Sep 292020
 
garden netting how to use netting to protect small fruit trees

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If you have a problem with birds, you have probably tried many solutions. Some of the most popular include plastic animals, scarecrows, wind chimes, or highly reflective tape. All of these things can do a great job of reducing bird problems. I have quite a few plum trees in my back garden, and I used to struggle a lot with birds. After I applied all of these solutions, my problem went almost completely away. Unfortunately, the solution only lasted a few months.

Apparently, birds have a natural tendency to get bolder as time goes by. While at first my scarecrow scared them senseless, now I look outside and see them sitting on his shoulder. And munching on cherries from my tree. Those insolent little fiends! I’m not saying I mind birds. I love having them around my garden. But you see, I’ve already designated one tree specifically for allowing birds to eat off of. But it seems that birds can’t be content with what they’re given. They always feel the need to go over to my own trees when there is a tree just for them that doesn’t have any scary things around it.

I saw many gardening stores marketing a type of bird netting. I decided to use it. Bird netting is basically a giant net that you throw over the entire tree. The holes are about one half of an inch wide. I purchased enough of this to cover one whole tree. It was quite a hassle to install, but it definitely worked after that. I didn’t have any more problems with birds taking cherries from that tree. But one day I woke up and made my daily rounds. On that day, I found 2 birds caught in the netting that had been choked to death. I felt absolutely terrible. I buried the birds and immediately took down that netting. I didn’t want to protect my tree at the cost of the birds’ lives! Sure, I’ll kill off a few bugs, but birds are a little too nice for me.

For a while I felt too guilty to prevent the birds from eating any more. I thought that I would make it up to them by letting them feast on my cherries. I even took down my scarecrow. But a few months later I saw something in a fabric store that made me rethink my generosity. Almost every fabric store sells a material called “tulle”. It is very fine netting with holes too small for any bird to fit its beak or head into. While it is easy to find, it is also extremely cheap. Buying enough to cover one tree ended up costing less than half of what it cost for the lethal bird netting.

I installed the tulle onto my tree (I’ll admit it was a lot harder to install than the bird netting was. I had to attach several large pieces together at the seams) and watched it for a day. I wanted to keep an eye on it every second, so that if a bird got caught I could quickly help it out. Fortunately, no bird ever got caught. Tulle is a much safer and cheaper alternative to bird netting, and I suggest it if you have any problems with birds. Just remember to let them have at least one tree for themselves! Sharing with birds is an essential part of being a good gardener.

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Sep 262020
 
pruning for beginners how to look after your trees and bushes

Since buying our new house the garden has started to really take shape. Today I reflect a little on maintenance, healthy growth and pruning and what you need to know.

If you have just entered the tree growing world, you have no doubt heard the term “pruning” tossed around by the more veteran growers. Well, I have something to admit. For several years, I did not even know what pruning was. I heard the term a lot, but I never felt comfortable asking someone what exactly it was. Even though it would have benefited my gardening and tree growing, I was too prideful to ask. I’ve found that pride is the reason for the failure of many great endeavours; if I had just asked someone what pruning was, I wouldn’t have undergone a few of the disasters that occurred during my first years of gardening.

Pruning is the removal of dead or unneeded branches to encourage the growth of flowers. Usually a tree will end up devoting energy to branches that don’t need it, while neglecting branches which are bearing more fruit. If you remove the branches that are taking all the nutrients, you will begin to see a flourish in the other ones. Pruning also keeps the tree in shape by keeping the branches even. This prevents it from becoming weighed down on one side. Having too many branches on one side could cause the tree to become permanently crooked.

Many gardeners don’t even think about pruning their trees until they start to bear fruit. This is a big mistake, and you should never neglect to care for a tree just because it hasn’t yet begun to produce. During the entire process of growth, you should prune the tree in a way that it is even and uniform. Then, when it does start to produce fruit, the results will be significantly greater. It is very easy to tell the difference between a tree that has been pruned regularly during its growth, and one that has been neglected. Generally the shape of the tree is much more natural looking if it has been pruned.

