Organic Roses in the Flower GardenWritten by Sandra Dinkins-Wilson
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6. Mulch, mulch, mulch! Mulching can reduce stress on your rose in several ways. It helps to hold in moisture which can be very good in a hot, dry climate. It helps maintain a more even temperature in root zone. And mulch can smother weeds that could be competition for your lovely roses. As mulch decomposes, it adds more nutrients to soil around your plant. Lastly, it can cut down on some of your work. ;-)
7. Roses are, what could be considered, heavy feeders. They respond well to fertilizer and should be fertilized on a consistent schedule. Most organic fertilizers are slow-acting and may produce less spectacular results of a non-organic fertilizer. Some organic fertilizers to consider are composted manure, fish emulsion, alfalfa meal, blood meal, and cottonseed meal. If you wish to have a truly organic rose garden, you should ensure that your fertilizer is also organic. Of all these only one you can be sure is truly organic would be your composted manure if you know exactly where it comes from and how animals are raised. Perhaps you should consider your own animals raised organically. Chicken manure is very high in nitrogen and some localities allow a small backyard flock. Make sure it is composted thoroughly as chicken manure is very "hot" and will burn your plants.
8. Prune your roses in early spring. To keep your roses healthy, get out dead wood, damaged wood and anything that starts to look diseased (and don't compost these trimmings). Thin out your plant to keep it from being crowded. Don't allow branches to rub against each other. This will allow air and sunlight to get to whole plant keeping it healthier.
In part 2 later this week, we will discuss some organic methods of combating specific diseases and pests.
Find more Rose Garden articles, as well as part 2 of this article, and other gardening tips for Flower Garden Lovers at our website.
How to Water Your Houseplants WiselyWritten by Kori Puckett
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You can water in several ways. A quick and easy method is to water from surface with a watering can. Use a long-spout water can and water at room temperature. When water escapes through bottom of a pot, houseplant has had enough.
Pots also may be placed in a tray of water for about half an hour. This allows soil to draw water in from drainage holes. Some plants, such as ferns, especially like this watering method.
During each watering, use enough water to completely soak soil in pot rather than simply wetting surface. (Keep in mind when watering that hairy plants, such as African Violets, can be damaged if their leaves get wet).
Tap water is fine for plants, but it's a good idea to let water stand in an open container overnight to allow it to come to room temperature and allow chlorine to evaporate. If your tap water has a high fluoride content, it is wise to use water from another source -- spring, well, rain water, distilled water, or water that has collected in a dehumidifier. You also can add perlite or limestone to your plant's soil to neutralize fluorides.
More steps to easily care for your house plants can be found at http://www.koripuckett.com/house-plant-care
Answers to the Most Frequently Asked Questions About House Plants Inside This Powerful Guide. Visit House Plant Secrets At: http://www.koripuckett.com/house-plant-care/houseplantsecrets?wa