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Archives for March 24, 2016

GREEN THUMBS UP: Begin planning your spring garden



Posted Mar. 24, 2016 at 8:00 AM


Article source: http://easton.wickedlocal.com/article/20160324/NEWS/160328078

Tactical urbanism takes to downtown Great Falls streets

There’s a new temporary crosswalk in downtown Great Falls.

The crosswalk was installed at the intersection of Park Drive South and 1st Avenue South by the participants of the Building Active Communities Initiative, which is hosting a workshop in Great Falls this week.

The workshop brought teams from communities all over Montana to the city for the BACI 2.0 Action Institute.

One of the presenters, Mike Lydon of the Street Plans Collaborative and co-author of “Tactical urbanism,” led the participants on a walk audit in downtown Great Falls to talk about creating public spaces and paying attention to how infrastructure details can affect residents’ well-being before they did their crosswalk project.

The group walked through some of the areas under construction for sidewalk repair and streetscape improvements, and Lydon said some of the same materials and traffic management tactics can be used in community enhancement projects.

Walking along 1st Avenue South from the Celtic Cowboy to the intersection with 3rd Street South by Bert and Ernie’s, the group noted that block wasn’t very visually appealing or engaging. There are parking lots and vacant lots along that block.

“The lack of rhythm walking down the street is discouraging,” Lydon said of the 200 block on 1st Avenue South.

“Where’s the arrows to the Sip n’ Dip?” a participant asked. The Great Falls group made note of the idea.

Public art in the windows of the south parking garage were mentioned as making that block feel more vibrant and engaging, as well as the landscaping and lighting.

Cutting over to Central Avenue, the group stopped in the 3rd Street plaza in between the Davidson Companies buildings.

It’s a space that is open to the public but “it’s underutilized,” said Erin Merchant of the Cascade City-County Health Department and BACI team member.

It’s an area several local groups are looking at for more public events and to better utilize the space.

At the intersection of Park Drive South and 1st Avenue South, the group got a chance to put some of Lydon’s tactical urbanism ideas to work.

The intersection is heavily used but is lacking in pedestrian crossings. The BACI organizers worked with the Great Falls planning department to come up with the idea for the exercise, and that intersection is on their radar.

Using chalk tape and pavement marking tape, as well as traffic cones supplied by the city public works department, the group blocked off a lane with cones while others cut and placed the tape in strips.

They worked through one lane at a time to create a full, temporary crosswalk at the intersection. It will only be there for a few days but it’s a demonstration of simple ways to test solutions to problems, Lydon said.

The BACI event started Wednesday and the groups will be coming up with their own tactical urbanism projects they’ll work to implement in their communities after the workshop ends Thursday morning.

BACI is part of the Montana Nutrition and Physical Activity program in the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services in cooperation with Montana State University’s Office of Rural Health. The initiative includes in-depth, interactive training, mentoring and ongoing assistance to local communities.

Article source: http://www.greatfallstribune.com/story/news/local/2016/03/23/tactical-urbanism-takes-downtown-great-falls-streets/82189210/

Hydrogel Beads Key Ingredient In Recipe For Sustained Bouncing

(Inside Science Currents) — Not all great ideas come in the shower. Sometimes inspiration strikes when you’re whipping up a stack of pancakes.

At least that’s what happened to the man who filmed the video above when he paused his cooking to perform an impromptu science experiment: dropping a handful of hydrogel beads — small orbs that absorb water and can be used instead of soil for houseplants — into a hot skillet.

Because, well, why not?

Last November, the amateur scientist posted a YouTube video of the beads, which are also used in gardening or landscaping to help retain moisture in the soil, bouncing around the pan like too many kids on a trampoline. And then the reactions and speculation as to why the beads acted as they did began to simmer.

In comments, some YouTube users made connections to familiar and fundamental physics. Sergio Romero wrote that the video “looks like a representation of atoms bouncing around when in a gas form.”

Some raised other concerns. ZOMG Gaming! suggested “This is water cruelty you should be ashamed im calling the internet police.” Brent Allen wrote, “I think there’s something wrong with your grapes.” (Their comments are presented as they appeared.)

A number of people, however, pointed to something called the Leidenfrost effect.

Even if you’ve never heard of the effect, you’ve probably at least seen it in your kitchen. It occurs when a droplet of liquid, say water, comes in contact with a hot surface, say a frying pan, raised to a certain temperature, and the droplet creates some vapor between it and the pan. As a result, the droplet doesn’t actually touch the surface. Instead, it’s levitated, skittering around the pan on its vapor cushion rather than evaporating quickly as expected.  

When Scott Waitukaitis, a postdoctoral researcher and physicist at Leiden University in the Netherlands, saw the video, he and his colleagues decided to replicate the experiment in the lab, teasing out the physics behind the beads’ strange reaction.

They found that when they dropped a hydrogel bead on a hotplate at roughly room temperature, it did “almost exactly what you’d expect for a bouncy ball,” said Waitukaitis, during a presentation last week at a meeting of the American Physical Society in Baltimore. “That is, it bounces, and every time it gets a little bit lower and a little bit lower and a little bit lower until it comes to rest.”

But when the researchers repeated the experiment with the hotplate heated to 437 degrees Fahrenheit, things got interesting. 

Although at first the ball bounced a bit lower and lower – just as it did on the first plate – after a while the bounce height stopped decreasing and stayed constant at a height of about 2 cm.

And when it comes to this hydrogel bead on a hot surface — it can’t stop, won’t stop. Waitukaitis and a colleague started one of the balls bouncing in the lab one day, and “lo and behold, 10 minutes later it was still going,” he said.

The scientists used a high-speed camera to film the experiments and a microphone to capture the high-pitched squeaks the beads produced as they came in contact with the hot surface.

But does the Leidenfrost effect explain what’s happening?

It’s “related to the Leidenfrost effect, but it’s a new aspect . . . the big thing is that this is Leidenfrost with an interplay between elasticity and vapor. So we get all these new dynamics from that,” said Waitukaitis.

In his presentation, Waitukaitis stressed that the research is preliminary. (He also highlighted the YouTube comments used above.) But here’s what he explained at the meeting: As the bead is dropped into the pan, vapor boils off its surface and gets shot down into little cavities in the frying pan’s surface. Because the bead is squishy, it deforms as it hits the pan, momentarily trapping the vapor in the tiny spaces — unlike in the regular Leidenfrost effect where the vapor can escape out the sides of the droplet. As a result, pressure builds up underneath the ball, giving it a little extra energy when it bounces.  

“This is where the story is right now,” said Waitukaitis. “[Our model] also makes the strange prediction that if I throw something softer on there, it will actually bounce higher. That’s what we want to test next.”


