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Pick The Proper Fertilizer for Garden

fertilizerDo you now and then ask why your plants are hindered in development? Plants get supplements and sustenance from the dirt. As the plants develop, the supplements in the dirt get quickly spent and really soon, there is none cleared out. The underlying foundations of the plant then starts to investigate the encompassing range perpetually prompting a conflict with underlying foundations of different plants. The arrangement is to revive the dirt through utilization of compost and you start by picking the right manure for your garden.

Where helpful, we suggest you get your dirt tried so observe what supplements are available and in what rate. In view of the test outcomes, you can exceptionally encourage the dirt the supplements that require to be recharged. Yes it sounds appallingly entangled however in the event that you keep on reading, you will know it is very basic.

If you visit any garden supplies store, watch out for the fertilizer bags and note the labels. You might see some weird numbers on them. These numbers reflect the percentage of nitrogen, phosphate and potash in that bag i.e. the nutrient ratios. So, a 7-12-7 fertilizer bag contains 7% nitrogen, 12% phosphate, and 7% potash. Another bag might have 5-10-0. Which means it has no potash. There, now based on the soil test report, you can choose the right fertilizer bag for your Gardening Bligh Park.

Organic fertilizer : The difference between organic (natural) and chemical fertilizer is the speed of replenishment. Chemical fertilizer nourishes the soil almost instantly and results are visible virtually overnight. Organic fertilizer has to first decompose into the soil before the soil can absorb the nutrients released during the decomposition process. Once the nutrients are released and absorbed by the soil then only it becomes available to the plants.

So does this mean chemical fertilizer are better? Chemical fertilizers are used by farmers because they do not have the time to wait for organic fertilizer to decompose. Also, you have to be very careful when using chemical fertilizer. If you put even a vee bit more than required, it will burn the roots of the plants. It is like giving a patient excess dosage of a powerful drug. It is therefore best if chemical fertilizers are applied only by professionals. When it comes to organic fertilizer there is no such thing as too much or too little so it is totally safe for garden use.

– Organic fertilizers contribute organic matter to your soil thereby feeding soil microbes, improving soil structure, fighting fungal and bacterial diseases, and contributing to micro-nutrients in the soil.

– Most organic fertilizer is slow release of nutrients so plants get a steady supply of fresh energy.

These days Lawn Mowing Penrith supply chains also stock organic fertilizers that have been pre-formulated in a manner similar to chemical fertilizer but without the chemical effect. Thus, you have organic fertilizers with 5% nitrogen, 5% phosphate and 5% potash and so forth.

Whether you choose organic or chemical should ideally depend on the state of your garden. If your plants need immediate nutrition, chemical fertilizer will do the trick. It might be best though, to use a mix of organic and chemical  i.e. a vee bit of chemical fertilizer to perk up the soil and rest powered by organics.

 

Vertical Garden Tips

vertical-garden# Settle on the Type of Garden

There are a wide range of assortments of vertical patio nurseries to browse. One simple alternative is a compartment style cultivate, which implies pruned plants are joined to a divider or showed in columns, or grower are stacked. Another is a “pocket” plant, including plants tucked into pockets produced using felt or canvas. Vertical patio nurseries can likewise be developed in a huge plastic or wooden divider grower with spaces or boards, or in reused wooden delivery beds—for these frameworks, the dirt is less contained, so wire work is at times used to keep the substance from spilling. In wooden beds (which you can buy at Walmart or other home redesign stores), arranging texture is stapled to the back, base, and sides of the bed. Within the bed is totally loaded with soil, and plants are developed in the support openings.

# Think About Placement

A vertical garden can go just about anywhere – indoors or outdoors. Let the type of sun exposure the plants will need determine where you place the garden. For example, if you’re planning on including succulent plants (like cacti), Brian Sullivan, Vice President for Gardens, Landscape and Outdoor Collections at The New York Botanical Garden, suggests choosing a space that has “half-exposure,” as opposed to full shade or full sun. “Some of the containers available are modular so you can hang them outside for the summer and bring them indoors for the winter,” says Sullivan.

