Monthly Archives: September 2016

Informations About Small Garden Ideas

gh4There are some informations about small garden Ideas:

Create an Outdoor Room
Turn a tiny patio into a gorgeous outdoor room by adding a freestanding pergola. Here, a small wooden pergola was constructed over a gravel patio and enhanced with a teak seating arrangement. The pergola creates a sense of enclosure and makes the patio seem a lot larger then it actually is.

Go Gravel
Crushed brick or gravel is a beautiful and low-maintenance paving option for small gardens. It’s also easier to use and less expensive than brick or flagstone. Just be sure to spread a layer of landscape fabric underneath the gravel to keep weeds from popping through. On this California hillside, the gravel also allows rainfall to percolate through to the soil instead of running off down the hillside.

Capitalize on Trees
If you have large trees with bare spots underneath them, why not put the barren ground to use by creating an outdoor living space? In this small garden, several trees made growing a lawn or flower border impossible. So, the homeowners paved part of the area with flagstone and added a table and chairs.
Small Garden Tip: When you are working under a large tree, be sure to leave any exposed roots alone and never raise the grade around the base of the tree.

Add a Pond
You don’t need a huge backyard to have a water garden. In fact, installing a water garden is a great way to handle low or wet spots in your garden. Just dig out the area, add a pond liner and pump, and you’re on your way. Even a tiny oasis will attract a wide range of colorful butterflies and birds. In this garden, Water Snowflake, Nymphoides humboldtiana, a small relative of water lily, provides color in tight quarters.

Learn how to create a small container water feature.
Double Your Pleasure
Get twice the flowers and vegetables in your small garden by adding a trellis or low fence behind every planting bed. That way, you can grow vine crops vertically so they don’t sprawl over their plant neighbors. In this narrow garden bed, a trio of rustic wooden trellises support flowering vines at the back of the perennial border.

Trees for Small Spaces
A small yard doesn’t mean you can’t have a gorgeous tree. See these shade-providing beauties that can squeeze into small spots.

Welcome Wildlife
Even a small garden can become a haven for birds and butterflies when you choose flowers they prefer. For example, this square bed is packed with bird and butterfly favorites, such as black-eyed Susan and phlox. A bird feeder and birdhouse add to the garden’s wildlife-friendly features.

See landscaping ideas for the front yard.
Add a Mowing Strip
Keeping turf grass from encroaching in your garden beds is a lot easier when you install a mowing strip at the border’s edge. This mowing strip was specially designed to keep weeds at bay and act as a low-maintenance garden path. It also provides easy, mud-free access to the garden for wheelbarrows, mowers, and other equipment.

Eliminate Lawns
Put every square inch of your backyard to work by removing the sod to create useable outdoor living spaces. In this small courtyard, the turf was torn up and replaced by a gravel base that supports a gorgeous dining table and flower-filled containers. Plus, the homeowners have a lot more time to enjoy the space because they no longer have to mow.

Add Drama
Give small gardens a big boost of style by adding an oversize gate or arbor at one end to act as a focal point. It will draw the eye in and make the space seem larger. Here, a large-scale ornamental entry arbor gives this tiny side yard some visual heft. Plus, it supports a crown of climbing roses. White lilies in the center bed mirror the white roses and arbor.

Curve Walkways
One way to create a sense of space in a small garden is to put some curves into your garden paths. A slightly meandering walkway is always better than a straight path because it will give visitors the sense that they are traveling through a large landscape. Just be sure to make your path wide enough for two people to walk side by side comfortably. This curved concrete path is especially appealing because a ribbon of tile separates each slab of concrete.

Rely on Pots
Enjoy your own corner of paradise by packing your small garden with pots and planters overflowing with flowers and fragrant herbs. In this luxurious backyard, pots of geranium (scented and standard) and marguerite daisy provide the bulk of color surrounding a welcoming teak bench. A large terra-cotta bowl acts as a reflecting pool and birdbath.

Consider the Seasons
When you plan your garden, think about how it’s going to look in all four seasons. Many gardens look terrific in the spring and early summer, but by fall they fade. Choose perennials and annuals that offer late-season color and shrubs and trees that bear colorful berries or interesting bark in the winter. In this tiny front border, a bevy of tulips provide plenty of spring color. After they fade, they are replaced with summer beauties such as geranium and verbena. Holly shrubs, which flank the front door, develop showy red berries that keep the landscape looking good after frost.

Find the perfect small garden plan for your space!
Rehab a Shed
If the view from your backyard faces an ugly shed or garage, think about incorporating it into your garden design. On this narrow lot, the only view was of the homeowner’s ugly garage. But with a can of paint and an inexpensive French door, they turned an ugly duckling into a swan. In fact, they were so happy with the transformation, they added a Mediterranean style patio right up against the new garage doors.