Emily DeMarco is a writer for the American Institute of Physics and the climate and environment editor for Inside Science. She tweets @emily_p_demarco.

Article source: https://www.insidescience.org/content/hydrogel-beads-key-ingredient-recipe-sustained-bouncing/3801

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dark side of the american lawnYasu+Junko for Reader’s Digest

On a beautiful April day, I decided to meet outside with my students at the University of Delaware, where I teach journalism. We sat on the central lawn between two buildings that just happened to bear the names of two gargantuan chemical companies: DuPont and Gore. In the middle of a conversation about agricultural pesticides, a groundskeeper, dressed from feet to neck in a white chemical suit, drove by us on a mower. He wasn’t cutting the grass, though; he was spraying it. And not from one nozzle, but from half a dozen. Up and back he went, describing parallel lines as neat as those in any Iowa farmer’s cornfield. Not a blade escaped the spray. This became a perfect teaching moment.

“Who’s going to ask him what he’s spraying?” I asked my students. One young woman marched over to the groundskeeper. He turned off his engine, they spoke, and she returned.

“He said he’s spraying 2,4-D,” she said. “He said we didn’t need to worry, because he sprayed where we’re sitting at five this morning.”

Which would mean about seven hours earlier. My students chuckled uneasily. He was wearing a full-body chem suit, and they were sitting on the grass in shorts and bare feet?

They’d never heard of 2,4-D, or 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid. But they had heard of Agent Orange, the notorious defoliant used in Vietnam, and 2,4-D, one of the most extensively used herbicides in the world, is a constituent of Agent Orange (it did not cause the bulk of the devastating effects associated with Agent Orange). It was developed during World War II, mostly as a weapon to destroy an enemy’s rice crops. Despite its history, 2,4-D has long been seen as safe for consumer use.

In the 1940s, botanist E. J. Kraus of the University of Chicago fed five and a half grams of pure 2,4-D to a cow every day for three months. The cow was fine, according to Kraus, as was her calf. Kraus said he himself had eaten half a gram of the stuff every day for three weeks and felt great. This was apparently good enough for the rest of the country; within five years, American companies were annually producing 14 million pounds of the stuff. By 1964, the number had jumped to 53 million pounds.

Today, annual sales of 2,4-D have surpassed $300 million worldwide, and it’s found in “weed and feed” products, like Scotts Green Sweep, Ortho Weed B Gon, Salvo, Weedone, and Spectracide. At first, its impact on humans seems mild—skin and eye irritation, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, stiffness in the arms and legs—and many lawn-care companies have dismissed health concerns. Plus, the businesses add that the amount of chemicals in sprays is very diluted.

With 80 million home lawns and over 16,000 golf courses, you get close to 50 million acres of cultivated turf in America.

But the effects are more worrisome when considered over time. Because 2,4-D is designed to mimic a plant’s natural growth hormone, it causes such rapid cell growth that the stems of treated plants tend to become grotesquely twisted and their roots swollen; the leaves turn yellow and die; and the plants starve to death (2,4-D does not have this effect on grass).

Unsurprisingly, 2,4-D also appears to affect human hormones. The National Institute of Health Sciences lists it as a suspected endocrine disrupter, and several studies point to its possible contribution to reproductive-health problems and genetic mutations. Although the EPA says there isn’t enough evidence to classify 2,4-D as a carcinogen, a growing body of research has begun to link it to a variety of cancers.

A 1986 National Cancer Institute (NCI) study found that farmers exposed to 2,4-D for 20 or more days a year had a sixfold higher risk of developing non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Another NCI study showed that dogs were twice as likely to contract lymphoma if their owners used 2,4-D on their lawns.

Like flame retardants, this compound also tends to accumulate inside people’s homes even days after the lawn has been sprayed. One study found 2,4-D in the indoor dust of 63 percent of sampled homes; another showed that levels of the chemical in indoor air and on indoor surfaces increased after lawn applications. After 2,4-D was sprayed, exposure levels for children were ten times higher than before the lawns were treated—an indication of how easily the chemical is tracked inside on the little feet of dogs, cats, and kids.

Thanks to pressure from campus activists, my university replaced 2,4-D with “softer” herbicides and began putting signs on lawns that had just been sprayed. Of course, 2,4-D is one of scores of pesticides in use. According to David Pimentel, professor emeritus of entomology at Cornell University, 110,000 people suffer adverse health effects from pesticides every year, and 10,000 cases of cancer in humans may be attributable to pesticide exposure.

 

The Greening of America

In 1900, 60 percent of Americans lived in rural areas. Today, 83 percent live in cities or suburbs. With that change has come an astonishing shift in the landscape. Over the past half century, Americans have become obsessed with grass. When you add up the country’s 80 million home lawns and over 16,000 golf courses, you get close to 50 million acres of cultivated turf in the United States, an expanse roughly the size of Nebraska. This space is growing by 600 square miles a year.

By 1999, more than two thirds of America’s home lawns had been treated with chemical fertilizers or pesticides—14 million by professional lawn-care companies. A year later, the U.S. General Accounting Office reported that Americans were spraying 67 million pounds of synthetic chemicals on their grass every year, and annual sales of lawn-care pesticides had grown to $700 million.

The landscaping trucks rolling through our suburban neighborhoods seem to represent something more than a communal desire for lush grass. Could it be relief from anxiety? (Why else call a company Lawn Doctor?) For one thing, hiring lawn-care specialists is a public declaration that you have the money not to take care of your yard yourself.

Diligent lawn maintenance and chemical use are also associated with approval and social status, Ohio State researchers reported in 2012: “The main factor influencing a homeowner’s decision to use lawn chemicals is whether neighbors or other people in the neighborhood use them. Homeowners crave acceptance from their neighbors and generally want their lawns to fit in with their surrounding community, so they adopt their neighbors’ practices.”

We also create manicured lawns to play the most chemically dependent of pastimes: golf. By 2004, there were just under 15,000 golf courses in the United States—a patchwork of chemically treated turf the size of Rhode Island and Delaware combined.

Even grass seed comes coated with chemicals. A close look at a bag of Scotts grass seed reveals it has been treated with Apron XL fungicide, whose active ingredient is Metalaxyl-M, or methyl N-(methoxyacetyl)-N-(2,6-xylyl)-D-alaninate. The bag requests that the product be stored away from foodstuffs, kept out of the reach of children, and not be applied near water, storm drains, or drainage ditches. (A Scotts spokesperson says that its products are designed to be safe when used as directed.)

