|Lawn Care For Busy People
Storm Damage and Mature Tree Pruning
One winter evening I was working on the computer when the power went out. The freezing rain that had been forecast must have been the culprit. It was getting late so I went to bed figuring we would have power again by morning.
Thunder and lightning woke me a couple times, but then I heard something a little different. An explosive popping sound followed by what seemed to be a shower of sparks. In my minds eye I tried to picture the cause of this sound. An exploding power transformer with hot lines arcing around it? There is nothing like a puzzle to keep me awake; but I didn't want to get up and lose the warmth I had built up under the blankets. Just drifting off again I heard the sound repeated but up the hill behind my house and more distant... more crackly sounding but still accompanied by the sparkling shattering sound my ears were now more tuned in to analyze. Suddenly realizing the impact this freezing rain was having I shot out of bed and ran to the window. Large tree limbs were on the ground. Major branches were bending under the cumulative weight of the ice; then noisily busting sending thousands of 3" icicles to break with a sparkly shattering sound.
Well the power was out for days for many, and the damage to the trees and landscape is still being cleaned up. After a damaging storm you always see a migration of tree company trucks to the area. Many of the local tree care, and landscape businesses have their hands full assisting their customer base. The city workers are also busy as these crews and residents move debris to the street for collection. The effects of such a storm can be seen in the landscape for years to come. Storms can cause limbs to break and trees to fall. A large damaged tree branch can be extremely heavy and dangerous to remove or trim. Removing large branches from a mature tree safely requires special training and often specialized equipment. Also the way this damage is dealt with impacts on the health of the tree. If you value your trees (yes I know they are all valuable) or fear a tree becoming a hazard, I would suggest you find a certified arborist.
One good first test of an arborist is:
Tell them you need your trees topped.
If they say "Sure, no problem." move on till you find one that knows what is good for the long term health of a tree.
There are plenty of crews in your town that can carve up your trees for you; but it may take diligence to find a crew trained in the proper pruning of mature trees. Everyone appreciates the hardworking and practical service of the local jobber cleaning up a storms mess, but if you have issues with major branches of a large tree, do generations to come a favor and search out an International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist.
A good certified arborist with integrity will only perform ISA accepted practices. Branches are not removed without good reason. They do not "top" tree's, remove excessive amounts of live wood, or use climbing spikes on a tree (unless it is being removed). A good arborist knows how to make removal of a desirable tree the last option, and will make pruning decisions that will enhance the health of the tree and reduce possible hazards.
Pruning Cuts on a Mature Tree
Regardless who is doing the pruning or why, final pruning cuts should be made just outside a growth of bark cells called the branch collar. The branch collar is a collar of growth made of parent branch (trunk) tissue where the branch meets the trunk (or parent branch) and care should be taken to not cut or remove it. This is true for dead, damaged or living branches. Do not remove the actively growing cells of the branch collar. These cells are the trees way of closing the wound. The branch collar grows a bit out and angled away from the parent, so if you make a flush cut against the trunk, the branch collar has been removed and the wound will not close. Conversely if you cut far away from the trunk the branch collar is not near the cut where they can grow over the wound. Improper pruning cuts can hurt your trees.
Take notice of trees with dieback of the bark on branches and down the trunks. Often you can tell it was from a flush cut or an end cut. Other times it may be a storm damaged branch that wasn't removed and it died back to the trunk and on down.
If removing a large limb, first its weight should be reduced to prevent tearing the bark when the branch falls. Make a shallow cut from the bottom of the branch a foot or so out from the branches point of attachment. Then finish cut from the top, above or a little further out on the branch. This leaves a lighter and more manageable stub. The stub is then removed while taking care to not remove the branch collar. This technique reduces the possibility of tearing the bark.
A garden center manager, writer, musician and webmaster; Lee Goins is often called on as an expert in landscaping and gardening. Residents of Shelby County Ohio have been bringing him pieces of trees, moldy leaves, and jars of bugs for 8 years in spite of the well publicized knowledge he prefers chocolate. His gardening help has been featured on TV, Radio, Newspapers and websites like http://www.shelbylandscaping.com
Straw Bale Culture Technique
In general, plants grown in straw bales appear to require less water than when grown in soil. Another benefit to using straw bale culture is the garden bed will turn into compost offering some additional nutrients to your vegetables and herbs. The constantly composing environment warms up to provide gentle heat to the roots of plants and for your greenhouse. After some preparation and processing the compost will also begin to generate Co2 which will help to boost your plant's growth rate.
Hand Feeding your Koi
One of the most rewarding and entertaining things about having a Koi pond is when your fish finally start eating out of your hand. There is no better way to learn each fishes' personality and temprament than to have them nuzzle your fingers when they are hungry.
For the Birds: Selecting and Placing a Bird House
Bird watching brings enjoyment to many people. Selecting and correct placement of bird house can attract many birds to your yard. The correct bird house can bring enjoyment and viewing pleasure from the comfort of your own home.
Decorative Garden Accents
Think of your garden like you would a room in your home. After planning the shape, tilling the soil, choosing the right plants the last step is to add those personal touches. And just like indoors this is accomplished with accessories.
There are many reasons why you might want to dry your roses. Some people just want to keep a memento of a special moment. Perhaps they are a part of a wedding that you went to; maybe they were a gift from a mate, friend, or family member. Whatever your reasons for doing it, this is the section where you will learn to dry your roses properly.
