Orchard & Tree Pests

There are a host of insects that feast on trees; some are deadly for them, with no known defense. Here are some of the more common pests you may find on your tree and how to control them.

Trees and ornamental shrubs will eventually encounter a variety of bugs. The difficulty is determining when, or if, many of these problems will reach a level where something must be done about it. Some tree pests are present every few growing seasons and require immediate attention, while many others are found each year but cause little or no harm.

(C) Gardener's Supply

(C) Gardener’s Supply

Maintaining healthy, productive trees means knowing about common pests. Survey your backyard regularly to identify problems at an early stage. Identifying the problem and evaluating its severity will help decide if control is necessary and, if so, what management strategy to take. The tree pests listed below are some (of the many) that homeowners are likely to encounter.

Read more: https://www.planetnatural.com/pest-problem-solver/tree-pests


Honeybee Population in Decline

A grave situation has developed over recent years where it has been established that the honeybee population is in decline world wide. Bees are in trouble. Beekeeping is in trouble.

Two-breaking stories on bee decline, pesticides and politics. The European Union has imposed a two-year ban on the use of certain pesticides linked to bee deaths. This comes after a report citing three specific pesticides from a group known as neonicotinoids as a major cause in the decline. Chemical manufacturers — specifically Germany’s Bayer and the Swiss Syngenta — fought fiercely to stop the ban. Some 300,000 people in the U.K. signed a petition supporting the ban. Even with that, the British Parliament voted to side against the EU plan.

(C) Tony Gordon Printcounsel

(C) Tony Gordon Printcounsel

Second story: Here in the U.S., the federal government released a study citing a variety of reasons for bee decline. In addition to pesticides, mite infestations, lack of nutrition, and genetic variation all contribute according to the study. The study was seen as a response to the EU’s banning of certain pesticides linked to bees deaths. “At E.P.A. we let science drive the outcome of decision making,” said Jim Jones, the agency’s acting assistant administrator for chemical safety and pollution prevention. “There are non-trivial costs to society if we get this wrong.” Translation: Risking our entire population of honey bees is trivial in the face of losing a few dollars for big chemical and agricultural companies.

Read more: https://www.planetnatural.com/bee-decline

How to Grow Lots of Fruit on Your Citrus Trees

Growing citrus trees is challenging but rewarding. Like most plants citrus trees have their own special requirements. If you want your citrus trees to bear lots of fruits, follow these steps and you will soon have a flourishing, bountiful citrus tree to make you proud.

It’s hard to imagine life without citrus… without zesty fresh juices full of vitamin C, more-ish lemon delicious puddings, a squeeze of lime in a soda or a Corona, or hot water with lemon to kickstart the morning. Life would be so very bland without these things.

(C) Gardenologist

(C) Gardenologist

Citrus trees are some of the easiest fruit trees to grow in your backyard. Their popularity is deserved — they are ornamental yet productive, have handsome, shiny green leaves and fragrant flowers, and add wonderful flavours and zing to cooking. Equipped with these growing tips, you should be harvesting box loads in no time at all.


Citrus plants love sunshine — five hours a day is required for maximum fruiting. Planting them in a north-facing, warm and sunny position is best. In cooler climates, grow them alongside a sunny wall, where radiated heat will warm them. Alternatively, bring pots inside during winter.

Citrus plants like water, but any water must drain away quickly and not pool in the root zone. To prevent this, before planting, dig a hole in a potential planting spot and fill with water. If it takes more than 30 minutes to drain, the drainage is inadequate. Mound the soil or choose another spot.

Read more: http://www.homelife.com.au/gardening/gardening-tips/citrus-trees


20 Garden Ideas that Will Blow your Mind

I really love flowers that’s why I always make it sure that my garden being taken care of. I get inspirations from the pictures I saw online — the designs and styles of gardens.  And this article has blown me away seeing these beautiful pictures of gardens.