# Choose Your Plants

In addition to succulents, you can try growing herbs, vegetables, trailing varieties like philodendron, native perennials (plants or flowers that are naturally grown in certain regions), and ferns, suggests Janice Goodman, President of Cityscapes Inc. in Boston. You’ll want to be aware of the “flexibility” of these plants since you’re growing them vertically. “I would be inclined to try herbaceous plants more so than woody ones, because the herbaceous kind are a little more flexible in the way they fall,” says Sullivan. Woody varietals—like trees, shrubs, or vines—have rigid, wooden stems, so they’ll grow parallel to the floor and stick out instead of flowing down. On the other hand, herbaceous plants, like flowers and ferns, have soft, green stems, so they’ll “droop” down.

# Mix Plants with the Same “Habit”

“In general, you’ll want to choose all-sun or all-shade plants,” says Sullivan. “You also want to use ones that have the same rate of growth. Let’s say you put one that has slow growth next to one with faster growth; the more aggressive kind is going to take over and shade out the other.”

# Start With Planting Basics

“Use potting soil – that is key,” says Chris Lambton, a professional landscaper and host of DIY Network’s Yard Crashers. “Vertical gardens dry out quickly just like pots will. Potting soil helps retain the water and hold in the moisture.” Another important factor is gravity, which pulls the water down. “Plants that don’t need as much water are recommended for the top part of the garden, since that part dries quickly,” says Goodman. Place the ones more suited for wetter conditions at the bottom of the system.

# Prep Beforehand

If you’re using a wooden pallet or container with panels, you’ll want to grow the plants horizontally for a few weeks to let the roots establish themselves and help hold the soil in place. “If you try to plant it vertically first, the roots have to grow still so you’re dealing with gravity pulling your soil,” says Sullivan. “Sometimes people use wire and glue to hold things together, but I find that when you grow it flat at first and then stand it up, the plant does the work.” You can also slowly elevate the container to a vertical position over the course of a few weeks to secure the garden.

# Consider a Drip Irrigation System

At first, your vertical garden might need more maintenance than a regular in-the-ground garden or container plant. These living walls are more compact and therefore have less soil, so they may need to be watered more often. “Watering can be tricky and the bigger the living wall, the more I would recommend incorporating drip irrigation,” says Becky Bourdeau, landscape designer at Potted in Los Angeles. These drip systems range from sophisticated with hoses and timers to more basic in which holes in the bottom of planters or pockets allow for water to drip down. You can also use a watering can as you would with containers, but you’ll want to be sure that water is being evenly distributed.

# Keep Some Extras on Hand

Of course, some greens will die out. “You might lose a couple of plants, so you’ll get holes and it will start to look ugly,” says Sullivan. “Keep a few extras on the side as a backup or insurance, so you can just plug in the new one.” This is especially easy if you have a container-style garden where there’s more of a separation between the plants.

Guide for Great Organic Lawn

great-organic-lawnWhen you’re eager truly hungry-what do you go after to fulfill that yearning? Something that tops you off and tastes debauchedly flavorful (however with no dietary esteem)? Alternately do you tend to pick entire nourishments that both fuel your body and offer greater picture medical advantages.

Fat-filled, sugar-loaded, handled snacks may “carry out the employment” and hit the spot when yearning hits, yet that moment delight for the most part accompanies a lot of frightful long haul outcomes that can adversy affect your body after some time.

Be that as it may, the sorts of entire nourishments that our bodies genuinely require dependably developed products of the soil, for instance frequently taste generally as astounding… just with none of the drawbacks.

Also, with yards, it’s one thing to have a lavish spread of turf that is the envy of the square. However, for me, a far and away superior prize is to accomplish that objective without the greater part of the poisonous chemicals that are so generally sold and utilized on yards the nation over.

Building up the overall health of the growing environment that feeds your lawn- and doing it naturally- will get you the same green grass on your own side of the fence, but with better, longer-lasting results and none of the negative side effects.

In our country, there is a huge market for products to put on our plants and lawns that promise incredible results: rapid growth, fewer weeds, and a minimum of pests and disease. And while most of these products admittedly do what they advertise, the environmental and potential health risks that come with using them are more significant than I’m willing to accept.

It was such a concern for one family; they made the switch cold turkey overnight. From a full-on, high chemical maintenance program to completely organic, on all 16-acres of their estate lawn! We were the first crew ever allowed in to document their amazing story.

Synthetic lawn fertilizers, for example, are salt-based. Used in excess, they’ll literally burn your grass. But even when used as directed, the chemical buildup in the soil can harm or even destroy the living organisms that Mother Nature has placed there for long-term benefits.

