Garden Jobs Late Spring – Early Summer

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Garden Jobs Late Spring to Early Summer

There are garden jobs that should be performed around late spring – early summer including planting bedding plants, pruning and taking cuttings etc.

Bedding

Bedding is a term that refers to the planting of short-lived temporary annuals, biennuals, perennials and, increasing in popularity, succulents in order to create colourful seasonal displays that are replaced every spring, summer or winter. Bedding plants are usually discarded after flowering. Since we are now in late spring/early summer, this post will primarily concentrate on summer bedding plants. Continue reading

Easter Flowers and Their Meanings

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The giving of flowers has had symbolic meaning going far back into history. An example would be the small posies or ‘tuzzy-muzzies’ that Victorian suiters would give to their loved ones as an expression of devotion. This is especially true of Easter flowers, which represent the new life, new hope and new beginnings of the Easter season.

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Spring Garden Jobs

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Here are a few of the Spring garden jobs that need to be tackled, as well as some to perform on houseplants. Spending time now will pay dividends in the future, so here is a list of some of the jobs. It is not exhaustive, but should give an idea of some of the things that need to be done at this time of year.

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Valentine’s Day

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The Background

 Valentine’s Day (or ‘Saint Valentine’s Day’ as it should properly be called) is celebrated in many countries throughout the world, including China, Finland, France, Greece, India, South Korea and, perhaps most Continue reading

Poinsettia

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Originating from Mexico, the Poinsettia has become synonymous with Christmas, but with care will last until Easter and beyond. The yellow flowers are small, but are outshone by the vibrant clusters of bright red bracts. More recent cultivars can have pink or creamy white bracts, or variegated pink and white bracts.

Environment

The Poinsettia does not like sudden changes in temperature, so do not buy one that has been displayed in a cold or draughty shop (or market stall) as its red bracts will drop soon after you get it home. It enjoys a warmer climate so avoid temperatures below 55F (13C), which should be fine for indoors. Try to keep it away from draughts and, although it enjoys good light, try to avoid direct sunlight, especially through glass, as this increases the temperature and can burn the flowers and bracts.

Watering

Overwatering will cause the leaves to turn yellow. Wait until the surface of the compost begins to dry to the touch then water thoroughly but do not leave the plant standing in the water which has drained off as this will become cold and cause leaf drop. If possible, keep the pot on a watered pebble tray to create a humid atmosphere. This will prolong the life of the red bracts and help to stop the leaves from dropping. Feed with a proprietary flowering food every time you water the plant in its flowering season.

Pests And Diseases

The plant is vulnerable to attack by whiteflies, attracted through stress if the plant is left in direct sunlight.Grey mould (botrytis) or root rot if conditions are too wet. If the leaves are wilting, water it at once and it should soon revive, but ensure there is sufficient drainage too avoid root rot.

How To Buy

If you would like to buy good quality plants directly from the greenhouses and delivered to your door, please call me:

Estelle – 07956 371405

Caring for your Orchid Plant Phalaenopsis

Phalaenopsis has on of the longest lasting flowering season, and will last through the years bringing pleasure in your home, we can choose  plants for your home with matching pots for your decor ?

How To care for your Phalaenopsis Orchids Plants
 

Phalaenopsis Orchid: The ideal night temperature is 60f/45c to 65f/48 c and daytime temperature range of 70f/51c to 80f 54c. Similar to that of your home. an ideal flowering  plant for your home.

Light conditions: Phalaenopsis do not require too much light to grow well. In their natural habitat they grew in the dappled shade of trees. Placed on a windowsill, with an east exposure proves to be the best, ( bet you have no idea where east is!) very bright positions near glass where the sun shines directly on to the plant burns the leaves and cause withering, attracting disease, please remember glass intensifies the temperature,In the months of December through the middle of February move these plants to a brighter position. One call out when we are in your area will help you place your plants and you will enjoy success.

Watering: your Phalaenopsis in the morning, helps to insures water evaporation on the foliage before nightfall’s cooler temperatures, if water accumulates on the crown use kitchen towel to absorb the excess to make sure it dries, this is one of the main causes of disease. Water with tap, rain or distilled water when the bark mix approaches dryness, if the orchid is in a moss mix this tends to absorb water more efficiently, these plant will need less watering, water once in 4 to 7 days depending on their position.Never use softened water, the salt in this water will cause untreatable damage in most cases. Plants left standing in water become unhealthy either with bacterial or fungal rot. If you need help or cannot determine what is wrong, call I will  enjoy discussing the problem and helping you, not at midnight please !

