Greener Gardening

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Essential gardening supplies

If you’re ready to do some work on your lawn and garden, you will need to acquire a basic set of specialized tools. For beginners these will be an initial investment unless you can borrow them from a neighbor or friend. Here is a list of the tools and equipment you can’t do without for lawn care and gardening. For more helpful tips on lawn care have a read of this site, there is an abundance of information: Lawn Kings Omaha.

A Garden Fork

This heavy implement is primarily used for breaking up big chunks of soil, but it can also be used for creating an even and level surface in preparation for laying a new lawn. A garden fork is handy for turning compost heaps and will be needed to aerate your soil.

A Spade

This large tool is essential for digging deep holes for bigger plants, trees or shrubs. Any time you need to remove a large volume of soil you will need to use a spade.

A Hand Fork

Smaller tools like this are handy for targeting weeds growing very near your plants. You can use them to pry out weeds by the roots.

A Trowel

Whether you are planting flowers directly in the garden or using decorative plant pots, a trowel will make putting them in much easier. This is a good hand tool for creating a small hole in the soil and then transferring your plant without damaging the roots or discarding the soil in the pot from the store.

A Rake

A large rake can be used for breaking up and leveling any soil, fertilizer or mulch that you need to distribute, and of course for collecting dead leaves in the fall. A rake can also be used to sweep aside grass clippings after you’ve mowed the lawn.

A Lawn Mower

The easiest way to keep the grass in your garden neat and trim is with a lawn mower. There are many makes and models to choose from, and you will want to decide which is suitable for the size of your garden. You also need to decide whether you prefer to use a manual mower, an electric powered model or a gas propelled mower.

A Pair of Gardening Gloves

A good pair of gardening gloves will protect your hands from scratches and scrapes during gardening work, from tools or thorns on prickly plants. They can also prevent blisters and prevent dirt from building up under your fingernails.

There are a wide variety of other garden tools that you could choose to invest in when you visit a garden centre, but with this short list of basic items you will be ready to get started.

January 2, 2015 at 3:06 pm Comments (0)

3 Reasons To Start A Vegetable Garden

If you have ever considered including a vegetable patch in your garden, there are three reasons you should get started. Cultivating your own vegetables benefits you and the entire family. If you enjoy gardening then you have to get the latest tips on growing a healthy and thriving lawn, please visit https://www.youtube.com/user/lawnkingsomaha. Here are just a few thoughts that might help you make up your mind to start growing vegetables today.

Grow Your Own Food

The ability to grow your own food is a timeless tradition, one sadly forgotten by many people. The convenience of fresh produce aisles at the local supermarket has led most of us to give up the sense of enjoyment that can be gained from producing food with our own hands. Once you start to successfully grow your own food, you will enjoy the fruits of your labor even more than you enjoy store bought foods, knowing how much effort went into producing that batch of juicy tomatoes, or cucumbers, or whatever it is that you decide to grow.

Organically Grown – No pesticides

If you are producing your own vegetables, you will know exactly how they’ve been cultivated. You will have the option of avoiding the chemical pesticides that industrial farms use to kill germs and bugs on a large scale. You can opt to use natural fertilizers, too, so that your produce is completely organic.

A Learning Experience For The Family

If you have children, beginning a vegetable patch can be a wonderful learning experience for them. Research has shown that many children do not even know that vegetables grow in the ground. They are so accustomed to seeing food on the shelves at the grocery store that they have no concept of where it came from. You can teach your children how to identify different types of vegetables and exactly where they come from and how they develop.

Another benefit to having your children work with you in the vegetable garden is that this can help encourage them to eat healthier foods. They may be more likely to enjoy eating vegetables that they have had a hand in growing.

Starting a vegetable patch doesn’t have to be a daunting task. You can make it as large or as small as you wish and you can decide what types of vegetables to grow. A vegetable patch can be the start of a wonderful hobby for you and your family to enjoy together.

December 26, 2014 at 1:03 pm Comments (0)

Making a gardening to-do list

Drawing up a seasonal gardening to-do list will help you save valuable time and prioritize recurring tasks that are essential to good landscaping. Your list might be divided into monthly projects such as weeding, planting or winterizing your lawn. Breaking yard work up into seasonal projects will help you fit gardening into your busy schedule. For more information about growing a healthy and easy to maintain lawn have a look at Lawn Care Kings Omaha.

Time spent planning out these projects will pay off as the year unfolds, bringing with it seasonal demands on your lawn and garden. A to-do list can keep you prepared for each change of seasons and help you practice good time management skills.

In the spring, your to-do list should include to cutting back ornamental grasses and pruning trees and bushes with gardening shears. Remove dead branches from otherwise healthy plants and fertilize both lawn and garden before summer. Spring gardening is an opportunity to put in new plants, and if you notice that you need additional gardening supplies, do an inventory before stopping by your gardening centre to make a comprehensive shopping list.

Before planting you will want to remove any plants that have not fared well during the winter. Be sure to keep track of which plant varieties suffer winter damage, so that you don’t waste effort on them in the future.

During both spring and summer you will need to build plenty of time into your schedule for dealing with weeds. Pulling or spraying weedy areas encourages new lawn growth and prevents your garden plants from being choked back. Make a major effort to clear your lawn during the spring, so that you can reseed exposed areas for summer growth.

