Santa Fe garden created to aid shooting survivors seeking donations

SANTA FE, Texas (KTRK) — Painted on Santa Fe City Hall, a mural serves as a reminder of the May 18 attack, but directly behind the building, there’s a place that could one day help survivors cope with the trauma.

Mandy Jordan leads the nonprofit Keep Santa Fe Beautiful. Jordan’s working to turn the greenspace behind City Hall into a therapeutic garden, and as the mother of a Santa Fe student, she knows how useful it could be to the entire community.

“During the holidays I wanted to lock myself away and that’s not good,” said Jordan. “Getting outside, feeling the sunshine, being around others, and having that group therapy is actually very beneficial to our emotional health.”

READ THE STORY: https://abc13.com/therapeutic-santa-fe-garden-seeking-donations/5063589/

Original source: https://www.urbanorganicgardener.com/2019/01/shooting-victims/

Do you want easy compost or fast compost?

Is your personality better suited to easy compost or fast compost? When I started gardening, I was confused by what appeared to be conflicting advice about compost. There seemed to be very exact recipes for…

The post Do you want easy compost or fast compost? appeared first on The Middle-Sized Garden.

Original source: https://www.themiddlesizedgarden.co.uk/do-you-want-easy-compost-or-fast-compost/

Minute Pirate Bugs: Beneficial Pest Control With A Love/Hate Relationship

Minute Pirate Bugs (scientific name: Orius insidiosus) are all around us most of the time, and we don’t even notice them. These tiny black bugs are beneficial insects, abundant in yards, gardens, woodlands, pastures, and farmlands. Pirate bugs are Hemiptera (true bugs) and members of the insect family Anthocoridae. Like all true bugs, these little critters have very […]

The post Minute Pirate Bugs: Beneficial Pest Control With A Love/Hate Relationship appeared first on Plant Care Today.

Original source: https://plantcaretoday.com/minute-pirate-bugs.html

Hanging Succulents: The Best Types Of Hanging Succulent Plants [With Pictures]

There is something special about hanging succulent plants. I’ve never been able to pinpoint exactly what it is. It could be the fact that in our mind we expect small succulent plants to grace the landscape of a fairy garden or succulent pots with interesting foliage being a small but great addition to our home […]

The post Hanging Succulents: The Best Types Of Hanging Succulent Plants [With Pictures] appeared first on Plant Care Today.

Original source: https://plantcaretoday.com/hanging-succulents.html

Top 10 Questions About Greenhouses

Here at Gardening Know How we get
lots of questions, and this includes greenhouses.
Our goal is to provide answers to these inquiries to the best of our knowledge.
The following information includes the 10 most commonly asked questions relating
to greenhouse
gardening
.

1. How do you get rid of bugs in a greenhouse?

Surprisingly, even in a greenhouse environment, insect pests
are inevitable. These greenhouse
pests
may range from aphids and mealybugs to mites, whiteflies and
more. One of the easiest ways to monitor them is by using sticky pads, which
keep many insects under control or at least signal you when their numbers are
growing for further control. The use of insecticidal soap and neem oil are
additional methods of control and normally safe to use on edibles.

2. What is the ideal humidity for starting seedlings in a greenhouse?

Most plants prefer humidity between 50 and 80 percent.
Foliage loses water and wilts rapidly when levels are below 50 percent, but
high humidity can cause fungal diseases such as damping
off
, which causes tiny stems to rot at the base. If high humidity is
a problem, you can provide a drier environment by watering plants from the
bottom, and by providing adequate heat
and ventilation.
If humidity is too low, improve conditions by misting plants, with cool mist
vaporizers or small humidifiers, or by placing pots on trays of wet pebbles.

3. How to get rid of mushrooms in greenhouse soil?

Mushrooms
often pop up in potting mix
, which indicates the substance is high
in organic material. Although the fungi are harmless, they tend to be
unsightly. If you notice tiny mushrooms, pull them up by their base and discard
them to prevent development of spores. Water plants from the bottom and be
careful not to water excessively. Provide proper ventilation to keep the air
moving. If air circulation is limited, a small rotating fan will help.

