Yellow ChrysanthemumsAlthough it was late autumn, this flower survived. All around him were dry, fallen leaves, and this flower, with its pale yellow color, attracted attention.
Keeping Snowfall Off Bird SeedI was tired of the birdseed getting buried under the snow. I put a green recycle bin on its side (our city no longer uses these bins). I put in the bowl of birdseed and then put an unused shovel over the birdseed like an "umbrella" by putting the shovel handle through the railing. It has worked great, it has snowed several days and the seed never got buried.
Growing CrocosmiaCrocosmia or montbretia is a perennial flower in the Iris family, usually with red or orange flowers. They are indigenous to Africa but can be grown worldwide. A common garden variety is known as "Lucifer"
Butterfly MagnetWhile shopping in the lawn and garden section at a home improvement store, I was trying to decide on plants. This beautiful butterfly landed on the butterfly bush next to me. Pretty good sales technique, I bought two bushes!
Colorful CaterpillarsThese caterpillars are an unusual color, teal blue, and so are the bright pink and green leaves in the background. Very vibrant and colorful!
Cherry Tree PhotosCherry trees are very popular for home gardeners. The white or pink blossoms are beautiful in the spring and the fruit is ripe at the height of summer.
Transplanting A Lemon Tree?There is a beautiful fruitful lemon tree on the lot next door that is up for sale. I am almost positive management will cut it down. Can anyone tell me how and where to cut it so I can replant it?
Growing a Guava TreeGuava originated in Central and South America and the Caribbean but can be grown in places with a tropical or subtropical climate. They can be susceptible to an array of diseases caused by fungus or insects.
Zinnia PhotosZinnias are originally from Mexico and the surrounding area. They are related to the sunflower and daisy. These bright flowers grow well as an annual and are prized by many gardeners across the world.
Identifying Birds?You don't have to be a serious bird watcher to enjoy identifying the birds that visit your yard or that you encounter on walks. Here are some tips for identifying birds, including baby birds.
Create a Humid Environment for PlantsPlace two same sized containers together with plant inside to increase humidity for tropical plants. This is a thrifty method instead of buying a humidifier. Also works for plants that you may purchase online and came from the mail - to help the plants adjust and recover from the transport!
New Plantings and Garden FlowersLast year my grandson and I cut down several forsythia shrubs along the northern edge of the side yard. The stumps still need to dealt with. This year I have focused on planting two lilac bushes further into the yard to ultimately help reestablish a green border between my yard and my neighbor's. There will also be a native mock orange placed along this same line, soon.
Half Circles in Longan LeavesHave you ever seen perfectly half circles bitten into your plant/trees leaves? I was so shocked but with a little research I found out leaf cutting bees made this art work. These leaf cutting bees won't do any harm to the leaves or plant/tree, but uses the collected leaves to make nest for their young ones. I found it very interesting and had to share!
Increasing Soil AcidityHow to increase the soil acidity for established tomato plants naturally? I'm not getting many blooms or viable tomatoes for this late in the season.
Growing DaisiesDaisies are a perennial favorite as both a wildflower and in gardens. These old fashioned flowers come in many varieties and colors from all across the world.
Bird of Paradise Flower PhotosThis is a picture of my sweet little granddaughter Cambria taken about five years ago just before they moved from Arizona to Idaho. Her outfit and her hairbow match the beautiful colors of nature right in our own front yard's Bird of Paradise bush! This was a fun moment to capture.
Wild Buttercup Photos and InformationThe wild buttercup is a member of the ranunculus genus. There are several different varieties, often with yellow flowers. They all typically contain, acrid protoanemonin glycoside oil to some extent. Thus they are listed as poisonous. There are some known pharmacological uses. They are considered an invasive weed in gardens.
DeKay's Snake PhotosThese common garden snakes are commonly known as DeKay's or brownsnake but the official name is Storeria dekayi. They can be found all along the Eastern side of the North American continent. They are harmless, eating slugs, snails and earthworms, and being eaten by larger snakes, birds and mammals.
DIY Galvanized Roofing Raised BedSturdy galvanized roofing can be used as the sides of a raised garden bed. This will last much longer than wooden sides and is an attractive look in your yard or patio.
Used Tea Bag to Sprout SeedsSave your old used tea bags as a seed starter. The tea will compost as the seedling grows, feeding it as well as marking the location.