In fact, of the 30 most common lawn pesticides, 24 of them are toxic to fish and amphibious wildlife, according to beyondpesticides.org. Sixteen are toxic to birds. Eleven are toxic to bees. And these are products meant to be applied to the yard of your home.

To me, that’s simply unacceptable, to say the least. Like opening a box of Twinkies instead of reaching into the bag of trail mix right next to it. 

Five steps to an organic lawn you’ll love 

In the spirit of kicking a junk food habit to the curb, here are five steps I use each spring to feed my lawn a “whole foods” diet and implement a healthy regimen that satisfies and rewards in all the right ways.

# Get a soil test. The information that this test provides can help ensure that you are doing all you can to promote your soil’s health. Healthy soil, in turn, provides the best long-term benefits to your lawn.

Of all the important things a soil test will reveal, the main one I look to is the soil’s pH level. When this number is in the “ideal” range for growing grass, turf roots will be able to utilize nutrients already present, therefore minimizing the need to add anything further. Outside that range, and adding more chemicals will not only not help matters, it may make conditions worse.

The magic number? Somewhere between 6.5 and 7.0. Getting your soil’s pH level within that ideal range is a key factor to how lush your lawn is. And a soil test tells you how to get there.

Call your county extension service for the soil test kit and additional information.

# Clean up. I prefer to have a clean surface to work with before I add any product to my lawn. Thatch, leaf debris, and weeds can prevent soil amendments from making their way on or into the soil. A stiff rake and a little bit of elbow grease is usually all it takes to prep the lawn surface. Collect what you scratch up and add it to your compost.

# Aerate. A clean surface also paves the way for the probes of a tool called a core aerator. This piece of equipment extracts plugs (cores) of soil from the ground. These extracted cores relieve soil compaction by allowing more room in the ground for root expansion, oxygen exchange, and drainage. The small holes left behind after aerating also collect and hold soil amendments or fertilizer in place.

Yes, a yard full of extracted plugs looks messy. But it’s temporary. Within a few days, the cores will have washed back into the ground, having done their job.

Aerating is a very helpful step, but not one that is mandatory. Since a core aerator is a tool that sees one afternoon of work a year, it likely makes more sense to rent one than to purchase one and store it for the other 364 days.

# Feed the soil. Nearly all grass types (centipedegrass and buffalograss are two  common exceptions) are heavy feeders. I use two main products. And unlike synthetic fertilizers, both build soil health while feeding the lawn naturally.

Compost: It’s full of all the nutrients a lawn needs and includes lots of other beneficial ingredients that are important to building long-term soil and lawn health. A little bit of compost goes a long way, but you’ll still want to add at least a half-inch across the entire lawn surface.

For most yards, that can quickly exhaust your homemade compost supply and likely an impractical option for buying bagged compost. Instead, find a reputable bulk supplier that offers “STA Certified Compost.” This designation represents the Seal of Testing Assurance, which is issued by the US Composting Council.* Products carrying the STA designation have been analyzed for ten important criteria of quality compost.

Milorganite: When it comes to bagged fertilizer, this is my go-to, especially for lawns. It’s an organic, non-burning, slow-release nitrogen feeder with iron. Milorganite** works well at building a healthy lawn with good green color, and improves soil health, too. It features excellent consistency of its ingredients, is readily available, and is easy to apply with a rotary or drop spreader.

# Mow and water less. Use the techniques listed above, and you’ll end up with a lush, green lawn- yes, one that requires periodic mowing, but not too much. In an organic lawn maintenance routine, you allow your grass to grow to the upper height of its preferred range. This will result in more vigorous turf with deeper roots and fewer weeds, as taller blades will shade and outcompete weeds vying for the same space.

Another advantage to organically managed lawns: better soil health promotes deeper roots and better water retention capacity. Bottom line, they’re more drought-tolerant and require less supplemental irrigation.

 

Case Study: My Experience With Options

How to Find Great Review Sites

For a consumer, product reviews get to make sure that you can be able to learn more about the product even before you have purchased it, checking out the product reviews online will be simple and less time consuming and it will be able to tell you if the product can be able to satisfy you or not thus being able to make the purchase decision. For a client, the reviews will get to ensure that they can save much time having to shop for a product online, all that they can do is check out the comment section of the manufacturers website and they can be able to get the real review of the product, so doing will ensure that less time has been spent and also that the client does not waste money.

