Growing Wildflowers in Your Garden

October 1st, 2013

Growing Wildflowers in Your Garden

Many people love the natural beauty of wildflowers. You can find them growing in a meadow, along the side of a road or even grow them purposefully in your own garden. Many admire the wildflowers that are found in the wild because these beautiful flowers grow – all without the help of a gardener seeing to their needs. Gardeners like them because they are not fussy flowers and need minimal care. Growing wildflowers is not like deciding to add several bushes of roses to your property! You’ll have beautiful blooms in no time and won’t have to watch over them constantly. They are also the perfect choice for the new gardener who is eager to grow flowers and wants to see results. Some flowers many of us now grow in our gardens were once known as wildflowers, including the snapdragon, the morning glory and the black-eyed Susan.

wildflowers

One challenge with wildflowers that those who grow them should be aware of is that if you choose to pick them, don’t expect them to last very long. Some flowers when picked will look lovely for a week or longer. Your wildflowers may be enjoyed for a few days or so and then start to fade. While they are hardy plants that require minimal care, this also means that they do not have the resources to withstand being picked.

The term “wildflower” is used to describe these charming flowers, but they are most often known by serious gardeners as “native species” which are naturally found in that specific area.

How to Grow Wildflowers

Growing wildflowers is easy and fun. They are the ideal choice for a new gardener who would love to grow flowers or anyone who would like to grow flowers that require minimal care. You’ll want to be sure to have a sunny spot for them. Use fertilizer only occasionally with your wildflowers, they actually prefer to grow naturally.

Popular Wildflowers Gardeners Love

There are many wildflowers available to plant in your garden. Here are some of the most popular wildflowers today. Remember to always check if a particular wildflower will grow in your climate and weather conditions, as wildflowers grow across the U.S.A. and in other countries.

Bachelor’s Button (also known as Corn Flower) – This flower is native of Europe and is an annual grower. It originally appears in blue but you’ll also find it in other colors including white, red and pink.

Cosmos – A charming and pretty flower that is often found in pink or white. This small flower blooms in the summertime and you’ll see it until the first frost. Cosmos are an annual flower.

Coltsfoot – This pretty yellow flower will bloom early on in the year. It has large flowers that sprout well ahead of its leaves.

Foxgloves – The Foxgloves appear in a beautiful, bold pink color that gardeners will love. This flower is found in wooded areas and prefers damp and shaded areas to grow best. You’ll see Foxgloves biennially and they bloom during the summertime.

Iceland Poppy – This flower is bright in color and large. They come in a variety of colors, from orange, yellow and white. They may remind some gardeners of tulips.

Prim Rose – Many love the Prim Rose and it blooms in the springtime. It has tiny white flower with yellow centers.

Sunflower – Some sunflowers stand over 12 feet tall, others are much smaller but these are beautiful wildflowers. Sunflowers can be found in yellow, light yellow and orange. They grow best in full or bright sunlight.

Remember there are many more – dozens and dozens! – of wildflowers you can choose from. Its time to grow a beautiful wildflower garden!

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10 Natural Remedies for Asthma

November 2nd, 2013

Asthma is a disease that affects millions of people in the Unites States. Unfortunately, asthma cases are on the rise; there are 2.5 million more people affected than there were five years ago. Asthma is a condition that makes it difficult to breathe, due to the constricting or tightening of the lungs. People with asthma have triggers that start an asthma attack. Different people have different triggers, and a lot of it depends on whether you have allergic asthma or non allergic asthma. People with allergic asthma will be triggered by things like dust, pollen, pet dander, or anything that can cause an allergic reaction. In people with non allergic asthma, things like exercising, cold air, and extreme emotions. Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for asthma. However, the good news is there are a number of things you can do naturally to help alleviate and sometimes prevent the symptoms for asthma.

woman-breathing-fresh-air1

1.       Breathing Techniques

Some people may find a great deal of relief by changing their breathing patterns. Breathing shallowly can raise the level of carbon dioxide in the bloodstream. Doing this can help dilate the airway muscles due to the increased carbon dioxide. In studies, patients with asthma have noticed a positive change in their breathing, however there has never been a study big enough to confirm whether or not this technique is truly successful. It is important to speak with your doctor before trying any techniques like this.

