Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Spring Lawn Care And Maintenance

The inclement weather conditions of winter makes a lawn weary. Following a few simple steps will help the lawn recover its lush green coloration and flourish. Raking, repairing damaged areas, renovating the lawn's appearance and correct fertilizer applications restore a lawn to its pre-winter glory.

New Lawn Growth

During the cold winter months, grass enters a state of dormancy. It will cease growing which makes its general appearance become ragtag. Its lack of growth during the winter also makes it more susceptible to damage from freezing, drainage issues and snow accumulation. In order for the grass to flourish and grow correctly, the winter damage must be fixed.

Clear Debris

Before undertaking spring lawn care, allow the area to dry out. A wet or soggy lawn can sustain damage when cultivated. The roots will be easily pulled from the soil and the blades bent or broke. Once the lawn has dried out, it should be thoroughly raked to help aerate the soil. Raking will remove accumulated winter debris. It will also open up the soil and the grass blades to create air circulation. Good air circulation around the crown of the plants and each blade of grass will help prevent fungal problems from developing. A basic hard tine rake works adequately to help remove dead grass plants and lawn debris or a lawn vacuum or leaf blower for larger lawns can help with larger lawns.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Grow Houseplants In Every Room of the House

Houseplants literally breathe life into your home. Boston fern, Peace lily, Areca palm and Spider plant all make great air-purifiers. So bring the garden indoors and fill your house with lush greenery.

Each room of the house offers a unique environment, so decide which location most suits a plant's needs.

Living rooms are often the first place we choose to display an attractive houseplant, but the dry atmosphere can kill off many plants requiring a higher level of humidity. Peace lily is a good choice for this environment as it lovely to look at, with beautiful oval flowers, plus extremely efficient at removing pollutants from the air.

Orchids don't mind the high temperatures of the living room but they do need regular misting. Create an eye-catching display by grouping pots together on a tray of damp gravel, which helps to keep them moist.

Bedrooms are usually much cooler, making them perfect for cyclamens. Available in shades of red, pink and white, cyclamens are elegant and have a pleasant, light fragrance. Azaleas also prefer a cool room and will provide plenty of bright pink and purple flowers. Avoid placing plants next to radiators as this will dry out foliage.

Hallways are generally draughty and have fluctuating temperatures, which dictate what will survive. The aptly named Mother-in-law's tongue is a tough succulent, with fleshy sword-shaped stems, that survives in almost any conditions.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Herb Gardening for Beginners - Growing Herbs From Seed

If you regularly use herbs in cooking or on salads and would like to have easy access at home to an abundant supply of fresh herbs, why not try growing your favorite herbs from seed in your own garden? Even though you may be just a herb gardening beginner it needn't take a long time before you enjoy the satisfaction of having freshly-picked herbs to use in your recipes.

If you choose to make a start on growing your own herbs from seed this year, the seeds you sow in the spring will produce plentiful supplies of summer herbs which can be used immediately. And when you take a final harvest of herbs at the end of the summer, this harvest can be stored away for use over the winter.

Herb Gardening is not difficult or Expensive

Growing herbs from seed will not take up a lot of your time or require a lot of effort. Also, you won't need to spend a lot of money to get good results. In this article I have provided you with:

- A list of the things you'll need to grow your own herbs from seed

- A simple five-step herb growing plan.

If you follow the plan and the advice I have given in this article, there's no reason why you shouldn't get results which are as good as those of any profersional herb grower - even though you are a herb gardening beginner.

Choosing the Herbs to Grow

You probably already have ideas about herbs you'd like to grow. Many years ago when I was just starting to grow herbs I grew basil from seed because I wanted fresh basil to use in my cooking. Other herb gardening beginners I know started with herbs like parsley, chives and sage because they already used them for their favorite recipes.