Your summer to-do list will be comprised mostly of maintenance work, such as additional pruning, planting and weeding. You will need to be ready to reseed any areas of your lawn that are bare, aerating the soil as you go. Fertilize and water all the newly seeded areas to promote robust growth, using either compost or store bought solutions.

Summer is also an excellent time to put in a vegetable garden, so set aside time to pick out seeds and plants. Again, aerate the soil first and fertilize newly seeded areas generously. If you don’t already have a compost system, starting one would also make a good summer project.

Your fall to-do list should focus on winter readiness. You will need to do a few things to maintain your compost system during the cold season as well. Don’t forget to remove summer yard ornaments like picnic tables and kiddie pools before winter, to prevent the dormant grass from being damaged beneath them. Fall vegetables can be harvested, additional vegetables can be planted, and you should fertilize your lawn one last time before the ground freezes.

Your to-do list will be much shorter during the winter. You can trim your lawn one last time before snow begins to fall, and then it will be time to put the lawnmower in storage. You might use the winter months to have the blades and oil changed. Keeping up with these seasonal tasks will make the next spring all the more rewarding.

December 12, 2014 at 9:58 am Comments (0)

Growing winter vegetables

Growing vegetables can be done year round, although summer is the best times for planting many varieties. Growing winter vegetables takes practice and a good sense of timing, but the results are very rewarding. Your garden can provide healthy alternatives to store-bought food well into the winter months.

The trick to winter gardening is choosing knowing which vegetables are hardy enough for the cold season. Many vegetables, such as broad beans, broccoli and some varieties of lettuce, grow quite well in the winter. The other trick to winter gardening is knowing just when to plant these vegetables.

Broccoli and purple sprouting broccoli thrive on cold weather, and both should be planted in raised beds toward the end of the month of August. Broccoli requires plenty of water and does attract pests, so monitor the plants closely for insect damage and water them frequently. You will be able to harvest the broccoli until mid-December. Sometimes late plantings of broccoli last all the way through the end of the year.

Brussels sprouts and beans are other popular choices for late summer planting. Both need to be in the ground by the end of August and will provide vegetables until December ends. January and February are generally the coldest months of the winter, so expect the freeze at the end of December to end your harvest season.

Garlic, rutabaga and leeks thrive on cold weather as well. Planting in the fall will allow you to harvest them during several of the winter months. Leeks and rutabaga are known for their hardiness and both vegetables also store really well.

Cornsalad, also known as lamb’s lettuce, and endive are two lettuce varieties that retain their growth during the winter months in spite of the cold. As long as you spend some time mulching them, the internal leaves can be harvested throughout November and into December.

Onions and kale are especially hardy winter vegetables. In fact, onions can stay in the ground throughout the entire winter. They do very well under snow cover and can be harvested longer than any other vegetable. Surprisingly, kale also survives above ground in cold climates. Kale can make excellent ground cover during the spring, but avoid the blue variety, which yellows during the winter.

Beets, turnips and Swiss chard do very well during the winter months and in cold climates. Most root vegetables are able to survive a frost, so check with your garden center for the ones that are best for your soil.

December 5, 2014 at 1:52 pm Comments (0)

Herb gardening for beginners

If you are new to gardening you might want to start with a small scale project for practice, such as cultivating a little herb garden. An easy way to start is by using ornamental plant pots or window boxes instead of planting them directly in the garden. With only a minimal investment you will soon have fresh seasonings that you can cut as and when you need for cooking.

How To Grow Herbs

The benefit of growing herbs in a window box or in decorative containers is that you can move the plants in and out of the shade rather than deciding exactly where to them. All plants need a particular balance of exposure to sunlight and shade for a few hours each day, and the appropriate combination can be easier to achieve through trial and error. With planting pots, you can correct the placement of your plants as needed, by observing the intensity of sunlight and availability of shade at different times of day.

Thyme

Thyme is one of the easiest herbs to grow and has a strong, bright aroma that will permeate your garden. Thyme goes well with meat dishes and many soups, and has a sharp, lemony flavor. You can choose to buy seeds or you can pick out thyme that has already been cultivated in little pots. All you would need to do is to transfer the seedlings to your preferred container, whether it be a decorative pot or a window box.

Basil

There are several different varieties of basil you can choose from, but by far the most popular is the sweet basil commonly used for pizza toppings, pasta, stews and salads. Visit your local garden centre to compare the varieties in stock, and pick out one that appeals to your tastes. Again, you can choose to plant seeds or to buy tiny seedlings.

Parsley

Parsley is added to a variety of soups and potato dishes, and many people use it as a garnish for hot foods as well as salads. Parsley can be grown year round, but it needs both light shade to flourish, so you may need to adjust the location of your planting pot until you find a spot that offers both. The different types of parsley include a flat leaf variety, often used in cooking, and a curly leaf variety, the one used for salads.

Chives

Chives are another easy herb to grow, and like parsley, they make a versatile condiment. You can simply snip off the amount that you need, chop it into coarse pieces, and add it to any creamy dipping sauce or soup.

Creating a small herb garden can be a rewarding experiment for a novice gardener. If you have children, herb gardening is also a way to expose them to enriching insights into where food comes from. Some garden centres offer starter kits for herb gardens that you can simply place in a window box and water for immediate results.

November 20, 2014 at 10:29 am Comments (0)