For an organization, therefore, the client reviews should be treasured since they get to ensure that you get to know what your clients expect from you, likewise, you can be able to make sure that you work on the features that might be disappointing for the client, likewise, if the product is of the best quality, you get to gain more and more clients since they can get to refer one another to try out the product. Therefore, you will be able to ensure that you can be able to gain more and more clients since once they have seen that you can be able to deal with their problems, they can recommend their friends or even family members to try out the product.

Likewise, when checking out your consumer reviews, you get to make sure that you can be able to understand each and every client individually, each and every client reviews a product according to how they had perceived it, if the product was able to satisfy their needs, you could get a 5-star rating. The ratings will, therefore, be able to identify the satisfaction levels of your clients, for the highest ratings, your clients are obviously satisfied with the services provided, for the medium rating, there is still work to be done and for the lowest rating, you will have to deal with these problems in the next production or manufacturing of the product.

Review sites will get to ensure that you can learn the way forward with your product, a good rating will indicate more organizational growth since you get to gain more and more clients. The organization will, therefore, be able to tell how well the product can be able to work and meet their clients’ satisfaction or even be able to ensure that they have solved any flaws within the product thus manufacturing a good of the best quality available.

Source: http://christyscozycorners.com/2016/12/spending-made-easy-make-money-stretch-hitting-stores/

Lawn Mowing And Lawn Edging Benefits

Property holders try for a rich and all around manicured garden. One of the best practices to keep your grass looking solid is customary yard cutting and garden edging. Other than the corrective angle, there are a few different advantages of normal grass cutting and edging.

A all around cut garden is a wonderful sight and adds to the general offer of your property. Customary cutting and edging keeps it looking great dependably. Actually, your very much kept up garden is motivation to be pleased with in spite of the fact that it involves some diligent work. In any case, keeping the grass trimmed decreases this workload to some degree a brisk keep running of the garden cutter does the occupation in a brief span.

Regular yard cutting advances even development. As you cut routinely, every one of the ranges of the garden get equivalent access to daylight and water prompting a uniform development. The grass additionally becomes solid and you have a lavish, green yard.

With regular lawn mowing, the grass is maintained well and is of better quality. A healthy lawn makes it easier to control weed growth, in fact, the healthy grass prevents the weeds from catching on.

Regular lawn mowing ensures that your garden is free from accumulated debris that might give rise to disease and pests in your yard. Cleaning the yard also becomes easier.

Regular mowing produces short grass clippings which need not be discarded but can be used as mulch for the lawn. The grass clippings break down into the soil providing natural fertilizer for the lawn which in turn promotes healthy growth.

Well, you may be mowing your lawn regularly, but that doesn’t complete the job. Your efforts will not show up unless you attend to the lawn edges. These are narrow strips of grass lining the driveway or tree trunks and light poles where the lawn mower can’t be used. A lawn edger may be used to cut the grass around these areas.

Another option to keep the lawn edges sharp is to create borders with materials like brick, concrete or stone. This helps to separate one section of your garden from another and prevents the grass from growing over the flowerbeds or the pathway.

Gardener Cleanup Services gives your garden a crisp and neat look. Adding borders not only adds to the beauty of your lawn but saves you time not having to trim grass around the edges. It is a simple and practical way to give your lawn a well-maintained and manicured appearance.

Small Space Simple Garden

# A Cutting Garden

What to plant : Tall, showy dahlias and gloriosa daisies (such as those pictured in this eight-foot-square plot) make lovely arrangements. Dwarf cosmos and salvia round out the mix.
Other options : Planting combinations are almost endless. Consider a scheme from one color family, like pinks or purples. Reliable, productive, long-lasting bloomers include snapdragons, China asters, lisianthus, mallow, and larkspur.

How to maintain : After planting, put down a two-inch layer of bark mulch to suppress weeds and slow evaporation of moisture from the soil. Any blossoms that aren’t cut for bouquets should be deadheaded (snipped off) when they fade.

# A Salad Garden

What to plant : Here, a Better Bush tomato and a Spacemaster cucumber share a four-foot-square plot with three kinds of bell peppers (yellow, orange, and red), four varieties of red and green lettuce, and a thriving nasturtium.
Other options : If your best planting spot gets only four hours or so of direct sun, forget the tomatoes and try leafy vegetables, like spinach, lettuce, and Swiss chard. Root vegetables, such as beets, carrots, and radishes, also require less light.

How to maintain : Till in plenty of organic compost at planting time for maximum output. Be aware that as plants put out more foliage and start to bear fruit, they require more water.