The first thing to look for when you start pruning is any branches which are dead or diseased. These are quite easy to recognize. Usually they don’t bear any fruit, and might be misshapen or discoloured. Don’t hesitate at all in chopping these guys off, as they are nothing but detrimental to the health of your tree. Sometimes a branch can be dead or diseased without making it too obvious. If this is the case, simply wait until the tree is flowering and it will become obvious by not growing anything.

The second type of branch to look for is the branch that is too close in range to all the other ones. If it grows at such a length and angle that the end is right next to all the other branches, they might end up crowding each other out. Take off the smaller of the two branches to allow the larger one to have the breathing room that it needs. This same rule applies to the weight balance of your tree. Sometimes, for reasons we will never understand, a tree will grow several branches on one side and weigh itself into being lopsided.

So hopefully I have provided you with a basic knowledge of pruning. There are more situations and types of branches that require pruning, but what I’ve outlined is the very basic parts. These can alter depending on how old your tree is. For example, for the first 3 years of a tree’s growth it requires pruning that follows more “formative” guidelines. After the tree is well established, you will need to use “regulatory” pruning to keep it where you would like it to be. There are entire books written on how to prune trees depending on how old they are. There are far too many techniques for me to go over, so if you want to use these advanced techniques then you should go to your local library and check out a book.

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Sep 232020
 
landscaping plants the plants that make your garden look amazing

My passion is to bring you information and answer your questions on everything related to the garden, from gardening tips to pruning. Please leave a comment on the article below and I’ll reply just as soon as I can. Landscaping plants – The plants that make your garden look amazing.

Finding the perfect landscaping plant is not such an easy job. There are so many different plants for you to choose from and each will have its own special ways that make is a great find for your yard. You can choose any kind of landscaping plant that will compliment your particular yard, just make sure that the landscaping plant that you choose can live in your climate. Not all landscaping plants can thrive in all areas so talk to your local plant specialist. The place where you usually get your plants may be able to help you with your selection of landscaping plant.

There are many different kinds of landscaping plants for you to choose from and some of the best ones are the ones that you would normally never think of. For example if you want to have a gorgeous border you can use sage plants. This is the perfect landscaping plant for any home especially yours. You can do so much with this great landscaping plant. Not only can you make wonderful borders with it you can also add them to pretty herb gardens.

What makes herb gardens to fun is that they are not only pretty to look at they are also practical. You can use all of the herbs that you grow as a landscaping plant in your cooking. Cooking with herbs is such a wonderful bonus to having a gorgeous landscaping plant.

When you are looking for a landscaping plant you will also need to take into consideration what time of year it happens to be. You cannot usually go into a gardening store looking for a landscaping plant in the middle of winter and find a summer bloom. Your shopping will have to be at least a little seasonal. Your landscaping plant, some of them anyway, will have to be purchased at certain times of the year.

You can find a landscaping plant that is annual or one that is perennial. An annual landscaping plant will need to be bought and purchased anew each year where as a perennial landscaping plant will grow back each year on its own. Some perennial plants like tulips for instance will double in number each year if left alone. When there gets to be too many in one spot of this kind of landscaping plant you can simply dig down and split some of them up and plant them elsewhere.

New expert gardening advice on garden table and chairs next week, when I write my post. Please join the mailing list to stay informed of updates.

Sep 202020
 
gas bbq features what do they all mean

When looking into different grills features, you may be faced with what seems like a foreign language. How are you suppose to pick the grill that is best for you if you do not understand what you are reading? While the language used when describing grills will not get any easier to read, understanding what the majority if what it means will help you make an informed decision.

BTU is the measure of the amount of cooking power the barbeque grill as. Simple math will be needed in determining the amount of heat that your grill produces. Take the amount of space available for cooking (typically measured by square inch) and divide it by the total amount of BTU’s. Ideally you will want at least 95 to 100 BTU’s per square inch of cooking space. So for example, if you have a grill with 50,000 BTU’s and 450 square inches of cooking space, then you will be receiving about 111 BTU’s of cooking power per square inch. Anything less, and you may want to consider a different grill.

The next thing you will want to consider is the cooking surfaces. How much space does it have? Will you be able to cook for just yourself, or you entire family? Depending on your situation, you may want to consider a larger or smaller grill.

