Thursday, January 11, 2018

Creating a Miniature Garden

Creating a miniature container garden is a great way to satisfy your urge to plant something while it's still winter outside. You can make wonderful container gardens with many of the features your outdoor garden has.  The secret is to think small. Begin by selecting a theme for your miniature container garden.
This one is titled "Life is better with friends", but you may choose to build one around an English cottage, a beach scene or a playground for fairies. The theme you choose is limited only by your imagination. Once you've decided on a theme, sketch out your miniature garden on a piece of paper. This will help you locate plants and accessories, as well as determine how large of a container you'll need.
Containers come in many shapes, textures and colors.
A key requisite is the container has drainage. Other than that, any container will do. Once you've settled on a container, add an even layer of layer of potting soil. The soil should be moist. If it's dry, then add water to hydrate it.
Now, you're ready to plant. Two things to remember. First, choose plants that will complement your design. Second, pick plants that will complement each other. That is, the plants you choose should have similar light and water requirements. 
When you visit our greenhouse, you’ll discover an entire section of plants dedicated to terrarium and miniature gardens. These are plants that will typically stay small and not overgrow your miniature garden. You’ll also find a wide selection of plant types and colors.
As a rule, you’ll want to place taller plants in the back of the garden and shorter plants toward the front. If you have any question regarding which plants work well together, please ask us. We’ll be glad to help you.
Accessorizing your miniature garden is next and again, you’re looking for items which will build on the theme you’ve chosen. 
From bridges, to cottages, to fairies, there are any number of accessories available. Once completed, you need to locate the garden where it will receive bright light, but not direct sun.
Miniature gardens are easy to design and build. With an idea, a container, soil, plants and accessories, anyone can experience the enjoyment of miniature container gardening.  

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Orchid Growing Tips

Growing Orchids as Houseplants 

One of the most common and popular orchids is the Phalaenopsis orchid, also called a moth orchid. Phalaenopsis orchids are great starter orchids and will do just fine if you provide the right light and don't over-water the plant. Phalaenopsis need bright, indirect light. 
An east-facing window would be an ideal location. West and south-facing locations will work, if you keep the orchid out of direct sun. If the leaves on your orchid start to turn lime green or look singed, they're getting too much direct light. 
In addition to light, correct watering is essential to the health of your orchid. Phalaenopsis like to be watered and then allowed to dry out slightly, before you water them again. As a rule of thumb, water your orchids about once a week. If possible, use water that is room temperature and avoid watering the center of the plant. How often you water depends on whether your orchid is potted in bark or moss. Generally, orchids arrive in a clear plastic container filled with moss or bark. Orchids potted in moss won't need to watered as frequently as orchids potted in bark.
When you see problems like this, you're probably not watering right. B
est bet. Let them soak in the sink until the bark is good and wet then put them back in their location by the east window.
You can repot your orchid into a more attractive container, once it's stopped blooming.  Ceramic and clay pots work fine. Often, they will have slits or holes in the side of the pot. This is to help air circulation around the roots.  Once you are ready to repot your orchid, select a container that is
slightly larger than the original pot. Orchids like to be "snug" in their pots.
Next, use a bark orchid mix designed especially for your plant to thrive in. Position the orchid so it is at the same level it was in the old pot. 
Feed your orchids sparingly this time of year, usually every 2 to 3 weeks. When you do feed them, make sure the bark is wet before you add the fertilizer. 
Flowers will fall off as they begin to fade. If not, you can snip them off. Don't be in a hurry to cut back the flower stalk, once your orchid has stopped blooming.
Your orchid will often send up a second set of flowers on the old stalk.   Orchids are tougher, hardier and more adaptable than most people think and with a little care, your orchid will thrive and flower for many years to come.