• Limoneira & Agromin Donate Carrot Seed Growing Kits to Santa Paula Kids - Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at

  • Limoneira Company and Agromin have teamed up with the Ventura County Resource Conservation District (VCRCD) to donate 183 "Carrots for Kids" seed growing kits to third and fourth graders in the Santa Paula Elementary School District. The carrot kit distribution is part of the VCRCD's efforts to educate local schoolchildren about the value of agriculture and growing their own food.

    "All the kids have been highly involved and enthusiastic about the topic," says Mary Maranville, environmental education outreach coordinator for VCRCD. "Kids love learning about agriculture, gardening and details about fruits and vegetables. Handing out the carrot kits is a lovely way to end the presentation."

    "Even in a community such as Santa Paula with its rich agricultural history, many young students don't make the connection between the acres of farmland around them and the food on their table," says Harold Edwards, president and CEO of Santa Paula-headquartered Limoneira Company and one of the country's largest citrus and avocado producers. "The VCRCD is helping make that connection. Having kids care for their own carrots as they grow from seeds to eatable vegetables brings it home even further."

    The kits contain a green recycling component. Agromin, one of California's largest green materials recycling companies with a 10-acre facility on Limoneira property, includes potting soil made from locally collected green materials (i.e., grass clippings, leaves, wood) in the kits. "The soil teaches students that the green waste we generate at home can be collected, composted and turned into eco-friendly soil products that can then be returned to the earth," says Bill Camarillo, Agromin CEO. "By being conscious of recycling their green material, the students can create a more sustainable community and help close the recycling loop."

    Maranville is scheduled to speak at other schools in Ventura County to spread the agriculture and conservation message. For more information, contact her at 805-386-4489, e-mail: mary.maranville@vcrcd.org.

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  • Gardeners and Gardens Enjoy Cool Fall Weather In October - at
  • October finally brings relief from summer heat, allowing both gardeners and gardens to enjoy a temperate climate for planting an array of cool season vegetables, trees and shrubs, says Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of premium soil products and one of the state's largest green materials recycling companies.

    Plant Bedding Plants: Plant now for colorful blooms by Thanksgiving. Use nursery six-packs instead of costlier annuals in larger containers. In fall, smaller plants grow bigger and will flower longer than their larger counterparts.

    Landscape Trees and Shrubs: Plant drought-resistant trees and shrubs so they have the long, cooler winter months to establish themselves before summer heat. Avoid frost-sensitive plants and those best suited to summer planting. Drought-resistant trees and shrubs include Eucalyptus, California pepper, California sycamore (drought tolerant once established), coast live oak, Italian buckthorn and oleander.

    Let Roses Rest: Stop fertilizing roses, water sparingly and don't cut dead flowers. This will let plants make rose hips (fruits) to allow a smooth transition to winter dormancy.

    Plant cool season vegetables: Pull out summer vegetables that have stopped producing. Buy six packs of seasonal vegetables including cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, garlic, peas, spinach, Brussels sprouts, lettuce and rutabaga. Plant them in well cultivated and amended soil.

    Spruce up perennials: Thin out perennials including Shasta daisies, callas and yarrow. Prune overgrown and dead stems, preferably almost to the ground. When the plants grow back, they will fuller with a less straggly appearance.

    Herb season: Hardy herbs that can be planted in fall include garlic, oregano, parsley, rosemary, chives, cilantro, dill, fennel and thyme. Basil goes to flower in fall so harvest and dry the leaves and use them for winter cooking.

    Cut back on watering: Unless we experience unusually strong and prolonged hot Santa Ana winds, gardeners can reduce the amount of water for their lawn, garden, trees and shrubs. Make sure water timers are shut off when it rains.

    For more gardening tips, go to www.agromin.com.

    About Agromin:

    Agromin manufactures premium soil products for the farmers, landscapers and consumers. Agromin is also the green waste recycler for over 50 Southern California communities. Each month, Agromin receives and processes thousands of tons of urban wood and green waste. Agromin then uses a safe, organic and scientific system to formulate its soil products from the processed recycled green waste. The result is more vigorous and healthier plants and gardens, and on the conservation side, more room in landfills and less greenhouse gas emissions. Agromin is the U.S. Composting Council's "Composter of the Year."

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  • September Gardening Tips - Monday, September 14, 2009 at
  • While most gardeners around the country are winding down their gardens for the year, Southern California gardeners can plant a fresh crop of vegetables and blooms in September and October for enjoyment during fall and winter, says Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of premium soil products and one of the state's largest green materials recycling companies.

    Prepare Your Soil For Fall Flowers: Remove annuals. Break up and till the soil and generously add compost or organic planting mix. You may want to wait a week or two before adding fresh plants. This will give weeds enough time to germinate. Remove the weeds while they are small so they will be less of a headache later on.

    Plant Your Winter Flower Garden: Begin planting your fall and winter flower garden towards the end of September. While blasts of hot, Santa Ana winds will blow from September through November, September nights are generally cool and days pleasantly warm--perfect growing conditions. Your fall garden can include calendula, delphiniums, larkspur, Iceland poppy, pansies, snapdragon and stock. In shady areas, plant primrose, daisies and cineraria.

    Trim Perennials: Perennials are beginning to lose their summer luster. Trim excess plant growth and remove sagging summer flowers.

    Plant Wildflowers: Instead of scattering wildflower seeds on the surface of the soil and hope they will grow, for best results, rake the soil gently, spread the seeds and cover lightly with soil. The seeds will begin to germinate once wet weather arrives.

    Plant Spring Bulbs: Spring bulbs will soon be available at local nurseries. Now is the time to plant bulbs for such plants as tulips, daffodils and hyacinth.

    Plant Your Vegetables: When summer vegetable plants stop producing a robust crop (late September or October), remove the plants and replace them with vegetable plants that will produce through winter. Cool weather vegetables include cabbage, peas, broccoli, lettuce and green onions.

    Prepare for the Santa Ana Winds: Santa Ana winds can wreck havoc on newly planted trees, shrubs and gardens. New, shallow root systems can't replace water as fast as water is drawn from leaves by the winds. The winds can devastate a garden in a matter of days if water is not provided. When winds kick up, be prepared to quickly get out the garden hose and give your plants the moisture they need.

    For more gardening tips, go to www.agromin.com.

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