Color Your World
Shady backyards are a great place to spend a hot summer afternoon, but too often, they can be a bit dark and dull. Brighten the view with colorful pillows, fabrics, outdoor rugs, and pots in a variety of colors and patterns. This shady deck is now a colorful spot for family fun.

Camouflage Trash
Nothing ruins the view in a small backyard faster than a set of garbage cans blown over in the wind. Instead of having your garbage in plain sight, build a wooden surround to keep them contained. Here, a set of stylish wooden panels camouflages the homeowners garbage with a little space left over for bags of potting soil and extra garden tools. When the gate panel is closed, everything is completely hidden.

Informations About Flowers For Your Valentine

Although traditional, red roses aren’t the only flowers that say “be mine” this February 14. Tulips (cut or in pots), carnations, iris, fragrant freesia, Peruvian lily, potted azaleas, and orchids are alternative flowers for giving to a special person on St. Valentine’s Day.

If you want to give roses, but can’t afford the high price tag for long-stemmed reds, why not choose sweetheart or miniature roses. They’re less expensive, just as lovely, and are available in the same range of colors including red, pale pink, white, lavender, yellow, and peach. Or, simply give one stem in a bouquet with the small white flowers of some baby’s breath, and a green fern leaf.

When choosing roses, you may want to pay attention to the color as different colors may have different meanings to the recipient. Red, of course, is the most popular and represents romance and love, while lilac-colored roses are said to represent love at first sight. Yellow, on the other hand, represents friendship and loyalty. Pink roses can be used to express gratitude and to say thanks.

Or, select red and white carnations which are less expensive than roses. You may consider a mixed bouquet of red, white, and pink flowers. For example, you could ask your florist to make up a bouquet of white tulips, pink carnations, and a few red roses with sprigs of baby’s breath for the finishing touch. Or include a few long-lasting and more specialty flowers such as alstroemeria, freesia, or even cut orchid stems. If you want a large and exotic bouquet, look for the large tropical red anthurium or ginger. Some florists have walk-in coolers where you can pick your own flower combinations.

If you select your own blooms, choose ones that are just beginning to open. Wrap the flowers well to protect them from the cold on your way home. Once you arrive home, recut the stems and immediately place in warm water with floral preservative. You can find this preservative in small packets at florists, or they may be included in pre-made bouquets. Flowers will last longest if the water in the vase is changed, with new preservative and stems recut, every 3 or 4 days. Make sure to remove any leaves that may be under water.

A flowering potted plant will provide enjoyment for many weeks, usually longer than cut flowers. Potted tulips, azaleas, and cyclamen are all easy to care for and are commonly available in shades of pink, white, and red this time of year.

When buying a potted plant for indoors, look for one with many buds about to open rather than one already in full bloom. Inspect buds, flowers, and undersides of leaves for signs of disease or insect pests.

You may want to enclose a note with your gift to ensure that the plant will be given proper care. Mention that the plant needs to be kept well watered, but not overwatered, and out of drafts. If the foil or paper covering the pot is not removed to allow adequate drainage, make a hole in the bottom to allow excess water to drain and of course place in a saucer to keep water off of indoor surfaces.

Tips To Care of Flowering Holiday Plants

If you purchased or received a poinsettia, cyclamen, or other flowering potted plant for the holidays, there’s no need to throw it out after bloom. With proper care and feeding, these potted plants will continue to flower for many weeks, and may even bloom again next year.

The most popular flowering potted plant and one most buy, or receive as a gift, is the poinsettia. They need good drainage, so if the pot is wrapped in foil, remove the foil or make a hole in the bottom so water can drain out. Put a saucer underneath to protect furniture, but make sure water does remain in the saucer. Then water only when the soil surface is dry. If in doubt, don’t water. Too much water leads to drooping and falling leaves, and root rots.

A common complaint about poinsettias is that they lose their leaves too quickly. This is a sign of poor growing conditions. Poinsettias need at least a half day of sun or bright light for at least 8 hours, a draft-free location, and night temperatures of 65 degrees (F) or above. Given the proper care, you’ll probably get tired of the poinsettias before they begin to lose their color, often as late as mid-summer.

If you want to try and get poinsettias to bloom next year, grow them through the season as you would other houseplants. Then from early October, for at least 10 weeks, you’ll need to move the plant into darkness every night, and bring it out into daylight every day. Plants need 12 hours or less of daylight for this period, every day, to rebloom.

The Christmas cactus responds well to the shorter days of fall, and cool temperatures. It usually will bloom year after year if kept at 50 degrees for several weeks each fall. Starting about mid-September, gradually reduce watering until buds set. Then keep soil constantly moist (but not waterlogged).

The amaryllis, with its stalk of colorful blooms, is another favorite holiday plant. After the flowers fade, cut the flower stalk to about two inches above the bulb. Place in a lighted area, water, and fertilize as with other houseplants. Next summer, place it outdoors, and continue to water and feed as needed. When the tops die down, bring it indoors again. For four weeks, keep at 70 degrees and water sparingly. At the end of that time, increase water to encourage new stalks and blooms.

