Tag Archives: Atlanta landscape

Press – Magazine Recognitions – Mom.me

20 Feb

Our ORGANIC gardens are highlighted in magazines and our gardening tips are published year around! For the last couple of months I have been writing tips and advices for home gardeners for the Atlanta Home Improvement magazine. This week I have been asked to participate on another editorial opportunity for Mom.me about Garden Fruits and Vegetables!! I will update this note as soon as I have the link for Mom.me

Atlanta Home Improvements Feb 2013 2

Atlanta Home Improvements Feb 2013 3  Atlanta Home Improvements Feb 2013 1

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How to attract birds to my backyard?

10 Feb

How to attract birds to my backyard?

When we first moved to Mindtown Atlanta, there were not many birds visiting our abandoned backyard. Nowadays, we are visited for over 30 species during the year. Some are local birds and some are migratory birds.

We basically planted evergreen shrubs such as hollies, aucubas, ligustrums, anise and many others. And most importantly we have 2 birdbaths and 3 water fountains. Water is the key to have many birds in our backyard.

Tip: Place one birdbath with stand close to a tree so the birds can feel protected and they will have a place to clean their feathers. And another one on the floor surrounding by plants such fatsia japonica, a holly tree or azaleas. Birds seem not to like birdbaths without shrubbery around it. Make sure to clean the birdbath at least once a week and refill it with fresh water every other day (even if water its frozen).

Most importantly, please do not apply any pesticides in your garden. If you apply an insect control for example you will kill not only the undesired insect but the beneficial as well, then a bird will eat this insect and then you will be poisoning the bird too.

How Important is Water for Birds?

It is VERY important, birds like other (all) animals, need water to survive. Birds also use

water for bathing, to clean their feathers and remove parasites. Every day we have many birds visiting our backyard’s birdbaths and water fountain. I don’t even have to place bird food anymore, because with water I attract more birds than ever.

Check out the following videos and pictures:

Video:

http://youtu.be/KnS_HAenrAo

 

Pictures of my backyard birds:

http://www.facebook.com/arcoirisdesigngardening?ref=hl#!/media/set/?set=a.292875447415130.62926.181272451908764&type=3

Interesting sites:

http://www.birds.cornell.edu/pfw/Members/BirdNote09–ProvideWater.pdf

http://blog.wbu.com/2012/07/16/how-important-is-water-for-birds/

http://www.georgiawildlife.com/node/2620

How to Use Fireplace Ash for Gardening

11 Jan

photo

Winter is the perfect season to collect your fireplace ashes either to store them in a save container or use them into your garden. When wood burns, nitrogen and sulfur are lost as gases, and calcium, potassium, magnesium and trace element compounds remain.

“Wood ash has a very fine particle size, so it reacts rapidly and completely in the soil. Although small amounts of nutrients are applied with wood ash, the main effect is that it is a liming agent.” (1) Furthermore, calcium works as soil amendment, helping to maintain chemical balance in the soil and improves water penetration.

Uses:
1. As calcium and Potassium soil amendments
2. Enrich compost, enhance its nutrients by sprinkling in a few ashes to the mix.
3. Block garden pests. Spread evenly around garden beds, ash repels slugs and snails. Salt in the ashes dehydrates these insects.

Calcium and potassium are both essential to plant growth. Hereby, I am listing the symptoms of both deficiencies.

Symptoms of calcium deficiency:
– Necrosis at the tips and margins of young leaves,
– Bulb and fruit abnormalities,
– Deformation of affected leaves,
– Highly branched, short, brown root systems,
– Severe, stunted growth, and
– General chlorosis.

Symptoms of potassium deficiency:
– Yellow and brown spots on leaves
– Leaves drop off
– Smaller and fewer fruits
– Fruits appear deformed or small

BEFORE applying ashes to your plants please keep in mind that too much ash can increase pH or accumulate high levels of salts that can be harmful to some plants, so use ashes carefully. And don’t use it in acid-loving plants such as blueberries, cranberries, rhododendrons and azaleas would not do well at all with an application of wood ash.(1)

1. http://emmitsburg.net/gardens/articles/frederick/2004/ashes.htm

Colors of my garden – DECEMBER

7 Jan

Azalea

Azalea

 

Camellia Flower bud

Camellia Flower bud

Fatsia Flower

Fatsia Flower

Fatsia Flower and flower bud

Fatsia Flower and flower bud

Hellebore

Hellebore

Holly Berry

Holly Berry

Hyacinth emerging

Hyacinth emerging

Insect on leaf

Insect on leaf

Tree Berry

Tree Berry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 very good reasons to plant Shrubs and Trees now (fall – winter):

20 Dec

5 very good reasons to plant Shrubs and Trees now (fall – winter):

 

September 12 053
1. No stress from hot weather.
2. Plants don’t have to expend energy on making leaves, they’ll put it into creating a strong root system.
3. Because of temperatures, you don’t have to worry so much about watering your new plant.
4. There are fewer insects and disease problems that could damage your new shrubs or trees.
5. Nurseries will have a lot of good prices for plant material.
(In cold winter areas, it’s recommended to plant six weeks before the first hard frost is expected.)

Any questions? Need help with your garden? www.arcoirisdesign.com

Colors of my Garden NOVEMBER

10 Dec

Pink double knockout rose stamens and pistil

Cape gooseberry flower

Cape gooseberry flower

Cape gooseberry

Cape gooseberry

Boston Ivy on wall

Boston Ivy on wall

Sky is the limit rose new bud

Sky is the limit rose new bud

Cucumber

Cucumber

Hydrangea flower

Hydrangea flower

Tea olive flower

Tea olive flower

Japanese maple leaf

Japanese maple leaf

Tomatoes and Cucumber

Tomatoes and Cucumber

Colors of my Garden – OCTOBER

10 Nov

Bee on lime coleus flower

Bee on lime coleus flower

Moth

moth

Pink Dahlia

Pink Dahlia

Pupa – Chrysalis swallowtail butterfly

Pupa - Chrysalis swallowtail butterfly

Sky is the limit rose

Sky is the limit rose

Sky is the limit rose

Squash flower

Swallowtail larva eating

Swallowtail larva eating

 

Colors of My Garden – AUGUST

5 Sep

Blackeyed Susan

Goldstrum rudbeckia

Purple Petunia

Crape Myrtle Natchez

Ornamental Bamboo

Big Blue Liriope Flower

Delosperma cooperi

Gold Lantana

Colors Of My Garden – JULY

14 Aug

Tickseed ‘nana’

Verbena bonariensis

Sunflower ‘sunspot’

Butterfly  bush – pink

Hosta

Eggplant

Tomato ‘roma’

Cucumber Flower

Cucumber

Crape myrtle

Curry Plant

Bell pepper flower

Peach

Frangipani flower buds

Squash Flower

Colors Of My Garden – JUNE

2 Jul

African blue basil flower

 

Coneflower – Echinacea

Dragonwing Begonia

Dragonwing Begonia

Green Pepper Flower

Hibiscus hardy

Honeysuckle flower

Hosta Flower

Hydrangea

 

Lawn Mushroom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monarch butterfly and Coneflower

 

 

Ogon Sedum

 

Pink Torenia

 

Raspberry

 

Roma Tomatoe

 

Salvia Black and Blue

 

 Salvia Red

 

Sky is the limit Rose

 

Squash Flower

 

Sunflower sprout

 

Thailand Basil

 

Torenia Yellow

 

Toto Rustic Rudbeckia

 

Tropicana

 

Verbena Pink

 

Yallow

 

Yarrow terra cotta