Category: Home and Garden

Plant through sheets of black plastic to stop weeds, make the soil moist and warm and keep the fruits clean so you get an earlier crop.

November is the best time to plant rose plants

When potting up plants make sure your pots are well cleaned from the previous plant to prevent any fungus or virus attacking new pot residents. And you can also click here to learn How to buy the best leaf blower for your garden.

To prevent squirrels from digging up your spring bulbs, wrap each one in the chicken wire before planting – the shoots can come through, but the squirrels can’t get in.

When planting garlic, slightly crush the clove to increase the flavor and put off flying insects.

Plant melons cucumbers in the compost pile – warm, moist, nutrient-rich compost seems to bring out the best in them!

Keep plant labels in the house. If left on the plant they will fade, break or disappear

To maintain a lush, green lawn feed regularly during the season and increase the cutting height on your mower.

When potting up plants make sure your pots are well cleaned from the previous plant to prevent any fungus or virus attacking new pot resident

Rather than direct sowing, start with large seedlings grown on the windowsill or purchased at a nursery for quick results especially in cold climates

After sowing seeds, put opened packets in airtight containers and store in a dry-frost-free place to keep them fresh

Try planting strawberries in hanging baskets – it keeps the fruit clean and makes strawberries really easy to pick

fruit, vegetables, and herbs will thrive in a raised bed filled with equal amounts of topsoil and well-rotted organic material

To prevent squirrels from digging up your spring bulbs, wrap each one in the chicken wire before planting – the shoots can come through, but the squirrels can’t get in.

To deal with slugs, put a jam jar in the ground with a beer in it – they’ll then be attracted to it instead of your plants and drown in alcoholic heaven

Keep cutworms away from seedlings with the cardboard centers of toilet paper rolls

Grass clippings can be composted or used as a garden mulch

Plant melons and cucumbers in the compost pile – warm, moist, nutrient-rich compost seems to bring out the best in them!

Rather than direct sowing, start with large seedlings grown on the windowsill or purchased at a nursery for quick results especially in cold climates

Large bags used by builders merchants for delivering sand, gravel, etc make good containers for leaves to make leaf mold, or for transporting prunings, weeds, etc.

If you’re growing strawberries in a jar, put a piece of plastic pipe down the middle before filling it with compost. This allows water to reach the plants easily at the bottom of the container.

Plant through sheets of black plastic to stop weeds, make the soil moist and warm and keep the fruits clean so you get an earlier crop

fruit, vegetables, and herbs will thrive in a raised bed filled with equal amounts of topsoil and well-rotted organic material

Tomatoes are especially needy plants, check they have enough water every day and feed once a week with Tomato food.

To make bulbs look more natural, plant them in small pots in the autumn and then plant out in January, this way you can see where to put them and avoid digging where you planted in previous years.

Tie old CDs onto string and bamboo canes to frighten away pigeons – old foil cake cases work too!

Plant melons and cucumbers in the compost pile – warm, moist, nutrient-rich compost seems to bring out the best in them!

Add height to a vegetable garden with a tepee covered with bean and pea vines. This space saver works similarly to a trellis but has a different look

Keep cutworms away from seedlings with the cardboard centers of toilet paper rolls

Rather than direct sowing, start with large seedlings grown on the windowsill or purchased at a nursery for quick results especially in cold climates

Try planting strawberries in hanging baskets – it keeps the fruit clean and makes strawberries really easy to pick

For lots of fresh salad leaves, just cut a long panel in the top of a grow bag and sow rows of your favorites across it.

Buy tumbling tomato varietals and plant them in hanging baskets in the garden. More fun and less ugly than canes in grow-bags.

Ground cover can also help to keep the moisture in the soil by stopping it from drying out from direct sunlight.

There are usually lots of seeds in a packet, team up with a friend/s, agree on what to grow and swap the excess plants

Cover your garden rubbish in Autumn if you are planning to burn it. Once it gets wet it never dries out

Old cardboard boxes make great winter covers to keep the weeds down.

Worms in your lawn can be added to your beds to enrich the soil. To find them, pour some soapy water onto the lawn, and wait twenty minutes.

When raking up leaves put a large bag (the type used by builders with handles) in the wheelbarrow, you can collect more that way and they don’t fall out all the time when wheeling them to the pile.

Save plastic trays such as the ones mushrooms are packed in, pierce holes in the base, fill with compost and sow mixed lettuce in them. Keep moist and stand outside in the shade.

Rather than planting peas, broad beans, and runner beans direct into the soil, start them off in small pots in the greenhouse and plant out when 3ins high. They will be less prone to weather, slugs, and bird damage.

To stop beans, cucumbers, and melons sprawling across the ground, plant them vertically – it’ll save you space and look nice as they grow up the trellis

Add height to a vegetable garden with a tepee covered with bean and pea vines. This space saver works similarly to a trellis but has a different look

To deal with slugs, put a jam jar in the ground with a beer in it – they’ll then be attracted to it instead of your plants and drown in alcoholic heaven

Encourage birds in your garden to deal with snails. When you hear a ‘tap-tap’ noise, it will be a thrush cracking the snail shell on a stone.

It’s a good idea to attract frogs, toads, and hedgehogs into your garden – they’ll not only eat the slugs and snails, but also all manner of bug eggs

To make bulbs look more natural, plant them in small pots in the autumn and then plant out in January, this way you can see where to put them and avoid digging where you planted in previous years.

Some of the easiest plants to maintain indoors are coleus, geranium, begonia, and ivy. Replant them in containers and give them plenty of dirt to keep them healthy. Keep them watered and enjoy your plants for longer each year.

If you’re growing strawberries in a jar, put a piece of plastic pipe down the middle before filling it with compost. This allows water to reach the plants easily at the bottom of the container.

