Hornbeam Tree

Identifying a Hornbeam Tree

A full grown hornbeam will live for up to 350 years (if pollarded or coppiced) and can grow up to 30m tall.

The common beech is often confused for the hornbeam. It has a smooth, stubby and warped trunk, which turns rigged with age. The grey bark is pale and has vertical marking running down them. Twigs have small hairs and are brown to grey in colour. Leaf buds are much like beech buds, only a little bit shorter, with a slight curve at the tips. The leaves are oval shaped, toothed and have pointed tips. They are smaller and more furrowed compared to beech; they also turn from yellow to orange during autumn before they fall.

Hornbeam has a monoecious reproductive system, meaning that the male and female flowers (catkins) are located within the same tree. Once they have been pollinated, usually by wind, they turn into paper thin fruits with wings; these are known as samaras.

Significance to Wildlife

The hornbeam does not shed its leaves and provides all year round shelter for birds, as well as roosting and foraging opportunities.

The leaves are usually eaten

Plant in Clay Soil

Planting in clay soil is great for the vegetation that have roots strong enough to break through the hardened ground and compacted clay. Amending an area to make suitable for gardening other types of vegetation is doable. The main idea to remember is to amend an entire area NOT just a single hole for the desired plant to root.

Why is it important to improve the soil structure in an entire area rather a single location? If a gardener focuses on a single location once the plant roots it will grow root length only as far and wide as the hole that was amended. Once the roots reach the soil that is clay the roots will grow inward as they are unable to penetrate through the unforgiving clay soil. The plant may survive, but it will be severely root bound.

Checking soil quality is very important, drainage of the soil is imperative. I also researched a multitude of opinions on the best practices of checking soil quality, and the one common factor each opinion offered is to check

Reducing Florescence Size

How can this be? Don’t we know that flowers can’t be dwarfed, at least to any serious degree? And if we can’t dwarf flowers, how can we make them in scale? Is there a trick? Well, it’s not exactly a trick, but it is a secret of sorts. At least it’s not a deliberate secret, but it hasn’t been talked about much; in fact, it’s even hard to find out much if you were to search for it in “Google” for an answer.

The secret lies in the fact that flowers don’t grow individually but rather in groups which together are called a “florescence”. A florescence consists of many flowers growing out of the same stalk and secondary stalks, as it were. Importantly, the florescence consists of a different kind of plant material with different growth characteristics than the flowers themselves. Thus the flowers don’t need to be dwarfed (which won’t happen anyway) to reduce the scale and size of the overall mass of the flower mass, the florescence. If we could just dwarf and shorten the stalks on which the flowers grow, we could make the florescence smaller without doing anything else. But how?

Here

Versatile Garden Arbors

People sometimes use the terms arbor and pergola interchangeably, because they refer to very similar structures. An arbor typically includes a seat under the arch, while a pergola is more of a covered walkway. Whatever word you use, any garden decor store will know what you mean.

Arbors and pergolas serve a number of useful functions in the yard or garden. A striking garden arbor can provide a focal point in your landscaping, drawing the eye in that direction. Similarly, it can be used to visually separate or connect parts of your property.

Arbors are often used as support for growing plants and vines. Although you don’t have to grow plants on your arbor, flowering vines that gently cascade over the structure add wonderful color and life to this bit of garden decor. Landscaping looks best when it contains plants, flowers, and grasses at a variety of heights, and the arbor can create a sense of height and visual interest to achieve a more balanced scene.

A strategically placed arbor can hide an unsightly view like the garage next door. Or it can give you a little privacy from your neighbors’ eyes. Most of all,

Successful Indoor Container Gardens

The first tip to creating a successful container garden is to get the right-sized container. There are many different types of containers one can use to grow their plants. It can be simple pots that are catered for specific types of gardening or one can get creative and use recycled materials. For example, one innovative gardener used an unused cabinet to her container garden. You want to make sure the container is big enough to support the root system of the plant you intend on growing. You also need to make sure that the proper drainage system is in place. In some cases, it can be as simple as having a few holes at the bottom of the container. In other cases, you may need a more complex drainage system in place to make sure that the soil does not get too wet.

