Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.
Cantaloupes are another one of my favorites, As a child growing up I still can remember the days when my parents would call me for a juicy slice of cantaloupes, so in this article, we will be looking at some facts that pertain to cantaloupe. To learn more about cantaloupes click this link. Garden fruits and vegetables
Pineapples are a popular fruit that is mostly grown on the Island of Eleuthera. Some of the many dishes and desserts that we use pineapple in are tropical conch salad, pineapple tart, pineapple upside-down cake, pineapple daiquiri, etc.
One of my favorites as a child was watermelon, I would eat this fruit until my stomach got full. I never turned down watermelon, when the chance came I would have a feast. So like in previous articles we will be taking a closer look at this fruit and how it can benefit our bodies.
1. Watermelons contain so much water that if you eat enough of it, it will not only fill you but also quench your thirst.
Strawberries are one of my favorite fruits. These fruits can be used in so many different dishes mainly desserts to delight our taste buds. We will also be looking at some fun facts and health benefits of these fruits.
Grapes make a healthy treat because of the vitamins and other benefits they provide for our bodies. But before we look at some of these nutritional facts we will be looking at some fun facts about grapes.
This is a good question, why is the world turning to organic gardening? what is the big buzz all about? and what are the benefits of having an organic garden? first, growing organically means growing crops without the use of synthetic pesticides, because these pesticides can contaminate the foods we grow.
Secondly, the use of synthetic pesticides can and have contaminated the air causing humans as well as animals to become ill, and thirdly having our own organic garden in our backyard will save us money. So we can see then that growing organically will benefit us in many ways.
In this article, we will be looking and doing a bit of study of the insect world. It is so amazing how many species of insects there are on planet earth, and what is even more interesting is their numbers are staggering. But before we get into all of this fun stuff we will be looking at persons who work in this field.
Just for kids is a web page that has been created just for kids. In this article, we will be looking at science and how it relates to us and our world. I believe that science is one way that we can develop our kid’s minds while they learn what nature has to offer and how it benefits us.
Gardening for kids can be such a rewarding experience. I remembered as a child having my very own garden that I designed and constructed with my very own hands it was such an exciting experience that I still remember to this day.
There were days when I would be outside turning the soil in preparation for planting my seeds. My garden consisted of okras, pepper, peas, and corn.
I would go into my garden on a daily basis to water my seedlings, then after a week or so I would notice little leaves and stems. Man, I was so proud of my seedlings, it was like walking on the clouds. The good news about kids getting involved with gardening is that it brings them closer to nature where they can have a better understanding and appreciation of how nature works.
In order for plants to perform at their best, we must do our part to ensure that their requirements are met. In this article, we will be looking at irrigation repairs because water is so essential to plant life. Without it, our plants cannot survive or thrive.
In fact, every living thing depends on water in order to survive. Getting adequate amounts of water to our plants is a necessity.
In this article, we will be looking at turf disease and how we can bring resolutions to those problems which can turn a nice healthy manicured lawn into a lawn that’s stressed and dying.
Apart from the maintenance practices that are carried out St Augustine grass also faces the issue of dealing with diseases such as take-all root rot, grey leaf spot, and brown patch disease, if these problems are not correctly identified and dealt with that once beautiful law will become an eyesore.
So then we will first be looking at take- all root rot disease, The fungus that is responsible attacks the roots, and because of this, the turf is not able to take up water and nutrients through the normal process. When this happens the turf begins to decline. To learn more about St Augustine grass click this link. Grass-type.
There are many rules that apply in order to have a beautiful healthy turf. Apart from these rules, there is the issue of dealing with the many insects that attack our lawns, feeding on them, and converting what once was a beautiful lawn, to a lawn that is sick, dying, and far from healthy-looking.
In this section, we will be looking at some of these lawn pests and what methods can be taken to counterattack and bring them under control.
St. Augustinegrass is a turf that has its share of problems with turf insects which include:
Plant nutrients are essential in order for plants to survive and grow healthy. Therefore it is important that we provide our plants with suitable nutrients so they can perform at their best. A lack of these vitamins will cause your garden plants not only to become stressed but your plants will also become susceptible to insects and disease.
These vitamins/nutrients are found in the soil but because they are in such small amounts, human effort is needed to help make up or supply plants with the right amount of nutrients.
In this article, we will be looking at palms their care, and how to use them indoors and outdoors. While we will not be covering every aspect of palms in this article because of the vastness of the subject, however, we will be looking at some general information that pertains to palms.
