• Planting A Picture Perfect Landscaping

    The meaning of agriculture When you consider the root of the word agriculture, agri meaning field and culture meaning society, it is a broad concept. Feeding the planet and doing it responsibly is important, but the vista of a yellow field of sunflowers or your corner of tomato vines brings joy to the senses. A true feeling of accomplishment comes from tending plants to flower and fruit with your own hands. Paying attention to varieties, placement, and care will bring success.

    Planting Trees Shade makes a big difference in the summer enjoyment of your yard. Poplars, aspens, and willows grow quickly, up to 5 to 15 feet per year. From deep green to light yellow, there are many colors to make a big statement. When deciding where to plant, keep in mind that what looks proportionally correct now, will be very different with a few years of growth. The amount of light and activities that will go on around the tree should also be determined.

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    When planting, dig a hole so that the root ball sits slightly above the soil line and three to four times wider than the ball. Roots grow out as well as down, which lets the young tree stretch and anchor. Remove the container gently. If the roots appear bound, cut an “X” across the bottom. Place the root ball in the hole and bury it, forming a depression around the top edge to create a sort of basin. This allows for less runoff of water. Cover the dirt with two or three inches of mulch, being careful to keep it away from the trunk. Water daily. Slow or drip watering may be needed during a dry season.


    Be Safe When considering shrubs to plant, you will not mature size and color. An additional consideration is a toxicity. Foliage, bark, flowers, fruit and even roots can be poisonous. Laurels, rhododendrons, and azaleas are lovely, but all parts of these plants are poisonous. Lantana and Jasmine have toxic berries. With yews, ingesting the berries and needles are dangerous. You may enjoy cherries, but the twigs and foliage have cyanide in them.

    Shade Plantings Many plants need the sun or partial sun. Deciding what to do with that dark corner of the yard may seem overwhelming, but there are many shade-loving plants to choose from. May apples have broad leaves that will add interest to the front of a bank of hostas. Perhaps, you would like more color than the shades of green these plants offer. Virginia bluebells have arching branches with lavender, trumpet-shaped flowers. Trilliums are white but also come in pink and yellow. They are a classic woodland delight.

    Over the Rainbow, Many gardens are designed with two or three colors for a coordinated, uniform look. The shape of bloom also impacts the symmetry of the garden. Rainbow gardens let the individual species stand out. Picture yellow daylilies, red cardinal flowers, blue lobelia, pink phlox, and orange poppies nodding their heads to the compliments you receive. The colors pop and each flower head is different. Rainbow gardens are joyful, interesting and don’t take themselves too seriously.

    Designing a beautiful yard takes into consideration light, color, and placement. With a little care and attention, you can paint a spectacular living portrait.

  • creeping phlox Best Plant Vines for Steep Banks And Stopping Soil Erosion

    The best plant vines for steep banks, and stopping soil erosion effectively, are a few of the most common, and easy to grow. There are marvelous vines one can utilize to enchant the barren hillside, or perhaps a colorful ground-cover under taller flowers. These low maintenance vines are perfect for adding beauty to the yard quickly.

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    In addition, ground covers are frequently regarded as cures, but this is certainly a misconception. Plant vines such as Vinca minor vines (Common periwinkle) are an excellent choice for steep and shady slopes, and this stops soil erosion. They are lower maintenance than grass, but they’re living plants and necessitate a certain amount of tending. Make sure that the plant has enough room or one can use a border of some sort on the edge.


    Furthermore, the roots of the plant vines grab soil and hold it against the bank. This creates a strong ceiling that helps hold the slope up. Plan to work on a small piece of ground, cleaning only what will be used to plant, then another section next time. Do not water the plants at night because they can grow fungus and rot.


    Also, the periwinkle vines will grow and cover fast, and it stops soil erosion. Blooming pretty blue flowers against shiny green leaves makes them ideal for any stubborn areas that will not grow other plants. They are ideal for ground covering on banks. Moreover, Vinca minor vines are one of two top varieties of periwinkle, and the flowers are a soft blue.


    Moreover, Periwinkle vines are easy to grow. This vine will climb anywhere, attaching to anything it can. Trim it as it matures, shaping it to grow where desired. This will also make the plant become fuller. The flora can get anywhere from 4-18 inches tall, only that will depend upon what variety one gets.


    What is more, there are also other colors, such as blue, lavender, white, purple and some will have variegated leaves. The plant likes full or part sun, but they’ll thrive well in the shade too. They flower from spring through autumn. Their USDA zone is 4-9, so when to plant vines will be according to the zone.


