Archive for the ‘Plant Nursery’ Category

Fall is for Planting!

fall tree

Most gardeners can’t wait until spring arrives so they can get outdoors and plant something. Good gardeners know that fall is an excellent time for planting trees, shrubs, bulbs, and for some essential lawn care.

Why Plant in the Fall?

As autumn arrives it’s time to think about spring. Although air temperatures are beginning to drop, soil temperatures remain warm – actually warmer than in the spring. This, along with traditionally higher rainfall in autumn, makes it a great time of year to plant. The moderate temperatures also mean that outdoor work is a rather pleasant task. Plus, planting now means there’s one less thing you’ll have to do next spring.

Planting Trees and Shrubs

Transplanting and planting are stressful to plants at any time of year. Fall’s cooler air temperatures mean transpiration is less (plants lose less water through their leaves). Trees and shrubs planted in the fall have the autumn months to develop their root system, giving them a head start in the spring. During the winter months they can acclimate, rest, and recover before the rush of spring growth.

Planting Annuals, Perennials and Bulbs

Of course, fall is the time for planting autumn standbys like pansies, mums, and frost-tolerant vegetables. Fall is also a good time to plant spring-blooming perennials. Fall is the only time to plant spring-blooming bulbs. Plant several varieties with different bloom times and you can enjoy bulbs all throughout the spring season. Crocus, snowdrops, tulips, daffodils, hyacinth, anemone, allium, iris, frittilaria – the list is as long as the succession of blooms in store for you next year.

Fall Lawn and Garden Clean Up

Less fun perhaps, but just as important, is a good fall lawn and garden cleanup. Pick up debris, deadhead spent blooms, divide peonies and daylilies, dig up summer bulbs for storage, mulch, prune, and pull the last weeds of summer. Those weeds may look dead, but perennial weeds are merely going dormant.

Fall is an excellent time to step back and evaluate your lawn and garden (while it’s still green) to see what worked and what didn’t. Make notes and plan accordingly for next year’s garden.

-originally posted by Lowe’s

Posted on: August 25th, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

Water Well – Watering Tips

Water Well

Use these smart techniques to conserve water without leaving your garden thirsty.

By Lauren Sloane

originally posted by Organic Gardening

smart watering strategies save water and encourage growth

You’ve seen this common conservation crime: the oscillating sprinkler watering more sidewalk than garden in the height of the afternoon. Smart organic gardeners know that overhead sprinklers are so last summer—a waste of water and invitation to plant diseases. We asked experts in different climates for hints on watering your garden to keep it healthy throughout the season.

Hand check
Before whipping out the watering can, check your garden’s soil moisture with that handiest of tools, your finger. Push it into the ground around your plants. You want the top 2 or 3 inches of the soil to be dry, and the soil below that to be moist. Oh, and don’t forget to check your local weather forecast to see what Mother Nature has planned before turning on the hose.

Timing is everything
In warm weather, water in the morning to give plants a chance to drink up before the hot sun or strong winds evaporate the moisture. This protects plants from wilting in the afternoon heat, too. In a prolonged drought, cover more sensitive plants with a shade cloth to limit midday transpiration, suggests Cado Daily of the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension. If you can’t water in the morning, try for late afternoon—but not too late; the foliage should have time to dry before the sun goes down so it doesn’t develop fungal diseases.

Deep and infrequent
Seeds and seedlings demand moisture close to the soil’s surface, but more established plants need deep watering to develop roots that will find water in the subsoil when drought strikes. Just be careful not to overwater! You want soil that’s damp but not soggy down to 5 to 6 inches below the surface. In waterlogged soil, roots are deprived of oxygen and may lose the ability to take up water. If your plants’ foliage begins to brown at the edges and fall from the plant, you may be overwatering.

Posted on: August 4th, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

The Lovely Lotus

Check out these pictures to see just what a lotus can add to your pond!