# An Herb Garden

What to plant : A gallon-size rosemary plant and a quart-size sage plant form the foundation of this 4½-by-3-foot herb garden. Oregano, thyme, parsley, and basil add visual contrast.
Other options : Anything goes, depending on your palate. Consider a themed garden, such as one planted with lemon thyme, lemon basil, lemongrass, and lemon balm.

How to maintain : Herbs are relatively self-sufficient, so water about once a week―more often during dry spells and less during rainy periods. Make sure to direct the water gently toward the base of the plants, which prevents runoff and allows the moisture to percolate down to the roots.

Biggest Mistake in Garden Landscape

# Poor Water Management

We are in a global water crisis. Of all the water in the world, only 1% is available to us as fresh pure water. Yet between 1950 and 1980, when the world’s population doubled, the demand on that water tripled! It’s a finite resource and we’re using it an unsustainable rates. Half of the water we use outside is wasted because we overwater or do so during the middle of the day. Consequently we lose much of it to evaporation and runoff. And harvesting rainwater using rain barrels is an easy way to collect and store this valuable resource for use on-demand, especially in times of drought.

# Failure to understand a plant’s cultural requirements

Plants growing in their ideal environment are naturally more vigorous and therefore more pest and disease resistant. Plus, when we don’t read or heed the information on those plant tags, we make the mistake of planting that three-gallon holly against the foundation, only to cut it down a few years later when it overtakes the house. Put the right plant in the right place and you eliminate most of your maintenance problems, specifically the need to apply excess fertilizer or pesticides.

# Failure to promote healthy soil

There is another world below the soil surface that we home gardeners know little about. Yet soil scientists tell us that in ideal conditions, it is teeming with billions of beneficial microorganisms that provide our plants with everything they need to grow and prosper, naturally. Of course that assumes we haven’t desiccated our soil with excessive salts that come from over use of synthetic fertilizers. Instead, we should improve the soil with a steady supply of organic matter, to promote plant growth by maintaining a healthy soil food web.

# Excessive use of fertilizers

More is not better. Fertilizer that isn’t absorbed by the plant can leach into ground water or runoff into watersheds, polluting water systems and harming amphibious habitats. Excess buildup in the soil can desiccate life underground, making plants chemically dependent for their nutrients and creating unsustainable soil for plants to thrive naturally. Using any chemicals with discretion and on-target will go a long way to improving ecosystems everywhere.

# Indiscriminate use of Pesticides

Only about 3% of all insects are considered pests, so why do we carpet bomb with non-selective pesticides when 97% are either neutral or beneficial. If you want to have a bug problem, start spraying. Many pest insect pests have developed a resistance to insecticides while beneficial insects are often the ones most adversely affected. In addition, according to the National Audubon Society, about seven million backyard birds die each year as a result of consuming insects that have been killed by pesticides.

Step by step Make Cutting Garden

It’s one of planting’s interesting little incongruities: Lots of us are hesitant to loot our bloom beds of wonderful stems to bring inside for new bunches. (Also, after all the work that goes into pampering those blossoms, is there any good reason why we shouldn’t be somewhat defensive?) But it’s conceivable to have the best of both universes by making a different garden only to cut. Debauched, you say? A migraine holding up to happen? Reconsider. The way to achievement—and making the entire undertaking low-upkeep—is arranging.

# Decide What You Want

Consider what sorts of blossoms you need to develop—both annuals and perennials—and make a rundown. (To begin, consider constraining the assortments to a sensible about six.) Try to concentrate on blooms that have longer stems, which will make them the best contender for cutting and orchestrating. Incorporate a couple of every that sprout in spring, midsummer, and late summer to keep you in business throughout the entire season. You’ll additionally need to research how much space every plant needs; some of your top choices may require just eight to ten inches (say, pansies), while others may require a few feet (dahlias). Contingent upon the plants you pick, a three-by-six-foot bed can hold up to around 20 plants.

# Scope Out Your Spot

Remember: Most cutting flowers prefer lots of sun—around six hours or more per day—so to allow for the most variety choose a sunny site that is well drained (meaning, the ground shouldn’t stay wet at all times). The ultimate size of the plot depends on how much space you have and how much time you can devote to taking care of it. A cutting garden isn’t supposed to look like a mixed border of plants, so there’s no need to get hung up on design principles. Visualize it more in terms of crops: You’ll be planting in rows.