    In a word, English ivy vines can be used as blankets outdoors in zones 5-9, but they are a houseplant. They need to be where the temperature stays at 55-70 degrees. Medium light and moist dirt will keep spider mites at bay. This ivy gets 2-6 inches tall and 6 inches to 6 feet wide. Pachysandra, English ivy, winter creeper and Vinca minor are the best choices for hardy vines.

  • Fern Plants Make Great Garden Accents

    Fern plants are bar none the easiest of all border plants to thrive with little care. You should also consider using native ferns when you want to create an outdoor space that has year-round appeal.

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    There are many different varieties of ferns that you can consider purchasing. Some specimens will only grow to a mature height of 6-12 inches. You can also find numerous varieties that will reach heights of 3-5 feet. Think of the wonderful garden silhouettes that you could create when you incorporate several different ferns into your designs.


    When you grow these plants it is their feathery, delicate shapes that you will most appreciate. You can blend New York ferns with your perennials and add wonderful texture to any garden bed. Remember that the New York ferns typically act as a ground cover. These plants have a scent that is reminiscent of fresh hay and prefer to be in a moist environment where they will only be exposed to filtered light.


    Choose an Ostrich fern, a maiden fern or stately Royal fern and add these specimens to a shady area of your yard. Ostrich ferns are tall and graceful, with fronds that resemble the elongated feathers of an ostrich. In northern climates, you can plant these in the sun or shade, but an Ostrich fern needs protection from the sun if it is grown in the southern states. The shapes and colors of these ferns can actually make that hazy, shaded piece of ground one of the most attractive features in your landscape.


    Some ferns do produce small flowers but it is not these flowers that appeal to gardening enthusiasts. Look for colorful pink or yellow flowers on the common Bracken ferns that tend to grow wild in certain wooded areas. If you are in the market for a few graceful specimens you might want to choose Cinnamon fern, Holly fern or a Christmas fern to add to your yard. Ferns have earned a place in the landscape because they provide unusual textures and are quite easy to care for throughout the year.


    Combine ferns with Creeping Jenny and Mallow to create a lovely boundary around the edge of a pond or stream. Mix a few of these feathery plants with hardy perennials such as Bee Balm, Geraniums, and Sedums. The ferns will add height, visual interest and unique texture that makes even the smallest garden bed more appealing.


    You can find ferns for any area of your yard but a Christmas fern or Japanese Painted fern will certainly appreciate being placed in partial-to full shade. Even in those difficult to plant areas around the roots of trees can become home to a group of ferns. In return, the ferns will serve as unique ground cover and bring visual interest to an otherwise barren spot in your yard.



    Ferns do much more than simply offer visual beauty. These plants require very little care, and many species can withstand drought, freezing temperatures and hard frosts. Ferns supply ready cover for birds and other small woodland creatures. These plants are also excellent choices for sustainable gardens because of their low water requirements.

  • Rhodoendron Flame Azalea

    Flame Azalea Shrub – Rhododendron calendulaceum


    The flame azalea shrub stands upright and features big, beautiful vase-shaped flowers. Measuring between six feet to 12 feet tall and wide, this shrub has bright green foliage and yellow, orange and red flowers that grow in large clusters. The non-fragrant flowers bloom right before or at the same time as the leaves, which will fade to a yellow or red color in the autumn. This deciduous, ornamental shrub grows natively in the low areas of the southern Appalachians, blooming in late spring. It is one of 16 species that are native to America, Japan and China. Many other related varieties have been cultivated.


    The slow-growing flame azalea thrives best in acid, dry, and rocky soil. As a perennial, this shrub enjoys moist, well-drained soil in partial shade. It is one of the few plants that prefers shade to sun and thrives in such conditions. New plants require careful pruning to look their best as well as reduce disease issues and pest problems in the long run. The flame azalea does well in hardiness zones six to nine.

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    Planting flame azaleas is best performed in the spring months but can also be done in fall. The flame azalea shrub is easy to grow in reasonable conditions, requiring very little, if any, fertilizing. With its shallow roots, this shrub can grow well under pine trees and in other shady areas. The leaves from the trees providing the shade actually provides all the fertilization, minerals and nutrients that the flame azalea requires.


    Gardeners use the flame azalea for mass plantings, and many gardeners find that planting the shrubs in containers works well. Beautiful blooms last nearly two weeks, making the shrub a beautiful addition to any landscape. Flowers attract a wide variety of birds, beneficial insects and bumble bees to the area.