4. Why is soil turning green on my starter seed trays?

Green
stuff on the surface of potting mix is probably algae or moss
. While
the substance is generally harmless, a thick layer can prevent proper
absorption of moisture and nutrients. Often, you can remove the green by
breaking up the surface of the soil with a pencil or toothpick. Always start
seeds in fresh, good quality seed starting mix. Allow the surface of the
potting mix to dry slightly, and don’t water to the point of sogginess. Be sure
your greenhouse is properly ventilated to prevent excess humidity.

5. Should cloches have an air gap top prevent over heating?

A greenhouse provides sunlight that warms the soil and
protects plants from frost. However, an air gap is essential, as too much heat
in an airtight greenhouse can quickly cook tender greenhouse plants. Be sure to
close vents at the end of the day when cool temperatures are expected, then
open them in the morning while the air is still cool. Automatic vent systems
are available. The same applies when using
cloches in the garden
, either by tilting it to allow for some air to
enter or removing altogether when warmer day temps are expected. Just remember
to reposition the cloche in the evening.

6. Do you have instructions on attaching shade cloth on the inside of a greenhouse?

Greenhouse experts recommend that exterior shade is more
effective than interior screen systems because light is blocked before it
enters the greenhouse. Once light is trapped inside, it becomes difficult to
remove the excess heat. However, if you want to install interior shade
cloth
, it’s best to invest in a retractable system that allows
sunlight to enter on cloudy days. Mechanized systems, consisting of support
cables, motor and shade, can be opened and closed as needed. You can also
install a less expensive indoor system consisting of ropes and pulleys.

7. Can I grow herbs in my greenhouse in the winter without a heating system?

If you live in a cool northern climate, it will be difficult
to grow
herbs in a greenhouse
. Most herbs will struggle when temps drop below
40 to 50 F. (4.5-10 C.), while many prefer consistently warm temperatures of 65
to 70 F. (18-21 C.) during the day and 55 to 60 F. (13-16 F.) at night. You
can, however, get a jump on spring growing by starting many herb seeds in an
unheated greenhouse, but you may need a heat mat for germination. Herbs that
tend to be cold hardy include lavender, garlic, rosemary, winter savory, catnip
and oregano.

8. How to choose the best greenhouse?

If you want to grow tropical plants, you’ll need a
greenhouse capable of maintaining steady temperatures of 65 to 70 F. (18-21 C.)
or higher. Most flowers, vegetables and herbs need temps of around 55 F. (13
C.), while a “cool” greenhouse is suitable for germinating seeds and raising
starter plants in spring. A greenhouse with clear panels provides warmth and
light for sprouting seeds, while a diffused or glazed covering provides
balanced levels of light heat for growing plants to maturity. Additionally, look
for a greenhouse
that is adequately ventilated and insulated to prevent plants from excess heat
and cold.

9. How to keep greenhouse cool in hot weather?

A shade
cloth
, either internal or external, will help block the intense rays
of summer sunlight. Make sure shade is in place before the heat of the day,
then remove the cloth on cooler days. Ventilation,
in the form of roof or side vents, keeps air moving and prevents buildup of
heat. If ventilation is limited, you may need to run a fan (or two) to
circulate the air. Be sure to
keep greenhouse plants well watered
during hot weather. A light
misting can cool plants on hot days, but mist judiciously, as too much moisture
can promote disease.

10. What plants/vegetables grow in a greenhouse?

You
can grow nearly any plant in a greenhouse
, but it’s all about
determining the needs of particular plants. For instance, you can germinate
seeds and grow starter plants in an unheated greenhouse, while tropical plants
need consistently warm temperatures year round. You can easily start most
flower seeds and cool season vegetables such as peas, broccoli and lettuce in
an unheated greenhouse, but tomatoes and peppers need plenty of sunlight and
warm temperatures between 55 and 85 F. (12-29 C.).  Some flowers, such as impatiens and ferns,
thrive in shade, while geraniums and daisies need bright sunlight.

We all have questions now and then, whether long-time
gardeners or those just starting out. So if you have a gardening question, get a
gardening answer
. We’re always here to help.

The post Top 10 Questions About Greenhouses appeared first on Gardening Know How's Blog.