Bromeliads are very beautiful strong plants that can survive the most extreme conditions. They are considered to be low-maintenance plants.
I have worked with these plants over the years and have come to love them. Bromeliads can add color to any environment and a unique style that cannot be matched.
Bromeliads can be used in the exterior landscape as well as interiorscapes. There are so many species of bromeliads that it is mind-blowing. There are said to be anywhere from 2000-2,700 species of bromeliads. Now let’s look at the care of bromeliads and their many uses.
There are many species of orchids that are beyond the scope of this article so we will be looking at some basic information about orchids, i.e. how to care for them and place them within the landscape. Orchids are in my opinion very exotic plants that can really add that elegant touch or flavor to our landscapes or interior plant scape.
I have worked with orchids over the years using them in many plant designs. I enjoy working with orchids because orchids can give that soft touch and appeal that can get the attention of just about anyone with their bright beautiful showy flowers.
With the world becoming more health conscious day by day, people are facing the reality from countries all over the world that in order to look healthy, be healthy and stay healthy we have to find means and put into practice those measures to improve our lifestyle. Every year hospitals and doctors’ offices are filled with hundreds of thousands of people with different health issues.
And while it is true that the many measures we implement to improve our lifestyle does not guarantee 100% good health, yet there is a lot that can still be done to at least improve our health and save us from that dreaded trip to the doctor’s office.
The advantage of having plants is that plants serve many functions and purposes. You can grow plants for food, for beauty, to make money, for medicine, and so on. But what is also amazing about plants is that plants can also clean the air that we breathe.
Plants have the ability to filter the air that we breathe by pulling impurities out of the air. Therefore it is always good to have a few plants indoors to clean the air that we breathe, besides giving the interior of your building a more polished look. NASA did a study many years ago and discovered that indoor plants clean about 87% of the air that we breathe indoors.
As a landscape and interior plantscape designer, one of the tasks that I had to commonly perform was making sure that the plants that I installed were properly maintained. Even as a nurseryman this was one of my responsibilities. So I did the basic stuff like watering, fertilizing, insect control, and of course pruning.
“To prune or not to prune?”
Pruning is important to a plant’s life because by pruning you can actually add years to your plant. Pruning can take your plant through a period of rejuvenation. In other words, because of pruning, your plant can go through a rest period causing your plant to become more healthy.
There are many factors that can influence plant disease. We will be looking at some of these basic facts. While this article will not be covering all aspects of plant disease, we will be looking at some general information.
If plants are not cared for properly eg. in the case of overwatering, it can cause plant disease or the gardener may have used an infected tool that was not properly sterilized.
Also, it may be situations that are out of your control that trigger plant disease eg. rain is an environmental factor that is out of our control. It can cause a plant to get so much water that the soil becomes saturated or waterlogged.
In this article, we will be looking at some aspects of making your garden a home for wildlife. In order to do this, we must create an environment that is almost identical to the natural habitat that animals and insects enjoy.
I am sure that you may have gone on a nature walk and observed animals and insects in their natural habitat.
You remember how excited you got to see those birds flying around, to hear them singing so beautifully and watching them as they took care of their young by feeding them and building nests for them? With great excitement, you took out your camera to capture the moment or maybe your video camera and started recording.
Nothing can distract more from a beautiful landscape than to see ugly weeds popping up from everywhere whether they are big or small weeds.
I remember the days when I would be out there in the landscape for hours weeding. For me, those days were days that I worked my fingers off and to make matters worse, weeding in direct sunlight on those long summer days. Oh, how I would pray for lunchtime and knock off time to come.
In this article, we will be discussing some of the grass types that are used to become that outdoor carpet of green. The five- star hotel where I was employed many years ago had some of the most beautiful lawns. The landscape team that I was a part of did such an amazing job taking care of the different areas where lawns were installed.
It’s amazing how great a lawn looks when it has been properly installed, watered, fertilized and cut at the right height. Even after cutting the lawn at home I would go back several times within that day just to muse over how great everything looks. With each look, you would probably think I was seeing my lawn for the first time.
A challenge to every gardener occasionally is keeping unwanted animals out of their landscapes and gardens. There is much reason why animals invade our landscape and gardens. Their main objective is their survival, so it does not matter to them how great of a landscape or garden you have. Their goal is to find shelter, food, and water.
