Growing a Windowsill Herb Garden in Winter

Growing a Windowsill Herb Garden in Winter

Depending upon which herbs you use, the requirements are pretty much the same. A south or southeast facing window that provides at least 6 hours of light a day, or an area where grow lights can be used is key. Without proper lighting, the seedlings will become too leggy.

In addition to proper light, the use of good soil-less potting mix, the right amount of moisture and temperature will lend to successfully growing herbs. Try to avoid a drafty windowsill, as cold temperatures may inhibit or kill off your plants.

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Indoor lights such as fluorescent or wide spectrum lights provide suitable light for seedlings and plants. Suspended lights hanging from chains can be adjusted upwards as the seedling sprout and grow. Initially, if the lights are about 1-2 inches above the soil they then can be moved upwards as the seeds sprout. There are a variety of growing kits on the market that include containers, lights, stands, heat pads, etc.

Once you determine which herbs you want to go, selecting growing containers is next. Of course,

Toxic Plants of the Winter Holidays, from a Veterinary Perspective

Toxic Plants of the Winter Holidays, from a Veterinary Perspective

There are readily available lists of toxic plants for people, dogs and cats and these lists are repeated over and over again on the internet and in magazines. But as a veterinarian I am usually less interested in whether something is called toxic versus how toxic something actually is, and how likely it is to be ingested/contacted so that poisoning actually occurs. I have been practicing as a veterinarian for over 20 years now, many of those in emergency medicine, and have yet to see a single case of a winter holiday plant toxicity. Yet one of the first plants everyone tends to think of in terms of toxicity, the winter holidays and pets, is Poinsettias. Of all toxic plants these are probably one of the least toxic around . The following article is a brief discussion of some of the toxic plants one’s pets might encounter this time of year.

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dogs are always investigating, and sometimes sampling greenery, even if it tastes bad

Image even cats sometimes eat something they shouldn’t

Poinsettias are very common and popular holiday plants in the Euphorbia family (Euphorbia

Indoor palms Selecting and caring for these popular houseplants

Indoor palms Selecting and caring for these popular houseplants

Though I personally prefer growing palms outdoors, I live in a climate where that is possible. Palms, in general, are tropical plants and most cannot adapt to colder climates. However, there are a number that survive and even do well indoors. What I mean by indoors, is in a house, business or mall. A greenhouse is a very different situation and one can grow literally thousands of species in a greenhouse (if one had a humongous greenhouse, that is). Ones choices are vast. But in a house that humans live in, the list of possibilities is much smaller thanks to poor lighting, low humidity and stagnant air flow typical of most dwellings. This is particularly true if one lives in a climate where it gets cold much of the year and one can’t keep the palm outdoors for long. The following is a discussion of some good and bad choices for indoor palms, as well as suggestions on how to care for them.

In a greenhouse like this you can grow literally thousands of species, but the lighting and humidity are far above what one encounters in most homes

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Getting Rid of Spiders

Getting Rid of Spiders

Spiders usually lurk in dark and damp areas. Kitchen corners, counters, drawers and garbage drains are the most common places where spiders thrive. But did you know that these spiders are especially attracted to rotting or fermenting fruits and food? If you want to get rid of these creepy crawlers, here are a few ways that you can do.

  1. Keep your home clutter-free.

This is the ultimate and most cost-effective way to get rid of spiders. Like most pests, spiders like dark places and clutters. They love to create webs in stacks of boxes, piles of old newspapers or magazines, and under-bed storage. Always vacuum behind furniture and make sure to clean light fixtures, corners and ceilings. Properly clean bookshelves and air ducts to prevent them from weaving webs. Eliminating clutter will not totally get rid of spiders but it will reduce their presence in your home.

  1. A tidy kitchen keeps the spiders away.

There’s no better way to attract pests than having an untidy kitchen. Leftover food left lying on your countertops is a definite spider magnet. If you want to get rid of spiders, you must keep your kitchen clean. It is also best to clean spills more quickly and put

Are Folding Arm Awnings Worth the Money?

Are Folding Arm Awnings Worth the Money?

