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Pink Tops

by tmgallery

Ornamental Grasses are becoming extremely popular in low maintenance landscapes as a way to add beauty and color without a great deal of hard work in the garden. Another great way to implement ornamental grasses is for fall landscapes. Many ornamental grasses for fall landscapes will last throughout the fall and winter months and will add texture and form to any fall garden design. Keep in mind that most, but not all, ornamental grasses for fall landscapes can be grown in almost any type of soil and usually until temperatures reach the low to mid 40s overnight. All of the following ornamental grasses are excellent suggestions for most average fall landscapes, but for those living in extreme conditions, it is best to research these grasses before adding them to your fall landscape design.

Blue Oat Grass

Helictotrichon Sempervirens

Without a doubt, Blue Oat Grass is one of the most popular ornamental grasses for fall landscapes. The large, densely blue colored foliage is attractive year round, but also provides beautiful flowers from June to August. While Blue Oat Grass does well in most mild to moderate climate zones, it is also fairly drought tolerant, only needing water every 1-2 weeks. For these mild to moderate climate zones, Blue Oat Grass can also make a great wintRed Fountain Grasser landscape choice as well.

Fountain Grass
Another large ornamental grass, Fountain Grass is another favorite choice of gardeners who prefer ornamental grasses for fall landscapes. Fountain Grass produces beautiful green foliage through the year, but the grass turns a golden yellow in the fall, adding to your fall landscape. This large ornamental grass can reach anywhere from 1 to 3 feet at full maturity. Keep in mind that this is an excellent summer landscape choice as it also offers beautiful white to purple flowers that will last until early winter.

Big Bluestem
A beautiful, tall prairie-like ornamental grass, the Big Bluestem can reach up to 8 feet in height, so be very careful where this ornamental grass is planted. The Big Bluestem truly is one of the perfect ornamental grasses for fall landscapes as the flowers wait until late summer or early fall to bloom and the fall foliage is also a vibrant orange color. Throughout the rest of the year, the foliage remains a bluish-green. While it does not have much presence throughout the winter months, it will begin to grow in April and become beautiful again by the early summer months.

Feather Reed Grass
A wonderful, medium sized plant, growing 3 to 5 feet at total maturity, Feather Reed Grass is another favorite among ornamental grasses for fall landscapes. This is also a favorite year round plant that grows well in almost any climate zone, although it may grow smaller in extremely warm climate zones. Flowers will occur in the mid summer months, a white to red color and will change to a beige color in the fall and into the winter months. Keep in mind that the wonderful temperament of this plant means that it can withstand excessive watering, sun or even lots of shade.

Source: Free Articles

Originally posted 2009-08-19 15:19:19. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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Author: Jay Ruppel
One of the best additions you can make to your back yard is a fire pit.  People are naturally attracted to fire, and there is a long history going back to the days of bonfireprehistory of people gathering around a fire to exchange stories and enjoy each other’s company.

This concept is being brought forward to today’s culture with the fire pit.  There are a couple of ways that you can accomplish this.  One is to build your own fire pit.  It can be as simple as a hole in the ground, or it can be as dramatic as a large stonework above the ground, complete with natural gas plumbed into it with an elective starter.

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Originally posted 2009-09-23 14:26:30. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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Photo by Eva the Weaver
By James W Shaw
Garden farmers nowadays are very fond of using red worms for their organic garden. This is because of the red worms’ ability to convert organic material into compost, a substance that is beneficial to garden farms. While it is important for garden farmers to understand what these red worms need to be healthy and productive, it is also important to understand how their body works and how they digest their food and produce the worm castings that garden farmers use to cultivate their farms.

Red worms are also called red wigglers because of their reaction to being touched. Usually when red wigglers are handled, their natural reaction is to wriggle about, thus the name red wigglers. Red wigglers are manure type worms. This means that they will consume almost any form of organic material. They belong to the family Lumbricidae and they are one of the most popular worms in commercial production today. This is largely due to their popularity among garden farmers. Farmers prefer worms over earthworms for the reason that they are more effective at converting organic material into worm castings than earthworms. Read More→

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by:MarigoldsOrnamental Cabbage, French Green Beans and Daylilies COOPER HILL

Gardeners growing vegetables find that companion planting provides many benefits, one of which is protection from garden pests. A major enemy of the carrot is the carrot fly, whereas the leek suffers from the onion fly and leek moth. Yet when leek and carrot live together in companionship, the strong and strangely different smell of the partner plant repels the insects so much that they do not even attempt to lay their eggs on the neighbor plant. They take off speedily to get away from the smell. This is why mixed plantings give better insect control than mono-culture, where many plants of the same type are planted together in row after row.
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Originally posted 2009-09-30 14:53:30. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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Photo by greenhem

One must have some gardening knowledge when it comes to having abundant blooms with hydrangeas. They can be tricky to prune so they bloom abundantly. They are particular about what kind of soil and fertilizer they receive for bloom color. Hydrangeas are also choosy about what kind of light conditions they will do best in-partial shade is just the beginning.The following notes are meant to help guide you with your different Hydrangea plants so you will get the most out of them.