Original source: https://blog.gardeningknowhow.com/top-10-qa/top-10-questions-about-greenhouses/

12 of the Most Difficult Houseplants to Keep Alive

Houseplants add a splash of greenery and vibrancy to indoor spaces, but keeping them alive can sometimes feel like a part-time job. Although some plants are hardy enough to survive on haphazard watering and the occasional dose of fertilizer, others are a bit more demanding. Here are a few of the most difficult houseplants to…

Original source: https://www.grandcentralfloral.com/2019/01/12-of-the-most-difficult-houseplants-to-keep-alive/

Scientists Fix Flawed Plant Genes, Make Plants Grow 40% Larger

Researchers in the US have genetically engineered a way of shortcutting photosynthesis to increase the size of tobacco plants by up to 40%.   They say the development could be applied to increase the yield of other important crops, as a way of boosting food productivity for a growing population in the face of climate…

Original source: https://www.grandcentralfloral.com/2019/01/scientists-fix-flawed-plant-genes-make-plants-grow-40-larger/

Artist Delicately Crafts Colorful Illustrations From Foraged Flowers and Botanicals

Seattle-based artist Bridget Beth Collins (aka Flora Forager) gives the term “floral arrangements” new meaning by using found flowers and botanicals to create charming, nature-inspired illustrations. Every petal, leaf, stone, and twig is hand-foraged by the artist while on adventures into the wild landscapes of the Pacific Northwest and walks around her local neighborhood. Each…

Original source: https://www.grandcentralfloral.com/2019/01/artist-delicately-crafts-colorful-illustrations-from-foraged-flowers-and-botanicals/

10 Retail Trends to Watch in 2019

From store concept advancements to an e-commerce reckoning, the Retail Dive team takes on predictions for the year ahead.   It was the best of retail times, it was the worst of retail times. Between historic bankruptcies, amazing advancements in technology, devastating consumer data breaches and a blockbuster end-of-year sales season, 2018 was a roller…

Original source: https://www.grandcentralfloral.com/2019/01/10-retail-trends-to-watch-in-2019/

Do Bed Bugs Live Outside? Where? And For How Long?

Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) are not your typical garden pests, as they don’t have any interest in plants and cause problems mostly indoors, they can give you a hard time outside. Yes, the blood-munching pests can live outdoors undisturbed for some time in the right conditions.

As the insect vermin feed exclusively on human blood, they will just wait for the opportunity to move indoors with you, probably hitchhiking on your clothing, on your bag of gardening tools, you just fetched from the shed or on your shoes. This is not a common gardening problem but it could happen.

And if they miss their opportunistic chance to somehow “jump” in your bed and feast on you that very night, the bugs will have a go at feeding themselves on your blood next time you sit down in the garden.

Well, this doesn’t sound great, especially if you have kids, whose skin is far more sensitive than that of adults. On that note, bed bugs might not be that dangerous to people (they don’t transmit diseases), but they will leave you with unpleasant bite marks, bumps or even a serious allergic rash.

So, naturally. you’d ask how to get rid of them if they can be found both indoors and outdoors and that’s why we’ve done this comprehensive guide on bedbug and flea fogger reviews.

Well, to get to some sort of conclusion on the matter, it’s best if you learn more about the pests’ irrefutable survivalist skills for bed bugs can travel across the yard.

If Bed Bugs Can Live Outdoors, How Do They Survive Outside The House?

Bed bug harborage site on plastic

Bed bug harborage site on plastic (credit)

Bed bugs are cold-blooded creatures that can adjust pretty “adeptly” to their immediate environment. Depending on the temperature outside, the vermin insects’ temperature can drop or rise and thus they can save energy, go without food or the opposite – become active and get ready to mate and breed in the warm weather months.

With this said, however, the minuscule crawlies will be always on the lookout for ways of finding more accommodating conditions that can provide them with harborage and an occasional blood meal.

If you’re using a lawn sweeper or a fertilizer unit it could act as as vessel for critters to easily relocate. To mow your lawn on a regular basis is great but you should always keep such risks in mind.

Why bed bugs would “prefer” to live indoors?

bed bugs

(credit)

The answer to this question is simple.