2.       Air Purifier

Because of the link between asthma and allergies, having an air purifier in your home is a great idea for any allergy sufferers. An air filter will help greatly reduce and possibly even eliminate dander, dust, and other allergens. This can lead to a significant decrease in asthma symptoms, and even those without asthma may notice they can breathe more easily with an air filter in their home!

Read the rest of this entry »

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How to Grow Your Herbs Inside

October 30th, 2013

Fresh herbs grown in the convenience of your own home offer more than just added flavor to your favorite meals. Intoxicating scents and a beautiful variety of plants can also add to the aesthetics of your home. Whether you are moving your plants out of harsh winter weather or considering starting an indoor garden, there are a few key things to know about growing herbs indoors.

Growing From Seeds

PR_1523 There are many herb plants that do well growing indoors. Typically, it is easier to purchase herb plants to bring home, but you can take on the adventure of starting your garden from seeds. This can give you a wider selection of plants and is typically less expensive. Starting from seeds also can help ensure a healthy plant. Annual herbs like dill are among the most common. A few others that do well:

  • Start basil from seeds and put it in a place with a south-facing window, as it does well with a lot of sun and warmth.
  • Bay leaves are perennials that can grow well all year long, and they enjoy lots of space in east- or west-facing windows.
  • Chervil seeds should be started in late summer and thrives when temperatures are controlled between 65 and 70 degrees.

 

Moving Herbs Indoors

Before the first frost, you can begin moving your potted plants indoors. However, you should put them in a cool “transition” area first, like a garage or basement, for a few days or weeks before putting them in their winter home.

To successfully move your plants inside, snip a 4-inch section, measured backward from the tip of the plant. Remove the lower leaves and place the stem into a moist mix like perlite. Cover the plant with glass or clean plastic to keep humidity on the plant. Some herbs have special instructions once you move them inside:

  • Oregano should live in a south-facing window
  • Chives transition well from an outdoor garden, clipping them at the end of the season before moving them to a brightly-lit window.
  • Parsley can either be started from seeds or dug up from your garden at the end of the season and placed in an east- or west-facing window.
  • A cut of rosemary should be kept in a moist, soilless mix until it roots.
  • Sage tolerates dry air well but needs a south-facing window for strong sunlight.

If you choose to bring herbs indoors from an existing plant or are purchasing a plant from a provider, be sure to inspect them for things like insect activity. If it doesn’t look right, it is probably best to pass on it. Read the rest of this entry »

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Use Wildflowers in Your Wedding Bouquet

October 11th, 2013

wildflower-wedding-bouquet

There is a holiday known as midsummer’s eve that celebrates the season, the sun and the fertile earth. A Swedish myth holds that a woman will dream about the man she will marry if she places wildflowers under her pillow on midsummer’s eve. Myth or no, we like the idea that wildflowers are linked with wistful, wild romantic ideals. On your wedding day, you can marry the man of your dreams while holding the flowers that make other women dream of theirs.

Vivacious Variety

Nowadays, people seldom pick their own flowers and instead choose someone like us to help. Picking a wildflower has come to represent spontaneity and thoughtfulness – in a “I saw this and thought of you” kind of way. It takes effort to put together a bouquet of flowers that grow wild. In addition to a sense of fun, one of the biggest advantages of incorporating wildflowers into your wedding flowers bouquet (thank you to Richmond’s Florist) is that there are so many. Choose from bright, bold colors or delicate pastels. Some popular choices include:

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Using Holistic Health Practices To Prepare For The Flu Season

October 7th, 2013

sneezing-girl

While flu shots continue to be the most popular preventative measure for the flu season, there are a host of additional steps that one can take to stay as healthy as possible this winter. A flu shot doesn’t guarantee immunity from the flu, and as the old sayings goes “prevention is the best medicine.” Western medicine is still largely reactive rather than proactive, meaning that prevention often falls to the wayside. Incorporating holistic health practices, such as Chinese herbal remedies, into one’s daily life helps to provide lasting health, particularly during the flu season.

The following are some simple ways one can enhance overall health and help prevent from being sidelined by the flu:

Maintain a Healthy and Consistent Sleep Schedule

This might sound simple enough, but a shocking number of people don’t receive adequate rest. Recent studies indicate that 7-8 hours is ideal for optimal health; inadequate sleep can weaken the immune system and contribute to stress, obesity, depression, headaches, and heart disease. Healthy sleep habits go beyond how many hours of sleep an individual gets. Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule is important as well, particularly for those who have high levels of stress. Read the rest of this entry »

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