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Ashley Nicole simply explains companion planting.

Gardening influencer Ashley Nicole (@momjeansandgardenthings) has an easy tip for everyone having a hard time with their plants dying and getting destroyed by pests. It’s a time-honored technique called “companion planting,” where your main crop is surrounded by plants that repel bad insects and attract the good ones.

Nicole founded the blog Mom Jeans and Garden Things, where she shares “tips, tricks, and ideas on ways to grow your own herbal beauty routine.”

“If you’re a beginner gardener and you’re confused about companion planting, this simple formula is going to make everything make sense,” Nicole says in the clip. “There are three main components to companion planting. There’s the main crop … the flower, and the herb.”

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Rooftop gardens have become popular features of high rise apartments, but a grocery store in Canada has taken the idea a big step further.

According to Canadian Grocer, the 25,000 square foot rooftop garden of IGA Extra Famille Duchemin grocery store, created in 2017 in Montreal, produces about 35 types of produce that the store harvests and sells themselves. The certified organic crops include kale, lettuce, carrots, green beans, eggplant, garlic, tomatoes and spinach, and store co-owner Richard Duchemin says the produce sells "very well." The garden also includes beehives for honey.

The garden is even designed in the shape of the letters IGA, making quite a striking visual from the air. Duchemin told the Montreal Gazette that he hoped his store's rooftop would serve as an example for other grocery stores to follow.

"Why don't supermarkets plant vegetables on their roofs? Some restaurants have little boxes where they grow herbs," he said. "We pushed it further because we know we're able to sell what we produce here."

Check it out:

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N.J.’s eyes are dark and deep as he kneels in the garden, hands wrapped gently around the kale seedling.

We line peas on either side of the fencing I’ve brought, and I show him how to press each one down to the first knuckle on his index finger and then pat the soft dirt over the hole. The tomato plant doesn’t want to come out of the container. It’s root-bound, clinging to the pot; I tap the edges to loosen it and pull slowly on the stem.

“Plants are tough,“ I say, as I slice the roots with the edge of the trowel and then let him do the same thing to the other side. We wiggle the tangly, knotted white roots loose, and then he sets it in the hole we dug, snuggling it in and combing the soil with his fingers. Finally, we dot the front of the box with onion starts and poke them in, some of them already sprouting little green shoots from their tops.

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Have you ever thought about how much time and money you put into maintaining your lawn without getting anything back?

Grass lawns are so ubiquitous in America that they often — no pun intended — blend into the landscape. We rarely take time to consider how much of our personal and global resources lawns absorb — or why we even have them to begin with.

Lawns are actually an out-of-date cultural hangover from French aristocratic societies, a status symbol used to prove that one could afford to tend to a completely useless crop.

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