  • Peat Mosses Has Many Benefits In A Garden

    Peat Moss – Sphagnum

    Peat moss is a spongy plant that  is often used as a soil mixture to facilitate the growth of acid loving plants like blueberries and camellias. Because it is mostly composed of moss and take ages to develop into the nutrient rich substance that it ultimately becomes, this plant is excellent at absorbing and distributing water to plants.
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    In landscaping and gardening, it is used primarily to add benefit the the plant maturation process. Peat moss is included in most potting soils because of its incredible ability to nourish and feed growing plants by effectively containing nutrients. While ordinary soil will allow a large amount of nourishment to be washed away when plants are watered, peat moss seals nutrients for proper consumption by the plant.

    Peat moss is similar in appearance to sphagnum moss, the substance from which it is formed. This spiny, green, brightly colored plant decays into a deep brown, soil-like substance which is this type plant. Peat moss is best used as a soil conditioner and work in well in almost every environment. Because it is a decomposed substance that takes years to develop, it is not beneficial to plant sphagnum with the intention of cultivating it. Instead, it might be beneficial to understand that sphagnum plants with underlying peat moss can typically be found in peat bogs, conifer forests and tundra climates.

    Peat moss can add tons of depth and health to landscaping and planting projects. This plant is rich, versatile, long-lasting, and relatively easy to find. For those seeking to spruce up gardens or add quality to soil conditions and levels, it is highly recommended.

  • Save Money by Planting Bare Root Trees

    Landscaping projects can become extremely expensive quickly. You need to find every way possible to save money without compromising on quality. Trees can represent a significant portion of your budget. How can you save money when planting trees? The answer is to substitute bare root trees.

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    What are bare root trees? Typically, you buy a sapling with a large ball of dirt that encases and protects the roots. This is an excellent way to protect a tree’s support system, but it also adds to the weight. Thus, the cost of shipping trees in this way is raised. You can get rid of much of the tree’s weight if you do not ship with the ball of dirt. In fact, the cost of a bare root tree is typically up to half the cost of an equivalent potted tree.

    Aside from the cost, you will find that tree nurseries tend to have a greater variety of bare root trees available than dirt-encased. They require less space, so tree nurseries can order more. In addition, these trees are often more resilient in terms of their roots when planting. Research shows that bare roots allow for greater surface area upon planting. This allows the trees to adapt to their environment more quickly.

    Bare roots require some special handling. They will not have a good success rate if they are not planted during the dormant season. This will be late fall when no leaves are present. You will also need to waste no time in getting the tree into the ground. If you follow those guidelines, though, these trees have a 93 percent success rate.

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  • Having A Military Mind In Modern America

    It’s vitally important to plan your life and always be on time. This is from a Green Beret. He stated that not only was self-discpline was a primary measure people must have to be discplines but also there’s no room for tardiness behavior.

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    Being in the most prestigeous of all military outfits, the green beret soldiers are fearless, fast and ferocious. They have very much control of their surroundings and are ready to move on a dime if and when necessary to go in to full fight mode.Image result for green beret

    They do not break under stress and are used to high intense surroundings. Most green berets are very educated in wilderness and violent force situations.

  • Amish – A History Back In Time

    Amish, A Stress Free Slow Paced Lifestyle

    Top Four Amish Communities in the US

    The Amish Community is a fascinating sector that has largely settled in the United States. These traditional people have Swiss Anabaptist origins. Sometimes they are referred to as the Pennsylvania Dutch, given their first settlement was in the states was in Pennsylvania. The Amish shun technology, and they choose to live a life of simplicity. They refer to themselves as “plain people.”

    The Amish Population Continues To Grow

    As of 2015, there are more than 225,000 Amish living in this country. The four most populated areas are in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Wisconsin. They are known for their devout faith, incredible work ethics, and fascinating woodwork and crafts. They sell their goods at local shops to make a living. Though Amish are not allowed to have cell phones, cars, electricity, or technology, they can use these items for their businesses.

    The Difference Between Mennonite and Amish

    The Mennonite faith is a bit more lenient. They often have cars and electricity in their homes. Common last names heard throughout Amish areas are Yoder, Miller, Schmitt, Hershberger, Hochstetler, Troyer, and Schrock. One thing fascinating about the Amish is that they don’t pay taxes. In fact, many don’t have bank accounts or use any “English” conveniences. They have their own businesses and take care of themselves. They don’t use medical or any other type of assistance from the state; they take care of each other. They have many children, and it is not uncommon to see a large home accommodate grandparents and extended family members. Because of their strict beliefs and dedicated lifestyles, the crime rates are rather low in Amish communities. 