# Prep the Planting Area

If you’re making a new bed in an existing lawn, first remove any turf grass and roots. Then enrich the growing area by working a layer of four to six inches of organic material (compost, chopped leaves, peat moss, etc.) into the top eight to ten inches of soil with a spading fork. If your ground is very sandy, swampy, or rocky or high in clay content, do yourself a favor and consider making raised beds with a simple kit and filling them with amended soil purchased in bulk. This saves you the daunting, near-impossible task of trying to turn bad soil into good.

# Sketch It Out

You’ll get the easiest and quickest results by purchasing seedlings or small pots rather than starting from seed, but either option works. Before you hit the nursery, create a simple sketch of the bed on graph paper and decide how many of each kind of plant you want. (Don’t forget to allow space for you! There has to be enough room between rows to get in there to weed, fertilize, deadhead, stake, and, of course, harvest.) Just like a trip to the grocery store, being armed with a shopping list at a nursery helps prevent overbuying and impulse purchases. (Trust us, there’s a flower equivalent of Cheetos out there somewhere.) Err on the conservative side: You can always add more plants if you prove to have the room.

# Shop

Planting can begin after the last frost—sometime in spring, depending on where you live. (Check the website of your local cooperative extension for the average date.) Even though plants will be available for sale before then, don’t be seduced into buying too early (unless you have your own greenhouse), or else late frosts could wipe out your investment. Whether you go to a garden center, farmers’ market, or roadside stand, ask for feedback on your plans from someone knowledgeable. And pack your reading glasses, because plant tags reveal a wealth of information, from size at maturity to care requirements. Even the most experienced gardeners read the fine print to ensure the varieties they choose fit their needs. (No tags on offer? Pepper the staff with questions.) You’ll also need to assemble a cutting kit that includes sharp, pointed scissors; by-pass pruners; a small hammer for smashing woody stems; and a pair of lightweight gloves. Store it all by the door closest to the cutting garden with a supply of three-foot bamboo stakes and a roll of garden twine for supporting top-heavy stems and propping up foliage that could be broken by rainstorms.

# Plant Away

Just before you plant, mix some granular time-release fertilizer (such as Dynamite; dynamiteplantfood.com) into the top few inches of soil. This will help keep nutrition consistent during the growing season. For easier maintenance, group together flower varieties with similar sun, water, and drainage needs. Tall plants should be placed in the back of the bed so they won’t shade out their shorter neighbors.

# Water and Mulch

Once everything is in the ground, water each plant carefully and thoroughly to settle it and eliminate air pockets. Then spread a two- to three-inch-thick layer of mulch around the plants. (Use shredded bark, salt hay, pine needles, or whatever else you prefer.) This will suppress weeds and help retain moisture.

# Maintain and Replant

Throughout the growing season, plants need consistent moisture. If Mother Nature cooperates with at least one inch of rainfall per week, you should be covered. More likely, however, you’ll have to make up the difference with hand watering or a drip irrigation system. Cutting stems regularly and removing faded blossoms will encourage plants to keep blooming as frequently and for as long as possible. To give heavy blooming plants a boost—especially later in the season when they tend to slow down—every couple of weeks apply a liquid fertilizer dissolved in water. When early season annuals and bulbs are finished, pull them out, cultivate the soil a little, toss in a tablespoon of granular fertilizer, and replant the area with new seedlings of later blooming flowers like zinnia or chrysanthemum.

# Harvest (Blooms and Compliments)

Do your cutting during the coolest part of the day—early morning—and bring a tall container of tepid water along with you. Plunge the stems into the water immediately after snipping them to prolong their vase life. When you’re back inside and ready to start arranging, make a fresh cut on the stems and add a floral preservative to the water to further prolong their lives.

# What to Plant

Flowering shrubs, trees, ornamental grasses, and even succulents make excellent candidates for mixed bouquets. Don’t limit your choices to what you plant in your cutting garden only. Judicious cutting and pruning around your entire yard can result in spectacular and interesting arrangements. (Note: Cutting Gardens, by Anne Halpin and Betty Mackey, is an excellent guidebook for planning, growing, and arranging flowers.) Here’s a partial list of some of the plants to consider for your garden.

