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    When and how to mow your new lawn

     

    New lawns require time to become established and set down a root system before they are mowed. If you’ve seeded your lawn, it may be as long as two months before it can be mowed. Sod, on the other hand, may need to be mowed within three weeks of being laid. Plugs, sprigs and stolons can take as much as six weeks to become firmly established. If you’ve seeded your lawn, all seeds must have germinated before you mow. Plugs, sprigs, stolons and sod must have roots firmly set before they’re mowed to prevent damage. Mowing • Never cut more than 1/3 of the grass height. • Assure the lawn is completely dry before mowing to prevent damage. • Check your mower’s instruction manual and set the mower to the proper height for new lawns. • Keep your blades sharp for the best results. Dull or out of balance blades will cause you and your equipment to work harder. • Mow at the highest recommended height and then mow again after a few days. • Mow your lawn every four to five days if grass has grown adequately. Mowing too frequently will scalp a new lawn. Remember; only cut 1/3 of the grass height. Example: If your grass is three inches high, only cut one inch. This will keep your lawn lush, healthy and well-groomed.

         
    When and how to prune roses

     

    : Rose bushes that are not pruned can grow into large tangled messes with small and inferior blooms. The following should allow you to grow an attractive well shaped and sized bush with large lovely blooms. Note: This article is about pruning bushes, not climers, trees, ramblers or pillers. Pruning at the right time can be just as important as how you prune. Bushes should not be pruned untill they begin comming out of dormancy. This can be as early as January in warm weather areas to as late as April in very cold areas. In colder areas do not prune untill all danger of frost is past. Using the proper tools is also very important. You need a good set of pruning shears, the type that have one side for cutting and one side for supporting. The shears must be sharp, otherwise they can tear your canes instead of cutting them. For older larger canes you will also need a good sharp fine toothed curved cutting saw that is lubricated. It is also a good idea to have some type of pruning paint or sealer to seal larger cuts. Do not forget good heavy canvas or leather gloves that can protect your hands. Do not cut canes straight across. All cuts should be at an angle of between 40 to 65 degrees. Always make sure that the shear's cutting blade is on the lower side of the cane in order to insure a clean cut. This way any injury to the plant will be on the upper part of the cane which will be discarded. How much you prune depends on what you are trying to accomplish and on how well established the plant is. Moderate pruning, leaving 5 or more canes of up to 24 inches in length, will develope a large bush with nice moderate sized blooms. Light pruning, canes 3 to 4 feet in length, will produce an even larger bush but with smaller blooms on shorter stems and is good for newer or weaker plants. Heavy pruning, 3 to 4 canes from 6 to 12 inches in length will produce the largest, showiest blooms, however if the plant is too new or weak you may end up reducing the plants life span. When pruning, remove all suckers as these grow from the root stock which is different from the grafted bush and may eventually take over and kill the bush. Cut out all week, spindly and deformed canes, and if possible cut out canes growing toward the center of the bush. If canes cross each other remove the weaker one. Proper shaping makes for a lovelier bush and allows proper air circulation which makes for a healthier plant. Try to make all cuts down to a cane or if necessary down to about one quarter inch from a strong outside bud union or eye, the eye is where new growth stems from. After pruning paint all major cuts with a sealer in order to aid in healing and to help keep out insects and diseases.


    For more information on what to look for when buying roses see nationalrealtorsdirectory/planbeforebuyingrosesarticle. html

    For more information about bare root roses see nationalrealtorsdirectory/barerootrosesarticle. html

    For information about planting bare root roses see nationalrealtorsdirectory/plantingbarerootrosesarticle. html

    Permission is given to reprint this article providing credit is given to the author, David G. Hallstrom, and a link is listed to nationalrealtorsdirectory the owner of this article. Anyone or any company reprinting this article without giving proper credit and the correct link, is doing so without permission.

