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Vegetable Gardens and Raised Beds

By on Nov 15, 2009 in Uncategorized |

Nice days during winter provide a great opportunity to get in the garden and improve the soil for next year.  Add a couple of inches of EKO or Nature’s Yield Compost to the surface and shovel or rototill to a depth of about 6″. Adding organic material will greatly increase your yield next year.

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Flower Gardens

By on Nov 15, 2009 in Uncategorized |

There is still time to plant spring flowering bulbs until the ground freezes. You’ll be happy you planted some extras when they bloom early next spring. If you cleaned out your annual pots you can recycle both the old plants and the soil, by either putting them right on your gardens or by putting them in your compost pile. You can significantly reduce the number of overwintering insect larvae by turning the soil in the flower beds now, especially where geraniums and petunias were grown last...

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Trees and Shrubs

By on Nov 14, 2009 in Uncategorized |

Knock down heavy snows form your shrubs and tree branches by gently pushing up with a broom. It is very important to water your trees, shrubs, perennial and shrub beds every 4-6 weeks throughout the winter. If dry soil freezes, there is a good chance there will be root damage and the trees and shrubs will suffer. Your plants will better resist insect and disease problems next year. Tree wrap is important protection for young trees. The purpose is to keep the tree’s bark temperature consistent. Start wrapping at the bottom and overlap up to the first set of branches. In the Denver metro area wrap the trees in mid November, and remove the wrap about April 1st. Protect tender shrubs, like rhododendrons, azaleas, hollies, etc. during the winter months from drying winds by providing a barrier made from a frame wrapped in burlap and placed on the north and west sides of each shrub. Make good use of our winter snow by shoveling the snow on to your lawn, trees, shrubs and perennial...

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Indoor Plants

By on Nov 13, 2009 in Uncategorized |

Now that our windows and doors will be closed for the winter, houseplants in the home are a very important air cleaner. Plants remove air pollutants from our homes and offices. Move houseplants away from heat vents if you have forced air heating. Houseplants will benefir from added humidity. Humidifiers are great, but you can also use a pebble tray. Take an oversized saucer, add pebbles, and fill halfway with water, then place your plant on the pebbles. Add the water evaporates, add more, but don’t let the plant sit in water. Be alert to cold drafts, especially for ficus, philodendron, begonias and gardenias. Shorter days mean less growth for houseplants. Water only when your plants require it, but use the same amount each time you water. Use fertilizer at half strength every other time you water until mid March. Try to let your plantsreceive as much light as possible during the darker winter days. Cyclamen are great plants for brightening your home during the holidays. Cyclamen prefer a cool, dry and bright location. The pink, red, white or maroon flowers will continue for weeks. Holiday cacti are beautiful with red, pink or white flowers. To ensure flowers for Christmas, keep your plant in a room with bright daylight hours and no light after sunset. They prefer cooler rooms about 55 degrees.  Keep the soil on the dry side in November. Flower buds should set and the plants will be in flower by late December. Amaryllis is the most majestic of all the holiday plants. To have blooms at Christmas, plant Amaryllis bulbs 7-10 weeks earlier. African Amaryllis will bloom in as little as 4 weeks. Choose a pot about 2″ wider than the bulb, and one that is heavy enough to keep from tipping. Fill the pot part way with potting mix. Set the bulb so that the top 1/3 of the bulb will be above the top of the soil when you fill the pot to 1″ below the top edge of the pot. Give the plant about 4 hours of bright light per day. Plant every 2 weeks for a spectacular color show all winter. Paperwhites are bulbs that can be planter indoors every two weeks...

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Home and Patio

By on Nov 12, 2009 in Uncategorized |

If you don’t use a heater for your birdbaths to keep water from freezing, remove the concrete birdbath tops to prevent freezing and thawing which results in cement cracking. Make sure there is an opening in the ice in your pond. A pond de-icer will keep an opening so gases can escape and your fish will stay healthy. If the animal repellents you have been using aren’t working anymore, try switching products. Animals can become accustomed to one scent, and the products lose their...

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