Get free plants by allowing some of your plants to produce runners or offshoots. Once baby plants have produced roots they can be detached from the main plant and put in a pot, or replanted in the strawberry bed.

The British strawberry season is really short, so to make it last longer pick early, mid, and late fruiting varieties – that way you can eat strawberries from June-August!

With the beginning of spring, the urge to clean out our spaces grows until even the most undomesticated amongst us find themselves emptying out closets and dusting light fixtures. The tradition of spring cleaning came from the time in our human history when candles and gas lights were used to light homes. During the winter, a coat of soot settles on most everything inside the home and once the weather becomes tolerable enough, windows are opened and everything washed down or taken outside to be shaken down and aired out.

Even after a recent remodel, I find myself this spring wanting to wash my fresh walls. I recently painted most of my first floor a very light, almost ethereal ice blue with the slightest hint of green. It’s a beautiful color, restful, serene, but really, really not good in house constantly overrun by children under the age of eight. Within a week of living with my freshly painted walls, the smudges began to appear. Tiny fingerprints, some with chocolate, a scuff mark from my husband’s briefcase hitting the wall. I had gone with the slightly matte finish, recommended if you’re painting old walls with visible flaws, and the marks started to drive me crazy. Even my white trim painted in a gloss finish weren’t spared. Taking a wet rag cleaned up some of the dirt but the scuff marks remained. From laundry to painting on the walls, the person will be performed through домоуправител for the person. A comparison can be done in the services offered through different house managers companies. The charges should be under the budget of the person.

Luckily I stumbled upon the All Purpose Eraser by Homelife at my local grocery store. Mr. Clean makes a similar one called The Magic Eraser. I took one home and followed the directions, basically, dampen with water and rub scuffed wall. I couldn’t believe my eyes. The sponge lifted the scuff off with out leaving any marks or lint, like my rag did. I tried it on crayon and magnetic paint that I accidentally swiped my maple cabinets with, and it took it right off. I also used it on the brown marks left by my club chairs bumping into the wall. There are some very deep scuff marks that it won’t take completely off, but I could see it was because the drywall has been gouged out a bit and I’ll probably have to touch up with paint, but at least I don’t have to completely wash my walls in the traditional spring cleaning fashion.

Two of the Homelife pads went for under $2.00. A package of four for Mr. Clean goes for about $6.99 at staples.com. Probably my only complaint is that unlike regular sponges, the erasers don’t last forever. They almost seem to disintegrate after some really heavy using. Don’t pay any attention to e-mail claims that they’re toxic. They are not made with formaldehyde and are not and have never been in any recall. Check out snopes.com if you want to check it out.

If your shrubs, plants, or small trees are having pesky pest problems, there are a number of things you can do to help them look healthy and beautiful. There are also many preventative measures that could keep you from battling insects and other pests in the first place. Here are ten tips for keeping your shrubs looking their best.

  1. First, don’t be too eager to spray. This may seem a bit counterintuitive, but unless there is already a mosquito pest control Columbia SC, the natural ecosystem in your own backyard may be keeping pests at bay as is. Pests have natural predators (birds, rodents, etc.) that naturally help to keep the insect population at an appropriate level. Only resort to spraying if your shrubs are truly being overrun and diseased by pests.

  2. Make sure your shrubs are receiving proper nutrition. Shrubs are much more susceptible to damage from insects when they are lacking in proper nutrition. Symptoms of poor nutrition may include pale or yellow leaves, stunted growth, a plant that loses leaves early, and mottled leaf veins. Try Miracle-Gro Tree Shrub Fertilizer Spikes. This is a slow-release formula specifically for shrub nutrition.
  3. Still, having shrub nutrition problems? Try deep root injections. This is the best fertilization technique because the fertilizer is actually injected deep into the roots where it is needed most. A pest control expert can provide this service during the fall and spring for the best results.
  4. Do not apply too much mulch. Excessive mulch creates ideal conditions for pests. Mulch should not be right up next to shrub trunks, but rather should be placed around the shrub creating a “donut hole” shape.
  5. Apply a preventative if necessary. Preventatives protect your plants for weeks after application from many potentially damaging pests. An excellent product is Bayer 2-in-1 Systemic Rose and Flower Care Granules. It is even effective against insects which tend to be very persistent and destructive.
  6. If you do have a pest problem that is causing the disease to your shrubs, stop the disease from spreading by removing any dead foliage. This includes removing diseased stems that can actually carry the disease to healthy parts of your shrub.
  7. Apply a fungicide to help manage diseases caused by backyard pests. Shrub fungicides do not cure the diseases themselves, but they do help manage the pests that cause them. Try a general purpose fungicide like Bug and Disease Killer. This Bayer Garden fungicide has an added fast-acting insecticide.
  8. If your shrubs and trees are still suffering the effects of damage from insects, mites, and fungus, professional spraying may be necessary. But finding the proper type of pest control spray depends on a variety of factors. Keep this in mind when searching for the right pest control.

The type of insects being controlled

The time of the year

Region/climate concerns

Environmental regulations

  1. Seasonal sprays are an option. Many pest control and lawn care companies provide five basic seasonal sprays. These include:

Dormant (Winter) sprays

Early Spring sprays

Late Spring sprays

Summer sprays

Fall sprays

  1. If more intensive spraying is needed for a particular pest, a professional can help you in its identification. Some sprays may work great about some pests but are completely ineffective against others. Examples of tough pests to get rid of include aphids, caterpillars, apple maggots, and coddling moths.

In the case of backyard pests, prevention goes a long way. But remember that there are ways to fight damaging insects and keep your shrubs looking beautiful.