An awning is basically a small sheet of canvas that’s stretched tightly on a frame to provide shade from harsh atmospheric elements such as the rays of the sun or heavy rainfall. You may have seen awnings installed outside windows and doors of shops, cafes, and restaurants. Awnings come in many different shapes and sizes. Some companies sell pre-designed awnings that are made to conventional specifications. However, most companies also offer custom awning options. The company will send over a team of professionals to take measurements of the windows and doors before they start manufacturing a custom awning.

You can choose from numerous types of awnings. A conventional awning won’t move up and down once it has been put into position. They are affixed in place using metallic rods and levers, and are designed to stay only in one position. However, folding arm awnings are generally preferred by most people. Folding arm awnings are not only good looking, but they are also quite functional. Here are a few reasons why folding arm awnings in Melbourne are worth the money:

Aesthetic Appeal

One of the biggest reasons why folding-arm awnings are so popular amongst homeowners

What to Do if a Tree Falls On Your Home

What to Do if a Tree Falls On Your Home

When the winds and rain howl outside, the last thing that you want to do is to get out of your cozy bed and deal with a tree trunk in the middle of your attic. Should this happen, your first thought should be about who pays to have it removed, and for repairs to your home.

It isn’t a given that your homeowner’s policy will pay for it. The insurance company will pay if negligence wasn’t involved in the tree’s fall. If it was in bad shape for a while before it fell, they’ll wash their hands off it. According to Gunnison Tree Service, leading specialists in the field, about the only reason that a rotting tree is ever neglected is that the homeowner would like to save some money doing the work himself, except that he never gets around to it. Calling in a tree service doesn’t cost very much, and it puts professionals in charge of a skilled job.

Call in a professional to remove a fallen tree

You’ll need to call in an emergency tree removal service as soon as possible, but you should first take as many pictures of

Tile Patterns For The Beginner

Tile Patterns For The Beginner

Tile Patterns For The Beginner

Everyone has their own unique sense of style and preferences.  When installing a tile project there are tile patterns to help you not only express them but to make your home looks as gorgeous as it can.  So here’s a fast overview of what you need to know before getting started or deciding on one.

Simple

A lot of homeowners are just looking for something simple.  If that sounds like you there are a lot of fantastic tile layout patterns that could work.  The least complicated is the straight lay where the tiles are set in a straight line. The checkerboard is a variation of this using black and white colored tiles.  Another famous choice is the running bond tile pattern which always looks great on back splashes and shower surrounds.  Simple layouts often are the top choice when you don’t want your space to look busy, or they may just be your personal preference.

Complex

A more complicated pattern may be what you prefer however.  Complex tile patterns

Create Exciting Outdoor Living Areas With Rattan Garden Furniture

Create Exciting Outdoor Living Areas With Rattan Garden Furniture

Modern families are making the most of their backyard, garden, patio, deck and/or terrace by adding outdoor furniture to create new all-weather living rooms and garden nooks.  One of the most popular choices in seating, tables and other pieces for these areas is beautiful, versatile rattan garden furniture.

Creating Outdoor Living Areas

Create the comforts of your home’s interior in multipurpose outdoor living areas.  These specially created extensions of your interior living space add functional focal areas for conversation and dining while adding value to your home as well.   Furnished with beautiful stylish rattan or rattan effect garden furniture, your outdoor living spaces provide space for relaxation and entertainment.

Add a sofa, chair and table combination set in your patio or deck to make a conversation area.  Use your garden gazebo, pergola or a separate patio area for an al fresco dining room with a rattan dining suite.  Enhance your pool deck with chaise loungers and rattan storage benches that also double as seating.  Rattan and resin rattan (or rattan effect) furnishings are built to endure the seasons and the elements.

The Versatility of Available Rattan Furniture Sets

You only need a simple

Beautify Your Community Signage

Beautify Your Community Signage

When you travel, what says welcome more than seeing a pretty sign and an exciting landscape full of color when you finally reach your destination’s front door, whether it’s a town entry, the front of a hotel, or a business!

Color attracts the eye and positive emotions are released when we see something beautiful.  Using this time tested theory, America in Bloom encourages cities and businesses alike to be cognitive of their gateways and imagine how visitors react to them.

The signs themselves should be easy to read at the speed required for the road where they’re displayed.