Annuals
• Ageratum (floss flower)
• Cleome (spider flower)
• Cosmos
• Dianthus
• Gomphrena (globe amaranth)
• Gypsophila (baby’s breath)
• Marigold
• Nicotiana (flowering tobacco)
• Nigella damascena (love in a mist)
• Pansy
• Phlox
• Snapdragon
• Sunflower
• Sweet pea
• Verbena bonariensis
• Zinnia

Perennials
• Achillea (yarrow)
• Alchemilla mollis (lady’s mantle)
• Aster
• Carnation
• Chrysanthemum
• Coral bells
• Delphinium
• Dianthus (pinks)
• Echinacea (purple coneflower)
• Heuchera (coral bells)
• Lavender
• Leucanthemum (shasta daisy)
• Lupine
• Paeonia (peony)
• Rudbeckia (black-eyed Susan)
• Solidago (goldenrod)
• Veronica

Foliage
• Coleus
• Dusty miller
• Eucalyptus
• Euphorbia (snow on the mountain)
• Ferns
• Flowering cabbage
• Flowering kale
• Hosta
• Sage, tricolor

Know more About Compost

The normal American family unit discards around 25 percent of its sustenance. Be that as it may, on the off chance that we treated the soil that stuff, we would alleviate landfill burden while making support for patio nurseries and gardens. Cary Oshins, a dirt researcher and the executive of instruction for the United States Composting Council, clarifies the simple, earth-accommodating practice.

How would you begin?

Get an endless plastic, metal, or wooden holder that holds around 80 gallons, or 10 cubic feet. (One you can purchase: the Earth Machine Composter, $109, homedepot.com.) Place it on the ground in a shady range of your yard. On the kitchen counter, set a little lidded compartment, (for example, the Oxo Good Grips compost canister; $20, oxo.com) for getting compostables as you cook. (For more data, see Composting 101).

# What foods can go in the compost bin?

Fruit peels, coffee grounds (and paper filters), eggshells, leftover vegetables. Don’t compost meat, cheese, or fish, because they attract animals. And skip cooking oil, which draws insects.

# What else?

Any and all organic matter. Most of your compost should be made up of dry materials, like torn-up newspaper, twigs, dead leaves, and paper plates. These items contain carbon, which gives the microbes that decompose the pile the energy necessary to work their magic. Food and other moisture-rich items, like grass clippings, supply the protein that microbes need to reproduce. You’ll get the best results with a roughly three-to-one ratio of dry to wet. No worries if it’s not perfect; composting is very forgiving. For more guidelines, go to seattletilth.org and search “compost pile ingredients.”

# Is there any upkeep?

Watch the moisture level. The pile should be damp, like a wrung-out sponge—not soaking, like a swamp, or dry enough to blow around. If it’s too dry, spritz it with the hose. Too wet? Add shredded newspaper or wood chips.

# What about the smell?

Maintain a thick layer of dry stuff, like dead leaves, at the top of the pile, and cover new food scraps with old compost. (Have a small shovel handy for this purpose.)

# How can you tell when a pile has decomposed?

It usually takes four to six months for compost to turn into dark brown or black soil with a nice, earthy aroma. Once most of your pile fits this profile, take away the bin and let the finished compost continue to break down in your yard for a few weeks. Put the bin in a new spot to start a fresh pile. Kick it off by scooping in anything from the old pile that’s not quite decomposed.

# What if you don’t have any outdoor space?

You can still recycle food scraps if you have somewhere to unload them weekly. Check with your local department of public works or a farmers’ market to see if there’s a drop-off site. In between hauls, stash scraps in the freezer in a sealed container lined with newspaper.

# Finally, how can you use compost?

Think of it as food for dirt. Spread it over your lawn to nourish the grass, or mix it into garden soil.

Plants to Grow for Get Beauty Benefit

# Witch Hazel

This is one that might surprise you. Consider it your new best friend for a gentle acne-fighting solution. Anti-acne products can often be strong and irritate your skin, but witch hazel works to soothe skin overall. Mix lemon juice with witch hazel extract and water to create a skin toner. This will help get rid of scars left by acne and give you a bright glow.

# Lemon Balm (Melissa Officinalis)

This lemon-scented plant will not only make your garden smell good, but it will also help your skin when you’ve gotten a nasty insect bite. It contains ferulic acid, which protects the skin against damage. You can also make a lemon-balm ointment to cure sunburn and sores.