Your garden or backyard should be your oasis. Whether you want a place to relax and unwind after a long day at work or a lovely area to entertain on weekends, your imagination is your only limit. Many people think that having a small space means they are bound to only the simplest of decorating features, but it simply is not true.

This list of twenty gorgeous garden ideas has something to appeal to every sensibility. Whether you want a riotously colorful flower garden or a romantic place for summer nights, find your perfect inspiration here.

(C) Pinterest

(C) Pinterest

Personally, number four is perfect for my idea of a relaxing oasis. The lovely little pond can be scaled up or down to create a beautiful focal point that will impart a feeling of peace and serenity.

If you tend to do a lot of entertaining, number twelve may be more your speed. A beautifully manicured lawn with a lot of space for guests is key, while carefully chosen flower bushes lend privacy and incredibly colors. Try tall hedges in place of traditional fences to keep your garden feeling safe and secure without sacrificing the beauty of nature.

Take a look at these twenty fantastic garden ideas – many of which can be implemented in spaces of all sizes and shapes – and find your perfect backyard sanctuary. Mix and match ideas to create something that is both uniquely your own and will appeal to a wide range of people.

Read more: http://blog.gardenloversclub.com/gardens/creative-garden-ideas


14 Ideas to Make a Small Garden Look Bigger

For people who love plants, a small garden is a curse. But it shouldn’t be. The following are tips to maximize the use of a small yard, where less is more and more is easily achieved.

Who doesn’t dream of an English estate with groves and gardens and koi ponds? Or perhaps you prefer the ultimate American playground with a pool and a grill? With 80 percent of us living in urban areas, however, the reality is most of us have a small garden.

But don’t despair, even those of us with modest outdoor spaces can take steps to make them a little more grand.

(C) San Diego Duathlon

(C) San Diego Duathlon

1. Think Big, then Drill Down (a.k.a: Prioritize)

My husband is always pushing to add one more thing to our small Cape Cod plot. At any given time he’s wanted a patio, a kitchen garden, an orchard, a hot tub, and a sandbox for the kids. (This last was my favorite, since we live across the street from the beach!)

I get it. All those things would be great, IF we had a large yard. But a small yard simply can’t be all things to all people. Cramming too may “amenities” into a minimal space results in disordered, cluttered chaos. So the first thing to do when faced with a small garden is to decide what you absolutely can’t live without—an outdoor entertaining space; a kitchen garden; a playground—and make that the priority.

2. Make a Plan

Now that you have your priorities straight, make a plan. Hire a landscape architect or garden designer to help execute your vision in the most efficient manner. There are also many apps and websites to assist you in creating a layout. Even a simple sketch will do. With a plan in hand, you will be able to make the most of your small outdoor space. You may even find you actually have room for that hot tub.

Read more: https://www.gardenista.com/posts/14-ideas-to-make-a-small-garden-look-bigger

Entryway Plant List: Choosing A Plant For Front Entrances

Does your home inspire, motivate, and welcome your guests? Your hallway is what’s going to create that first, and very important, impression on anyone. And plants are one of the best entryway decors that can attract visitors.

For most homes, the front door garden is the guest’s first impression of you and is scrutinized the most closely. As a result, you should practice restraint in the chosen accents and plants for entryways used in your front door garden design. Let’s find out more about choosing a plant for front entrances.

Front Door Garden Design

(C) Homedit

(C) Homedit

When creating a front door garden design, consider the architecture or “bones” of your home. The garden entryway should complement the design of the house and echo the mood one wants to project.

The front door garden should reflect who you are and how you want to be perceived. Whether choosing a relaxed grouping of mixed border plants or a more formal potted topiary flanking the front steps, the landscaping of the front door garden area will set the tone for visitors as well as a welcome home to you.

Whether of simple design or complex, the front entryway garden should draw the eye toward the front door. You want the front door garden design to be a transition between the exterior landscapes to the more intimate indoor area of the home. Tapering a walkway to lead guests to the front door and then creating a larger area at the doorway itself gives a welcoming impression and space to gather, greet or say goodbye.