Even when it’s nice and sunny outside, bed bugs will make tracks towards your house, only because you’re there. You will act as their host, providing them with the vital food they need to lay eggs or move from one larval stage to the next, five in total.

The minute vampire insects find their food source by detecting the heat and carbon dioxide, emitted from warm-blooded animals and people. So, in this sense, they wouldn’t go through all the effort of crawling from outside to an abandoned building (or even the house next door), regardless of what the weather’s like, as there’s nothing in for them.

How And When Bed Bugs End Up Living Outside?

Hmm, this is an interesting point to explore.

Let’s clear one thing. As we’ve already mentioned, bed bugs will stay outdoors only as a temporary measure before they embark on a trip across your yard to get to some food. They can travel from one townhouse to another townhouse (possibly, a recently vacated one), crawling their way relatively fast.

As long as the surface, they move on, is not hostile (glass, plastic, porcelain, PVC), they can cover great distances in relation to their 4-millimetre size and do that in a short period of time.

Bed bugs can end up living outdoors after a pest control treatment.

“Those, which have survived an insecticidal application (less chance of this happening after a heat treatment), will rush outside for a breath of fresh air.” said Alexander Crawley, an entomology consultant for the Australian-based Fantastic Pest Control, “Another way of getting a bed bugs colony outdoors is through your exciting travels or a visit by a dear and none-the-wiser guest. The blood-sucking crawlies just sense the delicious host and will trip over to get a hitch on their luggage or clothing.” added the Fantastic Pest Control expert, “And on that note, you don’t need to go far away to an exotic country or stay in a grotty, cheap hotel room, in order to unknowingly end up carrying the little squatters. No, you can just go to your local movie theatre one night and wake up all bitten by the critters.”.

Last but not least, you can bring bed bugs inside or outside your property by getting a second-hand piece of furniture, be it a swivel chair for your home office, a quirky-looking garden sofa or even an used foosball table.

How Long Can Bed Bugs Survive Outdoors?

(credit)

There have been plenty of research and experiments done in labs across the globe to test bed bugs’ survival abilities and investigate their behaviour.

From freezing them and starving them to applying extreme heat, scientists have established the type of conditions the pest insects cannot tolerate before they eventually succumb to their maker.

Unfortunately, bed bugs can survive up to 5 months outside and with no food.

So, How Does Temperature Matter?

Bed bugs love hot and humid conditions to breed and go about their business (run backwards and forwards to their food supplier).

But if the weather turns in and catches them unprepared outdoors, they’ll just snuggle deeper into crevices and small hidden places in exterior wooden structures, garden furniture or even in your parked car.

Or in other words, these pests won’t die. Bedbugs’ body temperature will also drop along with the plummeting temperatures outside. This helps them survive for a very long time until they can find a better-suited harbourage.

Still, extremities, in terms of heat and cold, will, of course, kill them.

But we’re talking about minus 17’C and above 48’C, which is difficult to reach without the help of a man-made device, such as a heat treatment machine or a commercial deep freezer.

So, you can guess that bed bugs can withstand the outdoor conditions of most climate zones. What you probably didn’t know is that they can do this for months, even up to a year.

To What Extent Food Availability Plays A Role?

Well, if the cold doesn’t bother bed bugs outside, the lack of warm blood nearby will definitely drive a said colony to extinction. After a long while, again, that is.

Yes, as mentioned above, they can survive for months outside, where it’s unlikely that their favourite food source will be hanging around for any length of time if it’s cold. On that note, if they have to, bed bugs will approach a chicken, a curled-up cat or any other animal outdoors to receive their critical dose of blood.

On a bigger scheme, food deprivation affects a bed bug family’s survival as a whole – females don’t produce eggs and young ones won’t reach adulthood.

What About Natural Predators?

Bed bugs will be eaten by various other insects and animals. From certain spiders, common cockroaches and a few ferocious types of ants to lizards and scorpions, the poor bugs are in grave danger if those emerge in the vicinity or if you encourage natural predators in your garden as means to get rid of pests.

Well, it’s another matter if you’ll dare to introduce some of these critters into your garden, considering that they are not exactly beneficial insects.