Even if they have to trespass as a means of survival. This can be a challenge to any gardener who has labored so hard investing time, energy and not to mention money into developing that nice and costly landscape or garden.
Vines are one of the plant species that I worked with for many years as an interior plantscape designer. One of the things I would often do is let the vine runners grow out or trickle down the sides of the decorative pot. It always gave that natural effect. There are many species of vines that I have worked with, but the ones that really stood out to me were the creeping Charlie or pothos vine, the butterfly vine, and the Algeria ivy.
I spent a lot of time also in the plant nursery caring for these vines. Like other plants, vines also need their share of tender loving care.
Roses are in my opinion the ‘queen of flowers’. It’s amazing how roses are used so widely especially on valentine’s day where we see them in great abundance as lovers express their love for each other by either buying a single rose or a rose arrangement. But whatever the occasion, these exotic flowers are loved by millions around the world. The story is told of a farmer’s wife who grew roses because of her love for them and the story goes on to say when asked about pruning her rose bushes she exclaimed that she would “rather chop off one of her chicken’s head than to cut a flower from her rose bush”. That is loving roses to the highest extremity.
We will be looking at biennials in this article and how we can use them around our home gardens. Biennials are flowering plants that spend their first year putting forth leaves, stems, and roots. Then they go through a period of overwintering or they go into a dormant state, the second year these plants put forth or produce flowers. Like annuals and perennials, biennials can also give us our share of colors that we can add to our garden and landscapes.
Make sure to learn as much as possible about your plants to get full use of them. Read instructions and follow carefully or you can ask your nurseryman.
Here are a few names of biennials that will really brighten up your garden area.
What are Perennials and how are they different from Annuals?
I am so glad you asked!
Whereas Annuals set seed, grow and flower within the same year, they also die within that same year.
Perennials, however, can live from year to year. Perennials are woody type plants compared to annuals which are considered to be succulents. Perennials can be kept nicely groom by pruning them. You can control their growth and the direction they grow in by using different pruning methods.
Everything is painted with an array of colors. It’s so amazing to see the beauty that nature offers. Splashes of red here, splashes of pink there, splashes of white everywhere. Everything is alive just bursting with colors. Flowering plants can bring such beauty to our surroundings.
In this article, we will be looking at flowering plants in particular annuals. What are annuals? and why are some plants considered to be annuals? annuals are plants that set seed, grow, blossom, and unfortunately, die in the same year. Yes, that’s right, after these beauties serve their purpose they go on to plant heaven.
Starting and Maintaining a Compost Pile successfully
When we think about growing quality fruits, vegetables, herbs, etc…. it depends in part on one thing and that is the type of soil that we use to grow them. The soil is so important to plant life because plant life depends on the soil in order to grow healthy giving us the results we’re looking for.
And a smart way to go about this is to create our own compost pile. Compost piles are created from natural products that we find right in our kitchens like portions of vegetable leftover from Sunday dinner or it may be that banana peel from the banana which you use to make a banana smoothie or yet again it may be that onion skin that you peeled from that onion to make a salad.
Do you want a garden that is low maintenance, requires little watering and the pest problem is like nill? then xeriscape is the direction that you would want to head in. Also if you want to plant a garden but your concern is the increase in your water bill, then xeriscaping is the garden for you.
The advantage of this type of garden is water conservation but the disadvantage is there are only a certain variety of plants that meet this type of garden requirements. You may have to choose plants which you are not too happy about. Your selection must be plants that are drought tolerant or as we said a bit earlier, plants that require very little water.
One of the awesome wonders of nature is that you can bring nature on the inside, this is where a terrarium garden comes into play. A terrarium is considered to be a mini garden that can survive on the inside, a terrarium is like a fish aquarium the only difference is that plants are used instead of fish. You will also need to choose certain plants for this type of indoor garden along with some other material which we will be looking at.
Materials needed for a terrarium garden
1. You will need a fishbowl it does not matter the shape or size.
2. You will need to choose some plants like ferns, cactus, ivy, or moss.
3. Rocks the size of a marble, river rocks will do just fine.
4. activated charcoal to filter the water and also help to prevent fungi build-up
I remember the days of working in a five- star hotel as an interior plant scape technician. We would spruce up many areas of the hotel that needed some tender loving care. By the time we left those areas, a total transformation had taken place. Those beautiful plants with their various sizes, colors, and shapes that were installed brought a whole different flavor to those areas.
So in this article, we will look at the many features of interior plant scape including how they can help us from a health perspective.