Ideally, landscaping around signs should offer four-season interest.  This is easy to do by including a mix of evergreens and deciduous shrubs and/or small ornamental trees.  The list below offers some suggestions for plants that thrive in most climates.

Evergreen shrubs may include:

            Microbiota decussata – Russian Arborvitae

            Cephalotaxus harringtonia ‘prostrata’ – Japanese Plum Yew

            Buxus ‘Green Gem’ – Boxwood

            Ilex crenata – Littleleaf Holly

            Juniperus virginiana ‘Grey Owl’ – Spreading Juniper

Deciduous shrubs may include:

            Itea virginica –Virginia Sweetspire

Top 5 Secret and Natural Soil Additives For A Healthy Garden

Top 5 Secret and Natural Soil Additives For A Healthy Garden

Eleven years ago I was a “traditional gardener”, meaning I used the traditionally advertised products on the market that were filled with chemicals to treat my garden. This led to over-fertilizing and using chemical pesticides regularly. Bottom line: I wantonly abandoned the idea of doing healthy things for my garden in favor of what the media told me I should do. At that time I would consider my garden an average garden even with all of my chemical efforts. Then one season a friend of mine suggested I grow in an environmentally healthy fashion and stop listening to the hype. I thoroughly researched the importance of how to go chemical free and gradually converted my entire property over to about 98.9% organic and natural. An amazing and surprising thing happened in response to that changeover – my garden grew more beautiful, astounding, and lush than it had ever been when I used all those chemical solutions.

The secret for using less chemicals and pesticides in your garden is this: good soil grows healthy plant roots. With healthy plant roots you have strong plants that can survive tough conditions. Over the last ten years I have discovered what type of

Importance Of Healthy Roots What Do Healthy Roots Look Like

Importance Of Healthy Roots What Do Healthy Roots Look Like

One of the most important parts of a plant is the part you can’t see. Roots are absolutely vital to a plant’s health, and if the roots are sick, the plant is sick. But how can you tell if roots are healthy? Keep reading to learn about identifying healthy roots and growing healthy roots.

Importance of Healthy Roots

The importance of healthy roots can’t be stressed enough. Roots hold plants in place. They also carry water and essential minerals to the rest of the plant. It’s how the plant eats and drinks. It’s important to keep healthy roots in plants that are already established, of course, but it’s even more important to check for healthy roots in plants you buy in the store.

If you buy a plant with a bad root system, at best, it will take it a long time to adjust to transplanting. At worst, it’ll die soon after you get it home. But how can you tell the difference between healthy and unhealthy roots?

What Do Healthy Roots Look Like?

Identifying healthy roots in the store is easy, since the plants are all potted and the roots are easily visible. Tilt the plant on its side, cradle the stem just

Should you plant lavender in your garden

Should you plant lavender in your garden

Lavender needs a little more care than many hardier plants, but it’s worth putting in that extra effort. Aside from their delicate, light purple flowers, lavender plants produce a fragrance that fills your whole yard and wafts on down the street. These benefits aren’t limited to the months when the flowers are blooming: Spanish lavender flowers make fantastic additions to dried flower arrangements and work well as pressed flowers. The blossoms of French lavender retain their scent when dried and are a popular addition to potpourri and sachets for long-term enjoyment.

Some gardeners recommend growing lavender from seed to help plants adapt to their environment right from the time they germinate. However, if you prefer to avoid the extra work of dealing with seedlings, you can buy ready-grown shrubs and transplant them into your garden [source: Sink]. Lavender plants grow up to three or four feet high (0.9 to 1.2 meters) and tend to grow outward at least as much. Lavender can be considered both an annual and a perennial, depending on specific type and location. Some varieties will grow throughout the year, especially in mild or warm climates, in which case the lavender is

5 Topics You Can Study With Online Horticulture Courses

5 Topics You Can Study With Online Horticulture Courses

Gardening includes a vast array of topics, knowledge, and skill levels. No matter how much you think you know about gardening, there is always more to discover. Horticultural classes are a beneficial way to increase your knowledge; however, it’s not always possible to fit a regular class into your schedule. Fortunately, online horticulture courses make it possible for you to learn at your own pace and on your own schedule. Here are five topics you can learn more about from these courses.