Furthermore, bed bugs that live outside your house are likely to outnumber any of their potential enemies. So, most of the colony will survive and enjoy the prospect of getting closer to where you sleep at night.

Important: Don’t use boric acid. It does not work for bed bugs It is basically a stomach poison and they will simply not ingest it unless flowing through your veins or all over your skin.

How Far Can Bed Bugs Travel Outside?

These pesky bloodsuckers will routinely patrol up to 20-foot away each and every night in search of food.

Don’t be fooled, it’s an extremely adaptive species that can move fast and overcome various obstacles. Bed bugs are tiny and holes and cracks work in their favour.

Where Do Bed Bugs Hide Outdoors?

So, where do bed bugs survive outside? Be sure, they will hang around near an inhabited property. Or to be more precise, there’s a high probability that the insect pests will make a temporary habitat out of any of the following:

Do Bed Bugs Live In Your Patio Furniture?

It doesn’t really matter how bed bugs infest your garden furnishings – you brought a contaminated piece from a thrift store or your neighbours drove them away from their house with a medium-strength insecticide.

The vermin crawlies are known to settle in the seaming of all sorts of fabric upholstery, as well as in crevices of wicker, wooden and rattan furniture. At least for a short while, until they feel brave or hungry enough to head towards your bed.

Do Bed Bugs Live In The Grass, Sheds, Garages And Barns?

Sheds, garages and barns also provide plenty of concealed spots for the bugs to hide, from cracks in structural fixtures to any old junk and clutter. And those hiding places don’t have to be inside the building. Usually, bed bugs won’t spend too much time in the grass but if drawn by a food source, they will proceed to follow.

Exterior baseboards, wood beams and porch joints will do just fine when it comes to the pests’ “choice” of a short-term shelter.

Can Bed Bugs Survive In Storage Totes Outside How Long Do Once Been Outside?

The storage compartment will have enough 02 to sustain the bugs for quite some time. In a small vail a single bed bug could survive up to two or three weeks.

Can Bed Bugs Live In Your Car?

Bed bugs may seek refuge in your parked vehicle to escape the cold, especially if they’ve sensed a human blood dispenser in the driver’s seat one bitterly cold morning.

Or you may end up with an infested car after a trip somewhere when bed bugs from afar got into your luggage in anticipation of a free ride and new “bloody” adventures.

How Long Do Bed Bugs Live When Put Outside In Black Trash Bags?

The bags themselves do not pose any treat to bed bugs. This means that you wouldn’t want to approach any bedbug infested pile of trash for weeks to come.

Do Bed Bugs Live In Wood Piles Outside?

Bed bugs can live in wood piles outside. In their terms of perspective the environment is sort of the same.

However, the presence of many of the natural predators of bed bugs could make wooden piles a slightly harsher place to be, bed bugs might survive for weeks.

Do Bed Bugs Live Outside In Hot Summer Weather?

And finally, are you wondering if your favourite pastime in the summer could be spoiled by outdoor bed bugs having a nibble on you while you’re pruning, planting or weeding in your garden?

There’s a myth that the critters are in abundance in the warm weather months. But the truth is that bed bugs can be active all year round, providing that they are settled in a place that has optimum conditions – somewhere warm, comfortable, hidden and with plenty of blood going around.

Still, if stuck outdoors for whatever reason, bed bugs will be more active in the summer period than in the cold weather months.

They will instinctively be more “determined” to travel and relocate near a food source, in order to reproduce successfully and preserve the well-being of the entire colony.

Now you know that getting an itchy bite in the summer, while appreciating your lovely flowers in the garden, isn’t always the works of a pesky mosquito. And if it’s a bed bug, be sure, the pest will be no longer outdoors in the winter.

In Conclusion,
The superior survival skills of bed bugs have prompted the development of advanced pest control methods against them, based on scientific research and numerous lab tests. So, if you think you have bed bugs in or outside your property, don’t leave their eradication to chance or rely on any DIY techniques for that matter. Call a professional to handle the problem.

The post Do Bed Bugs Live Outside? Where? And For How Long? appeared first on Sumo Gardener.

Original source: https://sumogardener.com/do-bed-bugs-live-outside-where-and-for-how-long/