The Lovely Lotus

I’m in love with the lotus. Is there any other aquatic plant as beautiful or graceful? It belongs to the genus Nelumbo and consists of only two species … the yellow-flowered American lotus (Nelumbo lutea) and the pink Asiatic lotus (Nelumbo nucifera). These two species have been grown and bred for centuries, resulting in hundreds of hybrids that range in size and color.

In my mind … this is what Heaven looks like.

The delicate intricacy blends the beauty of pink and yellow. {Dreamy Sigh}

The highly popular ‘Momo Botan.’ It’s easy to see why this is the best-selling lotus in the US. It reminds me of a cabbage rose or peony.

A sea of waterlilies provides the perfect backdrop for this regal lotus.

The outer petals of the ‘Shiroman’ appear like tissue cradling the flower.

The ‘Empress’ aka Alba Striata, is white with light red streaks. Stunning!

Even the lotus pod has a beauty all its own.

The seeds can be stored and replanted. The immature seeds are considered a delicacy by the Cajuns of southern Louisiana and are delicious eaten raw.

Even the waxy leaves of this amazing plant are breathtaking.

Look how large some of the leaves get!

Even the undersides of the leaves are beautiful. Oh, to be a frog and enjoy this view every day!

A yellow-flowered American lotus provides a striking contrast against the deep green leaves.

Even the buds are beautiful. This plant captivates the heart and soul at every stage of growth.

You can grow these amazing beauties in a container … so no need to fret if you don’t have a water garden. A great book to help you get started is About the LotusI just potted my first lotus in a large aquatic container and placed it in a sunny location in my yard. I check on it daily! The first leaf is already 6-inches in diameter. I’m taking photos of its growth and will post them once it has a few blooms. Can’t wait!

-Aquascape Your Landscape
Posted on: June 21st, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

Greenhouse Snapshots

It’s summer (almost) and the greenhouse is overflowing. Check out these pictures I took today.

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These roses are called Gemini and Electron. Fitting names.

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It’s not too late to add a planter to your patio.

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Lavendar and Coreopsis. Doesn’t this combination of yellow and blue perennials pop?

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And these lilies are blooming their hearts out.

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Posted on: June 11th, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

The Secret to Achieving a Crystal Clear, Trouble-Free Pond

You may have just spent your weekend cleaning your pond – or having your pond contractor do it for you. A couple of days … weeks pass, and you notice an incredible growth of algae. “Not again,” you screech to yourself. “I thought my pond was clean!” Cleanliness does not necessarily mean algae-free, especially in the cool waters of the early spring. Understanding the transition that your pond makes from winter into spring, combined with the use of a few water treatment products to help balance the ponds ecosystem is all it typically takes to maintain a crystal clear, trouble-free pond.

The Plants

Plant

Plants play a vital role in your pond’s ecosystem. As the aquatic plants start to grow, they will absorb the nutrients in the water. This means that they will naturally start to out-compete the algae for the nutrients causing the algae to starve. You will notice the water becoming clearer as your plants grow and algae is eliminated. Another benefit that plants provide, particularly water lilies, is that they shade the surface of the water, keeping it cool, all while cutting down on the growth of string algae and green water.

The Bacteria

Beneficial bacteria living in the biological filter and throughout the rocks and gravel in the pond are another key component to achieving crystal clear water and reducing pond maintenance. The bacteria, similar to aquatic plants consume excess nutrients, but are also capable of breaking down organic debris. It is important to the ponds ecosystem for these maintenance microbes to become established as early in the spring as possible.

One way to help jumpstart the bacteria in the spring is by adding Aquascape Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria. This particular water treatment contains a special blend of microbes that are found to thrive in colder water temperatures as far down as 35°F (2°C).

 Aquascape Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria (Available HERE)

There are also a number of other water treatments available to help control excess nutrients and the algae that are determined to take advantage of this food source.

 Aquascape’s IonGen™ System (Available HERE) – An electronic ionizer designed to control string algae

 EcoBlast Contact Algaecide (Available HERE) – A quick, effective and economical way to spot treat problem algae areas in the pond, stream and waterfalls.

