The Garden 1- Mosquito Repellent Plants

Citronella

 Citronella is a common ingredient found in most repellents and it’s strong smell is what keeps the mosquitoes away. You can easily plant it in a pot and place it throughout your garden. 

Basil

 Basil is another plant that mosquitoes tend to stay away from because of its pungent smell. There are also essential oils found in basil that help in keeping the insects away. Not only should you plant this for a mosquito-free home, but you can also use this herb for cooking. 

Catnip

 If you have a cat, he/she will thank you for this one. The chemical called nepetalactone, which is found in catnip, is a great repeller for insects. 

Peppermint

 Peppermint has a great smell and is another natural mosquito repellent. Peppermint oil actually kills mosquito larvae. You can even crush peppermint leaves and spread them around your garden if you don’t want to grow an entire plant. 

Lavender

 

Mosquitoes dislike lavender, mainly because of the flower’s soothing properties, including the smell.

Lemon Balm

The scent of lemon balm is what will drive the mosquitoes away. It also attracts a whole lot of pollinators (bees) which are perfect for a healthy garden, and this further repels mosquitoes. 

The Garden 2

Spring Planting your Perennial Herbs


 Eight Herbs for Your Perennial Herb Garden

  • Which Herbs Will I Choose? Perennial herb gardens will give you an inexpensive and fresh supply of many herbs. Just think, you'll have mint for your teas all year long, fresh or dried. 
  • Oregano. 
  • Mint
  • Thyme. 
  • Cilantro
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • French Tarragon
  • Basil, etc...

I found this video courtesy of Nicole Hart very useful ... Happy Planting !!


INDOOR Herb Garden made easy


This young lady is so much fun to watch as she makes everything look so simple with some great decorative pot ideas ...

Another great beginners video . As long as you have southern facing windows, you can have a great garden !!


How to grow Outdoor Fruit Trees in a Container


This is a very good video by Ross Raddi but lengthy, He is a Passionate Grower and a little long winded but knows his stuff. Warning: he drops the s#*%* word a few times but if you don't mind that ... this is a great video.

Find your Fruit Tree Gowing Zone

and choose the trees best suited for your area. Always use an Eco Friendly fertilizer and insecticide ... the main purpose of growing your own organic fruits and veggies is be able to eat healthy foods that are "free" of synthetic pesticides, bioengineered genes (GMOs), petroleum-based fertilizers, and sewage sludge-based fertilizers. 

How to grow your herb garden using seeds.

This is another great video for beginners. It shows you how to start with both seeds & starter plants

Solutions to the top 6 struggles growing herbs Indoors 

This is a great video I've used to solve planting struggles indoors (light, water, drainage, soil, temperature, fertilizing & insects.) 

The 9 herbs you can grow indoors with only water.

You may decide you only want to grow 1-3 types of herbs for cooking and this is a great way to do it on a budget. I tried it with thyme and it worked but I needed more than it could produce . I use it a lot! .. and you can find inexpensive nice jars at the dollar store, Salvation Army store or your local thrift shop....

Fall Seasonal Vegetables

Green Beans

Green Beans  

Green beans are fast producers. Choose from the full gamut of varieties for your favorite fall recipes.

The Best Vegetables to Grow or Purchase during the Fall Season

  Broccoli

Enjoy this vitamin-packed vegetable this autumn. Sow directly into the garden in late summer for a fall harvest.

  

Georgia Collard Greens

Collards are packed full of vitamins and taste great in stir-fries. These hearty greens taste best after frost exposure.

US Grow Zones


  

DIY Indoor Green Onions 

Green onions can be direct sown in late summer and will survive winter if not harvested.          

Most people know that you can cut and cook green onions to create a tasty healthy meal. But… few people realize you can actually use the left over bulbs to grow new green onions.

Indoor Plants for Cleaner Air

  

The Snake Plant

The Snake Plant aka Mother-in-Law's Tongue. is known to withstand all types of conditions and thus makes it ideal for beginners or novices.

The Snake plant can grow even when deprived of light for weeks. However, it prefers moderate to bright light and can also adapt to full sun. A Loose well-drained potting mix is good enough for its growth. Watering once every 7-10 days is generally enough during warmer months and the soil should be allowed to dry between watering. However, during winter, you should reduce the watering sessions to once a month. 

Under-watering and over-watering are the only things which can kill this plant. If the foliage begins to droop the plant is not receiving enough water and if its foliage begins to wrinkle and bend over, it is receiving too much water.

This variety of plant likes warmth. Temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degree Celsius) may be harmful for its health. It is advisable to grow it in a pot. Repotting should be considered only when the pot becomes too small to maintain an upright position. Fertilizer that is suitable during the growing season (spring/summer) is a “mild cactus” fertilizer. There is no need to fertilize it during the winter.


  

Dracaena

Select a pot that is no more than one-third larger than the root ball of your plant. Fill one-third of the container with Potting Mix that contains coconut coir and no compost or bark. Fungus gnats are a common issue with dracaena plants and utilize compost and bark as breeding sites.

Place the plant in the container and situate it so that the top of the plant root ball is about just about an inch below the top of the container (so you can water the plant without the water running over the edge of the pot). Fill in around the root ball with more potting mix. Thoroughly water the plant and let it drain, then move to its permanent location in the house. Dracaena plants are sensitive to fluoride, which is a common ingredient in municipal water and may cause plants to develop burnt leaf edges. If you don’t use well water or rain water to water your plants, consider purchasing distilled water to keep them hydrated.