As the use of chemicals has become widespread, lawn companies have found an unexpected source of profits. Herbicides like 2,4-D preserve grass but kill weeds like clover. Clover, however, pulls nitrogen out of the air and fixes it in the soil. Without clover, soil becomes nitrogen poor and fails to support plant life. So chemical companies now replace the depleted nitrogen, which homeowners used to get for free from clover, with synthetic nitrogen, for which they have to pay.

In America’s watersheds, nitrogen runoff is considered among the worst problems for water quality. Since synthetic fertilizers are water soluble, a good amount runs off your lawn after a rain, where it mixes with runoff from other homes and ends up feeding the plants in bodies of water. Doused with chemicals, algae grow and grow, creating “algae blooms” that—as they decay and die—suck most of the oxygen out of rivers, lakes, and bays and lead to massive “dead zones,” in which neither fish nor plants can live.

In 2007, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation published a report card on the bay’s health that showed just how much trouble chemicals can pose. The bay received an F for nitrogen pollution, a D-minus for phosphorous, an F for water quality, an F for dissolved oxygen, and a D for toxics. On a scale of 100 (with 100 being the best), the bay’s health was rated at 28.

In California, scientists are discovering that algae blooms off the coast not only remove oxygen; they also release a toxin, domoic acid. It enters the food chain when fish eat algae, then moves into the sea lions that consume the fish. If a sea lion is pregnant, her fetus can be contaminated, and years later, that mammal may develop epilepsy.

 

One Man’s Chemical Conversion

Paul Tukey knows about pesticides; the man who invented 2,4-D was a distant cousin. When Tukey was a kid in the late 1960s, his grandfather hired a biplane to spray his 300 acres of fields in Maine a couple of times a year. The fields were mostly planted with cattle feed, not with crops intended for human consumption. For Tukey, spraying day was a thrill.

“My grandfather would go out in the field, dressed in his wool underwear and thick heavy pants, and wave the biplane over his field,” Tukey recalled. “They’d drop this white powder, and he’d get back in the truck looking like Frosty the Snowman. Then we’d drive to the next field, and he’d do it again. My grandfather was getting doused 20 times a day, but he would never let me get out of the truck. I always wondered why I couldn’t go out and get dusted.”

Tukey’s grandfather died of a brain tumor at 60.

Tukey also followed his family’s agricultural tradition but charted his own course. For years, he operated one of southern Maine’s largest landscaping services and considered his job ideal. He worked outside in shorts and sandals. He never bothered with putting on protective gear.

In 1993, he started getting nosebleeds. His vision became blurry. But with business booming, Tukey was too busy to worry. One of his jobs was tending the grounds of a hospital where he hired university students for the work. One day, their professor, an eminent horticulturist named Rick Churchill, came by to say hello to his students. Tukey went out to greet him.

Churchill’s eyes were focused on the weeds, which Tukey’s crew had doused with herbicides and which were curling up and turning brown.

Churchill said, “I asked him how anyone in good conscience could be applying pesticides on the grounds of a hospital where there were patients being treated for cancers that could be linked to their exposure to pesticides. I asked whether he knew anything about the toxicity ratings of what he was applying and how dangerous many of these compounds were to an individual compromised by illness.”

The words cut deeply. “It was devastating,” Tukey told me. “In Maine, Rick Churchill is an icon.”

“You have broken bags of poison,” Tukey told the manager. “They all say, ‘Keep out of reach of children’!”

Tukey did some reading, and what he found was troubling. Pediatric cancers in Los Angeles had been linked to parental exposure to pesticides during pregnancy. In Denver, kids whose yards were treated with pesticides were found to be four times more likely to have soft-tissue cancers than kids whose yards were not. Elsewhere, links had been found between brain tumors in children and the use of weed killers, pest strips, and flea collars.

Tukey also learned that exposure to lawn chemicals was particularly alarming for people who spread them for a living. One study showed a threefold increase in lung cancer among lawn-care workers who used 2,4-D; another found a higher rate of birth defects among the children of chemical appliers. When he finally went to the doctor for his rashes and deteriorating eyesight, he learned that he had developed multiple chemical sensitivity. And his son—conceived in 1992, during the height of Tukey’s use of synthetic chemicals—was diagnosed with one of the worst cases of ADHD his physician had ever seen. (Several recent scientific reports suggest that toxic chemicals may play a role in ADHD.)

“All the evidence indicates that you don’t want pregnant women around these products, but I was walking into the house every single night with my legs coated with pesticides from the knees down,” he said. “Even when my son was a year or two old, … [he] would greet me at the door at night by grabbing me around the legs. He was getting pesticides on his hands and probably his face too.”

 

Tukey’s Breaking Point

In the midst of his research, Tukey was driving one day when he saw a sign: A store was having a big sale on Scotts Turf Builder. Tukey made a beeline. He was going to buy the store’s entire stock. Once inside, he walked to the lawn-care section. Tukey noticed a woman standing by the lawn chemicals. At her feet, a girl was making sand castles from a broken bag of pesticides. Suddenly, something in him burst—the DDT squirting over his grandfather’s fields, the chemicals that he’d sprayed outside the hospital, and now a child in a pile of pesticides.

Tukey told me, “I said, ‘Ma’am, you really shouldn’t let your child play with that. It’s not safe.’ I’m fundamentally shy, but this just came out of me.”

The store wouldn’t sell the stuff if it wasn’t safe, she told Tukey. She took her child and walked away. A manager came up and asked him if there was a problem. Tukey said there was.

“You have broken bags of poison on the floor,” Tukey said to the manager. “All those bags say, ‘Keep out of reach of children’!”

Those labels are there because of government formality, the manager said. The stuff isn’t dangerous. The store wouldn’t carry it if it was.

“That really was the stake in the heart of my chemical career,” Tukey said. “By then, I’d already made myself sick. I’d already been questioned by Rick Churchill. When I saw that girl making sand castles out of the pesticides, [there] was just a sudden gut-level reaction I couldn’t have anticipated. I was shaking when I left the store.”

Tukey issued a decree to his employees: His business was going organic. It was time to start weaning his company—and customers—off synthetic chemicals. Most clients were fine with his decision, just as long as it didn’t cost any more and as long as their lawns continued to look the same.

More than 170 municipalities in Canada have banned lawn pesticides, especially on public spaces like school yards and sports fields. Denmark, Norway, and Sweden have banned 2,4-D. In 2009, the European Parliament passed laws banning 22 pesticides that can cause cancer or disrupt human hormones or reproduction.

