Protecting Blueberries from Birds

Blueberry BushYou may have noticed your blueberry bushes are in full bloom and if you’re like us, you can’t wait to start picking off those ripe tasty morsels and pop them right into your mouth …. unless the birds have beat you to them, yet again.  This year, give the birds their birdseed and keep the blueberries for yourself!  Here’s how: birdnetting.  You can create the frame of your barrier using a square method with several pieces of wood, sturdy dowels or poles and secure them into the ground or you can use the teepee or v-shape method – whichever works best for your bushes.  Next, use your birdnetting to cover the top and sides around the bushes, but be sure to leave a “door” so you can access your blueberries once ripe.  The netting is thin enough so the sun and rain can continue to get through while keeping the birds at bay and providing you with a tasty summer harvest!

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Water Lilies – Jewels of the Pond

2011-07-13_09-20-54_45With the onset of spring and the thousands of plants already showing their eye-catching colors, one flower in particular can bring even a small water garden from ordinary to extraordinary!  Often referred to as “Jewel of the Pond,” water lilies are vastly known for their exquisite array of colors and ability to grow and produce a bounty of blooms while completely submerged in water.

Beginning in the early spring, lily pads begin to rise to the surface with the vivid blooms soon to follow.  Once showing color, the lily’s blooms will remain open during the day and close at night.  A single bloom will typically last three to four days before sinking below the surface.  Water lilies prefer full sun and steady water to grown in, so be sure to plant them away from waterfalls and streams.  In addition to providing a radiant color show, water lilies and their pads provide fish with shade and protection as they tend to grow to suit the size of their growing space.  To find out more about growing water lilies in your pond, large or small, stop in the Hyams Nursery and talk with our knowledgeable staff!

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Proper Plant Nutrition

Just like any other living organism, our plants require a number of nutritional elements to survive. There are 19 essential elements needed for plant nutrition and each are used by the plant in varying amounts and ways.  The major nutrients are supplied by air and water, but the minor and micronutrients are absorbed from the soil.  If there is an insufficient amount of these nutrients, then the plant’s growth can be affected.  The best way to avoid this is by feeding your plants regularly.

Hyams offers an excellent variety of plant foods by Espoma including Garden-tone, Plant-tone, Flower-tone, Tree-tone, and many more.  Each product contains nutrients essential for proper growth and development, specific to the needs of the varying types of plants.  To learn more about Espoma and other food brands that can benefit the plants in your landscape or garden, stop into Hyams and talk with our knowledgeable staff!

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Fruit Plants – Sometimes, It Takes Two

Blueberries2Often times, the excitement of purchasing a fruiting plant can make it quite easy to forget that some fruiting plants require a “pollinator” in order for it to produce tasty fruit!  While some plants are “self-pollinating” (meaning you don’t need two plants for your chosen one to produce fruit), others need a secondary plant of the same make to produce.

When choosing a fruiting plant this spring, be sure to read the label or ask a staff member to help you find out if two plants are required for producing fruit.  This way, you save yourself the hassle of finding out the hard way and possibly ending up with no fruit to show.

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Gardening Tips and Tricks

Spring is working its way here and we’re sure you’re getting ready for all the planting to come.  So, here are a few tips and tricks to help get you ready when the warmer weather decides to stick around.

- Before pouring soil in a container, add a coffee filter to the bottom to prevent soil from falling while still allowing water drainage.

- If you’re starting seeds indoors, try creating a greenhouse for those small pots by cutting the top off a two liter bottle to act as a cloche.

- For planting in large containers, try adding packing peanuts (don’t use those made from corn as they will disintegrate too quickly) to the bottom followed by a layer of landscape material before adding soil.  The peanuts will provide great drainage while not adding too much weight to a large container and the landscape material will prevent the soil from filtering down through the peanuts.

- Use mint dental floss to tie up climbers as the floss is delicate enough to not harm the plant while the mint in the floss will help to keep some bugs at bay.

- Save your banana peels and place them around rose bushes to help give them an extra boost of nutrients!

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Springing into Easter

March is almost here which means it’s time to start going through your spring and Easter decor to get rid of the old and start fresh with some new ideas!  One of the many things we pride ourselves on at Hyams is surrounding our customers with helpful and creative staff.  In the Hyams Gift Store, you can find just that and so much more!  Stop in and see what the Gift Store ladies have been up to with their extensive creative spring and Easter designs with our brand new home decor!

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Over Fertilizing

During the winter months, it can be quite easy to over fertilize some of those delicate plants you brought in from the cold.  Recognizing the signs early that your plant has received too much fertilizer can help save it from long-term damage or death.  Commons signs of over-fertilization can include yellowing and wilting of the plant’s lower leaves, browning of leaf tips, rotting roots, leaf drop, and slow to no growth.  

For plants that have been over fertilized, there are a few steps to take to help the plant survive.  First, try rinsing the root ball of as much soil as possible and then let the root ball drain.  After an hour, rinse again and let it drain before repotting it into appropriate soil.  For potted plants, remember to provide adequate soil flushing between fertilizer applications for best results and happy healthy plant!

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