The popular kalanchoe (said as cal-AN-cho), found in many bright colors through late fall and winter, is a “succulent” plant or one with thick leaves, and that prefers dry soil. In addition to not overwatering, this plant grows best in high light. Keep cool (55 to 65 degrees) at night and warmer (65 to 75 degrees) during day. Fertilize as with other houseplants while it is blooming and growing. If you want to try and rebloom these next year, you’ll need to give a similar fall light schedule as with poinsettias.

Azaleas are found through the holidays and winter in stores. They will bloom for the longest period if kept cool (68 degrees or less), the soil stays moist (but don’t overwater), and with bright light. Feed monthly, using a fertilizer especially formulated for acid-loving plants, or at least houseplant fertilizer, according to label directions. The ones you find in stores are “florist’s azaleas” and are not hardy planted outdoors in northern climates.

If you plan to keep an azalea, snip off flowers when they fade and pinch back the tips of the new shoots to promote compact, bushy growth. You can put plants outside in their pots during summer. Before the first fall frost, move the plant indoors to a cool, sunny room, preferably with 45 to 50 degree nights until buds begin to swell. Then move it into a warmer (60 degree minimum nights) location to force flowering.

You can prolong the bloom of your cyclamen by keeping it cool (68 degrees or below is best) and evenly moist. Too high temperatures, too little or too much water, or too low light may cause leaves to yellow and drop. With proper conditions, and if plants begin with lots of buds, you can have flowers for many weeks. Feed regularly with houseplant food at about half strength.

Most discard cyclamen after bloom. If you want to keep them for possible future blooms, stop watering when leaves turn yellow and wither. Keep dry, in cool, and out of direct sun. When you see the first signs of growth in fall, or at least by October, water well. Water again and treat as above when shoots and leaves appear.

There are other potted flowering plants you may find in stores, including mums, gerbera daisies, or ornamental peppers. As with other such potted plants, generally cool temperatures (60 to 70 degrees) and avoiding too much water will result in the longest bloom period. You’ll also get the longest bloom if you buy plants with lots of buds rather than all flowers already fully open.

The Reasons Why Houseplants Drop Leaves

Houseplants drop leaves for many reasons, but most are related to improper care or poor growing conditions. Often just giving plants the correct light and temperature, or controlling pests, is all that is needed to prevent future leaf drop.

Either too much or too little watering may cause leaf drop. A common problem is that when you see leaves droop or even fall off, you may be tempted to think the plant is thirsty and needs more water. This could lead to overwatering and even more leaves dropping. Make sure when watering, especially in northern climates in winter, to use lukewarm water. Icy cold water can chill the soil and injure roots of tropical plants, leading to root rots, leaves dropping, and perhaps even dead plants.

Extremely low humidity will cause sensitive plants, such as gardenia, to drop leaves although most common houseplants will not show leaf drop in response to low humidity only.

Fertility, or rather lack of sufficient nutrients, can lead to leaf drop. With this, usually you will notice leaves lighter in color first, so you have a chance to correct this before leaves totally turn yellow and drop. Use a houseplant fertilizer, according to label directions, particularly while plants are growing or flowering.

Plants in pots that are too small may drop leaves. Why? Because there may not be enough root room to support all the leaves the plant tries to form, so the oldest leaves drop off. Because the space for the roots is inadequate, the plant may not be able to absorb enough water and nutrients.

Some leaf drop occurs when plants are subjected to a big change in environment. Such changes occur when plants grown outside for the summer are brought inside for the winter. Greenhouse-grown plants may drop leaves if placed in dimly lit house conditions, when they’ve been grown in high light. Some plants just may require higher light to grow and keep all their leaves. Leaf drop brought on by a change in environment should be temporary and non-life threatening (to the plants), new leaves forming that are adapted to the new site.

Chilling is one cause of leaf drop related to environment. Tropical plants are sensitive to low, but above freezing, temperatures. Plants on windowsills may be exposed to chilling temperatures. Hot or cold drafts may be a problem for some plants. The poinsettia is a prime example of a plant that drops leaves due to exposure to cold drafts of air.

Insects and diseases can cause leaf drop, but are not as common as the previously listed causes. Recently I had a variegated English ivy that was losing leaves. On closer inspection I found leaves infested with spider mites. Washing plants well with mildly soapy water is a good start, and often all that is needed, for pest control.

Some leaf drop on houseplants is normal. Older plants should be expected to drop a leaf or two occasionally. This is particularly the case with plants that grow upright like umbrella plant or cane plant, losing lower leaves as newer ones form on the top. The only solutions for this are to stake plants and live with this habit, to propagate new plants by air layering the canes, or to give away the plant and get a new more compact one.

If you’re not sure of the correct culture and conditions for your houseplants, check any directions that came with them, look online or in books, or ask your local full-service garden center.