 

How to Bring Back Butterflies

Certainly, switching to a less toxic lawn company can reduce your family’s—and neighbors’—exposure to synthetic chemicals. It would also reduce the pollutants you contribute to the watershed. But there is another option, one that gets into the more inspiring realm of restoration. There is a way to think of your yard as more than a burden that needs to be mowed and weeded. There is a way to think of your yard as transformational, even magical. Doug Tallamy can show you how.

When Tallamy, former chair of the entomology department at the University of Delaware, walks around his yard, he sees things most of us would not. He can look at a black cherry tree and spot the larvae of 13 tiger swallowtail butterflies. He has planted scores of trees: sweet gums, tulips, white oaks, river birches, and sugar maples. But he’s really interested in bugs and birds—and boosting their numbers.

Suburban development has been devastating to avian populations. Most of the birds we see in our yards are probably house sparrows and starlings, invasive species from Europe. If you study the population numbers for native birds, you’ll find the wood thrush is down 48 percent; the bobwhite, 80 percent; bobolinks, 90 percent. An estimated 72 million birds are killed each year in America by direct exposure to pesticides, a number that does not include baby birds that perish because a parent died from pesticides or birds poisoned by eating contaminated insects or worms. The actual number of birds killed might be closer to 150 million.

In mid-Atlantic gardening circles, Tallamy is a bit of a prophet, his message freighted with both gloom and promise. It is the promise of ecological renewal that he most wants people to understand. His vision is based on three ideas: If you want more birds, you need more native insects; if you want more native insects, you need more native plants; and if you want more native plants, you need to get rid of—or shrink—your lawn.

Tallamy says that when we wake up in the morning to birdsong, it’s often being made by hungry migratory birds that may have just flown 300 miles. What is there to eat? Too frequently, ornamental trees that bear none of the insects the birds need—and chemically treated grass. Tallamy’s prescription: Put in native plants that will make your yard a haven for caterpillars, butterflies, and birds. In the mid-Atlantic region, this can mean swamp milkweed, butterfly weed, buttonbush, joe-pye weed, and a rudbeckia species like black-eyed Susans. At the University of Delaware, Tallamy and a team are restoring native species to the campus.

And me? I ripped up 20 percent of my lawn and planted two flower gardens, two sets of flowering shrubs, and seven vegetable beds. Now my daughter helps me pick eggplants, tomatillos, okra, and Swiss chard. My son can identify not only monarchs and tiger swallowtails but also which plants they like to eat. How? Because last year the butterflies were not here, and this year they are. We replaced the grass, which monarch caterpillars can’t eat, with native flora they can consume. It’s as simple as that. Milkweed and joe-pye weed were born to grow here. All you have to do is plant them and wait for the butterflies.

 

Wise Moves for a Lush Lawn

1. Get tested. “Spending money on fertilizer without a soil test is just guessing,” says Paul Tukey. Good soil is key to a great lawn, and a soil test can tell you what’s in the dirt and what’s missing. For a test, call your county extension office (a national network of agriculture experts).

2. Plant clover with your grass. Clover competes with weeds and fixes nitrogen in the soil. John Bochert, a lawn and garden specialist in York, Maine, recommends a seed mix of white clover, perennial rye (it germinates quickly), fescue, and bluegrass.

3. Mow high, and leave the clippings. Taller grass provides more leaf for photosynthesis, develops deeper roots, and resists weeds. The clippings act as fertilizer. “Lawns mowed at four inches are the most weed-free,” Tukey says. “If you did only one thing, adjusting your mower height would be it.”

4. Cut back on watering. Frequent watering leads to shallow roots, so “water once a week if at all,” says Tukey

5. Apply compost. “Weeds need light to grow,” Tukey says. “Spreading compost on a lawn in the spring prevents weed seeds from germinating.”

6. Listen to weeds … “Weeds are nothing if not messengers,” says Tukey. “Dandelions are telling you the ground needs more calcium. Plantains are telling you the ground is too compact and needs aerating.”

7. … and to insects. Beneficial nematodes, which are microscopic worms, eat some 200 species of insects, including grubs that become Japanese beetles; you can buy them from farm and garden stores. Mix them in water, and spray them on your lawn.

Edgar Allen Beem, from Down East

FROM CONTAMINATION BY MCKAY JENKINS, PUBLISHED BY AVERY, AN IMPRINT OF PENGUIN PUBLISHING GROUP, A DIVISION OF PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE LLC. COPYRIGHT © 2011 BY MCKAY JENKINS.

Article source: http://www.rd.com/home/gardening/lawn-fertilizer-dangers/

Get a first look at new conservatory exterior as Hershey Gardens opens for 2016

The 23-acre botanic garden that Milton Hershey built opens for its 79th season on Thursday, featuring spring’s first blooms now and a new, two-story Milton and Catherine Hershey Conservatory coming later this summer.

Contractors are heading down the home stretch on the $6.1 million glass-adorned conservatory that will become the new entrance to Hershey Gardens and allow the Gardens to stay open year round.

“The building is substantially complete,” said Donald Papson, executive director of the M.S. Hershey Foundation, which operates Hershey Gardens. “We’re hoping to have a grand opening in early to mid-July.”

The 16,000-square-foot, skylighted exterior looks all but done next to Swan Lake and the flagship Rose Garden at the Gardens’ south end.

Spring guests won’t be able to go inside yet, but they’ll be able to see how the conservatory will change the traffic flow and make a fitting “bookend” opposite Hotel Hershey higher on the hill.

“We’re exactly on schedule,” said Hershey Gardens Director Mariella Trosko, adding that the Gardens already is booking weddings and events into 2017.Workers have finished most of the interior work and soon will turn to landscaping and adding paths during April and May.

She said the conservatory’s Educational and Horticultural Wing also is projected to more than double the number of student classroom visits – thanks largely to the year-round Butterfly Atrium that will occupy the opposite wing.

“With the Butterfly Atrium, we’ll be able to do school groups all year,” she said.

The Gardens’ current Butterfly House – a main draw for school groups – operates only in warm weather, a time when kids are on summer break.

Once open, Hershey’s Butterfly Atrium will be one of only 25 butterfly houses operating year round in the United States, according to Papson.

“We’re creating a butterfly piece of art,” he said. “It’ll be a one-of-a-kind environment. No two of these look alike.”

Daniel Babbitt, who was hired to manage Hershey’s Butterfly Atrium last summer after 17 years at the Smithsonian in Washington, says the Atrium will have 50 to 60 species and 600 to 800 butterflies at any given time.

They’ll include both tropical and native species.

“What you’ll see will vary from week to week and even by the time of the week depending on what’s emerged,” he said.

Workers are finishing a meandering concrete path through the Atrium this week.

The path will wind through several garden beds that wrap around a central water feature with a stream and pool.

