Feeds:
Posts
Comments
leaf rakeAutumn is finally here, and you can’t wait to bust out your cool weather clothes and autumn decorations! You’ve also noticed that your grass doesn’t look as vibrant and green as it did over the summer; is there  anything you can do? Is reviving your lawn this late in the season even worth it? Of course it is! Proper lawn care, especially in the fall, will ensure that your grass grows back thick, green, and luscious come spring. If you don’t know how to take care of your lawn during the fall season, check out these tips.
Keep Watering – First things first, don’t shut off your sprinkler system. Even though the weather is cooler and you aren’t as thirsty as you were over the summer, it doesn’t mean your lawn feels the same way. Keep watering on schedule. You want to make sure your lawn stays lightly saturated even when the temperature drops, as this will keep the blades from drying out before they go dormant.
Time for a Trim – If you raised the height on your lawnmower blade over the summer, now is the time to lower it back down. During the fall season, you want to cut your grass a little shorter than you did in the summer. Since harmful UV rays are no longer a threat, you don’t need the long blades of grass to protect the shorter ones. You want your grass shorter; that way, fallen leaves and snow don’t weigh down the blades and distress your lawn.
Seed – We know this may sound silly, but autumn is the perfect time to seed your lawn. Seed cool-weather grass like rue-grass or bluegrass, as this will fill in any dead spots and will help your grass grow back thicker and greener in the spring. Plant the cool-weather grasses early, so that they have plenty of time to take root before the first snowfall.
Remove Leaves – Stay on top of leave removal, as leaves can damage and smother your lawn. If you want healthy blades of grass come spring, you’d better keep your grass clear of twigs and dead leaves. We know this can be a tedious job, but just think about how beautiful your spring lawn will look and how happy you’ll be that you don’t have to remove heavy, wet, soggy, dead leaves come spring.

 

23
In order to maximize your gardens efficiency make sure you are companion pairing your plants. Don’t know what companion pairing is or how it works? No problem, keep reading to find out.
Companion Pairing – So, for starters, what is companion pairing? Companion pairing is the act of planting individuals of the same or different species, in groups, depending on their relative needs. Now, at first this may seem simple, like planting shade plants in the same location; however this isn’t really what we’re getting at. Companion pairing is all about placing individuals together so t
hat they will reap benefits from their neighbors. Figuring out which species should be planted together and which should not is the hard part as some will reap benefits and others could suffer potential harm if placed too close to their neighbors.
The Benefits of Pairing – So, what are these special benefits that neighboring plants reap from each other? Well, for example, if you have plants that require natural pollination for survival or to bear fruit, plant them near African Blue Basil. African Blue Basil attracts bees which will help pollinate your other nearby plants.  Here’s another example, for sensitive plants that are prone to catch diseases and fungi, make sure you surround them with species that are disease resistant, that way you don’t have to worry about diseases spreading easily to your weaker plants. For individuals that need plenty of shade why not plant them next to larger plants like corn and tomatoes? And for those plants that require a generous amount of watering, group them together that way they’ll all get a generous amount when you turn on a localized sprinkler system.
Companion pairing is all about making your garden work for you not against you. If you know what species are going to benefit from each other, plant them in groups, this way you won’t have to worry about an individual getting too much sun or a plant being exposed to diseases. Plant smarter, not harder.

From: Sprinkler Juice

When you stop and think about you’ll realize that you use a lot of water on a daily basis, especially at home. But how much do you actually use? Here is a good way to find out; we’ve broken down the average water usage in the typical household. Keep reading to find out how much water you use.

raindropMorning and Evening Routines – You use water all day long and that water usage starts early in the morning and goes late into the night. Every morning you brush your teeth, wash your face, shave, and shower. With that in mind you should know that every time you fill up your bathtub you’re using roughly 36 gallons of water and every time you take a shower you use roughly 2-3 gallons of water a minute depending on the type of shower head you use. Brushing your teeth requires 1-2 gallons per minute. Remember that you perform many of these different activities twice a day; that’s twice the amount of water.

Daily Routine – Aside from morning bath time you have to remember that you’re consulting the tap all day long. Hand washing; 1 gallon, shaving; 1 gallon, running the dishwasher; 4-10 gallons, laundry; 25 gallons, using the toilet; 3 gallons, watering the lawn or garden; 5-10 gallons per minute. Four, five, six gallons here and there really adds up making it incredibly easy to waste water without even realizing it. Remember that when you use water for other things like watering the garden or lawn it could increase your water bill even more.

Once you know how easy it is to waste water you can start to monitor the usage a little better. For watering the garden we recommend using a sprinkler timer and a rain sensor to keep the sprinkler from running too long and to keep it from turning on when its raining.

Credit: Sprinkler Juice

Credit: Sprinkler Juice

From Sprinkler Juice

New gardeners make plenty of mistakes, it’s all part of the learning process. While most mistakes are harmless and will only set you back a little, others can be detrimental to your new garden. Here are three major mistakes you should try to avoid.