Grills come in a wide array of surface types. These different cooking surfaces can include a BBQ surface, a flat grill, and a ribbed grill. Some grills even offer these types of surfaces as none stick, which allow you to cook a whole array of foods that you would not be able to cook on a grill otherwise. Some gas grills even contain a Wok type surface for cooking pasta and rise dishes, or a full rotisserie set that allows you to cook rotisserie chicken. Weigh your options, and remember that some grills even come with the ability to interchange the surfaces. This way, if you decide that you want to start cooking Rotisserie chicken, all you will have to do is buy the accessory kit for it.

Perhaps one of the most important things you should consider is the fuel type. Charcoal grills are one of the most used types of grills. Charcoal grills utilize charcoal and lighter fluid to heat up and cook your food. Charcoal grills come in all shapes and sizes, and vary in cost. Charcoal requires you to buy charcoal and lighter fluid each time you cook with it. It must also be cleaned out each time. Charcoal grills come in small sizes, which are ideal for apartment dwellers or people with small homes. Once you have used your charcoal grill, you can clean it, and store it away. Propane grills are also useful for someone in small areas, since they can come in smaller sizes. Propane grills use propane gas to cook your food. If you want to quickly cook foods while still maintaining a grilled flavour, you may want to consider Propane grills. Natural gas grills are a little more complicated then smaller grills, so they require more room. Natural gas grills are meant to hook up directly to your home’s natural gas line, and can cook meat in record time. Smoker Grills are used when flavour is the number one priority. Smoker grills use wood to slow cook your meat. Flavour can be controlled by using different types of woods.

If you still do not understand the basic information provided about the grill, it may be a good idea to talk with a professional. There are stores designed specifically for barbeque grills and barbeque grill accessories. Other stores, such as your larger department stores may not have professionals trained specifically in barbeques, but chances are at least one employee in the store likes to barbeque, and can aid you, if on nothing else by personal opinion.

Sep 172020
 
choosing plants for acid soil how to make plants grow better

Our whole life in the garden is about learning. New flowers, new insects, animals and wildlife. Today I saw a pair of beautiful ducks in the garden pond for the first time!

Recently I’ve been reading up my old gardening books and so today I want to share my thoughts on Choosing plants for acid soil – How to make plants grow better.

Many times we buy plants on impulse then find there is nowhere in the garden that really suits them. Before buying plants carefully examine your garden to see how much sun and shade it gets, whether the soil is well drained or waterlogged and whether your aspect is sheltered or windswept. You’ll then be equipped to go and buy the best plants for your situation; shade-loving plants for the sheltered areas, sun-lovers for the warm spots, drought-resistant plants for the parched areas which may be either sunny or shaded, and swamp plants for the poorly-drained parts.

But wait! Test your soil first, to determine the pH level of your soil and what kind of nutrients you need to add, if any. Is the soil acid or alkaline? Most plants prefer soil that is slightly acidic, but there are some that must have alkaline soil to grow. You can alter the soil’s pH level, but it’s much easier to simply plant for the soil you have.

Now you are ready to plant. Well – almost. Will you plant in groups or singly? If you buy ‘one of everything’ your garden may seem rather spotty. Group plantings are organised, harmonious and you can vary the colour for interest.

Before planting out, place your chosen plants around the garden bed in their pots to see how they will look. Re-arrange them until you are satisfied. Grouping plants in sets of threes or fives usually looks better than planting in groups of even numbers. Be sure that you have an interesting combination of colours and textures of plants. Tall plants should go to the back, or the centre if your garden will be viewed equally from all sides. Try to keep your plants away from trees. The roots of trees are fiercely competitive and will steal all the nutrients and moisture meant for your flowers.

The right colour scheme is one way to maintain the harmony in your garden. Imagine the colour of the flowers when they are in bloom. Some colours may clash with others, but can still be planted side-by-side if they have a different blooming season. Foliage colour is also important. Many flower plants have silver, grey or purplish foliage that is just as attractive as the flower. This means that they are still attractive well past the blooming season and so have added value.

That’s all I have time for today. Hopefully its useful in learning a little more on plant selection. If you are interested in finding out more on acid soil, alkaline soil, fertiliser etc sign up to our mailing list. If would like to buy then click to today I’ve found a fantastic special offer on funny garden meerkats.