You’ll find lots of new gardening products hitting the shelves and catalogs this spring – many of them enviro-friendly.

Here’s a sampling of what’s new, available at many gardening centers:

– EarthBox. Think automatic garden in a box. This plastic box – a little more than 1 foot wide and 2 feet long – has a self-watering reservoir in the bottom and a plastic sheet that goes over the potting mix to reduce evaporation and stop weeds. Just keep the reservoir full and it’s brainless growing (www.earth box.com, $50).

– Stone carpets. No need to push around wheelbarrows full of stones to build a stone path anymore. This product from the Tenax Corp. bonds stone to 4-foot sections of mesh so you can just roll out instant paths. ($49 per box).

– Leatherman genus pruning multitool. This one fold-up gadget has a tool for any yard job you can imagine: pruners, a wire cutter, screwdrivers, mini-saw, bottle opener, sharpening stick and more ($99.99).

– Revolution planter. An 8-inch-diameter hanging cage that lets you grow tomatoes out of the bottom. The cage is filled with soil and has a built-in water reservoir. Plant a tomato in the bottom, hang it on the patio and you’ll get fruits at eye level. A good option for those with blight problems in their garden soil or for those with little space who just want one or two tomato plants (Gardener’s Supply catalog at www.gardeners.com, $19.95).

– Ultra-green. This potting mix is 100 percent organic with no peat (it’s a blend of compost, worm poop, coir and perlite), as well as made using equipment powered by wind and waste oil. Developed by soil scientist Mark Highland (www.org anicmechanicsoil.com, $8.99 -$10.49 for 16-quart bag).

– Terracyle all-purpose potting mix. Also a peat-free mix, this blend of compost, coir and worm poop sells in recycled 1-gallon milk jugs (Wal-Mart, Target, Home Depot, $5).

– Escar-Go Supreme. Get rid of slugs and snails without the heavy-handed chemicals of yesteryear. This granular product contains pet- and wildlife-safe iron phosphate and a fermented bacterium called Spinosad to make slugs so sick they stop eating and die. Also controls cutworms and earwigs (Gardens Alive catalog, www.GardensAlive.com, $9.95 for a 13-ounce box).

– PotHoles drainage discs. Keep soil from dribbling out through the drainage holes of your pots with these 5- or 6.5-inch porous discs. The material is breathable and rot-resistant and lasts for years (www .charleysgreenhouse.com or www.floriantools.com, $9.95 -$12.95 per pair).

Essex plant supports. These four-legged plant supports are shaped like a vase so they help tall flowers stand up in the garden in bouquet fashion. Elegant. Made of powder-coated black steel (Gardener’s Supply catalog, www.gardeners.com, $24.95-$29.95 per pair).

Dynamite organic. The first organic-certified (OMRI listed) granular fertilizer that’s formulated to last for three months in a single application. Think timed-release Osmocote, only organic. It’s derived from feather meal, blood meal, bone meal and potash, carries a 10-2-8 nutrient ratio and is odorless (Home Depot or www.dynamite plantfood.com, $8.99 for a 2-pound container).

ColorStorm premium rubber hose. Dramm Corp. is offering high-quality, crush- and kink-resistant rubber hoses that come in six “rainbow” colors to match the company’s popular Watering Wands. (Ace and True Value hardware stores or www.dramm.com, $50 for 50-foot hose).

George Weigel, a certified horticulturist, covers gardening for the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa. He can be contacted at [email protected]


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