Archive for May, 2008

Palm Tree For Your Home or Garden

Saturday, May 31st, 2008

Palm trees might remind you of the tropics, but actually there are many palms that can be grown in cooler weather. These wont be banana trees swaying in the breeze under a hot sun, but theyll still bring a bit of the tropics into your garden, or even inside your home. They are quite adaptable, and are both attractive and unique. Palm trees are easy to care for even for a beginning gardener. The variety you choose should be based on the palm trees intended location. Here are a few choices to consider:

King Palms are great shade trees for your yard. You can start tem off indoors, but they can grow very tall, so expect that youll need to transplant them to your yard after a couple of years. Indoors, they can shield smaller plants from the direct sunlight entering through your windows.

There are a few other varieties that are similar to King Palms but should not be started inside. Majesty Palms, for example, will grow to be ten feet tall in just ten years. In as little as seven years, Queen Palms can grow to be 25 feet tall, making it a bad choice to keep indoors.

Methods of Combating Dahlia Deficiencies

Friday, May 30th, 2008

My favourite trick for feeding is to use one of the commercial complete fertilisers (with a blood base) plus additional potash and magnesium. For convenience sake it is best to make this up in a concentrated form if to be used as a liquid feed, in say a 3 gallon container.

If the required strength of the complete fertiliser is one ounce to the gallon, then measure out 72 ounces into the 3 gallon drum, add 12 ounces of sulphate of potash and 12 ounces of commercial Epsom salts, fill up with water and leave for at least 24 hours, stirring the mixture well from time to time. Use this at the rate of half a pint of the mixture to a two gallon can, once every week or ten clays, from the time when the plants start to grow strongly until the third or fourth week in August.

Usually even if a reasonably well balanced fertiliser is used, it will be found with dahlias that there is not sufficient potash for their requirements, so that it is as well to give an additional dressing of sulphate of potash at the rate of 2 ounces to the square yard, at least twice during the growing season, say in late June and early August, particularly if the plants are lush and soft, and the blooms tend to scorch or wilt in the sun.

Pest Control-A Solution To Household Pests

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Pests are easily the most annoying creatures of earth. From cockroaches and rats to crows and squirrels, there are a lot of animals that can be characterized as a pest in a particular field of work or at the comforts of ones home. Thanks to the availability of many pest control sites and services, a lot of people and surroundings have been saved from possible demolition.

Pest control has been around for ages and the method used to eliminate or control a pest depends on what kind of pest needs to be controlled. If it is a insect then completely different strategies are to be used than in the case were the pest was an animal.

The type of pest control used to control a pest also depends on where pest control will be exercised. If there is a need for pest management in an agricultural area then the approach will be different than a pest management method used to deal with a pest problem in a home.

In order to bring about a solution for the growing agricultural concern, scientific mechanics such as mixed cropping and crop rotation have been inculcated in different farms. Some also go through the process of breeding specific cultivated plants so as to stow crops away from lurking pests.

Mulch And Landscaping Make Your Yard Look Great

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008

It’s always good to have some experience in landscaping or gardening before you try to take on a large project in your yard. Although using mulch and other yard improvement tools isn’t difficult, you should plan ahead and learn as much as you can before taking it on.

You may have enough funds to hire a professional landscaper to get the job done for you, even if it is a larger yard that will need plenty of mulch and topsoil. Believe it or not, some smaller and affordable local landscaping companies can do just as good a job as larger companies.

If you live in a residential neighborhood or own your own building, then you know how common the need for landscaping is in today’s world. This means that there will always be plenty of options to choose from when it comes to buying and using topsoil, mulch and stone for your project.

If you don’t have the budget or the funds to hire a landscaping company, you can always take on your yard or gardening project yourself. Working with mulch and improving your yard is mentally stimulating, fun and good exercise in the more temperate spring and summer months, and it is a satisfying project.

Travelling with Dahlia Blooms

Tuesday, May 27th, 2008

Commence packing by lining the boxes with soft paper, then place rolls of paper or corrugated cardboard across the width of the box. These rolls should be large enough in diameter to support the bloom without crushing the back florets against the base of the box, and long enough to hold in position by pressure against the sides.

The number of blooms that can be packed in a box similar to those described will vary with the size of bloom and the petal formation, for obvious reasons. It may be possible to put only two giant decoratives, one at each end, with a few smaller blooms added to take up the spare space, whereas up to twenty small cactus may be packed in a similar box. The method of packing is the same in all cases.