         
    Where did the window boxes go

     

    I just happen to love window boxes and miss seeing them in the more modern neighborhoods these days. My neighbors who lived across the street from us had just painted their older rather plain, small house a medium gray with white trim. Clean, but boring I thought. With two large windows on each side of the front door, I had visions of painting the front door red and adding 2 red window boxes beneath those windows. Talk about adding some impact! Window boxes can take a plain nondescript house and give it the look of a charming country cottage in no time. Window boxes are also particularly wonderful when you are limited for planting space in a small yard. You can fill them with low growing and trailing flowers, vines or even herbs. You may be hard put to find ready-made window boxes at your local garden store these days, but they are still available online. If you want to make your own window boxes, cedar or redwood would be the wood of choice. If you can't find some kind of a plastic or metal liner to fit, I would further protect the wood by lining the boxes with plain old tarpaper before adding the planting mix. You can then mount them to the window frames with the proper sized brackets. Your neighborhood hardware store can guide you in the right direction. Make sure you drill some holes in he bottom of the window boxes for good drainage and water daily during the summer months. Once every few weeks are so, add some fertilizer for container plants, then sit back and enjoy beautiful blooms from both the outside and inside of the house. Some good flower choices for window boxes would be geraniums, marigolds, trillium, alyssum, and any other low growing flowers that love the sun. For the shady side of the house, try fuchsias or the beautiful non-stop begonias. Some useful herb choices would include chives, rosemary, parsley and thyme. If you like fresh mint, don't plant any other herb in that particular window box as the mint will take over all other plants.

         
    Where to put your water garden

     

    Like so many things in life, the location is one of the most important aspects to consider when making any changes. Here are a couple of things to consider when you build your dream water garden: 1. Call Before You Dig While this one seems obvious, its surprising the number of people who forget to call the appropriate utility companies about phone, gas and power lines, only to accidently cut them. One simple phone call avoids all sorts of problems, ensuring that you wont have to worry about delays to your project and iritate your neighbours when their phone or electricity no longer works. 2. Made In the Shade Consider the pattern of the sun and its impacts on shadows in your yard. Also, remember that the direction the sun crosses the sky will change between spring and fall. The angle of the sun will dictate what type of shade you need to create, and where to place your trees and water pond. Many plants require 6 hours of direct sunlight. 3. Regional Considerations What type of weather and soil conditions can you expect in the area you live in? You may find that the type of soil will dictate the types of plants and trees you can use to create your backyard paradise. 4. Existing Structures Keep in mind existing structures such as trees, fences and patios. Will your plan mean removing trees? Will the design of your artificial water garden compliment your existing back yard, or will further changes have to be made? These considerations may add to the cost of your project. Keep your neighbours informed of your plans. You may find that they are willing to share in the cost of removing that tree or help in rebuilding the new fence. 5. Hows It Flowin? Spend time tracking the direction and intensity of water flows that plants need and intensity of that water flow. You may find that some parts of your yard recieve more water than others based on the flow of the water in your yard. You may find that there is a sloping effect in your yard. This will impact your vegetation. Also check for pools of water that gather in certain spots. Raising the level of parts of your yard will ensure that all of your yard recieves the same amount of water. 6. Drawing the line Remember to respect property codes for your city and wishes of your neighbours. Having an envious neighbour is one thing, violating their rights is another. When in doubt, check it out. 7. Whats the Plan? Keep the focus of your site in mind throughout all aspects of your yard. Are you building a barrier, an escape from the rest of the city or just looking to make your yard look better for the next owners? This should weight in on all of your decisions. Before you build your back yard retreat, plan, plan, plan. Remember, there are several factors to consider and the above lucky 7 tips should help you make the perfect water garden yours.

