Slug Management

Slugs have always thrived in the cool, damp weather of Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Yet in recent years, slugs have been eating their way through wider swaths of valuable crops. It’s a problem that continues to get worse—and one that can’t be solved with chemicals. (Even chemicals seem to lose their effectiveness rather quickly, as slugs…

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Central Oregon Basalt Products recently donated several hundred pounds of its all-natural Cascade Minerals Remineralizing Soil Booster to a minimum security facility operated by Oregon’s Department of Corrections. Inmates who participated in the facility’s Master Gardener Program conducted a greenhouse study using common houseplants and a variety of soil combinations to grow indoor botanicals. The…

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You might say that it takes true “grit” to be a farmer—or a backyard gardener, for that matter. It takes resolve and strength of character to deal with all the things that Mother Nature throws at you. The word “grit” can also mean small, loose particles of stone or sand. When it comes to rock…

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“How much should I use?” is probably the most frequently asked question that we receive from first-time users of volcanic rock dust. Naturally, most people are concerned about any potential dangers associated with overuse. We cannot speak for other brands, but we can give you some practical advice for using Cascade Minerals Remineralizing Soil Booster…

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It’s great to see how composting is trending on social media. Suddenly, compost is “cool” again. (Figuratively, that is. Learn how to turn up the heat on your compost pile by reading our previous blog post, “Bring On the Heat: Why Volcanic Basalt is a Composter’s Best Friend.”) However, no amount of organic compost will…

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Bonsai

Here in Oregon, we are blessed with an abundance of natural beauty both large and small. Take the giant, Miocene-era blocks of volcanic basalt that make up much of the Western Cascades and serve as the source of our all-natural Remineralizing Soil Booster. In a more urban setting, the Lan Su Chinese Garden in downtown…

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Lettuce

At its most basic, hydroponic gardening refers to the practice of growing plants without soil. Given the massive degradation of our earth’s soils over the past century (which requires ever-increasing amounts of fertilizer to produce even moderate yields), it’s not surprising that more and more growers are turning to hydroponics to produce the crops that…

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Compost Pile

We know that composting is a smart thing to do. So is choosing organic produce over conventionally grown food to feed ourselves and our families. But the reality is that it’s not always possible for everyone to buy organic all the time. For some people, it’s not just a matter of availability but also a…

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Houseplant

After months of outdoor gardening, our attention has turned indoors. Now is a good time to take stock of the health of our houseplants and to give them the TLC they need to thrive during the winter. The first thing to understand is that most of the plants that we consider houseplants come from tropical…

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All-Natural De-Icer

As we write this, an early Arctic blast is sweeping across the country bringing snow and freezing rain. Judging from the weather predictions, businesses, municipalities and homeowners will face a busy season of trying to prevent icy winter slips, slides and falls. The good news is that there are all-natural alternatives to rock salt and…

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