How to Hand Pollinate PassionfruitIf you have passiflora (passion flowers) growing in your garden and wish for fruit, you may have to take some extra steps. Hand pollinating the flowers is easy and can increase the your passionfruit harvest.
Open Bag Garden Items Are 50% OffOften nurseries and big box garden centers will sell open bags of garden soil, mulch, etc. at a discount. It can be as much as 50% off. So if the open bag is not marked, check with a sales associate. There is generally not a lot of product missing; it is another good way to save on gardening supplies.
DIY Crafty Pea TrellisThis trellis features reusable components and jute or cotton twine. You can recycle the twine with the spent vines at the end of the season. You may have some of the necessary supplies to build the framework in your garden shed or garage. Let us share this pea trellis plan with you.
Identifying Insect Eggs on Tomato?Anyone know what insect eggs these are on my tomato plants?
Hen and Chicks Growing Tall?Are the hens suppose to grow on top of each other and tall like the picture shows?
Fish Pond Is Green?My fish pond is green. I treated it with algaecide, but it didn't help. I have plants in it and just added tadpoles and snails. Is there anything else I should do? Or do I just wait and let them work?
What Are These in My Potted Flowers?What are these in my potted flowers? They are more brownish color, the flash made them look whiter. Also what's the best way to get rid of them?
Choosing Acid Loving Garden PlantsChoosing garden plants that will thrive in your soil can help ensure a beautiful and successful gardening experience. If your soil is acidic, consider choosing from the acid loving suggestions offered below, including rhododendrons, azaleas, and more.
Converting Dolphin Fountain Sculpture Into KoiThe tip on this page explains how to modify a garden fountain sculpture to match your pond concept.
Use a Pipe for Planting SeedsRather than bending over to plant seeds in a long garden row, consider a pipe planter. Two versions are offered on this page with the new and improved one using a length of PVC pipe and a funnel.
Monologue Of A Killer WaspThe killer wasp is considered a beneficial insect in that it helps to control the cicada population thereby reducing the damage done to deciduous trees. Read on for an informative and original wasp monologue imagined by the author.
What's This Plant?I was wondering what plant this? This is the first time that it's grown by our yard in the 10+ years that we've lived here. If it helps I live in PA.
Transferring Seedlings And RootingsIf you reuse the the cell packs from your nursery for starting seeds and rootings, here is a way to easily lift them from the cells before planting. Read on for a good description of this simple process.
Identifying SongbirdsEven if you are not an avid bird watcher it is fun to identify these garden visitors. Noting size & shape, color pattern, behavior, and habitat can help. There are books for your region and apps for your phone available to assist.
Getting Free Flower Bulbs?Does anyone know where to get free flower bulbs? I live in Chumuckla Florida.
What Is this Insect Egg Nest?What is this egg nest? I found it in the garden.
Create A Micro Climate For Rooting CuttingsRooting cuttings is often done by creating a mini greenhouse using plastic bottles or wrap. This method will work, but too much humidity can be harmful to the cuttings, thus requiring wiping to remove excess moisture. An alternative is to create a micro climate for your cuttings. This method is explained in depth on this page.
Identifying a TreeIdentifying a tree, whether on your property or one you have seen on a walk, requires some research. Trees can be identified by their shape, leaf or needle structure, fall colors, fruit, bark, and other physical characteristics. Some suggestions are offered on this page.
What Type of Flower Is This?Can anyone tell me what type of flower this is?
What is This Plant? (Philodendron)The philodendron is a popular vining houseplant, characterized by its heart shaped leaves and thin, flexible stems. It is often confused with a similar looking plant, the pothos.
Growing Croton?Crotons are a popular group of houseplants that can also be grown outdoors in warm humid climates such as Florida. Depending on the variety you purchase, the light requirements vary from high to medium. A northern exposure and temperatures below 60F are not well tolerated by this plant. The more colorful the foliage the more light required. These plants benefit from regular misting or being placed on a pebble tray.
Seedling Pots From Phone Book PagesAlthough they are fast becoming a thing of the past phone books are still distributed in many areas. Their pages can be formed into very good seedling pots. There are several tips on making these paper pots found below.
What Kind of Geranium Is This? (Rosebud)The blooms of the Apple blossom rosebud geranium form clusters of densely packed rose shaped flowers in several colors including pink, pink and white, red and more. It is a member of the genus Pelargonium which contains 200 species of flowering plants including perennials, succulents, and shrubs, some of which are know as geraniums.