         
    Why add decor to your garden

     

    Looking back through history, gardens have always been emphasized. From the Garden of Eden to modern times, writers have placed the principal characters of their stories and sometimes the most exciting events in gardens. Romantic interludes in garden arbors or in shady nooks are a common occurrence. One does not, however, have to be a writer to envision a restful, romantic and beautiful garden. In today’s over-developed suburban landscapes, the land is scalped, trees are removed, and the natural vegetation is destroyed, to be replaced by manicured lawns, demanding unlimited water and polluting chemicals. Professional landscapers frequently continue this trend, replacing native trees with exotics. Fortunately, there are native plant societies which can give good advice about plants for each planting zone, and law makers are beginning to realize that the destruction of the native vegetation allows unwanted plants to take over. In Florida this has happened with the incredible incidence of Brazilian Pepper trees. A shady tree, a garden bench, a beautiful birdbath and a tinkling wind chime make for a pleasant place to spend an afternoon, and with the addition of a solar lantern, a setting for a romantic evening interlude. Statuettes and a waterfall also add to the ambience. For a relatively small investment and some good planning, a suburban tract can become an artistic haven for both humans and small wildlife. Decorate your garden and add to the enjoyment of nature.

         
    Why every gardener needs a garden shed

     

    One of my all-time favorite hobbies is having a garden each year. I think my love for gardening started when I was a little girl spending summers with my grandmother and helping her take care of her large vegetable and flower gardens. I love the feeling of getting dirt in my fingernails and of seeing healthy vegetables and beautiful flowers grow from the tinest seeds. My grandmother taught me a lot about life and about gardening during those summers. One of the main things I remember her teaching me, however, was that every gardener needed a garden shed. I thought this advice about a garden shed was a bit strange at first. In fact, I questioned my grandmother about it because I thought surely she had spoken wrong. A garden shed? Sure, they are great, but why would every gardener need one? That was my question to my grandmother. She answered my question about the need for a garden shed in the most magical and memorable way. She walked me over to her special garden shed and brought me inside with her. Once inside she began explaining all the different tools, seeds and fertilizers that she had in her garden shed. I was quite amazed at everything my gram had in her garden shed. It was really organized and she seemed to have a great reason for each thing she had in there. She said that all gardeners will take more pride in their gardens if they have a special garden shed filled with everything they need to garden. To make a long story short, I have since become very convinced that my grandmother's words are true about a garden shed. The more I have gotten into gardening the more I have seen the truth that it requires a lot of tools and things to make a garden grow with success, and my garden shed is the perfect place to store everything for my garden. Each year it seems like I grow my gardens a bit bigger and so each year my garden shed gets a little more filled with all of the right products and tools for each of my new attempts. So if you are a gardener of if you are thinking about starting a garden for the first time, then I suggest you invest into a garden shed. It will hold everything you need for your garden and allow you to take pride in the work of your hands.

         
    Why i decided to plan my next years garden last fall

     

