Independent Garden Centers, or IGC’s, are some of our all time favorite stores. Today, we get to visit two of the countries best IGC’s, The Natural Gardener and The Great Outdoors, both located in Austin, Texas.
Our first stop, The Natural Gardener, is seated on 8 acres of Texas hill country. This IGC is known for its pioneering work in organic gardening and sustainable living. The Natural Gardener is a world-class gardening destination, providing everything from classes to farm animals, to a wildlife habitat. John Dromgoole takes on a tour around The Natural Gardener and what they bring their customers.
Next, Joe heads over to The Great Outdoors, in Eastern Austin, Texas, to explore what an urban garden center is all about. Located only 10 miles outside of the city, they pride themselves on their customer service and their knowledgeable staff. One of the many things that Independent Garden Center’s are known for are the personalized experiences you will receive once you step inside of one. The Great Outdoors will definitely not disappoint in all of the things they bring to the customer, from bringing in the best and newest plants available to providing educational seminars.
For additional information, check out these sites:
How To Make Compost Tea (Download the PDF)
Chef Nathan’s Swiss Chard Frittata
This episode and site, as well as other garden shows, continue to promote the use of compost teas. Yet, controlled studies from England and the US have shown no benefit, and in at least one study, some detriment. Are you aware of scientifically constructed studies which show otherwise or is this more urban legend than real? Without true controlled studies, all of the anecdotal praises mean nothing, and lead to the possibility of much wasted time and expense. I try to garden as organically as possible, but I am not convinced that all of these popular methods have merit beyond myth.
Joe Lamp'l says
Hi Beeg. Although we do talk about compost tea from time to time, we recognize that not everyone feels the same way about it’s purported effectiveness–especially in the academic community. We have close ties with many in this profession, and we do not advocate its effectiveness more than we know it to be on a factual basis.
While we have demonstrated segments on how to make it, as in the episode you saw, any favorable opinions from the ones reporting as such are their own.
Your opinion aligns with some of our trusted academic advisors and I respect their research. While compost tea and other home brews may not be all that some people claim, users have formed opinions on both sides and feel strongly about their opinion. While the science may not support the claims, I don’t doubt the claims by several organic gardeners I know personally and respect that swear by it. Occasionally showing a segment on how to make it is about as far as we go on this topic. We have not taken a position of stating that it works or doesn’t. I can’t speak for other garden shows.
Thanks for taking the time to write and share your thoughts here.
Love this episode! One of my favorites IGCs is Family Tree Nursery in Snellville, GA.