Hydrangeas come in a few different varieties. One type is called Hydrangea Arborescence which usually have big white snow balls on them-these hydrangeas bloom on “new” wood. Because Hydrangea Arborescence varieties bloom on “new” wood they can be pruned in the fall. They will produce new stalks in the spring which will bloom. The tree form hydrangeas you see which are also usually white are called Paniculata hydrangeas and they too should be pruned in the late Fall. Seems simple: white flowers, prune in fall.

It gets more complicated when you realize that there are other kinds of hydrangeas called Hydrangea Macrophyllas-these are the kind of hydrangeas that have pink or blue flowers. These bloom on “old” wood and can ONLY be pruned before July the year before…did I say this was tricky or what?There is also Oakleaf hydrangea which is also an “old” wood bloomer. So when would you prune it??That’s right-summer before….tell me about it…so confusing. Read More→

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Let’s take a moment to think about garden pests and how we want to tackle them next year. Winter is a good time to think about this because you have time to do some research and plan your strategy. If you have a bit of wisdom in your pocket you can avoid spraying toxic chemicals which are bad for you, your family, your pets and the wildlife which visit your lovely flower decorated garden.

We often attack pests when we first spot them in our flowers and this knee-jerk approach usually involves harsh chemicals. Let’s take a moment to contemplate the unwanted insects that we know will be visiting our garden and the sensible and safe ways we can make them go away so we can spend time this summer feeding the birds and picking the flowers instead of stressing over chemicals and insect damage.

Slugs are certainly an unwanted visitor in the garden. They leave holes in our hostas making them look like a ragged mess and they also leave slimy trails all over the garden. Yuck. Before you break out the most deadly of slug pellets which will also kill all the snakes, toads and bird feeding creatures you can try some other things. Try slug traps using terra cotta pots turned upside down which flip over in the morning and pick off the slugs. You can throw old newspaper bundles around the garden and pick them up in the morning and throw them in the garbage. You can partially fill soda cans with a solution of beer, water and yeast and then let the slugs crawl in and drown. Coffee grinds around your hostas may keep them at bay as well. These are better than the nerve damaging slug killer you buy at the hardware store. Read More→

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Bird Watching Basics

Posted by: CoolGardenThings | Comments (0)

by:Albreht Moy

Bird watching or birding is a very popular hobby that includes the observation and study of birds.Because visual observation of birds is complemented with auditory observation, the term “birding” is more accurate. Birding is the second most popular outdoor activity in America, second only to gardening as the number-one recreation.

For many people bird watching is an opportunity to feel close to nature. They also enjoy the relaxation and peacefulness by watching birds.Some birders,however,will travel long distances just to see a rare bird. These birders are known as twitchers. Twitching is popular in Britain and several other European countries.

Most birders start out by watching and attracting birds to their own back yards.Bird feeding can benefit birds and also provide great bird watching.You can attract a variety of interesting birds to your yard by selecting and offering the right kinds of food. The common types of food offered in bird feeding are seeds,nectar,suet and fruit.Early morning is the best time for bird watching since many birds are then searching most actively for food.

Once you start feeding birds, you’ll probably want to identify who is coming to visit. Equipment used for birding includes binoculars,a blank notebook, and one or more good field guides.

Field guides are books with pictures and descriptions of the birds. A field guide shows birds of just one country, or one region of a country, or one habitat.

Binoculars are described by two numbers: 8×32 for example. The first number tells you the magnification power of the binoculars. The second tells you the size of the objective lens at the end of the binoculars in millimeters. Most bird watchers think that 7 or 8 power is about right for most birding.

The next step is to broaden your birding experience beyond your own back yard. Plan a trip to a bird sanctuary, national park and other locations where you can see birds in large numbers. Wherever you go,never harm the birds and always respect other birders.

And don’t forget to join a local birding club. Clubs organize field trips,show films of good bird watching destinations and some of them are involved in local environmental projects. Also visit your local library and check out books on birds and ornithology.


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Here is another great video from Yolanda Vanveen! I like the non-toxic approach to pest control in this video clip. Aphids don’t have to be your worst nightmare-just get some dish soap and oil and water in a spray bottle and spray them away!
Just watch the demo right here:

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Garden & Lawn Pest Control : How to Get Rid of Aphids

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Even though I usually only recommend perennials I have to make an exception with this spectacular flower! Talk about attracting hummingbirds! This plant is wonderful and airy and prolific, even if it is not a perennial in the northern states. Just spend a few bucks and get this one in your garden…you won’t regret it!
Here is Yolanda telling it like it is! Enjoy…
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Scarlet sage, or salvia splendens, is an herb that is a member of the mint family. Discover why the scarlet sage plant cannot handle freezes with help from a sustainable gardener in this free video on flower gardening and plant care.

Originally posted 2009-05-18 07:56:02. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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Caring For Orchids

Posted by: CoolGardenThings | Comments (0)

by Jan Hartman

Photo by Thai Jasmine

Orchids are beautiful, exotic plants that are temperamental, but can be successfully grown indoors as a decorative houseplant Orchids are not that complicated and if you understand caring for orchids and their needs you can grow these exotic and beautiful plants

Orchids are beautiful, exotic plants that are temperamental, but can be successfully grown indoors as a decorative houseplant. Orchids are not that complicated and if you understand caring for orchids and their needs you can grow these exotic and beautiful plants. Read More→

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