“That makes a calming experience for people, but it’ll also be a water source for the butterflies,” Babbitt said.

The plantings will be lush, colorful and, obviously, butterfly friendly.

“We’ll have some annual flowers that are good nectar sources, but for the most part, it’s going to be filled with tropicals,” said Brooke Umberger, the staff gardener in charge of Atrium plantings.

Those plantings also will happen in April and May. Assuming everything passes muster with the U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection, the first butterflies could show up by late May.

The Educational and Horticultural Wing also will have tropical plants – especially big ones in movable pots so the space can easily convert from display garden to classroom to wedding venue.

The center of the conservatory – the Welcome Pavilion – will house the admission desk, a gift shop, a striking view into the Rose Garden to the north, and an overlooking view into Hershey to the south.

As for what’s happening now, a smattering of spring bulbs (primarily daffodils and snowdrops) are in bloom for opening day along with a variety of early-spring-blooming perennials, trees and shrubs, such as helleborus, flowering cherry, magnolia and a beautiful Cornelian cherry dogwood blooming brilliant yellow-gold in the Children’s Garden.

In the coming weeks, the 20,000 tulips that the staff planted last fall will bloom. Some of the new varieties for 2016 include Casablanca, Cheers, Christmas Orange, Christmas Yellow, Fire Wings, Green Wave, Jochem, Lighting Sun, Pittsburgh and Strong Gold.
Thursday’s opening-day hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Hershey Gardens dates to 1937 when it opened as 3½ acres of roses on the hillside below Hotel Hershey.

These days it’s 23 diverse acres made up of numerous specimen trees, a nut orchard and 11 different themed gardens, including a 1-acre Children’s Garden, a perennial garden, an herb garden, a rock garden, a Japanese pond with shade garden, and its main claim to fame, a Rose Garden with 3,500 bushes of 275 varieties.

Admission is discounted for everyone through April 7.

Adult tickets are $7.50 (ages 13-61), senior tickets are $6.50 (ages 62 and up), and junior tickets are $5.50 (ages 3-12).

Gardens members and children aged 2 and under get in free.

After April 7, ticket prices go back to the regular rates of $10.50 (adults), $9.50 (seniors), and $7.50 (juniors).

More information on tickets, hours and visiting the Gardens is available on the Hershey Gardens website.

Spring events on the Gardens calendar:   

  • Easter Sunrise Service, Sun., March 27, 6:30 a.m. A non-denominational service open to the community and run by Hershey Ministerium. No admission fee prior to 8 a.m.
  • Gardenfest, Sun., April 17, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Everyone gets in free in this annual community day. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., local organizations offer information on community and garden programs.
  • National Public Gardens, Fri., May 6, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Guests get in at half price with a voucher available on the Gardens website after April 30.
  • Mother’s Day, Sun., May 8, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Moms get in free on their special day.

Article source: http://blog.pennlive.com/gardening/2016/03/get_a_first_look_at_new_conser.html

Nurseries scurry in winter so gardeners can enjoy spring

With the mild winter ending and spring officially blossoming forth, some homeowners and businesses are itching to plant their gardens or maybe landscape yards.

The owners and employees of Great Falls’ two locally owned greenhouses and two locally owned nurseries have been laboring behind the scenes to get their flowers, vegetables, trees and shrubs ready for the coming invasion of green shoppers.

The four, Bundi Gardens and Flower Farm greenhouses and Forde and Tilleraas nurseries, are opening for retail customers after months of preparations.

The proprietors are no greenhorns, with each being in the nursery or greenhouse business in Great Falls at least 25 years.

But they still get excited about their work and nature’s growing cycles.

“It’s incredibly satisfying putting something that looks like a little piece of dirt into the soil and growing a plant that you can eat or enjoy because it’s pretty,” said Marcia Bundi, who founded Bundi Gardens in eastern Great Falls with her husband, Jim, in 1987. “It’s also gratifying to help others get that same kind of joy and health benefits from gardening.”

“It’s a hectic time from mid-February to late April,” said Gary Petrini, who has operated the Flower Farm with his wife, Debbie, in western Great Falls since 1981. “We have so much to do in such a short time frame to get everything ready. And then it’s really nuts in our retail shops in the three weeks between Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, when we sell 60 to 70 percent of our plants.”

“We’ve been taking shipments of hardy trees, shrubs and perennials since early March, and now we’re really gearing up for our early April opening and busy sales in May and June,” said Steve Tilleraas who started Tilleraas Landscape Nursery in western Great Falls in 1986 with his wife, Brenda.

“Trees, shrubs and perennials are our bread and butter, but we do bring in a lot of flowers for Mother’s Day and Memorial Day,” he added.

Bruce Forde, said this is the busiest March he’s had since opening Forde Nursery in 1980, with the mostly mild winter weather allowing his landscaping and maintenance crews to get an early start.

March is a nerve-wracking month anyway, he said.

“Despite winter planning and effort, everything comes at once in March, from final tree and plant shipments to hiring temporary employees and phones ringing with customers’ wanting landscaping plans.”

“I start losing sleep this time of year, thinking of all the things we have to do,” he said. “Fortunately I have good employees to ease the burden.”

“And then April, May and June, though super busy with walk-in sales, is like our harvest season after all the earlier planning and planting,” Forde said.

Counting their hard-working owner-operators, the four Great Falls flower, plant and tree operations peak at more than 90 employees in the spring and early summer when they plant, make sales and do landscaping.

Each of the greenhouse and nursery business folks has a unique background and differing schedule and way of getting things done, but all help Great Falls area residents and businesses beautify their homes and yards.

Bundi Gardens open year-round

Jim and Marcia Bundi opened their Bundi Gardens greenhouse and retail store at 4410 10th Ave. N. in 1987, but both had been gardening professionals much earlier. Marcia has an agricultural degree and is now a master gardener, while Jim managed other greenhouses in Great Falls, Billings and Seattle.

“We grow the vast majority of what we sell ourselves, and because we take our own cuttings and sow our own seeds, we have to plant at the right time and follow week-to-week schedules we’ve developed for each variety of plant,” Marcia Bundi said.

It also means keeping stock plants warm in greenhouses year around and taking some cuttings from slow-growing plants such as vinca vine bedding plants, lavender and rosemary and sowing seeds from slower perennials as early as October.

Their store is open in the winter, though they get few sales, she said.

“Since we’re working here already, we figure we might as well let customers in,” Bundi added. “They have questions about their next year’s gardens, and it’s a nice, quiet atmosphere.”

As with most of the other horticultural businesses, plant sales begin to slow at Bundi’s after June. In late summer, they take inventory, plan and order seeds from wholesale seeds catalogs.