Allow the top inch of the soil to dry out between watering, as dracaena plants do not grow well in soggy soil. Cut back on watering during the fall and winter, when growth slows.

A month after planting, begin feeding plants once a week with Indoor Plant Food to give them an instant boost of nutrition. Apply directly to soil and water as normal. Be sure to follow label directions. Reduce frequency of feedings during the cold (low-growth) months.

Dracaena can grow to be quite tall (4 and 10 ft) if left unpruned. When the plants are growing out of bounds, simply cut off the tops, bringing them to the desired height. They will re-sprout. You can then root the cut tops to have even more plants to pass along to friends. 

INDOOR PLANTS THAT CLEAN THE AIR

  

As cooler weather and winter approaches…and windows, and doors are kept closed to preserve heat and keep heating cost down; there is something you can do to help keep the air in your home clean. 

An indoor plant's ability to remove harmful compounds from the air is an example of phytoremediation, which is the use of any plant — indoors or out — to mitigate pollution in the air, soil or water. Indoor plants remove pollutants from the air by absorbing these gases through their leaves and roots. This eco-friendly low-cost solution has been used effectively by many for years. Always ascertain first the probability of any of the home’s occupants having allergies to any of the referenced suggested plants. If unsure, we recommend that you check with your physician. ...and always check to  ensure none of your plants are poisonous  for the safety of your children and pets. ❤🧡❤



  

Bamboo Palm

NASA lists bamboo palm plants as excellent plants to clean the air of harmful chemicals. I'd recommend leaving propagation to the professionals and buying an established plant. Bamboo Palms need a basic well-aerated potting soil that drains quickly but still retains water.

Find a location for the bamboo palm that offers indirect or filtered sunlight. Place indoor plants in a southeast facing window of the home. Failure to give the bamboo palm proper lighting can lead to a loss of fronds and you may end up with a sticklike plant with few leaves toward the top. The bamboo palm must be kept moist, but never overwater. Soggy soil leads to root rot, so water thoroughly -- enough to keep the soil moist. Dispose of water from the drainage tray after watering. Only water when the soil feels dry and allow the soil to dry out in between watering in the winter.

Protect the bamboo palm from cool drafts, as they grow best when temperatures are between 70 to 80 degrees F during the day and no lower than 60 F during the night. The only exception is during winter when the plant is not experiencing active growth; during this period a temperature of 55 to 60 F is best.

Fertilize the bamboo palm using a slow-release or diluted liquid fertilizer, but only during active growth. Only feed monthly or less often if you notice plant damage, such as brown edges and tips. This occurs with excessive use of fertilizer that leads to a buildup of salts in the plant's soil. Prune the bamboo palm to remove yellowing or dried fronds. Inspect the plant regularly for dead or wilted leaves and trim them. Only repot bamboo palms every two to three years, as they do best with confined roots. 

Clean the bamboo palm. Use lukewarm water in the shower or another method of producing a fine, hard stream of water. Regular rinsing of the plant removes excess fertilizer salts from the soil. Bamboo palms are very susceptible to spider mites, scale, and Mealy Bugs. Keep a bamboo palm clean by spraying it often with a mixture of biodegradable liquid soap and water. If the pests persist, spray the plant with an insecticidal soap. 

Although the ASPCA lists a Bamboo Palm as a non- poisonous houseplant, other experts state that the entire plant, especially any berries that appear, is toxic. We've erred on the side of caution and have listed a Bamboo Palm as a poisonous houseplant with a #1 toxicity level.

  

The Spider Plant 

Spider plants aka Airplane plants love a bright, sunny room and in this type of environment will easily grow in no time. They are one of the most adaptable and easy to grow houseplants, so they’re perfect for people who don’t necessarily have a green thumb!

Select a potting soil like vermiculite or coco coir for potting your indoor plant. Don’t worry too much about the soil, any good potting soil will do, as spider plants are very adaptable. Keep the soil moist but not soggy. Gently poke your finger into the soil to see if it is dry. If the top 1 inch or so of soil is dry, it’s time to water your spider plant. Watering moderately or once per week during the first year should be enough to keep the soil consistently moist, but not overly wet. After the first year, you can water the plant sporadically. Always empty excess water from drainage trays immediately if your spider plant is potted.

Fertilize spider plants 1 to 2 times per month during the spring and summer and use a general liquid fertilizer to feed your plant. Liquid fertilizers will provide better results than granular fertilizers. Follow the directions on the fertilizer to know how much of the solution to apply to the soil at the base of the plant. Avoid fertilizing spider plants during the winter if they are outgrowing their pots

Spider plants don’t need a ton of natural light, so they do well in bathrooms and bedrooms. They also thrive in windowsills, though they should be set about 12 inches (30 cm) away from south-facing windows during the spring and summer months. 

Maintain moderate and consistent temperature and humidity. This plant prefers a temperature between 50 °F (10 °C) to 80 °F (27 °C) and can’t thrive in outdoor areas with freezing or searing temperatures. Spider plants thrive in humid climates, so place a humidifier in the same room as your spider plant.

Note: Always water your spider plant with distilled or purified water. Spider plants are sensitive to the fluoride in tap water. Tap water also leaves behind other minerals that build up and can destroy your plant, so it’s important to use distilled or purified water. The water should be kept at room temperature, as cold or hot water can shock your plants and weaken them.

If your spider plant’s roots begin to grow through the drainage holes, you’ll need to repot it into a larger container in the spring. Be sure to provide fresh potting soil and choose a container with drainage holes to keep the plant from becoming waterlogged.

  


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