    Holmes County, Ohio

    Ohio’s vast farmland is the perfect setting for a community of naturalists. Located in the Northwestern part of the state, this area has a large settlement of both the Amish and Mennonite population. In total, more than 59,000 people of the Amish faith make Holmes County their home. The county seat is Millersburg, but areas like Sugarcreek, Berlin, Charm, New Philadelphia, Dover, and Canton, are also populated with their ancestors. They are spread out across Holmes, Tuscarawas, and Coshocton counties.

    The Amish community in Holmes County is the largest in the world. People come from all over the globe to see, taste, and mingle with these “plain people.” Statistics show that 42 percent of the Amish population in the US live in Ohio’s Northwestern parts. Most of the settlers here are from the “old order.” There is an “old order” and “new order” segregation of beliefs among the Amish. The older saints take simply living a bit further than those in the newer orders. They don’t allow buttons on clothes, women must always have their head covered, and no deodorant or makeup is permitted.

    The Amish are glad to see tourists come and visit their region, but never ask to take a picture with them. The old order won’t allow any pictures, which is a graven image. In Ohio, you can have dinner with the Troyer family, ride a train around the region, or visit an Amish schoolhouse and a working farm. There is plenty to do here and you will need a few days to see all the sites.

    Lancaster, Pennsylvania

    Lancaster is home to America’s oldest Amish order in the country. Though they are the oldest, they are the also the most commercialized. A visit to Holmes County and Lancaster will give visitors two different experiences. The people of Lancaster are accustomed to more modern conveniences, and they have been commercialized. However, in Homes County, one would have to drive a half-hour or so to get to any big name, retail stores.

    Strasburg, a neighboring town of Lancaster, also has a large concentration of Amish. This area is widely known for their corn fields, lush garden plants, potato, and cabbage farms. There are about 68,000 people in this area of the Amish and Mennonite faith. Though the public-school system is readily available to them, they choose to homeschool or send their children to Amish run facilities. Their schools allow accommodations for children to help on the farms and in their businesses. Some of the people of this area will pose for a picture, and they may even stop and chat. Don’t look for men to be too friendly to the women as it is frowned upon in their faith.

    Indiana’s Northern Trail/Elkhart County

    The Northern Trail of Indiana is home to more than 50,955 Amish. It includes areas like Bristol, Elkhart, Middlebury, Shipshewana, Goshen, Wakarusa, and Nappanee. This area is known for its scenic back roads and incredible sites. The Amish settled here in 1841. The community in this area is known for their quilts, homemade rolls and cakes, fried chicken, and other baked goodies. The winters are harsh here, so the best time to visit this area is in the spring and fall seasons. Make sure to visit or drive-thru each city along the Northern Trail. There are many shops, restaurants, and unique things to see and do. You can take a ride in an Amish buggy or even have dinner with an Amish family.

    Located just 15 miles south of the city of South Bend, Eckert is a lively city in the center of Amish Country. While visiting the area, be sure to stop and see a production at the Amish Acres Round Barn Theater. While exploring the Heritage Trail, be sure to listen to the audio feed through your car’s stereo system. Take a stroll through the Pumpkinvine Nature Trail, and make sure to see all the breathtaking botanical gardens in the area.

    Vernon County, Wisconsin

    The fourth largest Amish Country on our list is quite small. Vernon County in Wisconsin has about 17,000 Amish that calls this area home. This is one of the newer settlements that started around the 1970’s. The Amish settled between the areas of Ontario, Cashton, and Hillsboro. Both Viroqua and Ferryville have markets full of homemade Amish treats. You will need to do your exploration Monday through Saturday. Like most Amish orders, they are closed for business on Sundays.

    The Kickapoo River Valley provides ample opportunity to get outside and discover nature. There are many places to canoe, fish, and take a horse and buggy ride. Wisconsin has often been called “America’s Breadbasket.” However, growing wheat is difficult in the soils of this state. Now, more Amish and other locals are switching their focus to wine. There are 32 vineyards in this region. Dairy production is also a solid source of income. The Amish runs over 13,000 dairy farms throughout the communities. Much of the country’s organic agriculture come from this area. They are the second largest provider behind California. Many of the people here have an appetite for locally-grown foods. Because of the abundance of farmer’s markets, there are many who scarcely darken the door of a grocery store.

    A Trip To Amish Country

    Whether you choose to see Ohio’s massive Amish population or Wisconsin’s small one, there are many adventures waiting. It is often nice to escape the cares of life and mingle among those who choose a more simplistic lifestyle free of technology and modern conveniences.

