Tulip CareWritten by Linda Paquette
The crocus, anemone, narcissus and daffodil are all welcome harbingers of spring. However, growing tulips capture essence of spring with bright colorful blooms that renew earth with promise of summer color. The best part of growing tulips is watching them dance in first breaths of spring. The second best part of growing tulips is tulip care. The reason is because once established, a tulip bed needs very little care at all!
Tulips originated in Central Asia where they grew in wild. The word tulip means turban and comes from a Turkish word, turbend. Tulips were cultivated in Turkey as early as 1,000 AD. Today tulips are frequently associated with Netherlands. In August of 1593, Carolus Clusius received a gift of tulip bulbs from his friend, Ogier Ghiselain de Busbecq, ambassador of Constantinople. He planted bulbs and spring of 1594 gave birth to first tulips of Holland. Clusius’s planting is still considered birth of Netherlands flower bulb business, which continues today, over 400 years later. The colorful flowers soon became major trading commodities. Different color strains and mutations were status symbols and in such high demand in 1600’s that tulips were often sold by estimated weight, even before they were lifted from ground. Trading in tulip futures was dubbed as “tulpenwindhandel” (tulip wind trade). Soon this speculative trading got out of hand and Dutch government introduced trade restrictions to quash it.
Organic Lawn FertilizerWritten by Linda Paquette
Your lawn can be only as good as soil under it. When you use slow release, organic lawn fertilizer, you provide your lawn with nutrition that grows healthy, disease and drought resistant green turf. Although you may want to be first on your block to have a green carpet in front of your home, healthy grass needs to grow at its own rate. Organic lawn fertilizer feeds your lawn from soil, allowing it to grow naturally and establish a deep and expansive root system that is necessary to growing strong and healthy turf.
Over fertilization actually grows your lawn to death. Chemical fertilizers basically leave all their nutrients on surface of soil, killing microorganisms that work to keep soil healthy. High nitrogen fertilizers are foliar feeders; they help top-growth, which looks good and deceives you into believing you have a healthy lawn. However, half of all soluble nitrogen leaches out of your soil before it can be absorbed. If all your “lawn food” is on your soil instead of in it, your grass has no need to develop a good root system.
Organic lawn fertilizer breaks down slowly, feeding your lawn as it adds nutrients to soil. Roots feed from these nutrients and build up a reserve of carbohydrates keeping your lawn healthy and promoting steady growth during times of stress caused by disease or drought.