Program Information
May 2013


Air Dates: 2 & 5 | 9 & 12 | 16 & 19 | 23 & 26
Monthly Program Listing


Episode 2144
Airs 5/2/13 and 5/5/13

On this episode, we’ll show you a way to have home-grown vegetables and herbs despite a lack of good soil or garden space. Straw bale gardening is simply container gardening that allows plants to thrive even while sitting on concrete. Jeff Poppen demonstrates how to double dig a bed for successful root crops. Troy Marden visits his vegetable garden in late spring to check yields. Marty DeHart demonstrates how to stratify seeds for perennial propagation. Julie Berbiglia highlights good vegetables for beginning urban gardeners to try like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, okra. For a step-up, try growing eggplant and strawberries.

Straw Bale Gardening

Keep the straps on the straw bale and they should be wrapping around the sides when you put the bale into place, with cut side of straw facing up. As soon as purchasing the bales, start watering thoroughly and keeping damp. The trick to successful bale gardening is never letting the bale get dry.

Days 1, 3 and 5: Apply 1/2 cup of nitrogen (34-0-0) or ammonium nitrate (46-0-0) and water in thoroughly and keep damp.
Days 2, 4, 6: Just water thoroughly.
Days 7, 8, 9: Apply ¼ cup of nitrogen and water thoroughly.
Day 10: Apply 1 cup of fertilizer. Can use one of the following: general fertilizer (10-10-10) or a covering layer of 2/3 bone meal to 1/3 blood meal, fish meal, a very thick layer of spent coffee grounds, or compost (1” layer of fresh chicken manure for example) for a more organic approach. Also, to balance the growing medium consider adding potassium by sprinkling on a handful of sulphate of potash (potassium sulfate).

Water thoroughly through Day 12 and then it should be ready to plant. Confirm this by sticking your hand in the straw. It should not be any warmer than body temperature.

For a different recipe for straw bale gardening, visit here


Episode 2145
Airs 5/5/13 and 5/12/13

We visit a mature hilltop garden brimming with native plants at peak springtime perfection. Troy Marden highlights the perennials, shrubs and trees that bring color and fragrance to this garden, and are dependable too. Annette Shrader discovers Country Gardens Nursery that has clusters of vine ripe tomatoes in mid-April. Julie Berbiglia learns how easy it is to do raised bed gardening.

Annette’s segment was taped at Country Gardens Nursery
Tim and Treva Yoder, proprietors
4212 Hwy. 49W.
Vanleer, TN 37181

Julie’s segment was taped at Home Depot #732, 100 Oaks
2535 Powell Avenue, Nashville TN
For more gardening information, visit




Episode 2146
Airs 5/16/13 and 5/19/13

Troy Marden demonstrates how to prepare a garden bed with essential nutrients and additives to get the most out of perennials. Annette Shrader delivers a showcase of sustainable plants that are sure to brighten the landscape for years to come. Jeff Poppen visits Bells Bend Farm to highlight farming methods that will extend the season, and preparations for an early Spring start to growing.

Annette’s segment was taped at Sunlight Garden Nursery
174 Golden Lane
Andersonville, TN 37705

Plants featured:
Woodland phlox
Creeping phlox
Columbine (wild)
Bleeding heart, old-fashioned
Japanese orchid
Virginia bluebells
Baptisia (false indigo)
Dianthus ‘Fire Pink’
Celandine poppy
Coreopsis ‘Mouse eared’
Tiarella ‘Pink Brushes’

Troy’s Soil Prep Tips:
*Break up soil, preferably in the Fall. This aids in incorporating air into the ground.
*Add soil conditioner, peat moss, compost, pine fines, old mulch-mix into the soil to loosen the clay.
*If incorporating hardwood mulch into the soil, add fertilizer to replenish the nitrogen lost in the decomposition process of the mulch.

Jeff’s segment was taped at Bells Bend Organic Farm




Episode 2147
Airs 5/23/13 and 5/26/13

Troy Marden visits a large woodland garden that reflects the beauty of the surrounding countryside, with low maintenance and plant sustainability in mind. Julie Berbiglia learns the importance of selecting the right product for those lawn and garden tasks of fertilization and weed prevention. We learn about homeowner responsibilities for healthy streams and waterways from a member of the Metro Storm Water division. Sheri Gramer has a quick tip about labeling tubers and bulbs before storing away for the dormant season.

Julie’s segment was taped at Home Depot, 100 Oaks
2335 Powell Avenue
Nashville, TN 37204