# Aloe Vera

Aloe is one of the most common plants with beauty benefits—it contains antioxidant properties that can aid in soothing of the skin, which is why you usually see it listed as a main ingredient in after-sun products. If you suffer from stubborn acne, you can also apply aloe vera extracts on your skin, which may do the trick in terms of clearing it up. If your skin tends to be on the sensitive side, you may also have trouble with makeup removers causing irritation. Instead of grabbing the wipes, try dipping a cotton ball in aloe vera gel and removing your eye makeup with it. Apply that same gel to a sunburn spot for relief. Bonus: This succulent plant can be maintained without much watering, so it’s easy to care for.

# Elderflower

This bushy plant is popular for medicinal purposes, but is often sought after for skin care. Elderflower oil can be used as a skin ointment to sooth rashes and treat scars. It also has antioxidant elements that act as anti-aging agents, making it a great option for a natural skin care treatment.

# Green Tea (Camellia Sinensis)

Green tea is always there when we need to alleviate a nasty cold. If you don’t already have this plant in your garden, then Mom or Grandma probably does. Not only is camellia sinensis (the technical plant name you should ask for) useful during cold season, but it can also be used in various ways for beauty. If you have problems with dandruff and hair loss, then using green tea as a hair wash might be your solution. Boil some green tea like you normally would for drinking, and let it cool down all the way. Rinse your hair with it in the shower for smooth, shiny hair.

Caring Hydrangeas Tips

Hydrangeas are all around—whether they’re on your eating table, in a wedding bunch, or the highlight of your garden, these delightful, lavish sprouts are a work of art. Be that as it may, similar to whatever other blossom, hydrangeas can be somewhat scary with regards to developing and tending to them.

# Know When to Plant Them

“The best time to plant hydrangeas is when temperatures are mild in spring and fall,” says Ryan McEnaney, a spokesperson for Endless Summer® Hydrangeas. “In spring, wait until you’ve passed your final frost and the ground is thawed enough to dig easily. In fall, be sure not to wait until late, when a frost could damage the plant.” If you want to plant in the summer, avoid doing so on very hot and bright days. These blooms are at their peak in mid-summer through fall.

# Choose the Right Location

Hydrangeas grow best in partial shade areas. “Make sure that there is enough space for the hydrangea to grow into, that the soil is amended as needed, and that there is the proper amount of sunlight,” McEnaney says. He recommends placing the hydrangeas in an area that gets about five to six hours of morning sun, followed by dappled (or patchy) shade. If you live in warmer regions, plant where the blooms can get two to three hours of morning sun and partial shade in the afternoon.

# Plant Carefully

“Dig a hole slightly larger than the pot your hydrangea came in, keeping in mind that you want to leave enough space in the garden for the hydrangea to mature to its full size,” McEnaney says. “Add a small amount of high-phosphorus fertilizer to the bottom of the hole, then remove the plant from its container and slightly loosen the roots with your fingers. Place the plant in the hole, making sure that the crown of the plant (where the base of the stem meets the soil) is even with the ground level.” After you put the hydrangeas in the ground, cover with soil and water. Hydrangeas prefer loamy (mixture of sand and silt with a bit of clay) and moist soil, so make sure you frequently check it in the beginning to ensure that it isn’t dry or soaking wet.

# Opt for a Shrub, Instead of Seeds

It’s okay to cheat and buy a shrub from your local gardening center, instead of trying to grow your hydrangeas from a seed—especially since seeds are hard to come by. “If you’re able to obtain seeds, you must sow or scatter the seeds in the soil, taking extra care until they’re germinated,” McEnaney says. “To get the same size shrub as you would in your local garden center, it could take 2-3 years.”

# Don’t Forget to Water Them

These flowers love water—so you’ll want to keep them hydrated. “One common misconception, though, is that they need constant water,” McEnaney says. “You want to ensure that the soil is moist, but not wet. Overwatering can actually cause the plant to grow without flowers. It’s better to give it a heavy soaking once a day (or whenever the soil needs it), preferably in the morning or early afternoon, than various applications of less water.” To find out if you need to water the plant, stick your fingers into the soil about an inch or two deep to see if it feels dry or wet.

# Give Them Some Extra TLC During Winter

Along with pruning dead stems and blooms, you’ll want to protect your hydrangeas during the winter. “Add an extra layer of mulch, leaves, or pine straw up to six to eight inches high to provide tender buds protection from drastic temperature changes, cold nights, and high winter winds.” McEnaney says. “It’s sometimes helpful for younger plants to add a cage to add more protection—and keep the bunnies out.”