Their slackest time is from mid-September to mid-October, when it’s starting to get cold and customers are no longer planting perennials, she said.

By late fall, Jim Bundi and two full-time employees are doing maintenance work. He’s taking some cuttings and she’s sowing some seeds.

By early January, the Bundis start sowing regular seeds for annual flowers, vegetables and herbs.

Most of their replanting into larger, final containers runs from March through May, so customers will always have fresh plants.

The Bundis start adding employees in March to complete plant transplanting and care, make displays and sell during the busiest mid-May to mid-June time frame. They peak at 11 or 12 employees.

In June, they finally have time to plant a big garden, so they can sell locally grown vegetables at the Great Falls Farmers Market.

Flower Farm planting like crazy now

Gary and Debbie Petrini are celebrating their 35th year in the plant-growing business.

They started the Flower Farm greenhouse in 1981 south of Great Falls, and moved their main operation to the west side, 1500 5th Ave. S.W., in 1987. They sell plants there as well as at Electric City Conservatory, 1413 5th Ave. N., and in May and June at their original Flower Farm location, at 1825 28th Ave. S.

Petrini helped his uncle plant at Electric City from sixth grade through high school and later went to DuPage Horticultural School in Chicago to study “the business end of growing plants,” he said. He returned home and worked a few years at Fritz Roll Sons Nursery, at Flower Farm’s current west-side site, and drove many years for UPS.

The Petrinis launched their first greenhouse in their home backyard before moving to the south side and then current west side location, where they have a full-service flower shop, 40 greenhouses and a gift shop.

“We used to grow a lot more of our own plant stock, including poinsettias at Christmas time, and took our own cuttings from a variety of plants,” Petrini said. “But it would be cost prohibitive now for us to heat and operate all of our greenhouses year-round.”

“We primarily grow some bedding plants from scratch now. We’ve located large farms around the world that specialize in particular plants and do rooted cuttings. We purchase cuttings and seedlings in trays and complete the growing.”

Flower Farm closes its retail stores after mid-July.

The Petrinis plan about nine months early, ordering plants in August that they will receive in late winter and early spring to grow for sale by late spring and early summer.

They employ four full-time workers who do maintenance, repairs and upgrades in the fall. By late winter, they’re setting the pots, trays and greenhouses to receive the plants.

Eight women work from mid-February to May hand-planting a lot of delicate plants.

Longtime planter Ann Jonasen said she recently planted 4,300 pepper seedlings in a single day.

“I love the work, definitely,” she said, adding with a chuckle. “My husband says most of my wages from working here go to supply my own flower needs.”

In addition, employees using machines can plant 20 flats of less fragile plants in the time it takes a hand-planting worker to handle one flat, Petrini said.

The Flower Farm brings on seasonal sales people at its three operations in spring and early summer, peaking at 30 combined employees.

Forde grows landscaping business

Bruce Forde started Forde Nursery at 2025 2nd Ave. N.W. in 1980, making landscaping plans for new homeowners. He had worked in a nursery through high school and graduated with a business degree and horticultural minor from North Dakota State University.

Forde grew his small business into a year-round garden center and landscaping operation that serves the Great Falls area from Helena to the Canadian border.

Over the winter, he has about 10 full-time employees, including managers, designers, estimators and about four people working with plants. During the busiest spring and early summer season for walk-in sales and landscaping, the business peaks at about 30 employees.

Forde said he keeps some trees, shrubs and perennial plants over the winter in unheated greenhouses to protect their roots. Some of the greenhouses are covered with white sheets to prevent them from getting too hot from the sun.

But the business buys most of its hardy trees and shrubs from nurseries in northern climates. Some are shipped in bare-rooted and others as bulbs with burlap covers and are planted at the nursery in January and February.

They bring in and start growing perennial flowers in the greenhouses in February so they’ll be ready for summer sales. They start getting roses and potting them in mid-March in a heated greenhouse.

Forde crews have been bringing the trees, shrubs and perennials out of unheated greenhouses in March.

Meanwhile, his landscaping crews have done some maintenance work for customers and starting such “hardscape” features as retaining walls and edging on new projects. They can start planting soon, he said.

Forde said he’s seen a growth in the amount of small businesses and homeowners who want to landscape and irrigate their yards during his career, and more lawn maintenance companies who are now doing some landscaping.

The additional competition hasn’t hurt Forde’s business, he said, and some of the newer businesses buy plants from his nursery and seek advice.

“But some of these new landscaping businesses are inexperienced and lack training in landscape design and which trees and shrubs to use and when to plant them,” Forde said.

Tilleraas branched into family affair

Steve Tilleraas taught vocational horticulture and agriculture for eight years, including 1975 to 1979 in the Great Falls schools, before he started his Tilleraas Landscaping Nursery business in 1986 at 100 32nd St. S.W.

He had a little retail store in eastern Great Falls first, and then purchased the current site from farmer Oscar Nitz, who had grown trees as windbreaks and secured irrigating water from the Sun River.

“We gradually expanded things on a shoestring,” Tilleraas said. He and his wife, Brenda, now co-own the business with their daughters Melissa and Sarah, and have parceled out the work.

Father Steve and daughter Melissa each specialize in landscaping design and sales and each manages a landscaping crew, while mother Brenda and daughter Sarah run the nursery and retail sales.

The Tilleraas family does a lot of residential and commercial landscaping, he said, and most of their tree, shrub and plant nursery sales are to walk-in customers, although they supply a few area landscapers.

Besides the four family members, the business employs five or six seasonal nursery employees and eight landscaping employers from early spring well into the fall.

The four Tilleraas family members are fairly busy in the winter, doing landscape planning and ordering hardy trees and shrubs from wholesale growers in northern climates which arrive by April. They also keep some hardy trees, shrubs and perennials that didn’t sell from the previous year in the ground and covered by woodchips.

They do some “hardscaping” in late winter, such as building retaining walls, patios and outdoor fireplaces.

By March, as the weather turns warmer, they bring back their landscaping crew members who start by getting mulch, bark and top soil ready to sell at the nursery. As things warm up, they plant trees and shrubs for businesses and residents.

The retail operations open part time in March and full time in April, Tilleraas said. They’re busiest selling trees, shrubs and perennial flowers in May and June.

Although retail sales slow down in late June, homeowners can plant trees and shrubs throughout the summer if they have a good water system, he said, adding that late summer and early fall “is always a good time to plant.”

The Tilleraas nursery has a pumpkin patch operation, with a maze, that smaller kids enjoy through the second half of October.

