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This episode is part 1 of my talk with Robert Pavlis, author of the book “Garden Myths”, a book that pit’s his no-nonsense, scientific approach to gardening against many commonly held myths of gardening. In this part of the conversation we talk about myths related to germination, the toxicity of rhubarb, and fertilization.
Thanks for a great podcast.
As a long time farmer peas and beans germinate best dry. Exactly the worst seeds to soak. If my soil is damp I don’t water until they are up and strong. If the soil is dry I water once and not again till they are up in strong. I avoid planting them before rain spells or you will get poor germ.
I’ve never soaked seeds, out of pure laziness! It was so nice to hear from Robert that my laziness was paying off so well! Thanks for commenting 🙂
Regarding soil testing (which I agree is a good thing), my understanding is that testing accurately for N levels is extremely difficult and in many cases can be irrelevant because N levels are not stable. Otherwise, I think they are quite valuable, especially in showing ph levels.
Loved this discussion especially regarding finding accurate and useful gardening information. Like both of you I search out university publications and academic studies. Another “truth filter” I use is to look for successful commercial gardening sites – that is, real-life vegetable farmers. These are the folks that can’t afford to waste their time and resources on things that don’t significantly improve either the yield or the quality of their crops.
However, my absolute best technique for evaluating gardening tips or suggestions is to simply Google the tip, prefaced by “Garden Myth” – this way I tend to find more rational and scientific advice. By the way, that’s how I found Robert Pavlis’ site many years ago. Thank you both.
I do the same “garden myth” trick whenever something sounds fishy. I find it very rare that I find my instincts to be wrong when it comes to sniffing out the BS. I’m so glad that Robert has the patience to write these books and run his blogs.