    Every year spring comes and I get so excited to get outside and plant my garden. I can just taste those fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, beans, and all the other wonderful produce that I will grow this summer. I stop at all the seed displays and see if there is anything new that I want to try and grow this year and take pleasure in my anticipation to dig in the dirt. I watch the weather and am careful not to plant to soon, I don't want my plants caught in a late spring freeze of course. Then the time comes when I just can't stand it any longer I head to the nursery to buy my plants. I of course get way too many of everything and then I patiently haul them outside every morning to get some sun and then bring them in each night until the big day arrives. I get my garden area all rototilled and ready and invest in some plant food to help my little darlings along after I get them planted. I've got my stakes and string ready to make neat little rows of carrots and radishes. I've got my wire cages ready to place over my tomatoes plants and am just itching to get started. Finally the day has arrived and I can plant my garden. I start out the morning with enthusiasm and get everything planted just so. It is a little more crowded than I would like because I seem to always try to fit too many plants and seeds into the area, but I tell myself it will all be worth it. All through June and July I lovingly cultivate my plants, weeding and watering with a vengeance. August comes and we are thoroughly enjoying all our fresh vegetables. But by then it is getting a little hot out and weeding isn't quite as fun anymore. Toward the middle of August I have vegetables coming out my ears and it is time to can and freeze all this freshness for winter. I start out with salsa and then move on to tomatoes and pickles. Then of course I need to get those strawberrys in the freezer. And I don't want the corn to get too mature before I get it into the freezer. After a week or two my kitchen is a wreck and I am tired of spending the last of my summer days inside. If I never see another tomato or ear of corn I will be extremely happy. Between getting ready for the new school year and freezing and canning all my great produce I am thoroughly exhausted. Plus it seems like with this heat watering my garden, let alone the lawn is a never ending chore. But of course we don't want anything to go to waste so I head down to get more canning supplies and keep at it. When it is all said and done I have way too much for my family to use so of course I give it away. You don't want those vegetables to go to waste you know. By this time I look out and my peaches and apples seem just right for picking and the process starts over with them. While I am working on my fruit of course the garden is still producing and even though I quit canning and freezing from there I can't let it go to waste so I make sure every morning and night I pick what is ripe and give it away to those that will surely appreciate it. Because by this time the thought of eating anything out of the garden is not very appealing, neither is cooking in my kitchen that has become a canning disaster area. Then the next big day that I can't seem to wait for, the big freeze. Finally my gardening job has ended. All I have to do now is get everything in the compost pile, re-rototill, and fertilize. As I look at my kitchen and see all the fruits, vegetables, pickles, and jellies ready for winter I am proud, but really really tired. I vow next year I will not take on so much. Last year I went ahead and planned my garden in October and made specific counts of just how much I was going to plant. I made counts of just how much I had frozen and canned to see just how much we would use in the coming year. I made little footnotes of my thoughts on the subject as well. Well spring is approaching, well kind of there is still snow on the ground, and I got out my garden plan and looked at all the produce my family still hasn't eaten and thought about how much of it I had given away this winter already and thought maybe I should follow this new garden plan as I started to unfold all my notes. I vaguely remember thinking Pace salsa is almost as good as my own, and who really can tell if the canned tomatoes came from the garden or not after they have been cooked. I don't know if I will be able to stick to this streamlined plan when my green thumb starts itching to grow things but I keep telling myself if we run out of salsa, jelly, corn, or tomatoes it won't be the end of the world. They are readily available at the grocery store and in the long run may cost less than me putting them up myself. I was totally convinced in October, kind of convinced now, but I am wondering come May if I will be able to stick to it. I have a feeling when the grass starts turning green, and the tulips show their colors all my best laid plans for a more relaxing late summer are going to go by the wayside. Oh well, I guess their could be worse addictions. I wonder is there such a thing as a 12 step program for those addicted to gardening in excess?

         
    Why i ve always wanted a garden fountain

     

    I have always been smitten with the smallest things in life. In fact, even as a kid I remember being fascinated with small things and with finding beauty in places that most people ignored. So when it came time to purchase a home for me and my own family, there were naturally so many detail things that I was concerned about. As an architect, I was obviously concerned in detail with the layout of the house and with the way each room would fit into the bigger plan for the house. But I was also concerned with whether or not the home we chose would be able to accomodate the small things that I wanted to have for my home like a garden fountain. I think that I first started liking garden fountains in a movie I saw. The first word that comes to mind when I think about a garden fountain is magic. I belive that there is something truly magical about a garden fountain begin part of a backyard, and that is the main reason why I have always wanted one in a home of my own. I love sitting in a backyard on a warm summer night and watching the fireflies dance around a garden fountain. I love seeing fish swim and play in a garden fountain too. If you are thinking of adding an extra special touch to your home and yard, then consider carefully putting in a garden fountain. Why? Not only because a garden fountain adds a certain amount of magic, but also because a garden fountain is a relatively easy and simply way to add a touch of uniqueness and beauty to your property. After all, not everyone you know will have a garden fountain. I'm convinced that if everyone had the opportunity to see what an astetic difference a garden fountain really makes then they would be sure to add one to their landscape as soon as possible. It is a good idea to visit a few homes that have a garden fountain before choosing one of your own. See what other people are doing and determine what kind of garden fountain is best for you. You should keep in mind that you can install a garden fountain on your own or you can have one installed for you. So take your time and make a wise decision. It is true that adding a garden fountain to your outside space is a small decision, but it is also true that some of the small things in life are also the most magical and make the most difference.