Lily ponds can add that special feature and flavor which can really lighten up your surroundings while also adding that touch of class and elegance. Lily ponds are one of my favorite additions to a home garden and will add that unique quality for those who want to go to the next level.
Watching your floating water lilies can be a wonderful past time as you enjoy the fruit of your labor.
Do you feel limited by the amount of space you have but desire to have a garden of your own? You may be living in an apartment building or a condo and there just isn’t enough space for a garden. Don’t give up on your dream of having your own garden, there is still hope.
Container gardening is the recommended way to go. Growing plants in pots and containers on your porch or patio are one way you can optimize every square inch of space. Adding plants to the bedroom balcony or growing herbs on the kitchen counter just takes a little imagination and some creative thinking and the rest is history.
Like butterfly gardens, a hummingbird garden is no exception. Creating a garden to invite these small friends can be a wonderful and delightful experience for the homeowner. Special care should be taken though when creating this type of garden.
Planning your hummingbird garden
Thought and care should be our number one goal when seeking to plant a garden such as this.
Bring your garden to life by making it a habitat for butterflies which will bring beauty and charm to your surroundings. Can you imagine your garden area being, filled with activity and excitement as you watch some of nature’s beauties in their natural habitat
So what does it takes to construct a butterfly garden?
Constructing a butterfly garden can be lots of fun not only for adults but it can also be a fun activity for kids as well as learn about the different features and plants that it takes to make our gardens inviting to our colorful friends.
One of the things that add beauty, color, and charm to many events is the floral arrangements that decorate these events. Can you imagine a wedding without flowers or Valentine’s Day without roses?
We use flowers to express our love, our appreciation, to express well wishes, and so on.
Flowers can also transform our surroundings whether indoors or outdoors. It can really give that touch of elegance. So with that being said, our focus will be on creating a flower garden that will not only add beauty or attract some wildlife but also cause your grounds to be the talk of the town.
Plants like humans require vitamins or nutrition in order to be healthy. One of the common ways that plants feed is from their roots because as we know plants take up nutrients along with water through their roots. But there is another way that plants can take in not only water but fertilizers and that is through their leaves. This method is called foliar feeding.
Another name for leaves is called plant foliage. So when you hear someone use this term, they are talking about plant leaves. In comparison to the pores of our skin, plants have pores in their leaves known as Stomata.
Slow-release fertilizers are the total opposite of quick-release fertilizers, in that these types of fertilizers release their components very slowly, which means that plants can get the full benefits from this kind of fertilizer.
Slow-release fertilizers are broken down over a period of time with heat and moisture, unlike quick release fertilizers. Slow-release fertilizers are considered to be safe because of their slow-release, they will not burn plants.
Quick-release fertilizers are powdered fertilizers that you mix with water according to the manufacturer’s label. These fertilizers are also known as water-soluble fertilizers. The reason that they are called quick-release fertilizers is because of their availability to plant life. In other words, once they are applied to plants, they are taken up right away.
Care must be taken however because if applied too heavily, these fertilizers can cause the plant to burn. Fertilizers are salts and when applied too heavy or in the wrong amounts, the excess salt gathers around the plant root zone and pulls water away from the plant. So instead of the plant taking in water, the reverse happens.
The world as we know it is becoming more and more aware of the need to live a more healthy lifestyle, one that can add years to your lifespan. Everywhere we go we see and hear of health programs that are offering a better way of living.
The media and airwaves are flooded with advertisements and commercials about healthy living. The world has become so health-conscious that it has become common to see people working out in gyms, jogging, walking, and so on.
Dieting has also become the norm, while more and more restaurants are offering healthy choices on their menus. Supermarkets are placing more healthy products on their shelves and nutritional stores are in every shopping mall.
“So what does all of this have to do with organic fertilizers?”
As the population increases, the demand for greater food supply is in high demand and the need to raise more livestock is in great demand also.
The need for crops such as fruits and vegetables is also needed in abundance. There is not just a need for a greater supply of food but also for growing and raising these foods that are safe and of good quality.
For plant life to survive the right requirements must be met. This is known as “Proper Cultural Practices” meaning that plants must be placed in the right location whether full, partial, or filtered sun, also the proper soil medium is needed, the right amount of water, along with the correct type and amount of fertilizer and correct pruning methods.
When plant requirements are met, there is less chance that they will be attacked by insects because insects attack plants that are stressed.