Indoor Herb Garden Tips

For the individual who is beginning to learn all the excitement that can be found in the art of creating yourself an indoor garden of herbs, it should be a rather easy task, and one with much enjoyment for you and any member of your family to be able to complete together if you like.

One of the best parts about this enjoyable and fun-filled hobby is that they are inexpensive to make. Not only are they cheap to make, but also they are very easy for you to be able to maintain with very little effort, and they are not time consuming at all. If you are a beginner who finds enjoyment in this type of hobby, this is definitely the type of project that will help you to get further in-tune with your green thumb abilities.

One of the first things that you need to consider is to keep in mind what the best herbs are for indoor gardens. There is a very wide assortment of many popular herbs that are commonly used like thyme, mint, oregano, rosemary, and even garlic chives. To get these herbs, you can go to your local garden center, or you can also use one of your friends or family members stem cuttings that they have clipped from their herb garden. These are some the best herbs for indoor gardens because they do not demand a lot of attention or constant sunlight.

For decoration you can get one of many different containers for your stem cuttings in an array of rainbow colors to make your indoor herb garden more attractive to visitors. If you would like to start from scratch you can just use seeds. When growing from seeds you’ll want to use a heavy clay or terra cotta pot, which facilitate good air and water circulation.


Home Gardening Tips From an Experienced Gardener

There is so much more to home gardening than simply plugging plants into vacant spots in your front or back yard in an effort to make it look green. When designing the landscaping around your house, it pays to take your time and carefully plan out your project. Putting in the time before you ever stick a shovel in the ground, will help create a beautiful garden that will give you pleasure for years to come.

Once you have a plan, or at the very least, an outline of what you want to accomplish, the next step is to clear the general area that you will be working in and start from scratch. Consider this your “canvas”. Next make a sketch of how you would like your garden to look. This can be a rough sketch, just as long as you give some thought to color, plant height, bloom times, and the zone in which you live.

Make a list of possible plants, shrubs, and trees that you have available. If possible, choose perennial plants. They will be more expensive initially, but will last for years. You will need to keep in mind the maximum height of the plants you choose, making sure to place the tallest ones in the back with decreasing height as you move toward the front of the garden. Planning your garden in this way will show off every plant.

Even though most plants will have a tag that describes its maximum height, the next growing season, you may still find that you have misplaced a particular plant. Don’t get discouraged, simply dig up the plant (carefully, of course, keeping as much dirt and soil around the root system as possible) and move it. Much of gardening is a trial and error process.

When deciding on which plants to choose, try to go with those with a longer blooming season. For example, tulips are beautiful in the spring, but unfortunately only last a few weeks, after which they don’t add much to the garden. Day lilies, such as the Stella d’Oro, bloom throughout much of the season, adding color to your garden for months. Several annual plants, such as marigolds, zinnias, and begonias, will add color throughout the season. However, as the term implies, annual plants will need to be purchased and planted with the beginning of each season.

When landscaping your garden, don’t forget to add objects such as fake boulders, antique knickknacks, and bird baths. These can complement your garden just as effectively as a well-place flowering shrub or tree.

If you decide to useĀ a setting for your garden, like a table and chair garden set, place them in an area where they can best be viewed and enjoyed. The same is true if you decide to install a water fall. You may want to make these items the main focal point of your garden (or a section of your garden if you have a large one).

Additional features that can enhance the appeal of your garden, and are often overlooked, are the designs of walls and fences. Not only can these structures offer privacy, but can serve as an effective backdrop for your plants, trees, and shrubs.

Gardening is meant to be fun and relaxing. However, it pays to take some time for planning whether staring a new garden or adding to an existing one. With some hard work and plenty of creativity, you will feel great when you look out your window and see the beautiful garden that you designed and created yourself.

Plant Pests and Problems

Vegetarian insects, arthropods and mollusks can ruin plants in all sorts of ways and are the bane of the gardener’s life. Sometimes you need to take urgent action, yet at other times you don’t need to bother doing anything at all. This is why it pays to know your enemy.

Identifying Absent Pests

Plant pests work in lots of different ways. Very often you will never spot what is causing the damage. Many pests are at their most active at night, so unless you venture out with a torch, all you will normally see is the results of their work. In some cases this is enough to identify the culprit and take the necessary action.