         
    Why people like artificial plants

     

    What can be done with artificial plants is just a matter of seeing it for yourself. Who knew that manipulating plastic could even turn out to look that beautiful? If you are the type who's against the destruction of the Rain Forest, who said that you should not have any green in your home? Artificial plants are odorless and the only thing they do catch is dust. Taking a damp cloth, or even having the kids spend on morning on a Saturday cleaning them, will bring back the color of the plants. Artificial plants can resemble actual flowers and it will take a second – maybe even a third – glance to realize that they are not real. A few of the plants are available with artificial water, which adds to the look-a-like effect, and be beautiful centerpieces on the coffee table, on the mantelpiece or even on the bedside pedestal. There is nothing wrong with having plastic in your house, and if you are against it, you just have a look at a few of the artificial plants and decide for yourself. You will not be blamed if you are taken to the artificial plant section and can’t tell the difference between real and plastic. The two are very close – maybe so close that there is no fault. To tell the difference all you have to do is put your nose near each of them and smell the difference. When owning artificial plants in your home and would like to give it a fresh smell, try adding a few drops of potpourri oils on the brim of the vase. That should convince the visitors that your beautiful flowers are making the room smell so nice. Share your secret with them and tell them and then see the looks on their faces when they stand there in disbelief. People love artifical plants for many reasons as you can see. Since they aren't as delicate as real plants, they can also be easily found and purchased online. Find any artificial plants you like online and take measurements to make sure they'll be a perfect fit for your home.

         
    Why purchase herbs at the supermarket

     

    Herbs are no doubt among the easiest plants to grow in your garden. Many of them are fairly drought tolerant and have a blooming period albeit short. In addition, herbs lend a delicious fragrance to the garden. While most herbs are easily grown in containers which is a major plus, if you have space, consider planting an entire herb garden. It needn't take that much space. A plot of land measuring approximate 200-400 square feet should do you quite nicely. Find out the diameter of a mature plant; obtain some graph paper and sketch out your garden before you dig a single hole. Remember to allow at least 1 foot of space between mature plants for ease of weeding and pruning. One of the most fragrant herbs to add to your garden is lavender. The scent of lavender in bloom is heavenly and is wonderful for making scented sachets to hang in your closet or place in your dresser drawers. This is the only herb I would suggest you plant as many as you have space for as those sachets make wonderful gifts. As the song goes, 4 great savory herbs to add to your garden are Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme. Fresh chopped parsley is a wonder addition to potato and pasta salads, not to mention a lovely garnish for many other dishes. Try drying sage leaves to add to many dishes including stuffing for turkey and chicken. And, both rosemary and thyme are excellent accents when roasting poultry and lamb among other savory dishes. Tarragon is a wonderful addition to soups and vegetables. This herb is also good in tuna, egg, pasta and green salads. Add when making sauces for fish or chicken, it's a must for bйarnaise sauce. If you intend upon canning pickled vegetables from your garden or making pretty vinegars for gifts think about planting some dill. While its true you can purchase dried dill weed very cheaply, there is no way you can get a full stalk of dill unless you grow it or pay rather dearly for it when needed in quantity. In my opinion, no herb garden is complete without chives. In fact, if I could plant only one herb, it would be chives because they are so very useful. While I love green onions, by the time I get around to using them, alas they all but lifeless. No problem with chives growing right outside my door. They not only add that touch of needed green, they also have that subtle onion flavor which is perfect for salads and potato toppings. Unfortunately, another one of my favorite herbs is not worth planting. Cilantro tends to bolt so quickly you would be lucky to retrieve a leaf or two. Obviously those that grow cilantro commercially know something we don't know and they aren’t telling. If you figure it out please let me in on the secret. I will let you in on my secret for preserving store bought cilantro, however. Place the bunch of cilantro in a glass of water and cover with the plastic bag it came in. This way, the cilantro will stay fresh and crisp for up to 2 weeks in your fridge. On a final note, let's talk about mint. A favorite of mine is pineapple mint. It has a wonderful fragrance and taste and makes a lovely tea and garnish. However, there is a real problem with mint. It's tangled roots go deep and it tends to try to take over every other plant in the garden. Spray it with Round-up and it comes right back again. Once planted, you simply can't get rid of it! So, if you want to add mint to your garden, plant it in a container and move the container often enough to insure it doesn't take root in the ground through the drainage hole in the container.