Protect Ripening Fruit with NewspaperYou can protect your ripening fruit from rabbits, birds, etc. by wrapping the fruit in pieces of newspaper. Wrap it and then staple the paper together. There is still sufficient light for the fruit to ripen.
Sunken Gutters For Flower Border ContainersIf you are looking for an inexpensive, easy way to create a nice narrow flower border for your garden consider rain gutters. The gutters can be placed level with the soil surface for a discrete planter.
File Flower Seeds to Help SproutingSome seeds such as nasturtium have a hard outer seed coating that can slow down germination. For these and similar seeds you can speed up sprouting by nicking the seed coat and filing lightly until you can see the lighter inner seed coat. Soak overnight and plant immediately.
Growing EuonymusThese easy to grow small trees or low shrubs are valuable for garden design. The color-filled foliage of the burning bush is a popular variety.
Saving a Tree with a Broken Main Trunk?Saving a tree with a broken main trunk may be possible. The rotting portion can be removed and the the cut sealed. However, this is not always successful and sometimes the tree must be cut down.
Growing Sugar Snap PeasGrowing sugar snap peas is easy. They can be planted earlier than many other garden veggies. The young, flat pods are delicious straight off of the vine. They freeze better than snow peas, thus providing you with a future supply for cooking later in the year. Heirloom varieties and be planted next season from peas dried on the vine with assurance of the same delicious flavor.
Growing Philodendron?Philodendron plants are often grown as trailing foliage houseplants. There are upright varieties as well. They lend a bit of a tropical feel to your home. These tropical plants require bright but indirect light, warmth, moist soil, and humidity. In addition to their beauty they are often grown indoors because of their ability to clean the air in your home.
Something Is Eating the Leaves on My LiliesAre the leaves of your lilies being ravaged by some unidentified pests? Insecticidal soap may be one method to treat this issue. Read on for more information.
Homemade Potting ShedBuilding a potting shed in your garden is a project that be done by many homeowners. You can even use recycled and repurposed materials to reduce costs. There are plans and kits, or your own creative concepts can be used for its design. Once built you have a useful garden space for potting, preparing plants for transplanting, and storing garden supplies.
Growing Saskatoon Serviceberry (Amelanchier alnifolia)?The fragrant drooping white flowers in spring are followed by large bluish purple edible berries. The Saskatoon service berry is a medium to large upright shrub native to North America from Alaska across much of western Canada into the western and north-central US. They prefer full sun, but can tolerate light shade. The extensive root system results in clumps and allows it to being grown as a hedge.
Stacked Rocks in the GardenStacked rocks make for an interesting focal point in an area of your garden. This is also a fun way to display a rock collection. Especially those of us who can't seem to pass up an interesting or pretty rock.
Growing PhalarisPhalaris is a genus of beautiful grasses found throughout the world except for Antarctica. It grows well under a variety of conditions. They have broad leaves and a dense spike of flowers.
Transplanting Lupine?Young lupin plants or seedlings can be successfully transplanted into a sunny location. Because they have a tap root trying to move older, mature plants is not often successful. If you must try to move a mature lupine, cut back the foliage to compensate for the partial loss of the root.
Growing Cape Gooseberry (Physalis peruviana)The cape gooseberry is a native of Peru. The plant is a perennial and is easy to grow, even from seed, and be spread throughout your garden by birds, who really enjoy the berries. It is a member of the genus Physalis in the nightshade family Solanaceae. Ripe berries are safe to eat and provide a good source of vitamin C. They are also a good source of fiber. Like other members of this plant family the unripe berries, leaves, and flowers are poisonous.
Growing a Tabebuia Tree?The tabebuia tree or shrub is native to the American tropics and subtropics from Mexico and the Caribbean as far south as Argentina. Most of the species are from Cuba and Hispaniola. They are evergreen in the tropics and deciduous in dry climates. Sometimes called a trumpet tree they are known for their trumpet shaped flowers that can be yellow, pink, and a lavender pink in color.
Hibiscus Flower Petals Stuck Together?What is causing my hibiscus flowers to fold up like they are glued together?
Protecting Garden PlantsYour garden plants may need protection from insects, too much sun, birds, wildlife, and more. Depending on the situation there are a variety of options discussed on this page.
Removing the Seeds from a Pinecone?It can involve a lot of time when trying to remove seeds from a pine cone. The cone will need to be heated in order to cause it to open and release the seeds. Some tips follow.
