Archives For July 2014

Wildflowers

July 21, 2014

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Cranes

July 20, 2014

The cranes are large to very large birds, including the world’s tallest flying birds. There are fifteen species of cranes under four genera and though they look like herons they are completely unrelated. They are easily recognizable for their long legs and long necks. One of the species of cranes, the whooping cranes became the inspiration for the legislation to protect endangered species. In 1940s there were only 15 cranes but now thanks for the efforts of conservationists there are now about 600 today.

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The cranes easily adapt to new surroundings and can adjust their diet and nutrient requirement according to what’s readily available. Their diet ranges from small rodents, amphibians, insects, to berries and plants. When they are in land they feed on seeds, leaves, nuts and acorns, berries, fruit, insects, worms, snails, small reptiles, mammals and birds. In wetlands, roots, rhizomes, tubers, other mollusks, small fish and amphibians are eaten.

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Some of species of crane migrate over long distances while others don’t migrate at all. The plumage of cranes vary by habitat, those living in vast wetlands tend to have more white in their plumage and tend to be bigger. Those living in smaller wetlands tend to have more gray in their plumage and are smaller in size.

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Cranes usually establish long term bonds that may last the lifetime of the birds. Pairs that are successful at breeding will continue to stay together while those that are continuously unsuccessful will part ways and “divorce”. Both sexes raise the young together which stays with them until the next year’s breeding season. Cranes are territorial and it is left to the male to defend the territory. When the male crane dies the female does not linger in the territory for protecting it lies with the male.

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Terrarium

July 19, 2014

SELECTING A CONTAINER

Requirements to consider:
1.  The container must be glass or another clear substance through which light can pass.
2.  Large enough opening to allow for the emplacement of soil and plants.
3.  The plants selected for a terrarium must have similar environmental needs.
4.  Terrarium must be thoroughly cleaned before use (to prevent bacteria growth)

Terrariums fall into two general categories:

1.  Open: can tolerate some direct sunlight. However, too much sun may burn the edges of leaves that are in direct sunlight.

2.  Closed: A closed terrarium can also be an open terrarium to which a cover has been added. Closed terrariums should be placed where they will receive bright light, but no direct sunlight. If placed in direct sunlight, the temperature inside the container rises considerably and literally cooks the plants.

*Before choosing a container, you must decide what you wish to grow in your terrarium. All plants in a terrarium should have similar light, moisture and other environmental needs. If you want to grow sun-loving plants in natural light, use an open terrarium. If you want to grow plants that require high humidity, the container should be closed.

Article Source: http://www.sprouthome.com/terrariums-step-by-step/

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STEP 1: Drainage: A terrarium does not have drainage holes. Therefore, you must supply a drainage layer to prevent damage to plant roots. Crushed river gravel works well, but any small stone or bits of broken pottery will work. You want to use 1 to 4 inches of drainage material depending on the height of the container. Generally the depth of the drainage material, charcoal, and soil should equal about one-third the height of the container.

STEP 2: Charcoal: On top of the drainage layer, place a thin layer of charcoal. This will help keep the soil fresh.

STEP 3: Soil: The kind of soil used will depend on the type of plants you wish to grow (Cacti/succulent soil vs. potting soil). Use enough soil so that you can create a “hole” where you want to place the root ball of the plants. For example, if you are adding a fern to the terrarium that has a 4” root ball, you will need to add at least 4” of soil to the terrarium.

STEP 4: Landscaping and Planting: Remember, plants grow. It is advisable to choose slow-growing plants and not to overplant. Make sure any necessary pruning is done prior to placing the plants in the terrarium and make sure plants are free of insects and disease. Place the largest plants in the terrarium first. Then add the smaller plants. Groundcover should be added last. Remember, you are making a miniature landscape, don’t forget to have fun with it and add in small animal figurines.

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Want to Learn More?  Check out this Lovely Book:

 

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Basye’s Purple Rose

July 18, 2014

‘Basye’s Purple’ rose has reddish brown bark, blue-green foliage, and beautiful single velvety maroon-purple flowers graced by purple stamens that are bright yellow at the tips. It is truly a royal rose. It was bred and introduced by Dr. Robert Basye in 1968 and is a cross between R. rugosa and R. foliolosa. It has wonderful bright green feathery foliage that is very much like its parent, Rosa foliolosa, and showing little of the rugosa characteristics.

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It will become a fairly large shrub of about 7 or 8 feet tall and at least as wide, with a very nice compact, arching habit. Like most Rugosas, this one repeats it’s bloom all through the season, although the individual blooms last only a day or two.

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It has a fruity fragrance, has an average diameter of 2.5″ medium, single bloom form about 4 to 8 petals and it blooms in flushes throughout the season. It is very hardy, vigorous and heat tolerant and does not set many hips.