         
    Why rose gardening is so addictive

     

    For many of us, the act of gardening brings us closer to nature by getting us outdoors and allowing us the opportunity to tend and grow objects that in the absence of our assistance would not be able to survive, let alone thrive. There is a special connection between the growers of roses and their plants, however, which seems to go even beyond the basic instincts of the traditional gardener. The first reason that roses can be such an addictive plant is the roots it has in our culture in the form of myth and symbolism. The same reason we are addicted to rose gardening is the same reason we are willing to pay a ridiculous amount for a single flower or bunch on Valentine’s Day - nothing in our society communicates more than the rose. This cultural phenomenon has been a part of western heritage for longer than anyone can trace. The rose was considered a flower of romance in ancient China, where it was first developed, and was used throughout the Roman Empire. British history is full of roses in every context - the theater where Shakespeare’s plays were put on was known as the rose, and some of the most distinguishing events in British history occurred during the long “War of the Roses”. Roses were not actually introduced to Europe in the cultivated style until the late 1700s, when they arrived from China. Perhaps some of the addiction we have in cultivating roses stems in part from the same areas that our ancient forebears found so appealing. Many roses have a very distinctive scent, and the shape of the rose is certainly unique enough in itself to warrant extensive cultivation and appeal. Roses can also be found in many different colors and varieties, and there is symbolism attached to every colour that roses can be found in - red, of course, symbolizes love, but did you know that pink roses carry a message of gratitude, while yellow represent joy? Roses also represent a singular species which can manifest itself in a variety of styles, and therefore a rose gardener really needs only to focus on rose types to bring all the variety to the appearance of her lawn and garden that could be wished for. Roses can be planted in the miniature style, as bushes, and as climbers. As has been noted above, roses are also available in several different colors which will add to the overall diversity in appearance of your garden. Roses are also available in petals of many different sizes to further add diversity to your landscaping. Species roses grow hips that are colorful and last well into the winter, and can add a further sprinkle of uniqueness to your landscaping by attracting birds throughout the winter months. Lastly, roses require as little or as much attention as the gardener wants to put in. Pruned bushes look ideal, but roses are also beautiful when allowed to grow freely. Roses also tend to be very hardy and resistant to diseases. The soil composition needs not have too many considerations, and the ground cover is totally up to the gardener. Growing roses can be an addicting experience because of their history, their beauty, their variety, and their maintenance. Once a person dedicates their garden space to the cultivation of roses, the possibilities are limitless.

         
    Why should you use grading in the garden

     

    Not all houses have perfect surroundings that will be easy to transform into outdoor recreation and entertainment areas with good lawns and gardens. It is frequently necessary to undertake some construction projects to obtain the quality and type of outdoor area you want. One of the basic construction problems for any landscaping task is grading the soil. Generally, grading means building a slope into the garden area. Sloping ensures that there is proper drainage, and it can make the house look better while allowing for easier maintenance. Whether you want to have a garden, a lawn, or a terrace, you must do your grading first. The best time to grade is when a home is being constructed, since it is relatively simple to add a few inches between the entrance level and the ground level at this point. Just a few inches can ease the creation of a grade away from the house to improve its appearance and make for a drier basement, if you have one. It is difficult to measure a grade by eye. Even professionals cannot do this. You should use a piece of twine as a guide. Pull the twine tight between two sticks imbedded in the ground. Once you’ve completed the rough work for leveling, use a long board as a straight edge on the ground to make sure you’ve been accurate. Rough grading is the first step in landscape construction. The extent of the grading depends on the condition of the ground and ground levels desired. You must also pay attention if there are extreme slopes and try to keep as closely as possible to natural contours. This reduces the expense of grading in a big way. Begin grading by stripping and separating topsoil from the areas where the level is to be altered. Even if you are grading for a stone or concrete terrace, you should save the topsoil. You can spread the topsoil in areas where it is thin, or you can use it a flower garden and save yourself some money. Once you have stripped the topsoil, subsoil can be graded to the desired contours, leaving space for adding the topsoil that has been removed. You should also plan to have a slope for every one-hundred feet of lawn. The same measurement can be applied to a stone terrace to prevent pools of water to develop during periods of rain. When you level an area for a terrace, you don’t need to insert subsoil drainage. Just save the topsoil. For nearly all terraces, it is good practice to tamp the soil down and even to put a layer of gravel cinder or crushed rock as a base for the terrace. Terraces typically require a level area, but the grade that slopes away from the house should be maintained.