Planting Design
Even an experienced gardener may find that it’s easy to get in a slump when designing gardens. Planting design courses can enhance garden designs by teaching about specific plants and their characteristics and attributes. Once you understand more about plant textures, colors, form, seasonal colors, and more, your garden will come to life. You will understand how to properly select flowers, grasses, trees, bulbs, and shrubs in order to create a garden of vibrant color, form, and texture. These courses are valuable in designing any size of garden, large or small.

Vegetable Gardening
If you’ve attempted to grow vegetables, you know that there is much more to it than planting a

Garden Design Courses Might Be the Right Move for You

Garden Design Courses Might Be the Right Move for You

Gardening is an emerging interest for people across the country. You can find gardens sprouting up in several different areas. On the community level, cities have reinforced their community member’s interest in gardening. In cities across the United States, gardens can be found in the center of urban areas and even in growing suburbs. People have also adopted the practice of making vegetable gardens on their residential property, giving them convenient access to the freshest produce imaginable. People often find a sense of fulfillment when taking care of their gardens. People enjoy having a connection to the food that they grow. In an age where food is processed, preserved and shipped from all corners of the earth, some foods have lost their quality.

An excellent way to take matters into your own hands is by working with your own garden in your area. When you grow fresh herbs in your own garden, you are able to season your meals with ingredients that are from your own back yard. Whether you are a fan of parsley, sage, rosemary, or thyme, you won’t find yourself needing to go to the market to acquire these items. Gardening is also

5 Tips To Keep Correct Moisture In Your Worm Bin

5 Tips To Keep Correct Moisture In Your Worm Bin

A possible challenge for a beginning vermicomposter to get a handle on is keeping the moisture levels in the bin at a reasonable level. Thankfully, composting worms are very tolerant of a wide range of dampness, between 50-90%. But “wet it and forget it” is decidedly not a winning plan. A sopping wet worm bin can cause a slowdown in worm activity and reproduction and worse yet, stinky, anaerobic conditions which may spoil your entire bin. The following tips assume you have an indoor plastic bin (the most common, but wettest bin set up) and should help you keep clear of turning your bin into your own personal Swampland (or Sahara) in a box.

5 TIPS TO KEEP APPROPRIATE MOISTURE LEVELS IN YOUR WORM BIN

1. MEASURE MOISTURE IN SEVERAL PLACES.

Compared with commercial systems, home vermicompost containers are not uniform in their content. Home bins will feature shredded cardboard and paper, peat moss, coffee grounds, corn cobs, apple cores, banana peels and whatever food waste that household is producing at the time. I’ve even seen a fellow worm nut toss old t-shirts in his worm beds, presumably for insulation.

If

Gardening Is Rewarding in More Ways Than One

Gardening Is Rewarding in More Ways Than One

In times of economic uncertainty, people have turned towards the practice of self-sufficiency. An indication of the drive towards self-sufficiency can be found in the DIY movement. Passionate do-it-yourselfers have covered the internet with their money-saving creations. If you find yourself wanting to save money or just enjoy taking care of something with your own hands, you might want to research the many do-it-yourself techniques that are available for free all over the pages and walls of the internet.

One big movement that has also emerged is gardening. Gardening is inexpensive, environmentally responsible, and provides a therapeutic pastime to any person involved. When you help plants grow, you can row as well. Some people report that when they garden, they feel a deeper connection with the earth as well.

Gardening also does a favor for your wallet. When your plants are ready to yield their fruits, you can enjoy the freshest produce available just from your backyard. When you eat food that you have grown, there is a level of satisfaction that cannot be matched in comparison to simply buying food from a market.

Gardening does not have to be difficult. If you find

Growing Your Own Food – The Benefits of a Productive Garden

Growing Your Own Food – The Benefits of a Productive Garden

For many years now the Government and environmentalists have been encouraging us to think about the planet and ways we can conserve its dwindling resources. We’ve been taught to reduce, re-use and recycle wherever possible and many of you will have taken that on board. But did you realise there’s also a way you can save money – by growing your own food. Food prices seem to be getting higher and higher and the quality is not all it’s cracked up to be. Supermarket shelves are stacked high with perfect looking produce but when it comes to taste you’ll find them sorely lacking. Growing your own produce may seem a little overwhelming but it really isn’t as difficult as it sounds. Even the smallest garden or patio space can be productive with just a little thought and planning. But growing your own has countless other benefits:

Health Benefits

  • Eating fresh fruit and vegetables will have a huge impact on your family’s health. What is more by picking them straight from your garden you’ll benefit from the highest level of vitamins and nutrients. Studies have shown that children who are encouraged to eat produce from the

Growing Tomatoes in Large Pots

Growing Tomatoes in Large Pots

You don’t have to give up your love of growing tomatoes when the summer is over. You can continue to grow them in the fall and winter, as long as you use pots and take great care of them. You also need to plant the right type of tomatoes for pots. The following are the ones that are best for large-sized pots:

Heirloom Tomato for Large Containers

Heirlooms are the best type for planting in large pots. Under this type of tomato, there’s one variety that works best in large containers – sprite tomatoes.

Hybrid Tomato Varieties

Hybrids offer many options for growing tomatoes in a large pot. You can choose from the Big Boy Bush Tomato, Bush Goliath Tomato, Celebrity Tomato, and Early Girl Bush Tomato.

The Big Boy Bush can be ready for picking in 72 days. This plant doesn’t grow as big as the Better Boy tomato, but it does produce just as many tomatoes and tastes about the same.The Bush Goliath are ready in 68 days. This plant is good for the indoors, if you don’t have a patio to grow your tomato plants in the fall and winter.

The Celebrity

When Autumn Leaves Begin to Fall Autumn Gardening Ideas

When Autumn Leaves Begin to Fall Autumn Gardening Ideas

Autumn has arrived and now it is perfect time to rearrange your garden. There are many things to do before winter comes. Autumn is a time to make sure that your yard is in the best shape for the forthcoming year. We hope that the following hints will give you some useful information and ideas of the jobs that need to be done in your yard in the autumn. We will also show you how you can enjoy this season of the year with some gardening tips for you.

1. First of all, get ready for autumn clean-up and buy comfortable boots that are slip-resistant to avoid injuries with slippery and wet leaves. These boots are cheap and work great for the purpose of autumn clean-up.

2. Autumn is a perfect time to think about the compost. If you start your heap now, your waste will develop into compost over the winter. This compost is great for fertilizing in spring.

3. You should leave any plants that are sturdy and standing as they will give winter cover for any wildlife that visit your yard. Flowers and vegetables that have gone floppy must be cut

Did You Eat Your Flowers Today

Did You Eat Your Flowers Today

Many fine dining restaurants make the use of flowers to enhance the flavors and textures of the food they offer. Flowers can be added to main dishes, desserts or salads for an exciting twist or can be used as a garnish. There are many beverages which infused with flowers. Flowers can also be used for making spreads and preserves, marinades and dressings, to cakes and puddings, appetizers and starters- the options are endless. All you need is some imagination and creativity.

However, it is also important to keep in mind that not all flowers are edible. So make sure that you depend on some reliable source when choosing flowers to consume. If possible, try to grow your own edible flowers. To ensure best flavor, choose fresh flowers and avoid the wilted ones. Also, flower buds can be bitter, so are better left alone. Some flowers can be eaten whole, except for bitter parts like stems and stamens.

If you suffer from any allergies, add flowers to your diet gradually as too much of them can aggravate your condition. Avoid eating flowers plucked from public parks or even from the florist as they could carry traces

The Main Uses for Different Garden Buildings

The Main Uses for Different Garden Buildings

If you’re looking for a garden building, you might be surprised by the amount of various buildings to choose from. We would like to break down the different types of garden buildings. If you think that a garage is just a garage, you are about to learn that there is a lot more to it than that. Garden building is typically a very simple and small wooden structure in the garden. These buildings can be used as garden offices, wooden garages, storage sheds, summer houses, and log cabins. If you need more space for unused garden tools and other equipment, it is extremely important to decide which type of building you need in your garden because there are many options for garden buildings. Nowadays, the demand of these buildings has increased extremely.

A garden building is a simple wooden structure, mostly used to store unused equipment or gardening tools. These buildings may also be used as workshops. Small garden buildings are common buildings in many gardens because they are sturdy, durable, and functional. If you grow vegetables or fruit for you and your family members, you need a place to keep all your gardening tools. Of