If leaves have been ‘rasped’, leaving a skeleton of ribs, with perhaps a few slime trails, you can safely blame it on snails. Nowadays they are dab hands at climbing – they will even shin up trees and walls, often going to an amazing height to reach something tasty.

Brassica seedlings with lacy holes in the leaves have almost certainly been attacked by flea beetle. Rhododendron leaves with scallop-shaped bites out of the edges of the leaves will have been nibbled by vine weevil. If vine weevil adults are around, look out for the larvae that may be attacking susceptible plants, too.

Plants With Particular Pest Problems

Some plants attract particular pests. Tomatoes and fuchsias are martyrs to whitefly; cacti are often victims of mealy bug; orchids and citrus trees, in common with many conservatory shrubs, suffer from scale insects. There are also lily beetles, cabbage white caterpillars, and carrot root fly. At least if you know what to expect, you know what to do about it. Alternatively, you might decide not to grow the sort of plants that are susceptible to problems. If you don’t grow fuchsias in your greenhouse, for instance, you are likely to keep the rest of the plants relatively clear of whitefly.

Tackling Pests

You don’t always need to know precisely which creature is responsible for causing damage, as most chemical sprays eradicate most common pests. If aphids are the problem, you can get specific aphicides that kill only aphids and don’t harm beneficial insects, so use these wherever possible.

Some pests, however, are not easy to get rid of. Large caterpillars and beetles such as the lily beetle are resilient creatures that take so long to absorb a lethal dose of pesticide that, since they continue feeding on your plants in the meantime, it is better to pick them off by hand.

Don’t be in too much of a hurry to reach for the pesticide: you do not always need to do anything about pests. If an infestation is small, or likely to disappear on its own, there is no need to do anything at all. Aphids on roses in spring are a good example – there are plenty of baby Bluetits and hungry adult birds that should take care of this problem for you.

A low level of insect population is actually a good thing in a garden, as it ensures there is always a thriving population of predators ready to increase at a moment’s notice if pests start to get out of hand. That is what you call natural balance, and it is well worth having. Keep the pesticide for serious outbreaks of an infestation that really threaten a plant and then use it selectively – there is no need to smother the whole garden with it; just treat the affected plants.

Simple Gardening Tips Suitable For Everyone

Not everyone has access to the ground needed to put in a garden. If you’re among them, this doesn’t mean you have to forgo the joys of gardening. Container gardening makes it possible for everyone to have some homegrown produce.

Where to Grow Now

For apartment dwellers, a balcony that has sun exposure throughout the day will work for most plants. Decks and porches are good spots for those who just have small yards. Exposure to sunlight means you can have plants.

The containers you choose to plant in can be almost anything, so indulge your crafty side. Containers should have good drainage and enough space for the plants to grow. Other than that, the sky is the limited.

What to Grow

Most plants can adapt themselves to container gardening. There are some varieties which do better than others. A local nursery can help you choose the best plants for your setting.

Besides the typical plant options, there are some interesting and useful plants you can grow. Herbs take very well to containers. Their use is a convenient way to add bold flavors to meals.

Aloe plants are hardy. The oil that their leaves secrete is great moisturizer, helping to heal burns and minor scratches. It is the ultimate first aid plant.

How to Grow

Container plants need some extra attention because water and nutrients get used up quickly. You will need to routinely replenish both to keep plants healthy.

When feeding your container plants, you need to add fertilizer. It can be added with spikes, pellets or in a liquid form. Combine watering and fertilizing together to optimize the rate of absorption.

Water for container plants can be either a savior and a killer. Container plants depend on you for water, but it is possible to over water them. Try to add less water more often until you have a good feel for the needs of your plants.

Some container plants will need to be transplanted at some point. As the plant grows, so does the root system and its spacing needs. A greenhouse can give you guidelines on when plants should be upgraded to a larger home.

Container gardening is great way to indulge your productive hobby and enjoy the fruits of your labor. You don’t need as much space, nor do you have to invest as much preparation time. So you get the benefits of your labor with somewhat less effort.