         
    Why teak wood is so popular as garden furniture

     

    Why is Teak Wood so Popular? As the days go by, teak is becoming rarer, harder to acquire and more expensive to own. Regardless, in the face of fierce competition from other types of hard woods like cedar, fir, oak, mahogany and cherry, teak wood remains one of the more popular materials to be used - especially if we’re talking about outdoor furniture. Even as the supply of teak wood dwindles, there must be a reason why teak wood continues to be the preferred staple for outdoor furniture. The popularity of teak wood has everything to do with its weather-resistant nature and naturally shiny and beautiful color. The gentle and natural yellow-brown color provides an excellent contrast against natural green backgrounds. As mentioned, because the supply of teak is slowing down, the price of teak is quite exorbitant now but people who know wood knows that it’s worth investing in. Many efforts have been made to find a suitable and adequate substitute for teak wood but many of them do not have the same qualities as teak wood and they always fall short of being as useful and efficient as teak. Let’s admit it, it’s kind of hard to measure up to teak wood. One will truly appreciate and understand the reason why some furniture experts insist on having teak furniture instead of other cheaper wood-type furniture when they see the extraordinary durability of teak in harsh weather conditions. In some Asian tropical countries, building beams made of teak shines on in near-perfect condition even when the building has aged more than a thousand years. With evidence like that, it’s not at all hard to see why teak is commonly used in the construction, shipbuilding, and outdoor furniture industry. In fact, it has been shown that even when iron was introduced into the shipbuilding industry; it did not replace the high demands for teak wood. Teak wood is considered superior to other types of hard woods because once it is weathered and seasoned, it takes a lot to crack, split, shrink or alter the shape of teak wood. Teak is definitely far more superior to oak. On top of that, teak wood has great elasticity making it a favorite type of wood to work with among craftsmen. Teak takes on a beautifully polished appearance when finished because it contains natural oils. Despite its superior strength, teak wood is not too heavy, making export of the hardwood popular. The natural oil in teak wood is extremely aromatic. Some say the smell of teak is somewhat strange but it smells very natural and fragrant to most. In fact, the oil from teak wood is extracted in some cultures and the oil is used for medicinal purposes. With all the obvious advantages of using teak as opposed to using other types of fancier, more available and cheaper hard woods, it’s not hard to understand why teak wood remains one of the most popular types of hard woods. It’s beauty and durability make it an excellent choice for any outdoor garden or patio. Read all about teak at: teaksupplies

         
    Why the perennial plant survives through the winter

     