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  • Native Wild Plants at Garden Plants Nursery Hardiest Perennials

    Hardy Perennials

    Perennials are plants that come back year after year. Though their flowers tend not to be as showy as annuals, they make up for it by their reliability and the fact that many of them are easy to care for. Hardy perennials are plants that can tolerate conditions of drought, heat, frost, poor soil, less than ideal light and other conditions that might shorten the lives of plants that are more tender. They’re just the thing for beginning gardeners!


    Black Eyed Susan

    The black eyed Susan is a member of the coneflower family. It flourishes in hardiness zones 4 to 9 and flowers throughout the summer and fall. It’s notable for its rayed, orange or yellow petals and the prominent, dark center that gives the flower its name. It can grow well in both full sun and light shade and does best in average loam. The black eyed Susan tolerates both heat and drought well. It can grow from 18 inches to six feet high. It’s also excellent when it comes to attracting birds, bees and butterflies.


    Aquilegia Columbine

    This graceful plant with its beautiful blossoms surrounded by colorful spurs blooms from spring to early summer and is best grown in zones 3 to 8. The flowers come in a riot of colors, including white, pink, yellow, red, violet and blue.


    The columbine can grow from one and a half to three feet tall and prefers well-drained, loamy soil that’s a bit acidic. It can do well in full sun to light shade and should be planted about one and a half feet apart.



    Synomymous with spring, freshness and beauty, the familiar daisy with its pure white petals and sunny yellow centers can grow in full sun and partial shade. It can grow from half a foot to three feet tall and does best in soil that’s both well-drained and moist. Daisies also bloom best in zones 4 to 8.



    This pretty plant is also used in herbal medicine. It’s a hardy but deciduous perennial that has a striking yellow rhizome and roots. The leaves are large, handshaped, deeply toothed and grow between five and eight inches long. In spring, the plant brings forth tiny flowers that are followed in the fall by red fruit. It grows best in zones 4 to 8.


  • The Beauty Of The Flowering Dogwood Tree

    Flowering Dogwood Trees


    The dogwood tree also referred to as dogwood arbor in the Latin language is a small ornamental tree that blooms in early spring with blooms lasting throughout the entire summer months and into fall. The dogwood flowers come in a variety of colors including pink dogwood, red dogwood, kousa dogwood, yellow, white dogwood with red tips, red dogwood with white tips and solid white dogwood. Because of their beauty and their long lasting blooms dogwood trees are often used in the landscaping for both homes and businesses but flowering dogwoods trees growing in the wild are more often than not breathtakingly beautiful.


    When the blooming season has passed and the weather begins to cool the leaves of the dogwood tree will change color and its pedals will all fall to the ground. Then tiny red berries will grow in their place for the birds and squirrels to enjoy until old man winter comes around and takes them all away in preparation for a new year to begin. The dogwoods natural lifespan is around eighty years, the normal height of the dogwood is about thirty feet but they have been known to grow as tall as thirty feet.


    Different Varieties of Dogwood Trees Include:


    Pink dogwood

    Red dogwood

    White dogwood

    Satomi Dogwood

    Kousa dogwood

    Cherokee dogwood


    Where and How Do the Dogwoods Grow?


    Native to North America the flowering dogwood grows best in zones 1 through 9 which for the most part covers the entire United States as well as Europe and Asia. Dogwoods are pretty hardy trees that will grow in many different types of soil but they grow best in soil that is moist and well drained. Dogwood trees can grow in shady areas or in full sun.

    Diseases That Affect the Dogwood Tree


    Diseases that are common but not fatal among dogwoods are:


    Powdery Mildew

    Leaf Blight


    Dogwood Blight is a common disease that kills dogwood trees within a few years. All of the above mentioned diseases are the result of too much moisture.


    The dogwood is most often grown and appreciated today for its beauty but in times past the tree was valued for it incredibly hard wood and medicinal purposes. The dog wood was used by early Americans to make items such as:

    Bow and Arrows

    Sewing Needles






    The Uses of The Dogwood Tree


    The bark from the dogwood tree was often made into a tea and used to treat fevers, boiled to make a lovely red dye for clothing and blankets, and even smoked during certain ceremonies conducted by the Indians.


    Myths and Legends


    There are also myths and legends that have been associated with the dogwood tree. One being that a murdered Indian princess used the pedals of a dogwood tree to stop the bleeding when she was murdered by an Indian Brave who wouldn’t take no for an answer.


    Another legend about the dogwood is that there was a time when the dogwood tree grew straight and tall until it was used as the wood for the cross of Jesus. At that time Jesus was said to have cursed the dogwood so that it would never grow straight or tall ever again.