Caring For Tropicals And Exotic Flowers

Written by Gerry Belvedere

Continued from page 1

Look atrepparttar flower heads and notice howrepparttar 136802 petals are “cupped” to catch and store as much water as possible. These plants drink fromrepparttar 136803 top and like being wet.

Look atrepparttar 136804 pattern onrepparttar 136805 leaves. The ridges channel water down torepparttar 136806 stem where it is absorbed intorepparttar 136807 many layers ofrepparttar 136808 plant.

2. If your flowers have been out of water for any length of time after cutting, submerge them inrepparttar 136809 bath for half an hour or so.

3. Cut 3 to 4 inches offrepparttar 136810 stems and then place them in a tall vase FULL of clean water.

4. Use a spray bottle to mist them at least twice a day.

5. Changerepparttar 136811 water and re-cutrepparttar 136812 stems every 2 or 3 days.

You can doublerepparttar 136813 vase life of your cut flowers by using these simple techniques.

Gerry Belvedere is a former artist who now runs her own online florist service at Rosaflora delivers flowers Australia wide and overseas and offers tips on getting the most out of your cut flowers.

Get Off The Grass - Groundcovers For Problem Places

Written by Jean Fritz

Continued from page 1

The original plant used for “lawns” was creeping thyme (Thymus serphyllum). This creeping beauty is ideal for high-traffic areas, responding torepparttar onslaught of pedestrian footfalls with heavenly fragrance. Many people grow creeping thyme as a filler in flagstone or brick walkways, but there’s no reason to limit it to small spaces. Another herb that is popular as a groundcover and adapts to either sun or shade is sweet woodruff (Asperula odorata). The plant has a fernlike appearance, andrepparttar 136681 leaves smell like new-mown grass or hay. Inrepparttar 136682 spring, it boasts dainty white flowers that are used to flavor German May wine.

Finally, if you believe you are a brown-thumbed gardener and nothing will work for you, take heart. There are two groundcovers that grow in sun, shade, sand, clay, and are virtually indestructible. These arerepparttar 136683 golden moneywort (Lysmachia mummularia aurea) and bishop’s weed (Aegopodium variegata). Golden moneywort is a golden-leaved, low-growing creeper. It starts to color up in early spring, oncerepparttar 136684 temperatures reachrepparttar 136685 mid-60s, and retains its golden hue until hard frost hits. Like most lysmachias, it is very invasive, and can choke out unwanted weeds within two to three seasons. Bishop’s weed stands about 12” tall, and offers succulent, palmlike leaves in either deep green or variegated hues. Its flowers resemble those of Queen Anne’s lace. And from personal experience, I can attest that it comes back stronger after burning, tilling, chopping and applications of glyphosphate herbicide. Perhaps you can kill this stuff with kindness, but nothing else works.

Using groundcovers may take you out ofrepparttar 136686 “best lawn” competition withrepparttar 136687 neighbors, but they will be green with envy when your time is spent grilling and lounging rather than mowing, watering and fertilizing.

The author is a farmer and freelance writer. You can take a virtual tour of her farm at

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