• Algaecide (Available HERE) – A liquid algaecide designed to control a wide variety of algae types

 Aquascape SAB™ Stream and Pond Clean (Available HERE) - contains bacteria along with a powerful phosphate binder. Controlling excess levels of the nutrient phosphate, is an easy way to prevent unsightly water conditions.

Patience Please…

You need to have patience as your pond awakens from its winter slumber. Give the plants and bacteria a chance to do their thing as the water temperatures begin to increase and in return you will reap the benefits of a well-balanced, low maintenance ecosystem pond.

Posted on: May 9th, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

April Gardening Tips

spring

Pruning Grasses and Other April Gardening Tips

Charlie Nardozzi, Horticulturist and
Leonard Perry, UVM Extension Horticulturist

Pruning back ornamental grasses, getting patio containers ready for planting, and starting dahlias indoors are some of the gardening activities for this month.

If you left your ornamental grasses intact last fall for their fall and winter effect, and for seeds for birds, you can go ahead and prune them back to a height of about 6 to 12 inches. If you remove the old growth before new growth starts, and don’t cut back too close to the ground, you won’t risk damaging new sprouts when they emerge with warm weather later in spring.  Add prunings to the compost pile, but the thick stems of some grasses should be shredded or cut up first so they’ll decompose more quickly.

When planting large containers for the deck or patio, save on soil by creating a false bottom. Most of the plants you’ll use don’t need more than about a foot of soil depth for their roots, so put some empty plastic soda or water bottles in the very bottom, then cover with landscape fabric or a piece of cardboard cut to fit to keep the soil from eroding. Plastic pots turned upside down also work, as do coarse and inexpensive wood shavings.  Some use those Styrofoam packing “peanuts” (put in plastic bags so they’re easily handled and contained).

To control annual weeds in the lawn, spread corn gluten meal with your lawn spreader when forsythia are blooming. That’s when many weed seeds, such as crabgrass, are germinating. It’s a safe, organic option for preventing the germination of weeds, and it provides a small dose (maybe 9 percent) of nitrogen fertilizer. The best controls for weeds, however, remain a good soil conducive to growing grass, and proper lawn culture.

While safe and environmentally friendly, corn gluten products can be expensive with such a demand now for corn-derived products from corn syrup to ethanol.  A 20 to 25 pound bag, depending on product, may treat 1000 square feet of lawn or beds, and cost around $30.  This means to treat a quarter acre lawn, you may need to spend $300 or so.  Like all “pre-emergent” weed killers, corn gluten will keep seeds from germinating.  So make sure any desirable flowers or vegetables have germinated, and have “true” leaves, before applying around them.

Get flowers sooner on dahlias by potting up tubers and growing them indoors until it’s warm enough to plant them outside. Pinch the growing tips when they get 6 inches tall to keep the growth short and stocky for easier transplanting into the garden.  Keep them in a cool place, such as garage, so they don’t grow too fast.

To get a head-start on fresh greens, sow seeds in a large, shallow container. Keep the container outside during the day and bring it in at night if the temperatures dip below freezing, or protect it in a cold frame. A window box with colorful greens is not only ornamental, but makes for easy picking and protection from hungry rabbits.

Woody perennials differ in the way they should be cut back in spring. If butterfly bush has died to the ground, cut the dead stems to the ground. Otherwise just shorten them by about one third. Cut back Russian sage, rue, and artemisias to about 8 to 12 inches from the ground. Don’t prune lavender until new growth appears, and then just shorten the stems by about one-third. Heather should be lightly pruned to remove the old flowers and the tips of the shoots, but don’t cut back to brown wood, stay in the green.  Wait until rose shoots and leaves emerge to prune, in order to know what stems died and which are living.

(Charlie Nardozzi is a nationally known horticulturist, author, gardening consultant, and garden coach; CharlieNardozzi.com). 

Posted on: April 14th, 2014 by admin | Comments Off
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