Flowering: once your orchids have totally acclimatized to your environment they tend to generally follow a flowering season although there is variations due to the genetics involved. Most will flower spike in October through to December. Flowering season would be late winter early spring February. More mature plants tend to bloom more often and the flowers last even longer – nine months to more than a year. You may encourage main spikes or go for sub spikes  which will produce more flowers. Some species are primarily summer bloomers. After it has flowered the first time, cut the stem just above the node where the first flower bloomed. From the top node a new flower stem should emerge within 2 months. If there is no response or the flower spike turns brown, cut it off near the base of the plant where it emerged. And you will gain a complete new spike. Would you like me to look after them or show you how?

Fertilizing: with drop by drop orchid food, the bottles placed upside down feeds the plants on a regular basis and they will produce larger blooms. If your plant is potted in bark, flush with clear water once a month. If potted in sphagnum moss use a bottle feed then rest for a week before replacing a new bottle.If you decide to flush water through a plant with sphagnum moss this must be done early in the  morning, to allow time for the moss to dry out .A clear water flush gets rid of chemical build up. We stock this bottle feed.

Humidity: They do well in kitchens and bathrooms, as It is important to provide good humidity. They will adapt to a lower humidity conditions if kept well watered.

Re Potting: Because the Phalaenopsis is watered frequently,(EXCEPT IN MY HOME WHERE IT GETS FORGOTTEN !) the bark breaks down, they require re potting about once in two years sometimes earlier The best time to re pot tends to be spring or fall, preventing shock. Give me a call we will do this in your home for you.

Diseases: Buds dry up and drop off the plants before opening. Check the following: is the plant too dry or too wet ? or  ( root rot, this is the most common cause of death, plants left to stand in water)  Is the temperature too hot and the sun shining directly on the plant, does the room gets too cold especially in the nights ? Are you using softened water instead of clean water? Maybe too much fertilizer ?  strong fumes may also have an effect. These are some of the conditions which bring disease. Call me, and have a chat do you want me to pop in, and have a look at your plants?

Bulb Planting and Information

Bulbs make beautiful displays

Tulips or Tulipa a bulbous perennial, which flowers between March and May. They are fully hardy and require full sun but dislike excessively wet conditions: One of the easiest garden plants to grow, they give an abundance of colour and a new life to the garden, expressing their beauty in differing shapes of flower heads and heights .  Plant spring-flowering and hardy summer-flowering bulbs in autumn,  summer-flowering bulbs in early spring, and autumn-flowering bulbs by late summer.Tulips make ideal plants for the borders or bedding. They  can also brighten containers and some varieties can be naturalised by planting them in grass, as can crocus . Tulips grow best in fertile, well-drained soil in full sun, sheltered from strong winds. All dislike excessively wet conditions.Before planting application of Growmore or chicken manure pellets will improve  the nutrient value of sandy or clay soils (70g per sq m or 2oz per sq yd) Neutral to alkaline soil is best. A  pH reading of lower than 6.5 will benefit from additions of lime.Plant from mid- to late autumn – this help reduce problems with the disease tulip fire   Discarding any bulbs that show signs of damage or mould Plant at least twice the bulb’s width apart and at a depth of two or three times the bulbs height Most Tulips are best replaced each year.  They are unlikely to re-flower Tulip parts may cause stomach upset if ingested. It is best to wear gloves when planting them, as contact may aggravate skin allergie

 Daffodils or Narcissus: a bulb, they flower in Feb to early May, and need planting in Sept to October, Daffodils give a welcome wakeup call to spring, they can be planted in sun or light shade plant at a depth of two or three times the bulbs height Daffodils have 13 divisions, based mainly on flower form. Some divisions are known particularly for their fragrance, or for their ability to naturalise in grass.Jonquilla and Apodanthus:  divison7 Are fragrant,  eg Narcissus ‘Dickcissel’ AGM. Daffodils can be troubled by slugs,snails, virus disease and Narcissus bulb rot.Sometimes daffodils can fail to flower or produce unusually small, pale flowers. This is known as daffodil blindness, and has a number of causes. There are no cures for viruses plants should be destroyed.

Hyacinths or Hyacinthus orientalis, a bulb, plant in sun or light shade, fully hardy can be frost susceptible,  in containers plant in early autumn. Hyacinths provide stunning spring displays of fragrant blooms between march and April. Both in the garden and containers.Hyacinths grow best in well-drained, moderately fertile soil, in full sunTo protect them they should be planted 10cm (4in) deep and a minimum of 7.5cm (3in) apart Blooms should be removed as soon as they begin to brown, but the leaves should die back naturally .Left planted in the soil they become small with few flowers. But yet a delicate scented treat. To regain the dense large blooms, fresh bulbs must be purchased ad planted All parts of Hyacinths, if ingested cause stomach upset, handling the bulbs as they may aggravate skin allergies. Slugs can be a prove difficult during mild periods, bulbs that show any sign of disease should be discarded to avoid spread of disease.