The second tip for container gardeners is to use the right type of soil. One should never buy the first pack of soil they see on sight. You want to get soil from a reputable seller. Otherwise, the soil will come with plenty of unwanted visitors that will cause all sorts of havoc in

Sprinkler for a Small Lawn

Lawn sprinkler system is the most efficient and time saving method available to irrigate lawns. A lawn sprinkler system saves you the ordeal of hosing the entire lawn by implementing hassle-free watering of lawns. You can easily install a sprinkler system yourself that will allow you to save time and money on watering your lawn. Lawn sprinkler systems give you an attractive green lawn that you can be proud of, with very little effort. Not only does the lawn sprinkler system save you but it also saves a lot of water. With growing awareness of water conservation, particularly in dry climate areas, excellent irrigation systems can help in maintaining our precious environment by not using much water at all. A well designed and carefully maintained lawn sprinkler system makes lawn maintenance effortless, and with an automatic lawn sprinkler system, you just have to turn the water on and forget the rest. The sprinkler will irrigate your lawn completely without your assistance on a timer similar to the timer on your alarm clock. Lawn sprinkler systems can even be adjusted for the amount of water to be sprinkled depending on the season so as to retain the right level

African Violets

Watering and feeding your violet. The African violet likes a humid atmosphere and moist soil. I found that the bathroom works well. You can also provide humidity for your plant by standing the pot on pebbles in a partly water filled saucer. The pot should not be touching the water. When the plants soil starts to dry out, water well with lukewarm water. Take care not to wet the leaves. You can feed your plant with water soluble plant fertilizer every month except in winter.

The potting and re-potting of your violets. African violets tend to bloom more freely when their roots are a bit crowded. Only re-pot them when more than a third of the rosette of leaves extends beyond your pots edge. The best time for re-potting to be done is either in spring or summer. You can re-pot the violets into African violet potting soil or you can make your own potting soil from equal parts of peat moss, perlite and your garden soil. If your plant grows extra rosettes of leaves, nip them off with a knife. If the leaves turn yellow or rot or become too crowded, break or cut their stalks.

Get Children Interested in Gardening

First, it is important for parents to understand that children have little patience. If they don’t see results quickly then they will move their attention elsewhere. Therefore, it is important to start off with small projects. Pick a plant that takes a short amount of time to grow. For example, vegetables with short growth periods include green beans, spinach, onions, and sweet potatoes. Once your children get the hang of it, introduce plants that require more care.

The second way to get your children interested in gardening is by getting them to grow something that is consumable. For example, if your children grow tomatoes then they will be instantly proud of the fact that it can be used for a beneficial purpose. While the plants are growing, try and give your children as much ownership as possible. It is possible for the children to learn that the health of plant is their responsibility.

The final way to get your children interested in gardening is by educating them. There are many things to be learned while maintaining a garden. For example, it is a great opportunity to teach your children the basics of biology. How do plants

Choosing Plants in Soft Landscaping

Creative soft landscaping can breathe life to a garden and gives the garden its unique ambiance. Because it is the main component in any garden, the collection of plants that will be used in a garden must be selected with care.

The biggest concern in soft landscaping is the nature of the vegetation itself. It is the gardener’s worst nightmare to see that the decorative flowers and herbs he planted a week before has begun to wilt.

To avoid this problem, one should choose the plants carefully. Usually, local fauna rather than exotic or countryside vegetation are best for large scale planting. They also require less maintenance since the plants have already adapted to the soil conditions in the area.

Since flowers are usually the main attraction of a garden, it is important to select a variety of annual flowers. These flowers complete their life cycle within one year. At the end of that year, the flowers die, allowing time to propagate and produce new, fresh flowers during the next season.

After the plants are chosen, garden cover usually comes next. Ground cover effectively utilizes garden space. Usually, ground cover is ornamental grass but

Landscaping Contractors

Getting hold of a proficient landscape contractor, one who doesn’t cut a hole in your pocket yet leaves you satisfied with his work is what the investment involves. Be rest assured to see that landscaped lawn of your dreams taking shape in a tailor-made manner and definitely not the typical neighborhood kinds that are such clich├ęs.

Begin with a detailed plan now that you are determined to carry on with this venture. Jot down on a piece of paper all that you have in your mind and categorize them according to your specifications. Prepare yourself for happy days ahead as you see your fondly imagined landscape turning into reality.

Chalk out your budget subsequently. Ask yourself if the creation of your envisioned landscape an achievable task. Or are you required to make a few alterations?

Don’t lose heart. Your position is favorable as you realize your need and are ready to accommodate a few compromises in you plan in case of budget constraints. The best part is that you can negotiate with your landscape contractor once since you are armed with a budget, a plan and a schedule for your landscape makeover. The contractor in