Making Decorative Planter PotsTake any plastic planter pot and paint it to spice up your garden decor. This is a great project for kids and teens and could also be used to decorate a gift plant.
Using a Strawberry PotTerra cotta planters are designed with pockets on the sides to grow strawberries. Many other herbs and garden plants can also be planted in them, to decorate any deck or patio.
Making a Teacup PlanterBeautiful teacups can be upcycled into planters for small houseplants. These make a great gift for someone's office or kitchen windowsill.
Making a Self-Watering Milk CartonSave your cardboard milk cartons to water your garden slowly. It's great for self-watering for when you go out of town.
Caring for HoyaThe hoya is a genus of 200300 species of tropical plants in the family Apocynaceae (Dogbane). Most are native to several countries of Asia such as China, India, and Thailand. There is a great diversity of species in the Philippines, and Polynesia, New Guinea, and Australia. It is a waxy leafed vining plant with star shaped waxy flowers. In non-tropical areas it is typically easy to grow indoors.
Recycled Wheelbarrow Herb GardenAn old wheelbarrow can be repurposed as an herb garden. Many herbs are perennials so you can harvest for years to come. If the barrow is intact you can move it about your yard to maximize sun exposure. Fresh herbs are very flavorful, so this creative recycled planter is something to consider.
Rose Stems Started Sprouting?Roses can be grown from cuttings. That being said it is possible for the beautiful roses in your vase to begin to sprout and grow new leaves. If you would like to start plants for your garden this page provides some helpful tips.
Spilling Wheelbarrow Garden PlanterSpilling wheelbarrow yard decor and planters are quite popular. The attached photo shows one example of this landscape project using coleus.
Growing FernsThere are numerous varieties of ferns, each have its own growing requirements. Identifying your fern is the first step. Then you can provide the right growing medium, exposure, and planting site. Some will only do well as indoor plants others are more hardy, depending on their native climate conditions and can be planted outdoors or rotated in and out depending on season.
Getting Rid of an Elderberry?Elderberries can be very invasive. The suckers need to be removed and then a choice will need to be made whether to use an herbicide or more natural methods for killing and removing this large shrub.
Propagating African Violets from Leaf CuttingsAfrican violets are relatively easy to propagate from a leaf cutting. Follow the steps defined below and start new plants now.
Building a Retaining WallAdding a retaining wall to a steeply sloping yard can not only make landscaping easier, but also increase the plantable garden space. Here are some photos of the new stacked retaining wall and early plantings.
Identifying Wild Flowers?These are some of the flowers I see on my social distancing walks in the neighborhood. Some of them I recognize more or less, but am hoping for more specific information.
Starting A Pecan Tree From SeedNature always seems to find a way to continue even without our help. Read a fun and interesting description of the birth of a new pecan tree inside a bucket of harvested nuts.
Growing a Pussy WillowPussy willows are a fun and easy to grow addition to your landscape. They contain a natural rooting hormone, which makes it easy to propagate your plant.
Identifying Egg Casings or Cocoons?Identifying what kind of insect is about to hatch in your yard can be hard to determine. There are many fascinating cocoons to be investigated.
DIY Living Succulent Pine Cone DecorIf you have access to pine cones and succulents, combine them to make these pretty decorations. A succulent needs little water so can survive a long time with occasional misting.
Making a Succulent Plant StarterThose of us who grow succulents know that it is generally easy to start new plants from cuttings. This recycled soda bottle succulent plant starter is designed to also focus on starting new plants from individual leaves. The easy to follow instructions appear below.
Making a Strawberry Planter from a Laundry BasketLine a plastic laundry basket with burlap, fill with soil, cut holes in the sides for some of the plants and you have an inexpensive strawberry planter for your garden. Plant the berries and stand by to enjoy delicious strawberries alone or in recipes.
Laundry Basket PlantersPlastic laundry baskets make fun holders for outdoor potted plants. Set the pots down inside and create a cluster planting effect.
Burying a Dead Animal Near a Vegetable Garden?There are mixed views and potential local ordinances that can affect where it is OK to bury a dead animal in your yard and more specifically near a vegetable garden. If allowed in your area be sure to dig a deep hole for the burial. Read on for more details.
Harvesting ElderberriesElderberries should be ready for harvest between mid August and mid September. Remove the clusters from the bush and strip the berries from them. One way to quickly remove the berries is with a plastic fork. Refrigerate or freeze.