Article source: http://www.greatfallstribune.com/story/money/2016/03/24/nurseries-scurry-winter-gardeners-can-enjoy-spring/82196760/

Domestic Garden Landscaping Materials Market Report – UK 2015-2019 Analysis

LONDON, March 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — AMA Research have published the 8th edition of the report ‘Domestic Garden Landscaping Materials Market Report – UK 2015-2019 Analysis’. Incorporating original input and primary research, it represents an up-to-date and informed review of the domestic market and includes a review of recent market trends and forecasts over the next few years.

Key areas covered:

• Detailed assessment of the market – analysis of market size, structure, recent developments and forecasts to 2019.

• Analysis by product group – market size, product mix and sector trends:

• Hard landscaping – Paving, walling, fencing, trellis, garden structures, decking, aggregates etc.

• Garden decoration – including pots, planters, water features, decorative products and external lighting.

• Soft landscaping – including bedding plants, nursery stock, bulbs and seeds.

This market is highly dependent on the weather as well as the economic conditions. Historically, the gardening industry has coped well with economic downturns and not suffered as badly as some other sectors. However, the length and severity of the latest economic downturn did appear to negatively impact on the market, particularly in the hard landscaping sector, although economic prospects and garden product demand are now improving and the market saw strong growth during 2014.

Key areas of insight include:

• Analysis of market performance in 2010-2014.

• Factors affecting the market and analysis of key market characteristics (eg: weather, consumer confidence spending, housebuilding, product trends).

• Product group analysis – sector market sizes, product mix, influences, trends and forecasts.

• Review of key suppliers for different product categories – key players, product profiles, market positioning, turnovers etc

• Review of distribution structure – key channels – garden centres, DIY multiples, builders merchants, Internet, and grocery multiples etc.

• Forecast of market performance to 2019

Some of the companies included:

Arborforest Products, AVS Fencing Supplies, Blue Diamond UK, Bouchier Fencing, Bradstone, Brett Landscaping, Cemex, Decco, Dobbies Garden Centres plc, Ebertsankey, Feature DECO, Forest Garden, Grange Fencing, Haddonstone, Hanson Packed Products, Hillier Garden Centres, Home Hardware Southwest, Honeysuckle Bottom Sawmill, Hutton Garden Products, Jacksons Fencing, John Brash, J Parker Dutch Bulbs (Wholesale), Klondyke Garden Centres, Lakeland Concrete, Liniar, Marshalls plc, Metsa Wood, Minsterstone, Mr Fothergills, Notcutts Ltd, OA Taylors Sons, Outland Stone, Plasmor, Richard Burbidge, Rowlinson Garden Products, Somerlap Forest Products, Stax Trade Centres, Squire’s Garden Centres, Stewart Plastics, Suttons Consumer Products, The Butters Group, Thumbs Up (Bury), Westland Horticulture, Wilfirs, Willowstone Garden Products, Winchester Growers, Wyevale Garden Centres.

Key areas covered in the report include:

MARKET OVERVIEW

• Domestic garden landscaping materials market – market definition in terms of product categories included – share mix between hard, soft landscaping and decorative products.

• Market size – analysis by value from 2009-2014, key characteristics of the market.

• Market trends and major factors influencing the market – including consumer confidence spending, performance of housebuilding/housemoving sector, continued interest in ‘grow-your-own’, attitudes towards gardens, longer term demographics.

• Market forecasts – market size, prospects and influencing factors on market to 2019.

PRODUCTS

• Product groups reviewed:

• Hard Landscaping – including paving, walling, fencing, trellis, garden structures, decking and aggregates, etc..

• Garden Decoration – including pots, planters, water features, decorative products and external lighting

• Soft Landscaping – bedding plants, nursery stock, bulbs and seeds.

• Estimated shares in 2014 of main product groups within each sector.

• Product groups – definition, market size 2009-2014 and product mix within each sector. Review of products including trends and factors affecting sector.

SUPPLY AND DISTRIBUTION

• Overview of supply structure – evolving market influenced by consumer shopping behavior – complex structure with various product segments within each major sector having a variety of distribution channels.

• Key suppliers by product group – major players, product profiles, turnovers etc

• Review of distribution channels – estimated shares of channels including Garden Centres, DIY multiples, Builders Merchants, Internet/mail order, Independents, Grocery Multiples etc – growth of Internet.

• Review of key suppliers in each distribution channel – turnovers, company structure, key areas of specialization etc.

FUTURE PROSPECTS

• Forecast of market developments from 2015 to 2019.

• Positive and negative factors affecting the market – performance of UK economy, housebuilding, consumer confidence spending.

• Outlook for the domestic landscaping materials market through to 2019 – growth prospects etc.

Key product sectors in the UK domestic landscaping materials market market are horticulture, which accounts for just below half of the market by value, hard landscaping and garden decoration. Annual growth rates in the market are heavily influenced by prevailing weather conditions and market performance fluctuations reflect this variability, as seen in 2012 and 2014 in particular. In addition, the performance of the UK economy impacts on the market, although the market tends to cope well with economic downturns and has not suffered as badly as some other consumer markets. Since the start of the economic downturn, sectors of the landscaping materials market have performed differently, with sectors such as paving and decking declining, whilst sectors associated with ‘grow your own’ (GYO) experienced overall growth.

The overall market was volatile during 2008-12 due to the impact of the economic downturn and weather conditions (notably poor in 2012), but recovered in 2013 and grew by an estimated 7% in 2014 – mainly due to favourable weather, an improving economy and increasing consumer confidence spending. Assuming ‘normal’ weather patterns, the market is expected to experience growth to 2019. Key factors influencing the market include the housing market, consumer confidence spending, and levels of interest in gardening as a hobby or to grow produce, as well as the trend for gardens being seen as an extension to the home and al fresco dining, the mature structure of most sectors and the growth of the Internet that tends to drive down average prices and increase price competition in the market.

Distribution of landscaping material is complex and fragmented, consisting of a very wide range of products distributed through a range of channels. Key channels include DIY multiples, garden centres (particularly for horticulture), builders merchants (hard landscaping) and mail order Internet (a channel gaining share). Internet retailing is expected to continue gaining share as consumers seek greater value for money and the convenience of home shopping. Garden centres are increasingly addressing this issue and it is likely that those companies prepared to evolve their formats and develop their offering will perform better in the future. Garden centres are increasingly being seen as destination centres and have expanded their product ranges to more weather proof their businesses.