Then pack cotton wool lightly round each bloom and cover with either more cotton wool or very soft cloth before putting the lid on the box. Soft rags and cloth can be used instead of cotton wool for packing but are not quite so effective. This may seem a lot of bother, but the small tubular florets are very susceptible to bruising and quickly show signs of damage.

Staking Dahlias

Monday, May 26th, 2008

Once the dahlias start to grow strongly the question of staking and tying will become of increasing importance. The central stake, unsupported, is seldom sufficient, unless very stout, when the developing branches may be simply looped back to it by soft string. But the danger here is the tendency for the whole plant to swing in a circular fashion around the stake during high winds.

This movement may be prevented by driving in additional supports in a triangle round each plant, some little way from the stem to avoid damaging roots, pointing outwards at the top. These supports need not be as stout as the central stake, and even quite light canes may be used. Some of the branches are secured direct to these additional canes, whilst the rest are retained by making a tie right round the outside of the canes. In the case of the giant cactus and clecoratives provide a supporting cane for every stem.

Things I Thought I Wanted To Know

Sunday, May 25th, 2008

Some things are easy to understand and explain. Im trying to determine why my husband does some of the things the way he does around the house. His most current endeavor involves low volt lighting transformer and the simple name of this thing brings to mind image of childrens cartoon shows and toys.

How to describe the function of this low voltage transformer was no simple take for my confused hubby. Its an even larger task for me to understand the concept. However, I have a good excuse for this confusion and sometimes a person can know a little too much about a topic to be able to explain it in simple terms. My hubby works with electrical supplies on a daily basis. He does not have the option to break down things into smaller tasks.

I thought I was doing him a favor when I requested a step-by-step analysis of how this low voltage contraption functions for our house. This offer was responded to with a blank and glazed expression that denoted to me a promise of the impending confusion that would unveil itself in the next few sentences.

Dahlia Treatment

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

If every shoot is allowed to develop, and it is decided to cut blooms with fair stems, unopened buds and side growth will have to be sacrificed with a consequent delay in the production of further flowers.

A few naturally small bloomed varieties will need to have the side buds removed at an early date even on the first flush, and quite severe disbudding on the secondary and succeeding crops, if size and quality are to be obtained.

It is best to disbud at least on modified lines, as the blooms will be so much more attractive, both on the plants and in the house when cut. Usually on the medium sized varieties it is sufficient to remove the two side buds, and the side shoots from the top one or two pairs of leaves, thinning out later on if the plants become too overcrowded with developing branches. For the smaller varieties the two side buds should be removed, and preferably the side shoots from the top pair of leaves.

The first crop of blooms are not disbudded at all; not even the side buds taken out. It is undesirable to cut these blooms, unless this is done above the first pair of leaves, so that no side shoots are removed.

Growing Dahlias

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

As with the thinning out, the degree of disbudding must vary a great deal, consideration being given to the classification of the particular variety, its potential size in the group and to the specific purpose for which it is grown.

Pre-supposing that the plants are destined to produce blooms of exhibition quality, on the giant varieties all side shoots should be removed, except two which should be retained low down on each branch to act as replacements when the bloom is cut. Disbudding should be done gradually over a period as there is a tendency, if too many side shoots are removed at any one time, for the buds to be misshapen, or in extreme cases completely blind, due to the sudden concentration of sap flow into the one bud.

If possible the whole plot should be covered several inches deep. It may not be possible to do this if only compost or manure is used, but a bale or two of straw or bracken can be used to eke out the more valuable material to give the required depth.

What Use Are Shower Water Filters?

Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

Shower water filters. Why would you bother? Yes theres no doubt that drinking clean water is essential to our health, but why do you need to filter shower water?

After all, you don’t drink out of the shower do you? You only wash.

But even so there are excellent reasons to use a shower water filter. Here’s 4 good reasons in support of using a shower water filter every time you shower.

1. Chlorine. Now we all know that you shouldn’t drink chlorine, and that the best water filters filter out chlorine. There’s no doubt that drinking chlorine isn’t good for you and some consider it very likely that drinking chlorine causes cancer.

But even showering in chlorinated water is a problem. Several actually. Because when you shower some of the water goes into your skin. And in a hot shower your pores actually open wider and let more in, and if there’s chlorine in the water the chlorine goes in too. So in effect you’ve just drunk chlorinated water.

2. And as chlorinated water gets hot the chlorine is released into the atmosphere and you breathe it.