Bamboo Sticks for Plant SupportSlender bamboo sticks can be used in your garden or containers to stake plants such as tomatoes and flowers. They also work for young trees.
Making a Succulent WreathA vine style wreath form can be "planted" with succulent cuttings to create a pretty living wreath for your front door or garden. Read on for the instructions, supplies, and some helpful photos so that you can successfully complete this project.
Pruning Huckleberry Plants?Evergreen huckleberry plants may not require pruning, but if you want to encourage growth and increase berry production, the best time to prune is late winter or early spring. Learn more about pruning your huckleberry below.
Use Old Storage Racks In Your GardenHaving shelving to display potted garden plants is easily done. Repurpose some of the racks and shelves you may have been using in your garage, or look for some at a garage sale.
Use Faux Flower Stems to Support Live PlantsSave the stems of faux flowers used in crafts and use them to support live plants. Their green color will blend in with your live plants and you don't have to buy plant stakes.
Using Old Sinks As PlantersGardeners can be so creative when it comes to recycled planters. Old sinks are a good choice, especially for low water use plants such as succulents. Set the sink in soil with the short piece of drain pipe buried and enjoy your salvaged planter.
Saving Rescued or Clearance PlantsRescued or clearance plants are easy to come by at your local big box stores, nursery, and sometimes from neighbors. If you can identify it, read up on growing requirements, otherwise use your best judgement and some TLC. Several accounts of successful clearance plant revivals follow.
Do Not Feed Leftover Breads to BirdsAlthough many of us have fond memories of feeding bread to ducks and geese, or of Grandma saving bread for the backyard birds, it is now strongly discouraged. Not only are the nutrients unsuitable for a bird's nutrition, but moldy bread can cause a host of health concerns. It's best to feed backyard birds an approved mix birdseed and to let waterfowl find their own sources of food.
Black Widow (Latrodectus) Spider PhotosThe female black widow spider is easily recognizable by the hourglass marking on her abdomen. The males are often lighter in color and exhibit a series of red spots on their abdomen rather than the hourglass shape. This page contains photos of black widow spiders.
Ways for Gardeners to Stay Busy During WinterWinter is not a time for gardener's to have the blues. There are a lot of activities you can engage in that will put the old garden to bed and prepare you for the coming season. Clean tools, read up on gardening, order seeds, try new spices to see if you need to grow your own. Concentrate on your houseplants and perhaps make up some garden decorations such as stepping stones or fun planters. More ideas can be found on this page.
Alternatives to Plastic Flowerpot SaucersPlastic flower pot saucers can seem pricey for what you get. Many of them are thin, flimsy plastic. One alternative is a sturdy child's plastic plate. There are other options as well.
Use Whey for Healthy PlantsMany gardener's use whey to fertilize their plants. It contains nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, and other minerals that are beneficial in small amounts. Too much has the inverse effect and can harm you plants.
How to Bring Light Into Shady Garden SpacesThis page offers several useful tips for adding light to a shady garden space, including the choice of plants, addition of mirrors, lights, and more. Try one or more in a shady area of your garden to create a lighter feel.
Growing a Strawberry Bush?I planted an euonymus americanus last fall. In spring it was full of flowers. The flowers never bore fruit. The plant is about 3 tall, but does not have new growth, branches, or leaves. It is in a semi shaded place.
Making a Garden Orb from a Bowling BallStore-bought garden orbs are often quite expensive. However you can easily make your own from a bowling ball, which are often available at Goodwill.
Using Bricks as Tree RingThere are many options available for creating a tree ring. Rather than the curved stone cinder block material or decorative rocks, try clay bricks. You may find that they are less expensive and give you a look that you prefer for you garden.
DIY Bamboo Garden GateThis page contains the instructions for adding a bamboo finish to a weathered chain link style gate. This is a great way to reuse and enhance an existing garden gate.
Using Plastic Containers in the GardenAll sorts of plastic containers, tubs, and bottles have a place in your gardening activities. Use recycled bottles to add lightweight bulk to planters. Tubs and containers are useful for starting seedlings and as planters in their own right. Learn more about using plastic containers in the garden on this page.
Reviving a Frozen Christmas Cactus?I received a Christmas cactus last year and worked on it all year and have been patiently waiting for its 1st bloom. We had an unexpected freeze and I didn't think to bring it inside. It's wilted and I have no idea how to save this beautiful plant so that it's ready to bloom at Christmas.