Carnivorous Plants and Black Bears

Written by Jacob Farin

Carnivorous plants native torepparttar United States are accustomed to cold temperatures, frost and snow. That is what really makes these plants very unique. They may look tropical, but really they are as hardy as a black bear inrepparttar 113392 Rockies.

But, likerepparttar 113393 black bear, there is something that frost-tolerant plants do not like dry freezing Arctic wind. This type of wind will pull moisture right out of your plant and cause your plant to wither away.

There are couple ways to protect your plants fromrepparttar 113394 wind, while making sure they stay in hibernation.

Wind protection is only necessary if you live in zones 5 or below and temperatures routinely go below 20F for more than a week at a time.

Likerepparttar 113395 black bear, you can place your plants in a cave. If you do not have a cave in your backyard, place your plants in an unheated garage, tool shed or cold frame, which is essentially an unheated greenhouse.

Becauserepparttar 113396 plants are dormant and has stopped growing forrepparttar 113397 winter, light is not much of an issue. Just make surerepparttar 113398 soil is always moist. You can maintain its moisture by keepingrepparttar 113399 plant in no more than 1/4-inch of water.

Before placing your plants in your cave, so to speak, follow these important steps:

Growing Great Tomatoes

Written by Karen Gross

For many people, growing big juicy tomatoes is part of what makes vegetable gardening so enjoyable. Whether purchasing plants from your local nursery or starting tomatoes from seed, there are a few basic steps to follow to ensure that you harvest an abundant crop atrepparttar end ofrepparttar 113391 growing season. There are many different varieties of tomatoes to choose from, depending on whether you will be cooking, canning, slicing, or eating miniature or grape-like varieties right offrepparttar 113392 vine. Sweet 100s are very abundant, and are good for salads as well as eating fresh fromrepparttar 113393 garden. Roma tomatoes are good for making salsa, becauserepparttar 113394 peels are not as tough as others so you dont need to peelrepparttar 113395 skins off. Romas are also known asrepparttar 113396 classic paste and sauce tomato. There are Early Girls, Early Boys, Big Boys, Big Mamas, Sweet Baby Girls, Beefsteaks, French Rose hybrids, Big Rainbow, specialty tomatoes and many more. So start by choosingrepparttar 113397 kind of tomato you would like to grow.

Planting Tomatoes from Seeds

Tomatoes grown from seed will require six to eight weeks before they can be planted inrepparttar 113398 garden. Purchase individual containers or flats, starter soil or mixture, andrepparttar 113399 seeds of your choice. Fill each container with soil, pressing it tightly to remove air and to avoid settling problems after watering. Typically, seed companies print instructions for planting right onrepparttar 113400 tomato seed package. Each variety is a little different so follow instructions carefully. Prepare a label identifyingrepparttar 113401 type of tomato andrepparttar 113402 date started. You can make your own from Popsicle sticks or purchase them atrepparttar 113403 store or garden center.

Insert your label inrepparttar 113404 pot and mist with water. Place containers in a sunny window and keep seeds moist by placing a plastic bag over them. Small greenhouse containers are also available at your local nursery. Watch for seeds to germinate and remove plastic when plants emerge. Wean out weaker looking seedlings to give strong ones more room to grow. Keep moist by misting or watering tomatoes when needed. When plants have a second pair of leaves it is time to transplant these seedlings to your garden or a large pot in which they are to grow.

It is a good idea to harden off or acclimatize a plant to outdoor conditions before planting by setting it out in direct sun duringrepparttar 113405 day and bringing it in at night. After a few days,repparttar 113406 tomato plant will have adapted torepparttar 113407 new surroundings and can be transplanted inrepparttar 113408 desired location. Place plants directly outdoors afterrepparttar 113409 threat of frost in a shady location, out ofrepparttar 113410 wind and protected from heavy rains.

Purchasing Started Plants

If you prefer to purchase plants from your garden center or greenhouse, select dark green plants that are stocky in size and that do not have any fruit. The fruit will stuntrepparttar 113411 plant growth andrepparttar 113412 total yield will be reduced. Tomatoes are one ofrepparttar 113413 few plants that will tolerate being planted deeper than they sit inrepparttar 113414 pot. So a taller plant can be placed a little deeper if preferred. As mentioned, harden offrepparttar 113415 plant before moving it to a final location.

Preparing Garden Soil For Tomato Plants The soil should be deep, loamy, and well-drained forrepparttar 113416 best harvest. Tomatoes prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6.2 to 6.8. The term pH balance refers to acidity orrepparttar 113417 alkalinity of your soil from a numerical scale of 1.0 to 14.0. The neutral point onrepparttar 113418 pH scale is 7.0. Higher than 6.5 indicates alkaline soil, lower than that indicates acidic soil.

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