Forecasting future market performance is difficult at this time due to events unfolding in the Eurozone and the forthcoming General Election, as well as the market dependency on the weather. However, house building and house moving levels have improved in recent years and are forecast to continue. As the economy and consumer spending grows it is expected that the market will benefit from pent up demand for landscaping projects that have been deferred during the economic downturn. Also, some product sectors saw consumer downgrading in their product selection, which has reversed more recently and is expected to continue as disposable income levels increase. Trends that may benefit the market include increasing demand for artificial grass, permeable paving and other environmental friendly options (e.g. solar lighting) and container vertical gardening. Conversely, sectors such as the declining decking market are forecast to lose share in the overall market mix.
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Article source: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/domestic-garden-landscaping-materials-market-report---uk-2015-2019-analysis-300240706.html

Spring gardening tips from Both – Agri

Grow Lights: I’ve been writing about starting your own seeds for quite a while but forgot to mention one important thing. If you are using florescent shop lights with two ordinary bulbs, use one warm bulb and one cool bulb instead. This combination is very similar to the color spectrum required to grow plants. Any hardware store sells them; the labels will say warm/red spectrum or cool/blue spectrum.

Planting early crops: If the soil starts to thaw and can be worked, you could put in some plants like potatoes, spinach, peas and shallots. I would wait until about April 15th to plant onions. If soils are not soggy, a lot of your cool season crops could be planted mid to late April.

Asparagus Beds: If you are planning on an asparagus bed this year, the soil should be well prepared before planting. Good soil preparation is the single most important thing you can do for asparagus. With proper care, they can produce for 100 years or more. A bed 30 feet long and 8 feet wide will give you space for 30 plants. Plan on growing 10 plants per household member.

Dig trenches 15 inches deep. Fill each trench with 4 inches of rotted manure. Next add the “secret weapon” for root development: a layer of phosphorus (0-20-0) at 5 lbs per 100 sq.feet.(10 ft.x10 ft). Then hoe in around 4 inches of the soil you dug out of the trench. Set the asparagus plant on a little mound of soil and cover with another inch or so of soil.. Mix the remaining soil with compost and as the tiny asparagus grow, gently place this soil around them until you reach ground level. In June and October, a sprinkling of 10-10-10 fertilizer as a side dressing will help with next year’s crop. Do not harvest for at least two years. And remember to keep the beds weeded.

Contact Phyllis Both at phyllis.both@ces.uwex.edu or 608-355-3253.

Article source: http://www.agriview.com/feature/farmlife/spring-gardening-tips-from-both/article_84f3ac71-be2d-5b7a-950e-1aeb59e0a978.html

Green Thumb: Gardening Tips & Provisions

Growing tips, garden provisions, and sartorial essentials for expert horticulturists and first-time gardeners.

 

Banshu Hamono’s ergonomic scissors and shears ($170-$260) are modeled after Japanese katana, or traditional samurai swords. Hive Home, Gift,  Garden - West Palm Beach

Shear Genius

Stock up on agrarian essentials rooted in the Far East.

Our pick: Banshu Hamono’s ergonomic scissors and shears ($170-$260) are modeled after Japanese katana, or traditional samurai swords.

Hive Home, Gift, Garden, West Palm Beach (561-514-0322)

Photo by Chelsey Boatwright Photography


 

All Clear A vertical green wall makes growing herbs indoors a snap. Our pick: No need to hit those weekend green markets when you have this acrylic Full Bloom plant stand ($1,499) at home. B. Pila Design, Miami (305-985-6370, bpiladesign.com)

All Clear

A vertical green wall makes growing herbs indoors a snap.

Our pick: No need to hit those weekend green markets when you have this acrylic Full Bloom plant stand ($1,499) at home.

B. Pila Design, Miami (305-985-6370)

 

Garden Guru

Jason Jason “Farmer Jay” McCobb knows his way around a garden. An expert in sustainable agriculture, McCobb divides his time tending to his three-acre farm in Lake Worth, designing herb gardens for his restaurant clients, and teaching kids about sustainable practices through his Jr. Sprouts program. Here, he shares a few tips. Farmer Jay Pure Organics, Lake Worth (561-396-0210)

Location: Gardens should be a part of our everyday, not in the back corner of the yard out of sight. Ideally, you should be able to slip out in your socks to trim some basil.

Sunlight: Consistent southern exposure is best for berries, fruits, and summer vegetables. Leaf and root vegetables are more tolerant of the shade.
Water: Irrigate regularly but don’t overwater or you’ll attract bugs. Get a hose with a built-in water timer.
Maintenance: The best fertilizer is the gardener’s shadow. Tending a garden is like raising children, so get to know your baby’s needs by being present.

Photo by Damage Studios

Terrarium Gardening Advice and TipsGardens Under Glass

Bring the outdoors in and create your own terrarium with these helpful guidelines.

Click Here


 

Ample pockets and concealed fabric ties make this locally made linen Makers apron a great choice for fashionable floriculturists.

On Your Mark

Go hands free with a gardening apron that has plenty of pocket space.

Our pick: Ample pockets and concealed fabric ties make this locally made linen Makers apron a great choice for fashionable floriculturists.

Earth and Sugar at Social House, Lake Worth (561-444-9636)

Photo by Chelsey Boatwright Photography


 

Artist John Risley’s vintage iron bench ($3,500) seats two and charms at any angle.

Sit Pretty

Regard your verdant surrounds from a bold perch.

Our pick: Artist John Risley’s vintage iron bench ($3,500) seats two and charms at any angle.

Galere, West Palm Beach (561-832-3611)


 

Make a stylish splash in these Rockstud rain boots ($445).      ValentinoRain Warrior

Flex some serious fashion muscle, rain or shine.

Our pick: Make a stylish splash in these Rockstud rain boots ($445).

Valentino, Palm Beach (561-659-7533)

Hidden Gem

After decades of stellar indoor exhibitions, the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County (561-471-2901) now has an outdoor art haven to call its own. Sitting just south of the nonprofit, Project Space serves as a sculpture garden and is currently showcasing Jeff Whyman’s “Resurrection of Innocence,” a collection of jocund steel works, through July.

Crafted from burnished enamel and welded steel, Jeff Whyman’s striking Woman With Yellow Bird sculpture stands 7 feet tall ($64,000).

Bird is the Word

Transform an alfresco setting into an artful retreat.

Our pick: Crafted from burnished enamel and welded steel, Jeff Whyman’s striking Woman With Yellow Bird sculpture stands 7 feet tall ($64,000).

Jeff Whyman Studio, Delray Beach (561-322-8867)

Photo by 4th Ave Photography

 

Article source: http://www.palmbeachillustrated.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=news.details&ArticleId=5127

Arlington Garden Club to offer ‘knockout’ garden design tips


Posted Mar. 23, 2016 at 4:53 AM


ARLINGTON

Article source: http://arlington.wickedlocal.com/article/20160323/NEWS/160329600