 

Seeds – As cheap and easy as it is to buy a bag of seeds, don’t do it. You’re new to gardening and cultivating seeds is a learned skill. Since plants are most susceptible as seeds you’re far better off purchasing seedlings for your garden. Seedlings are hearty enough for an inexperienced gardener yet young enough to need tender loving care before they can grow into fruit baring plants. No, it’s not cheating, once you master the skill of actually taking care of your plants you’ll then be ready to start your garden from scratch.

 

Watering – Don’t be to quick to think that all of your plants need the same amount of water. Take some time to get to know your plants, some will need regular watering and some will only need a minimal amount. We suggest that you do your homework way before you plant your garden, this way you can group plants together depending on their water needs.

 

Pruning – Please do not forget to prune. No matter how little or frail that seedling looks, it still needs to be pruned even if it doesn’t have very many leaves. If you don’t prune your plants they can become unhealthy and sick; when dead leaves stay attached, the plant continues to waste precious energy feeding the dead leaf when it could be growing a new, healthy one. Prune often and you’re plants will grow strong and healthy.

 

Source:

“Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make” – SprinklerJuice.com

 

 

From: Sprinkler Juice

raindrop

It’s easy to look at bodies of water all around us and make assumptions. While we might think that a water molecule frozen in a pacific glacier will never reach a backyard stream, we could be mistaken.

Traveling Water – Surface water, meaning water that is above the ground, doesn’t stay put. But of course you already knew this. if you’ve ever sat on the side of a babbling brook or watch the wave’s crash onto the sand you know that water is always moving. Having said that, how far does it travel? In a 100 year period one water molecule will spend, on average, just over a year and a half as ice, two weeks in lakes, rivers and streams, 98 years in the ocean, and less than a week in the atmosphere. Knowing this, take another look at the water that is rushing past your feet as your walk along the surf, said water hasn’t just traveled thousands of miles in the open ocean, imagine where else it has been and how far it still has to go.

Groundwater – We know that surface water is fast moving, what about groundwater? If you get your water from a well then you’re actually tapping into a groundwater system. If you have always pictured the aquifer as a fast moving underground river, you couldn’t be more mistaken. Groundwater couldn’t be more opposite than surface water. So opposite in fact that it takes nearly an entire human lifetime for groundwater to travel one mile. Where above ground is zipping from here to there groundwater moves at a snail’s pace.

Temperature – It’s probably a good thing that surface water is constantly moving, especially because water regulates earth’s temperature. Have you ever noticed that coastal towns are warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer compared to central regions? The reason for this is simple, you’re standing right next to a huge body of water that is doing its best to regulate temperature and make changes less drastic.

So, the next time you water your garden, think about the water you’re using. If you’re using rainwater just imagine how far said rain molecules have traveled to land in your buckets. If you’re using well water think about the slow moving pool beneath your feet.

 

Source:

www.SprinkerJuice.com

dreamstimefree_1253061We decided to take a critical look at our beloved lawn so see just how green and eco-friendly they really are. Here’s what we found:

 

Lawns are cool!

Lawns are 50-70 degrees cooler than streets and driveways and 30-40 degrees cooler than bare soil.

 

Lawns minimize erosion!

Rain will remove up to 2200% more topsoil from bare earth than from a lawn

Lawns are 10 times better at soaking up rainfall than crop  farms

90% of the weight of a grass plant is in its roots

 

Lawns recycle!

The microorganisms in turfgrass soil can clean:

  • petroleum products
  • metals (lead, copper, zinc, and cadmium)
  • chemicals, including pesticides

 

Lawns enrich!

Grass enrich the soil by adding over 6500 lbs of organic matter per year to an area the size of a football field

A turf area of 50 sq. ft. absorbs carbon dioxide, ozone, hydrogen fouride and releases enough oxygen to meet the needs of a family of four.

 

Lawns are efficient!

Five year old trees require 200-300% more energy input than a lawn.

Shrubs need 350% more energy.

Shrubs can take twelve times as many hours for maintenance as the same area planted in grass

Less than 1% of the domestically used water is utilized to irrigate landscape plants.

 

Source:

Infographic: How Green is the Grass? by Adam Kutner

http://www.waterfootprint.org

Professional Lawn Care Association of America

From Organic Gardening Magazine

 

Edible flowers add a touch of colorful to your salads and are the perfect way to welcome summer into your cuisine!

Here’s  list of the best ones we’ve found, based on flavor and beauty, of course!

Nasturtium
Available in a scope of colors. Both flowers and leaves add a peppery flavor to mixed greens.dreamstimefree_255334

Calendula
A prolific grower, calendula blossoms grow in abundance. Sprinkle individual petals lightly on a salad.

Herb Flowers
Basil, chives, dill, fennel, and arugula flowers all add a spark of aromatic flavor and a burst of color to salads.

Viola
Whether wild or cultivated, delicately flavored violas jazz up a bowl of mesclun greens like nothing else.

Borage
Intense blue star shaped flowers add a burst of color that contrasts nicely with greens. The flower’s delicate flavor tastes similar to cucumber. Separate the flower from the stem for a softer texture.

 

 

Source:

Organic Gardening Magazine - “Edible Flowers”

 

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.