Posts Tagged ‘Home garden’

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I have Argyranthemum Frutescens!

March 26, 2014

It is new to my yard and blooming beautifully in a pot that greets visitors as they enter the front walkway. Argyranthemum frutescens ‘Madeira Red’ is a mounded evergreen shrub that flowers all summer, grows best in full sun, well-drained soil or quality potting mix. I’ve had my ‘Madeira Red’ four weeks now and so far, no need to deadhead! Now that’s a perfect plant!

 

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Dear Readers,

I want to thank those of you who have purchased Ashley’s Gift. It’s not easy sending one’s work out into the world, wondering where it will end up.

Being an author is a learning process. There are ups and downs, and 99 percent of the lessons are public! One of the first things that I learned is that Amazon offers FREE Kindle apps for any device! PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, and more.

Amazing!

You can purchase all the electronic books (mine included) you wish to read right from your laptop, desktop, phone, or tablet! According to Amazon, you can even, “start reading a book on one device, and pick up where you left off on another device.”

Where have I been?

I hope you take advantage of the FREE Kindle apps. There are thousands of e-books from which to choose!

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Join me on:
www.facebook.com/inandaroundthegarden
www.facebook.com/diannemarieandre
www.twitter.com/dianneandre

 

 

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Pushing Towards the New Goal and Finding the Past

February 20, 2014

The past two days I have looked through digital photographs, selecting the finest images to sell right here at inandaroundthegarden.net. The funds will go toward the new camera.

It was fun opening file folders, via CDs, then unexpectedly come across forgotten images from when my perennial garden was first established. So much has changed. The images you are about to view are not anything special as far as photography goes but I thought you would like to see how my garden has evolved.

The front of the garden had a variety of plants, most of which had to be cut to the ground come late-fall through early winter. During the blooming season, I had a lot of deadheading to do. It was an enormous job, inside the garden as well. As the snow-in-summer (Cerastium tomentosum) ground cover spread, I removed plants requiring too much work. Now, the bed has a beautiful display of silver green year round with white spring blossoms.

 

Instead of herbs and a picket fence leading into a tiny vegetable garden, I now have Santa Barbara Daisies (Erigeron Karvinskianus) along the path and a garden house in place of the fence and vegetable area.

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The potato vines behind the bench arbor was removed last fall to repair the fence. We planted new potato vines about a month ago. Soon, the fence will be completely covered again. It doesn’t take long for potato vines to take over. A few years ago, the arbor posts rotted so my husband replaced them. Then the seat rotted. I don’t think my husband is going to replace the wooden seat. A new arch, probably wrought iron, will most likely be a better solution.

In the garden’s early years, yellow columbines bordered the inside beds. It was stunning. Each spring they grew three feet tall. Then as soon as the temperatures heated up, the columbines died back and were cut to the ground. This left empty spaces until the following spring. There was too much pruning and too many empty spaces for my preference, so out they went.

Gardens and lifestyles have to marry or it just doesn’t work.

 

More later on photographs for sale and fundraising for a new camera.

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No Words Friday

December 27, 2013

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The Basics: Repotting into a Larger Container

April 4, 2012

Supplies:  Existing potted plant, larger container, potting mix, broken potsherds or packing peanuts, trowel, blunt knife or hand weeder, snips, water

1.  Select a new or repurposed container one – two sizes larger than the existing one.

2.  Tilt the container and carefully pull the plant out of the pot by grasping the trunk just above the top soil. If the plant doesn’t move, slide a blunt knife down the sides to loosen the roots and try again. When necessary, as seen in photo to the left, break the pot by likely tapping it with a hammer. Be sure to wear protective glasses. Slice plastic containers open with a knife.

Tip:  Repot when the plant’s soil is on the dry side (slightly moist). The plant will be lighter and easier to lift out of its container. Never repot saturated plants, as the roots will separate from the soil.

3.  Carefully loosen the roots with a blunt knife or hand weeder. Trim off broken roots and cut back extra long roots by a third.

