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Monthly Archives: January 2017

Wintering Water Lilies

In case of tropical plants, take out these beautiful plants from your pond, post the first frost. It’s imperative to check the roots first to ensure that the plant has developed tubers. In case of no tubers, it will be difficult for them to survive during the winter months.

Once you have pulled out this plant from the pond, place them inside the water. You can take different variety and shapes of water containers available in the market which is used to store these water lilies. One can even use an aquarium with an incandescent light, a container preferably a plastic one or a tub or plastic jug placed on a window shelf. The container could be of any sturdy material in which the plants get fully soaked in water and is exposed to eight to twelve hours of light, will surely work best for these water lilies. The best way is to grow them bare rooted inside the water and not grow in pots.

Ideally the process of storing starts much before winter arrives, irrespective of you growing tropical water lilies. During late summer, stop pollinating this plant, this will send an indication to your plants that it’s time to be ready for winters. You will be able to sequentially witness the following:

First, the water lilies will start growing tubers. This ensures that they get food during winters. Secondly, slowly and steadily they will reach a dormant state, that slows down their system and helps them in protecting during winters.
Eventually, you will witness them growing small leaves during this time and their large leaves will turn pale and die. Now just when you have noticed this happen, you will be absolutely ready to take steps for wintering them.

Outdoor Fireplace

The flexibility of masonry materials adds considerably to the fun of working with them; you can be imaginative and creative when tackling outdoor fireplace landscaping. A concrete slab does not have to be a hot prairie playground; the surface is not limited to “smooth” or “rough”; the color is not limited to cement gray. Brick and masonry units, thanks to new developments, are no longer prosaic, uninspiring building materials.

The truth about an amateur project is that the results can be every bit as good as a job done by a professional. Both in appearance and structurally, the job you do can rate A-l on the building inspector’s card. There will be a difference in time due to the fact that the pro can work faster, but the amateur need not worry about .speed–the end result is more important than the time needed to accomplish it. The mixture for concrete, actually an artificial stone, consists of a blend of fine and coarse aggregates, each piece of which is completely surrounded and held to its mates by hardened Portland cement paste. A chemical reaction, which occurs ideally due to favorable temperatures and the presence of moisture while curing, causes the paste to harden. The water to cement ratio is probably the most important factor as far as the strength of mix is concerned. Too much water will result in a thin, diluted cement-paste that will be weak and porous when it hardens. It will not bond the aggregates nor will it be watertight. The correct water-cement paste, and this is important, produces a mix with maximum strength which is necessary for outdoor fireplace landscaping. The amateur will often use more water than necessary because it makes a more fluid mix that flows easily into the forms. Such a project may look O.K. to begin with (although there will probably be finishing problems due to excess moisture), but it will eventually be discovered to lack strength and durability.

About Color in Landscape

  1. Red, red-orange and yellow are considered to be warm colors.
  2. Green, blue, blue-green, blue-violet, and violet are considered to be cool colors.
  3. To the eye, warm colors tend to advance and cool colors tend to recede. If planted side by side at a distance, the warm colors will appear closer and the cool colors further away. You can use these effects to create spatial illusions. Planting cool colored flowers at the rear of your garden will make the yard seem larger, warm colors will make the yard seem smaller.
  4. Spot plantings can have similar effects seeming to deepen a part of the yard or bring it closer.
  5. Cool colored plants are good for close-up viewing, warm colors are good for dramatic displays.
  6. Cool colors can easily be overwhelmed by warm colors.

There are different ways that color can be worked into the landscape. Some of the most common color schemes are as follows:

  • Monochromatic: Using flowers of various tints and shades of one color.
  • Analogous: Using colors that are closely related to one another on the color wheel.
  • Complementary colors: Combine colors that are opposite one another on the color wheel. These can be powerful combinations ? bold, that some people may find vibrant, however, others may feel that these colors clash.
  • If you want to try and blend strong colors, arrange them so that they intermingle, rather than being clearly defined. You can tone down colors by including silvery leaf or white flower plants. If you mix bright reds with bright yellows, try leading up to the mixture with plants of similar but less intense colors.

  • Polychromatic: This includes a mixture of all colors. These combinations often produce a carnival type atmosphere. These are often the result of random plantings. Although it sounds foreboding, these can produce pleasing combinations.

Before planting, take note of your background and surroundings:

  • Anything you plant will blend in or stand out against the surrounding vegetation, scenery and buildings.
  • Note the colors of your existing house and landscape. Almost any color will look good with white, cream or gray, but it is harder to choose plants that go well with more vivid colors.
  • Use colored foliage carefully. Although the plants will have color all season, plants with gold, blue, purple or silver-gray leaves are uncommon in nature and can look like they are out of place.
  • Vividly colored plants (purples, reds) may look fake in a rural or informal setting.
  • A single plant of a different color may stand out from its surroundings – watch the effect; it may look like a focal point or like something that is out of place. To blend in the plant, try adding different plants of the same color in the area to repeat a theme.
  • Variegated plants have leaves that are stripped, rimmed or spotted, generally with white. These plants are either loved or hated. They may have a subtle effect in your landscaping, but because of the foliage it may also look like you have a “sick” plant in your landscape.

Zero Turn Mower

These are faster and more efficient. There are several reasons to choose these over traditional tractors which includes-

  • These are faster than usual mowers thus one need not to make plans for cutting grass on weekend instead one can cut grass as and when required.
  • Another advantage is that one can add attachments with these mowers. Attach any portable trolley and grass collector to these mowers and perform two works simultaneously.
  • These can work without problem on difficult paths where ordinary mowers didn’t work so well.
  • Unlike other mowers these are equipped with controlling handles rather than driving wheels thus they are easy to use.

How to use zero turn mowers?

-Read the manual properly and then gather proper knowledge regarding the mower.

  • Learn how to use it by grasping all the controls in your hand and feet.
  • Learn to apply brakes and by pulling the choke knob and pulling the lever start the engine.
  • Make sure you follow proper instruction else you might damage your mower if proper care is not taken.

Why zero turn mowers are costly?

  • They make use of hydraulic energy and each wheel has got its own motor which allows them to run independently of each other along any pathway with ease.
  • These are compact and offer more functional benefits. Thus these are bit costlier than those traditional tractors which were used initially.
  • These are versatile.

Best uses of zero turn mowers-

  • They can be run along any circular pathway regardless of its radius.
  • Portable attachments are another benefits as only a single person can do the job without requiring assistance from another person.
  • These are faster and more efficient in comparison to other mowers.
  • These can be used easily on uneven grounds thus making the job easier.