About Leanne Philip

Dr. Leanne J Philip, BSc. (Hon.); MSc.; PhD. is the Managing Director & Chief Scientist of Soil Advocates Inc. She studied at the University of Guelph as an undergraduate (Plant Biology, Environmental Management and Urban Horticulture) and as a graduate student (Plant & Soil Interactions). She has a keen interest in soil sciences, which lead her to the University of British Columbia in Vancouver for doctoral studies in soil carbon sequestration and movement within British Columbia’s clear-cut soils. Further work in soil sciences in Europe and Canada reinforced Dr. Philip’s belief that soil processes and mechanisms belowground drive aboveground aesthetics and plant interactions. While active in both research, mentorship and teaching, most recently Dr. Philip has been working in applied soil sciences in industry and community outreach. Dr. Philip is a native of southern Ontario and is a strong advocate for scientific literacy within her community and responsible environmental stewardship.

Yes, You Can Blend Your Own Soil. Here’s How.

Most people looking to pot plants or put new soil in their home gardens will pick up pre-mixed bags of soil at their local garden center. However, you do have the option to blend your own soil. Doing so allows you to better customize the soil to certain plant types and conditions. This is especially […]

By |2019-04-02T13:36:08-04:00April 2nd, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Soil Searching: Picking the Right Soil for Indoor Plants

Have questions about which type of potting soil is right for your indoor plants? It’s understandable—you’re bound to find a wide variety of soils at your local garden center, including prepackaged mixes for house plants. The type of soil you need really depends on the type of plant you have.

First, it’s important to understand that […]

By |2019-03-26T09:30:58-04:00March 26th, 2019|Categories: Blog|

How’s Your Soil IQ?

Soil is a dynamic force in nature and comes in wide varieties that all serve different roles in the ecosystem. It has physical, chemical, and biological properties that work together to create what you see aboveground. Organic matter, gases, liquids, and countless organisms make up every form of soil. Everything from evergreen pines to fungi […]

By |2019-03-19T11:50:32-04:00March 19th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Why is the Term “Change” Such a Charged Word?

Change is hard. It can also be controversial. But what is it about the word “change” that can produce such harsh, strong reactions?

Perhaps the single-biggest example we can discuss in the natural world is climate change.

Many experts believe climate change to be the single-biggest threat facing the world today, more than any terrorist organization […]

By |2019-03-11T21:36:11-04:00March 12th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

The Dangers of Sunscreen Lotions in Our Water

Sunscreen and sunny days go together like peanut butter and jam. But there is some evidence that a buildup of sunscreen lotions in the water could potentially damage the environment.

One report in the New York Times earlier this year indicated sunscreen can be especially hazardous to the health of coral reefs. Some tour companies […]

By |2019-03-05T17:29:44-05:00March 5th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

Ever Wondered Where These Popular Gardening-Related Phrases Come From?

Have you ever noticed how many figures of speech we use in our everyday conversations that have some gardening-related themes to them? Consider, for example, phrases such as:

• “The grass is always greener on the other side.”
• “That kid is growing like a weed!”
• “She really has a green thumb.”

These and other phrases are commonly […]

Sugar Kelp and Sea Greens: New Organic Sources of Fertilizer & Ingredients in Soil Blends

Over the last decade, various forms of kelp and seaweed have become increasingly popular sources of fertilizer and ingredients in soil blends you can find at your local garden store. But why exactly is this?

Here are just a few examples of some of the benefits associated with using seaweed in fertilizer:

  • Maintaining workforce: We’ll get […]
By |2019-02-15T16:11:43-05:00February 19th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , |

Once the Forest Fire is Out…

This was an especially awful year for forest fires in the western North America. Both British Columbia and California were ablaze most of the late summer and into September before firefighters were finally able to get the flames under control.

Still, there is a misconception that all forest fires are inherently bad. While it’s certainly true […]

By |2019-02-11T22:33:51-05:00February 12th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , |

What’s Your Favorite Tree Form?

A tree’s form refers to its shape, which occurs naturally or can be altered through pruning. Observing the form of a tree can help you identify its species. It can also alter the area surrounding the tree and play a large role in the aesthetics of a yard or piece of land.

Different types of trees […]

By |2019-02-04T20:29:59-05:00February 5th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , |

The Perilous Life of a Street Tree –Why Are They Dying at Such an Alarming Rate?

Passing trees planted along roads and walkways helps us feel more connected to nature each day. Cities across Canada – and the entire world – have implemented programs to plant new trees to liven up the city streets, shade sidewalks, provide homes to animals and clean the neighborhood air.

However, these street trees are subjected to […]

By |2019-01-28T11:16:54-05:00January 29th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , |
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