4.  Cover the drainage hole with broken potsherds or packing peanuts.

Tip:  1) If reusing an old container, scrub the inside with detergent or four parts water to one-part bleach to kill harmful organisms. Rinse well. 2) If your container doesn’t have a hole, drill one hole in small to medium containers and two holes for very large pots.

5.  Place fresh potting mix about a third up in the new container. Check the height by gently positioning the plant on the mix. The crown of the plant should be one to two inches below the top of the pot. This will allow space for watering and eliminate overflow.

Tip:  To absorb excess water and gradually release moisture to the roots use moisture control potting mix.

6.  Once you have established the proper height, center the plant spreading out the roots.

7.  Add fresh potting mix around the sides, gently working it down with a trowel or hand weeder making sure there are no air pockets. If your container is tall, use a thin stick or heavy-duty non-bendable wire. Be careful not to compact the mix.

8.  Set container on risers and water well. Keep out of hot summer sun for at least a week until the plant(s) can recoup from transplant shock.

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Garden Tips Hints and Cool Things

March 23, 2012

1) If you are getting ready to sow wildflower seeds, use an empty Parmesan cheese shaker. Fill with a mixture of fine sand and seeds. Then simply shake to spread the seeds as you are planting. The seeds will distribute more evenly. This will also save time.

2) Slugs and snails are coming out. Handpick or place empty 10 to 14oz cans in the ground with the rim at ground level. Fill with beer. The slugs and snails will crawl in for a delicious drink but they won’t get out.

3) Humming birds have arrived, so clean feeders and fill with sugar-water:  One part sugar to four parts water, boiled until dissolved, and completely cooled.

If you have garden tips, hints, or something cool or interesting to share, email them to inthegarden@softcom.net and I will post them along with your name.

Happy Friday!

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Last Frost Date and Why it Matters

February 22, 2012

With the onset of spring-like weather, it is tempting to put away frost cloths and to plant vegetation and sow seeds outdoors. But, don’t let the sunshine, green field grasses, and emerging buds fool you. Frost and frozen ground can kill or damage plants and seeds leaving you frustrated, discouraged, and broke.

If you are new to gardening or have recently moved, ask your local Master Gardener Chapter or professional nursery person for your zone’s last frost date. They can also tell you what zone you live in or plug in your zip code here to find out. But remember there is more than one zone system. Guest writer and master gardener Robin Ivanoff explains here.

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Seed Starting Guide

February 8, 2012

Recently, I came across a FREE, on-line seed-starting guide at Johnny’s Seeds. This is an awesome tool that I hope you will use. Although it’s not a complete list of vegetable and flower crops, it includes those most grown by home gardeners.

In order to explain a couple of things about the guide, I have posted part of it below:

  • Once you are at the link, enter the last estimated frost date in your area (where it says mm/dd/yyyy) and the dates following each crop will automatically  change accordingly. Is that cool or what!
  • In the cell where it says, “Safe time to set out plants (relative to frost-free date)”, the phrase ‘to set out’ simply means ‘hardening off’. This is a horticulture term for placing indoor seedlings outside during daylight to gradually make them more resistant to their new environmental conditions. If you are a gardener who doesn’t have the time or patience to do this and prefer transplanting seedlings directly into the soil, simply protect your tender plants from the hot afternoon sun with a cover cloth until they adjust to the climate.
Enter spring frost-free date (include year):  
mm/dd/yyyy
Crop Number of weeks to start seeds before setting-out date When To start inside Setting-out date
From To Safe time to set out plants (relative to frost-free date) From To
Artichoke 8 19-Feb on frost-free date 15-Apr
Basil 6 11-Mar 1 week after 22-Apr
Beets* 4 to 6 19-Feb 4-Mar 2 weeks before 1-Apr
Broccoli 4 to 6 19-Feb 4-Mar 2 weeks before 1-Apr
Cabbage 4 to 6 5-Feb 18-Mar 4 weeks before 18-Mar 15-Apr

After you utilize Johnny’s Seeds’ seed-starting guide, check out their online catalog. I know several master gardeners who are pleased with their service and products. Have fun with both!

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