A Teak Table - Accent Your Outdoor Decor With One
It's been time consuming, and there have been a lot of hard decisions along the way, but finally you have chosen the perfect outdoor furniture that fits your personality, budget and space. And as you sit on your new favorite chaise lounge, drink balanced precariously on the edge of the flower box to your left, you suddenly realize what your space is lacking: tables. Not just any table, but a teak table.
Vegetable Garden Layout
The size of your yard will determine your final vegetable garden layout. What can be fun is the planning of the garden and the decisions surrounding the kind of garden you want. One of the very first decisions is whether it will be a ground level or raised bed garden.
Metal Garden Furniture
Since Victorian times metal garden furniture has become a popular way to decorate gardens. In fact, since this furniture can easily last for many years with the proper maintenance, some people are still using pieces in their gardens that were made in the Victorian era. Metal garden furniture adds both a classic style and durability, which demand that it should be considered as the preferred choice of garden furniture.
A Teak Chair - Create a Livable Outdoor Space with One
When creating a comfortable, usable outdoor space, nothing could me more inviting and warm than furnishing that space with natural products such as wood. Often, though, there are problems associated with wood furnishings. Wood is susceptible to the elements and can splinter and degrade if not cared for properly. That's why many people choose teak chairs and teak furniture for their outdoor spaces.
Choosing the Perfect Landscape Painting
Landscape paintings are a beautiful way to spruce up the decor of your home. Although you can buy cheap reproduced paintings, you may want to consider purchasing an original from an artist to reduce the risk of a friend obtaining the same one. You can even buy one from an undiscovered up-and-coming artist to get a beautiful landscape painting at half the cost.
Gardening--Fun and Frugal!
Whether you are an avid vegetable gardener, a beginning herb gardener or just like to have a pretty yard, these frugal tips may help you save a little money!
Here is Why You Should Use Gypsum in Gardening
Do you have clay or layer of hard subsoil problems in your garden? Then gypsum may be the answer to help loosen the soil structure. It is not considered a miracle substance and you will find that it doesn't work right away, but a 3 year program of applications should help improve the poor soil conditions. It is not expensive and is easy to spread where needed.
Wild Flower Garden - Yours to Design and Plan
To design a wild flower garden, you do not need to be a specialist or an artist, you just need to be observant and let your creative juices flow. Look around you, what is unique about your surroundings? Do you wish to enhance or compliment these things. Will your new wild flower garden be visible from the house, if so, perhaps you would like to plant your favorite colors so every day is a feast for your eyes. Are you seeking a quiet spot to sit awhile and relax, then your new garden can have a stone bench surrounded by tall plants to create a sense of peace and privacy. As I said, whatever style of wild flower garden you want, it can be yours. You can make this a reality if you plan the work, and work the plan.
Orchid Care - What The Root Tells Us
Orchid Care Part 4 Diseases of the Roots
Flower Meanings & History of Flowers
The charming and delicate beauty of flowers has fascinated people of all nations and backgrounds for centuries. Flowers have been bred and cultivated for their decorative beauty as well as their ability to heal diseases. Flowers are the subject of poems and myths, and religious symbols are associated with flowers as well. Many girls are named after flowers. The main reason for the popularity of flowers though is their ability to bring good cheer.
Wind Chimes Go Great With Gardening
What could be more relaxing than gardening on a nice summer morning? Listening to your wind chime while you garden! Wind chimes are not only fun to look at but they add much more to your garden then just visual appeal.
How to Grow Cucumbers
The versatile cucumber (cucumis sativus) is tasty pickled, in a salad, as a salad, in a sandwich, or just eaten raw. How to grow cucumbers depends largely in part on how you plan to eat them. Cucumbers come in over 120 varieties that range from small picklers to large slicers and from dark green to the yellow of the lemon cucumber. They come "burped" or burpless, seeded or without seeds.
Ten Considerations Before You Buy A Bird House
When you decide to buy one bird house or more -- be aware that there are many designs being sold that are unsuitable for the birds. These houses may not attract any birds or the types of birds you wish, or they may actually be harmful. Many are very cute and look like little decorated houses. There is nothing wrong with these, but they are usually more appropriate as indoor decoration than as good safe homes for wild birds. Below is a checklist of the ten most important features of a good working bird house. Before you put a house out for wild birds, be sure it has these ten features. If it is decorative and still has these features, then it is fine to put it out.
Create a Hummingbird Garden Habitat
It's not difficult to create a garden that will attract hummingbirds, but if you'd like to build a habitat in which they will happily nest and live throughout the northern summer, you need to provide them with more than a sugar-water feeder and a plant or two. An active hummingbird garden doesn't need to be large, but it will have all of the following key ingredients to attract and keep the attention of "nature's fairies".
History of the Adirondack Chair
If you were to travel to Blue Mountain Lake, New York, you would come across a very unique museum called the Adirondack Museum. According to experts that run this museum, the Adirondack chair originally went by a different name - Westport chair, which was after a small nearby town nestled in the Adirondack Mountains. Thomas Lee first created the design of the Adirondack chair in the early 1900s. Determined to develop a chair that would be appropriate for both indoor and outdoor use, as well as a chair that was highly comfortable, he started to work using standard boards and nails.
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