Monthly Archives: December 2016

The Dendrobium Orchid Care

As other plants Dendrobium is belongs to kingdom Plantae. Genus is Dendrobium. There are many species belongs to this genus. Nearly 1200 of orchid species are recorded around the world. As other orchids orchidaceae is the family of Dendrobium.

Dendrobium orchid flower is famous for cut flowers. It has a sympodial and an epiphytic growth habit as other orchids in its family. There are many orchid varieties that produce orchid flowers in different colors. The durability is also higher than other orchids. In cut flower production, the flowers are divided into three types. They are phalaenopsis type, cane type and intermediate type. In these three types cane type is not that much suitable for cut flower production.

Read more >>> Phalaenopsis type, cane type and intermediate type Climatic Requirements

Orchid growing is not that much easy. It needs a good attention than other flowers. To keep a healthy plant below factor should be maintained.

Light

Dendrobium is a light prefer plant. It needs more lights than other orchid varieties. But direct sunlight is not good. So light level should be controlled by using a shade net above ten feet in height in a commercial cultivation or pot plants can be place in a sitting room. The window must be had in south or north directions. Keeping pots with a window in east or western, it is leads to sun burning damages on orchid plants. Temperature

Dendrobium can tolerate warm conditions. But ventilation should be good enough to control it. The temperature fluctuation should not be more than 10oC. Day time temperature should be between 25-30oC and night time temperature should not be lower than 15oC. Those conditions are the best for flower production. Humidity

Normally higher humidity level is needed for orchids. Therefore 70% of humidity is better for well growth of Dendrobium orchids. If humidity level is low you can spray water around the plant. The media should be prepared to keep moisture. Media preparation for Dendrobium (Orchid Care Steps [Full Guide])

Watering

Watering is very important for Dendrobium. As other treats, water should be added in optimum level. It is also helps to keep the humidity level. Chlorine free water must be used. Frequently check the moisture level in the media and use a hand sprayer to apply water. The Better time to apply water is 8 – 9 a. m. Arial roots and leaves should be wet. If water is applied in the evening, it should be done before 4 p. m. Fertilization

Liquid fertilizers are recommended to add. It is better to add them by using a sprayer. Spray on leaves and roots to get wet well. It is better to use morning time to add fertilizer. Organic liquidfertilizers can be used once a week. The best mixture of fertilizer is N. P. K. (20: 20: 20). Dissolve 5 gram of fertilizer in one litter of water for adding. Any balanced fertilizer can be used this purpose. Potting

It is better to use a clay pot. Because it is absorb more water than plastic pots. For decoration purposes you can put it into a plastic or any other suitable one. The diameter and height of the pot should be five inch. There should be holes for better ventilation. Media should be consisted with char or biochar and tile pieces. Better to add coconut husk pieces. It will keep the moisture.

To Burlap Or Not To Burlap for your Garden

I feel strongly that evergreens are an integral part of every garden. As a landscape designer I use evergreens in many ways, to provide structure in a garden with a hedge or to provide a focal point at the corner of the garden to name a few but in all situations the most important thing about the evergreens I use is that they are in fact… EVERGREEN! So it really breaks my heart to see gardens everywhere scattered with burlap.

The thinking behind this popular practice is to protect the evergreens from winter sun and drying winter winds. This can sometimes be an important thing to do for young evergreens, especially ones planted late in the season but it should only be done for the first season. Also in many cases it’s not necessarily the winter wind but the evergreens inability to draw water from the frozen ground. The winter landscape can replicate desert conditions making the plants susceptible to winterburn. Properly watering the evergreens in the fall and all the way up to the ground freezing will help prevent the winterburn from happening.

Another reason many burlap evergreens, especially cedars, is to prevent the winter snow and ice from splitting them as any branches bent by snow and ice will not return to normal in the spring. The best way to prevent that from happening is to wrap the cedars with twine or I prefer fishing line. It’s almost invisible, keeps the evergreen tight to prevent the snow from weighing on the branches and allows you to still have winter interest.

Evergreens aside, the one ornamental tree that should be protected with burlap in the winter is the Japanese Maple. The best way to protect this tender tree is to water well into the fall and after its leaves have dropped, put 4 wooden stakes in the ground around the perimeter of the tree and then wrap the stakes with burlap to create a screen. The stakes should be about 1.5′ to 2′ away from the trunk.

We still want the tree to get the snow cover but want to protect the tree from the winter wind until it is established. This should only be done for the first 2 years until the tree is established. Another case where location matters due to the winter wind patterns. I am still sad that I cannot have a Japanese Maple in my front yard due to its North East exposure. Note I have yews planted instead of cedars for that very same reason.

Simply put, plant the right tree in the right spot, water well into December and use fishing line to wrap evergreens. All my secrets to a burlap free garden!

Joanne Shaw is the owner and operator of Down2Earth Garden Design. A graduate of Ryerson University in Landscape Design, Joanne has over 15 years experience in designing gardens and more than a decade in landscape and related business. Sign up here http://www.down2earth.ca/ to receive Joanne’s free report “Seasonal Landscaping Tips” and monthly newsletter, “Down the Garden Path”, providing useful tips and tricks for keeping your garden as low maintenance as possible.