Transitional options, such as an arbor or a few stairs, link spaces to gradually move your visitor from the exterior to interior of your home.

Read more: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/special/spaces/plants-for-front-entrances.htm


6 Of the Most Common Garden Weeds

Weeds actually are plants that happen to be left to grow by nature that can take away the nutrients from the soil and don’t enable the ample progress of grass and also other garden plants. Whenever they are kept to grow wild, unwanted weeds can overcrowd other landscaping shrubbery, grasses along with decorative plants. Weeds are classified primarily in line with the form of the foliage, its method of growth, and the time when it grows. It is important to know their existence making sure that you’ll know how to prevent them.

Here are six of the most common weeds:

Daisy weed

This weed can stand close mowing and trimming yet still flower. It is spread by seed consequently can colonize the lawn instantly. They’re reasonably easy to take out since they’re susceptible to weed killers and one application is normally sufficient to kill them. In cases where problems are sparse then weed them out by using a hand fork called a daisy grubber.


The yarrow weed could grow to a height of around 20 ” and bears feather-like foliage and groups of white-creamy flowers. This weed does give off a scent should the foliage is mashed. Yarrow may be found in poor soil that’s without nutrients. The yarrow weed is ideally removed from the lawn by pulling manually.

(C) tri-statepest.com

(C) tri-statepest.com


The dandelion is a perennial weed with pointed and glossy rosettes of foliage and yellowish colored flower heads which soon turn into fluffy seeds. As the fluffy seed heads are rapidly spread and regenerate, it is essential to totally eliminate the dandelion the moment found. They typically grow to a height of about 10 inches.

Dallis Grass

Dallis grass is perennial grass and it is a very tough weed to handle. It is a warm season grass which actively invades all grassy spots. It’s light green in appearance and in most cases has to be removed individually to be sure the rhizomes and root structure is thoroughly removed. Dallis grass is additionally treatable with the pre and post-emergence weed killers.


This weed is very common in gardens. This is a perennial that grows in cooler seasons and is discovered just about everywhere. The foliage are rosette-shaped and have conspicuous veins. Leaves might appear parallel-veined, green to purple and may also be hairy or smooth. Seed heads similar to rats’ tails could be the distinction of this weed.


Once this grassy weed has started to occupy a place in your garden it can be very hard to eradicate it. This type is annual and it also germinates by seeds spread during the previous year. Sunlight is the best friend of crabgrass in which it will help it to sprout. With this kind of weed, it is easy for someone to prevent it from growing instead of preventing it once it has sprung.


6 Steps to Creating Your Butterfly Garden

Everyone enjoys watching butterflies fluttering about among flowers. By creating a garden specifically for butterflies you can attract and enjoy even more of these beautiful creatures. You can easily make a beautiful butterfly garden in your own with these 6 steps.

(C) onegreenplanet.org

(C) onegreenplanet.org

Butterflies are among the most beloved insects. Someone once called them flying flowers. They float, they flutter and they dazzle us with their colors. We relish their dance of spring. Then there’s the bad news: Because of pesticides and habitat loss, the populations of our cherished butterflies is in decline.

A few simple tips will have you on your way to creating your own butterfly habitat. Any home garden, even a container garden, can attract butterflies. My vision is a patchwork of schools, businesses, home gardens and parks around the country that provide insect habitat, restoring communities of beneficial insects. The steps are simple — like most of earth’s creatures, butterflies just need food, water, sun and a safe place to have a family.

