Must Have to Survive — Empress of Dirt
We know it’s important to provide flowers that attract butterflies, but there’s another important element that is often overlooked: the baby nursery. Without the specific plant species needed, called larval host plants, butterflies have nowhere to lay their eggs. See what you can grow to support their survival.
Grass lawn versus similar area sown with low-growing wildflowers and ground covers. Flowers, Beautiful, Wild, Flores, Modern, Wallpaper, Tips, Jardim
How to Replace Lawn With Wildflower Seed Mix — Empress of Dirt
Whether you want to reduce your grass lawn or replace it, there are lots of options for alternative eco-lawns including wildflowers, clovers, and fescue grass seed mixes. The recommended seed mixes are suited to hardiness zones 3 to 9 in Canada and the United States.
Spring flowering bulb in garden attractive to pollinators. Planting Flowers, Spring Flowering Bulbs, Summer Flowering Bulbs, Planting Bulbs, Spring Bulbs, Perennial Bulbs, Early Spring Flowers, Spring Blooms, Hardy Perennials
20 Spring Bulbs For Pollinators
When it comes to helping pollinators in spring, not all flowering bulbs provide the nectar bees and other insects need. Find out which early spring flowers provide nourishment for emerging pollinators.
Garden with a diverse selection of flowering plants. Starting A Garden, Thriving Garden, Gardening Tips, Healthy Garden, Garden Problems, Creative Gardening, Garden Plants
12 Smart Tips for Starting a Budget-Friendly Organic Garden
Want to start a garden on a budget while growing organically? These tips provide a smart, long-term approach to gardening with frugal yet sustainable practices. Whether you’re growing veggies, annuals, perennials, or some combination, there are basic ways to save money while growing a thriving garden.
Organic raised bed garden with flowers and vegetables. Compost, Seeds, Organic Seeds, Garden Prepping, Homesteading, Garden Tips
How the Term "Organic" Misleads Gardeners
Whether we identify as organic gardeners, grow organically, or buy organic seeds, the word organic has many meanings, some potentially misleading for gardeners.
A bee hovering near a frilly peony flower in garden. Peonies, Peony Flower, Special Flowers, Peony, Flower, Bloom
The Trouble With Double Flowers (Sorry, Pollinators!) — Empress of Dirt
While we love the beauty of double flowers like hybrid roses, peonies, and coneflowers, compact, frilly blooms make it impossible for pollinators to collect nectar and pollen.
Birds, flowers, and vegetables in a garden. Vegetable Garden, Container Gardening, Gardens, Watering, Garden Projects, Harvest Time
5 Good For The Earth (& You) Garden Resolutions
Ready to make this your best gardening year yet? These resolutions are both good for the earth and good for you. And, most importantly, it’s all about balance, taking on what’s do-able, and letting go of the rest.
Birds, flowers, caterpillars, dragonflies, bees, berries, in the garden. Eco Garden, Plant Needs, Garden Organization
45 Ridiculously Simple & Helpful Eco-Beneficial Garden Tips — Empress of Dirt
When you love nature, eco-friendly, beneficial garden choices matter. Gone are the harmful, quick fixes and instead we look at the big picture following tips and principles that benefit the environment long-term—and create a thriving growing space.
Seedlings in pots ready for planting. Companion Planting, Gardening For Beginners, Transplanting Plants, Gardening 101, Gardening Blog
10 Beginner Garden Tips That Avoid Bloopers (Great & Small)
While the actual experience of gardening will always be our best teacher, those of us who want our gardens to support local eco-systems can avoid some regrets (great and small) by using these practical tips.
Want to attract dragonflies to your garden? It’s all about water, plants, and animals. You’ll need a pond with aquatic plants and diverse natural habitat to support native wildlife including pollinators like bees and butterflies. Dragonfly Habitat, Aquatic Plants, Water Garden, Ponds For Small Gardens, Pond Plants, Water Plants
How To Welcome Dragonflies To Your Garden
Want to attract dragonflies to your garden? It’s all about water, plants, and animals. You’ll need a pond with aquatic plants and diverse natural habitat to support native wildlife including pollinators like bees and butterflies.
Hummingbird hovering over a pink flower to collect nectar. Dessert, Hummingbird Flowers, Flowers That Attract Hummingbirds, Hummingbird Plants, Humming Bird Feeders, Hummingbird Garden, Humming Birds, How To Attract Hummingbirds
How To Grow a Hummingbird-Friendly Garden — Empress of Dirt
Want to support the hummingbirds in your garden? They need nectar, bugs, shelter, and more. And, of course, no pesticides or herbicides.
House with large flowering perennial garden. Sustainable Garden, Soil Amendment, Eco Friendly Garden, Shrubs
Tips For Transitioning Into Eco-Friendly Gardening — Empress of Dirt
Many of us started gardening before we ever understood the ecological impact of our choices. Little did we know how seemingly innocuous decisions like plant selections, soil amendments, or pest management can have very different outcomes, either helping or harming the environment. While one garden alone may not make a big impact, the cumulative effect of millions of us toiling away in our yards really adds up.
Various moth species in the garden. Moth Species, Butterfly Species, Entomology
The Surprising Benefits of Moths in Your Garden
Just like butterflies, native moths are important plant pollinators and act as a food source for other animals. While invasive species pose challenges, the many thousands of beneficial moth species deserve their rightful place in nature and our gardens.
Green frog sitting on stone surface. Frog Species, Frog And Toad, Backyard Bee, Frog Eggs
Why Frogs & Toads Are Good For Our Gardens
It’s a good sign to have native frogs and toads in our gardens. It means we’re providing the food and habitat these environmentally-sensitive creatures need to thrive. Find out what you can do to attract them and why they are important in a healthy ecosystem.
How To Use Fall Leaves To Improve Your Garden Organic Gardening Tips, Starting Seeds Indoors, Garden Soil, Vegetable Garden Planning, Fertilizer, Kill Weeds Naturally
How To Use Fall Leaves To Improve Your Garden
How To Use Fall Leaves To Improve Your Garden
Monarch butterfly collecting nectar on a coneflower. Monarch Butterfly Garden, Growing, Garden, Garden And Yard, Blue Bayou, Monarch
How to Grow a Monarch Butterfly Garden
Monarch Butterflies: How Gardeners Can Truly Help