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Last year I planted three packets of green beans.  Only five of the seeds sprouted.  The squirrels didn't get them because I didn't see any digging holes in the soil.  I wasn't sure what the culprit was.
This year my garden is doing much better.  All of the green beans I planted sprouted. 
The difference could be to several factors.  First of all, I added another landscaping timber to the edge of the garden, and added four bags of garden soil and four bags of cow manure.  This raised the garden up three inches.  A gardener at Semmes Elementary told me that a raised garden sprouts earlier because the soil gets warmer quicker.
I also have carpenter ants living in the landscaping timbers.  I treated the ants twice during the week before I built the garden up.  I can't say for sure, but carpenter ants may have eaten the seeds I planted last year.
When we purchased tomato plants, I told my husband I needed ones that are nematode resistant.  The tag on the pot didn't have the typical N that stands for this type of plant, so my husband asked the salesman.  He recommended adding lime to the soil to prevent these bugs from attacking the roots.
I also read an article that said old milk helps chase away nematodes, too.  Whenever I have old milk I pour it on the garden.
Well, so far, so good.  I just wanted to pass that news along.
5/9/2013 02:48:26

Excellent tip about the raised garden. We usually do that in the landscaping business, both from an aesthetic point but also the warmer ground temperatures

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