    One reason why the perennial plant is sought after is because of its remarkable ability to survive year round through most weather conditions. Not unlike your local mail delivery person, perennials lives on through rain, sleet, or snow - perfect for the year round gardener. What is it about perennials that enables it's winter survival abilities, whereas other plants will shrivel up and die as soon as the going get tough? Why can't scientists engineer annuals or biennials to last as long the perennial plant? As with most things in the natural world, not all plants are created equal, however some biologists have succeeded in re-engineering annual and biennial plants to last longer. To do so, they must examine the perennial plant and find out what allows it to survive in the same environment that causes other to perish. Although stretching the life of a non-perennial would certainly make the plant and floral businesses flourish, marketing isn't the only reason scientists and many others have this question. If we had vast amounts of plants that have medicinal and life saving properties, we could study their curing capabilities at an exponential rate. The longevity of the perennial plant is definitely an exciting curiosity for many people. Interestingly enough, the perennial plant is able to thrive year after year due to a few survival tricks it has up it's sleeve. Take trees and shrubs for example. These drop their leaves and protect their next year's growth with waxy scales. Examine the bud of a perennial plant and you'll see that it covered with a sticky looking waterproof wax.. When the bud begins to bloom, it scars as its scales fall off and the distance between its scars are an indicator of how many times a year that perennial plant grows. The perennial plant gears up for the winter by draining its own food supply from its leaves down inside its trunk, branches, and twigs. As the weather gets colder, the tissues of the perennial plant will slowly change and become cold resistant in a process called "hardening." During these changes, the chlorophyll of a perennial plant will decompose and lose its propensity to project a green hue - leaving the tree with its trademark red, yellow, orange, and brown autumn leaves.

         
    Why you need a compost tumbler for your garden

     

    If you’re looking to turn your garbage into gardener’s gold and do it in a hurry, then you should try a compost tumbler. If you have a compost bin then you know how great it is to add compost to your flower beds and vegetable garden. But making compost takes time and it’s usually in short supply. A compost tumbler is a great time saver when making compost. Some gardeners believe that compost is better than fertilizer because it doesn’t just feed your plants, it also improves your soil. Improving your soil keeps your plants healthier so they grow stronger and more capable of fighting off diseases or beating droughtspost is decomposed organic matter and is high in nutrients that plants love. Bacteria and other micro organisms help break down that decomposing organic matter and their short life cycles become part of the process itself. When they reproduce their offspring continue the process while the parents bodies break down and add to the organic matter. It’s nature’s way of recycling. Creating compost will usually take a couple of months. If you get the ratio of browns to greens right, turn the pile to keep it aerated and don’t let it dry out you’ll be rewarded with fresh earthy compost. The more you tend your compost pile, the quicker your garden waste will become compost. Neglect the pile and it will still become compost but it’ll take a lot longer. For an example of this examine the rich soil in a forest. As leaves and tree litter fall to the ground, there isn’t anyone there making sure it’s the same wetness as a wrung out sponge. But by the time the next season rolls around, a lot of those leaves have begun decomposing and in the process, they’re feeding the trees and the cycle continues without any help from man. The gardening season can be very short depending on where you live. In the Northeast we have about 4 months of time to grow the flowers, fruits and vegetables that we love. So unless you have a huge bin of compost ready to go on the first day of spring you’ll need some more during the growing season. A compost tumbler is perfect for making compost fast. Now you probably won’t make enough compost to fill new beds but the amount you can make is perfect to give your plants and nice top dressing. Or if you are a composter with a pest problem, the compost tumbler will keep the critters out of your pile. The most popular tumblers are sealed up and only have holes for air. If rodents or snakes have been problems for you in the past then the compost tumbler is the solution that you’ve been looking for. There’s a few things you’ll need to do a little differently if you’re used to bin composting. First off, you’ll need to add all the raw materials at once. Don’t continue adding or else your compost will never be done. Add what you want and then start turning. Try to turn it everyday. If not everyday then at least a few times a week. The first few batches will take the longest unless you already have some compost that you can toss into the tumbler. Or you can use a compost activator. That’s all activators really are anyway. Just someone’s else’s compost to help get your pile started. The bacteria and micro organisms have to get in there somehow. Be sure not to over water when using a compost tumbler. Moisture doesn’t escape as easily inside the tumbler as with a regular compost bin. And most likely your ingredients such as grass clippings or coffee grinds were already moist to begin with. After about 3 weeks the compost should start to look like compost. It should be an even color and you shouldn’t be able to tell what you put in the tumbler. If your waste is still recognizable then let it decompose a while longer. And don’t forget to smell your compost. It should have a nice earthy smell to it. If you’re looking for a neat & compact composting solution that works quickly and won’t receive a lot of attention from your neighbors, then look into a compost tumbler. You’ll be tumbling your way to a great garden this season.

         
     
         
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