1. Use a Diversity of Plants

Butterflies, including the anise swallowtail (Papilio zelicaon) seen here, want nectar from a diversity of flowering plants. And they find the plants when they are in large blocks of color. Like a sign over a roadside diner, blocks of color say, “Hey, we’re open for lunch.” Select a variety of nectar plants for adult butterflies using these guidelines:

Read more: https://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/44769697/list/6-steps-to-creating-your-butterfly-garden


10 Useful Tips About Wooden Summer Houses and Sheds Before You Buy

Summer houses are an excellent way to make the most of the garden especially this coming summer. But with so many different types and styles of summerhouses on the market, how do you choose which is suitable for you. It  is important to spend some time considering exactly what you are looking for before you decide on a particular building.  Let’s have a look at this article to know exactly what you are looking for before buying a garden summerhouse.

(C) Mortongardenbuildingsltd.co.uk

(C) Mortongardenbuildingsltd.co.uk

1. Building regulations and planning permission

“My garden and my rules” is unfortunately not exactly the way it works with setting up a summer house or any other building in your garden. Whether you need to apply for a planning permit or not depends on the size and height of the building, ways of use, location in the garden and other details.There are two separate issues when considering a new garden building – Building Regulations and Planning Permission.In most cases, if the building has an internal floor space up to 15m² and its overall height is less than 2.5m, it is very unlikely that you’ll need any Building Regulations or Planning Permissions at all. Even if your garden building is within the limits, it is still wise to contact your local planning office and get all the answers to your questions. This will give you peace of mind to be sure that everything goes to plan with your new garden office or a hobby room.Should your desired summer house or a garden room exceed the limits, don’t worry and don’t give up your dream! In this case you should call or visit your local planning office and get a proper instruction of what you need to do in order to meet all the rules and get the required permissions. Our previous experience with clients getting planning permission for larger garden buildings, is that it takes no more than 4-6 weeks. Should you require any plans, detail or information to submit your planning application which is not on our website then please email or call us.

2. Peculiarities of wooden buildings. Proper care.

Wood is a natural material, growing and adapting depending on the temperature, humidity and other weather conditions especially during the first month after the assembly. It is common that you must adjust doors and windows a few times during the first month after the wooden cabin has been erected and then once or twice in a year to keep them functioning properly. Small cracks, knots and color tone differences are not errors but inherent qualities of wood.It is important to treat your garden house with wood preservative stain or other protective coatings straight after the assembly. Untreated wood becomes grayish, and can turn blue and become moldy or rot. We recommend that you treat floor boards with a wood impregnation agent before installation, especially the bottom sides of the boards, because after the assembly you have no more access to that side.Having been properly treated, your log cabin’s lifespan has been increased significantly. It is wise to inspect your summer house once in the year and retreat accordingly to the instructions set by the wood preservative manufacturer.

Read more: https://summerhouse24.co.uk/10-useful-tips-about-wooden-summer-houses-and-sheds-before-you-buy


The Best Plants For Clay Soil: Grow in Full Sun and Partial Shade

 Some might  find it hard to identify plants that can grow well in clay soil. But actually there are lots of them! Read this article to find out what are those plants and how to plant them.

Clay soils bring many gardeners out in a cold sweat. They have a reputation as back-breaking and impossible to work with. But the truth is that clay soils can be truly brilliant in a garden.

They are rich in nutrients and retain plenty of moisture, two important things that plants need to grow well. In fact, many plants thrive in these conditions.

Here’s my guide to handling clay soils, including how to improve them and a list of the best plants for clay soils, in both full sun and partial shade.

What are clay soils?

(C) Topsoilshop.co.uk

(C) Topsoilshop.co.uk

First, it helps to understand what we mean by clay soil. This type of soil has a structure made of very fine particles which sit closely together, meaning that air and water cannot easily move through the soil. This is what makes it ‘heavy’ and it can lead to poor drainage.

The biggest problem with clay soil is that it gets waterlogged. This can slow the growth of plants and even cause the roots to rot.

Clay soil is also heavy to dig and slow to warm up in spring. But these issues are outweighed by the potential clay soil has to be the foundation for a wide range of plants.

Read more: http://www.daviddomoney.com/2016/02/23/the-best-plants-for-clay-soil-grow-in-full-sun-and-partial-shade