Love of Wind Chimes

When I was a teenager, and dating my now husband, he helped me buy my first car, a beautiful red 1967 Dodge Dart and that was in 1970. If I’d only known then that it would be a classic car today, I would never had sold it years later. Now many more years later, I never thought that a love for classic cars would spawn a love for wind chimes.

My husband and I have a favorite vacation spot in Tennessee. On the first weekend after Labor Day there is a huge, and I do mean huge, classic car show with 20,000 plus classic cars spreading out between the three towns of Sevierville, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. During a visit to Gatlinburg, we took time out to do some shopping. One of the many shops sold beautiful wind chimes. Big beautiful wind chimes, the likes that I had never seen before. I couldn’t help myself and we bought one of those chimes. The different lengths of tubes that the chimes had made the most beautiful sounds I’d ever heard before and thus began my love of wind chimes.

That was several years ago that we bought those big wind chimes and now they hang on the east side of our front porch. Thank goodness I am a country girl because sounds tend to really travel far at night in the country and a city slicker may not appreciate the sounds of my wind chimes the same way that my country neighbors or I do. One of our neighbors has told me that she can hear the sounds of those chimes at night and she’s not even upset about it! In fact she really enjoys hearing them and often falls asleep to the soft sounds of their chiming. But then again, even I like doing that because there’s nothing quite like the sound of these wind chimes lightly chiming in the night breezes. There is just something soothing and serene about it. So there they hang on one side of the porch like a giant while teeny little dollar store horse wind chimes on one corner of the porch tinkle in their own pathetic little way while some cow wind chimes that were a gift from my daughter tinkles on the other corner. Oh I must mention a special wind chime given to me by my husband, a set of carousel horse wind chimes hanging right over the steps going up to the porch chiming a warm welcome to everyone who visits our home.

I guess it’s just a matter of time before I have wind chimes hanging from every tree in the yard. I think that there’s no turning back now. Something has taken a hold on me and I don’t think I can let go. There’s just so many beautiful different kinds that provide so many different sounds. I may eventually drive my neighbors bonkers thinking I’m some kind of crazy wind chime lady but I could be called a lot worse I guess. As I am writing this, I can hear those wonderful wind chimes of mine belting out their beautiful sounds to the crazy chime lady that is me, and I love it!

Request The Quest To Cover The Fence

One of the most common requests I get when visiting a customer is what will grow on my fence?

Well I know firsthand that both popular vines, Boston Ivy and Virginia Creeper, will cover the fence nicely and without the need for trellises to boot! I have both in my back yard that is surrounded by fence with narrow gardens between fence and the pool we inherited when we bought the house. Both vines provide nice fall colour and both are deciduous and lose their leaves in the late fall.

Here’s my opinion of the pros and cons of both of these vines.

1) Virginia Creeper, Parthenocissus quinquefolia

Virginia Creeper is five-leaved ivy, or five-finger vine, it is a species of flowering plant in the vine family Vitaceae, native to eastern and central North America.

I didn’t plant Virginia Creeper but I “borrowed” it from my neighbour behind me. We are in a corner house so my backyard faces the side of my neighbours’ garage. When we moved in 8 years ago, the vine was covering their whole garage wall, right up the soffits.

I appreciated those few weeks of the vine covered garage. If I had to look at a brick wall in my backyard then it was great to see it covered with green… that is until they had it removed from their house, much to my chagrin.

Well I quickly learned there was no such thing as ‘removing’ Virginia creeper! Pro or con, you decide.

As it grew back with a vengeance, my next door neighbour and I decided to train it over the back and eventually side fence between us. If I had to look at a brick wall, I might as well have a green covered fence!

We were quite successful in a short period of time. The vine filled in nicely but needs constant trimming to keep it in check. At the base of the fence it even grows on the ground and seems to make a beeline for the pool. Since it is a deciduous vine it does allow for some hard pruning to keep it in check.

And even though Virginia Creeper plants attach to fences and walls with “pads” inside of tendrils, they still do a fair bit of twining and are constantly twining through my Japanese Maple (my one show piece in my virtually gardenless back yard). But my biggest pet peeve, believe it or not, is it also interferes with my ornamental grasses that I squeezed in front of it. It is constantly growing throughout the grass, ‘pulling it down’.

2) Boston Ivy, Parthenocissus tricuspidata

As for Boston Ivy, I didn’t plant it either. It was already planted in the narrow garden that I inherited along the fence but it was just a small patch and didn’t look like it was going to do much.

Well I guess this story is similar to the tortoise and the hare… as fast as the Virginia Creeper grew the Boston Ivy took its time filling in nice and slowly. It’s much bigger glossier leaves creating a thick mat along the fence attaching itself with similar tendrils as the Virginia Creeper.

So while I spent the last 8 years taming the Virginia Creeper, the Boston Ivy crept up on me and pleasantly surprised me with a nice glossy display.

I have tried to remove the Creeper from the back fence and have let the Ivy fill in nicely. Cool springs may have contributed to its great growth but it has certainly taken its time.

So good or bad, I am sure when my customers want to know what will cover their fence, they mean now and not in 8 years!