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Content Source: Antique Rose Emporium, Old Garden Roses and Beyond, Hartwood Roses, Help Me Find and Rogue Valley Roses

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Gerber Daisies

July 17, 2014

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Blue Danube

July 16, 2014

The Blue Danube pattern was inspired from a somewhat similar pattern created during the Chinese Yuan Dynasty (1260-1368 AD). The designs showcase flowers which in Chinese culture symbolize happiness and good fortune. This ancient Chinese pattern which was so sought after it paved the way for the creation of the Blue Danube pattern.

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The Blue Danube china pattern was developed in 1951 Blue Danube China company, based in Japan and was distributed to the United States, Canada, Australia and part of Europe by Lipper International who held the patent for its design and distribution. The Blue Danube is under glazed on translucent porcelain and each piece is highly chip resistant and dishwasher safe.

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A variety of backstamps were used throughout its production, the original being used in 1951 through 1976 showcased the words Blue Danube on a ribbon banner with the words Reg. US. Pat. Off. underneath it. Then it was followed with the boxed backstamp which was used between 1977 and 2000. At the start of 2001 a new backstamp was introduced with the words Blue Danube in a scrollwork and the word Japan beside it.

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The Blue Danube china pattern has been discontinued in 2010 but replacements are still available online.

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Yellow Rose China

July 15, 2014

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Red Calico

July 14, 2014

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Antique Roses

July 13, 2014

The American Rose Society classifies antique roses as any rose introduced into cultivation before 1867 and since a wide variety of roses fit that description they have been organized into groups. Many gardeners consider a rose to be antique or old if it has been around 75 years or more. Many of the antique roses are pastels so you won’t see any bold colours. Most of these roses have good fragrance, they often have their own season of bloom, some have a repeating bloom season, they can be a shrub or a climber and in general are less demanding than modern hybrids, they need less fertilizer, pesticides and water.

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Antique roses are divided into classes of roses and they are:

China Roses (Rosa chinensis) – are actually a complex of natural and cultivated hybrids that have evolved over more than a thousand years in Chinese gardens. It is native to Southwest China in Guizhou, Hubei, and Sichuan Provinces. At maturity they can become large bushes and are likely to live for a very long time.

Noisette Roses – are elegant, fragrant roses first hybridized in South Carolina in 1814. They are graceful repeat-flowering shrubs and climbers that are well adapted to the warmth and mild winters of the Southeast

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Polyantha Roses – is the result of crossing china roses with the rambling Japanese Multiflora rose. They are low growing, disease resistant, ever blooming and are cold hardy. Their compact nature lends themselves well used as low borders.

Musks Roses (Rosa moschata) – is a shrub with single white flowers that blooms on a new growth from late spring until late autumn. It has a musky scent emanating from its stamens. They are great landscape roses, fragrant and disease resistant.

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Bourbon Roses – this class of roses resulted from a cross between Old Blush and Autumn Damask. They were both planted as hedges on the island of Bourbon now called Reunion. Usually occurs in shades of pastel pink, they are intensely fragrant and they bloom repeatedly throughout summer if soil is kept moist.

Tea Roses – these roses tend to be tall and narrow and smells somewhat like tea leaves. They bloom profusely in the spring and fall, the blossoms are large and spectacular in shades of pink.

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Species Roses – these are roses generally found in nature, they tend to be very vigorous and are disease resistant. They often grow well without attention when planted properly. Most of them are climbers but with pruning and training they can be grown as shrubs.

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Belinda’s Dream

July 12, 2014

The Belinda’s Dream was bred by Dr. Robert E. Basye in United States in 1988. It was registered as Belinda’s Dream and introduced in 1992. It is a cross between Tiffany and Jersey Beauty; it is a fast growing shrub that is upright and sturdy. Belinda’s Dream is disease tolerant, has plentitude of bluish-green foliage. The flowers have large, very double pink blossoms come in large clusters from spring until frost. They are freely produced throughout the growing season and are simply lovely with a rich, distinctive fragrance of their own.

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Belindas Dream was named for the daughter of one of Dr. Basyes friends. It was the first rose to be designated Earth-Kind® by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service. Bred in Texas to withstand hot temperatures, it does well in temperate climates as well. It may have some blackspot in cool, damp weather, but its vigor and blooming will not be affected by the disease. Light pruning improves appearance and blooming frequency.

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Belinda’s Dream inherited its vigor, strong constitution and disease-resistance from Jersey Beauty and a shrubby growth habit and beautiful pink hybrid tea-type flowers from Tiffany.  It has moderate, fruity and raspberry fragrance.

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Content Sources: Nola, Help Me Find, Antique Rose Emporium and Texas AgriLife Extension Service.

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