Breaking Down Leaves

Breaking Down LeavesThanks to Kevin Lee Jacobs for this great information that I want to save for next spring. How to break down the last of those fall leaves that you use to fill your flower beds? Kevin suggests Cottonseed Meal (which I’d never heard of).

To help the leaves break down, I sometimes sprinkle a handful of organic cottonseed meal over each 6×4 bed. Cottonseed meal is almost all-nitrogen. It is nitrogen plus carbon (from the dried leaves)  that produces heat. However, if the weather is already frigid, it makes little sense to add cottonseed meal at this time. You can always add it in early spring if your own leaves have not decayed sufficiently.

Thanks, Kevin. Can’t wait to try this out.

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How to Get Hummingbirds in Your Yard!

How to Get Hummingbirds in Your Yard!

 

We have a lot of hummingbirds and I always want more! They’re so tiny and amazing. Here’s a great post I found on Houzz. Enjoy!
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How to Keep Squirrels out of Your Birdfeeders

How to Keep Squirrels out of Your Birdfeeders

Got birdfeeders? Then I bet you have squirrels!

I have birdfeeders – lots and lots of birdfeeders. I go through about 25 pounds of birdseed a month. And, as much as I love feeding the birds, feeding the squirrels is not my goal. We have lots of trees with nuts and acorns so our squirrels are not going hungry. I really fight to keep them out of the feeders.

My first attempt at controlling them was to invest in “squirrel proof birdfeeders” and that works fine. However, I have many truly lovely birdfeeders that are not at all squirrel proof and I really want to be able to use them!

Finally, I made the most amazing discovery – Safflower Seed!

How to Keep Squirrels out of Your BirdfeedersThe cardinals absolutely LOVE it as do many other birds. The amazing thing, however, is that my squirrels hate it!

So now I have seed mixes in my “squirrel proof” feeders and Safflower seed in my pretty feeders and my squirrel feeding problem is solved.

Have you found any tricks to share?

How to Keep Squirrels out of Your Birdfeeders

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Japanese Maples

I’m a HUGE fan of Japanese Maples. I don’t even know how many I have!

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March Gardens

It’s exactly mid-March and I can’t believe how much is already peaking out in the gardens! I love this time of year when I find new sprouts every day. Fabulous North Carolina      (zone 7).

March Blooms

Hellebores

March Blooms

Hellebores

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Blooms

Hydrangea

March Blooms

Geranium

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Blooms

Trillium

 

March Blooms

Sedum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Blooms

Yellow Brugmansia

These are just some of the examples of what I have popping out. What’s already growing this Spring in your yard?

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Angel Trumpet

Well, perhaps I spoke to soon in my last post.

Here it is, November 1st, and my Brugmansia is still blooming!

Angel Trumpet

Angel Trumpet

IMG_2643

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Yellow Brugmansia – Angel Trumpet

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia at full bloom.

Do you have, or have you ever had, a Brugmansia? They are lovely, as you see here. Mine is a yellow one and this is a photo showing it in it’s full glory. Fabulous.

However….

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia with faded blooms.

As beautiful as the blooms are, and they are spectacular, they last only about 3-5 days. Seriously.

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia bloom.

My plant is in a pot on the deck and I literally have to water it every day, 7 days a week. A friend of mine planted hers in the ground and only watered once a week. So far, she’s had only one bloom.

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia flower

As lovely as this is, I just don’t think it’s worth all the time and effort for one week of flowers. I don’t mind watering my tomato plants daily because they fruit for months. The Brugmansia simply doesn’t bring me the same satisfaction. This may be my only year with this plant.

Your experience?

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