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Succulents

August 17, 2014

Succulents also known as fat plants are any type of plants that are thickened and fleshy in some parts usually the leaves and stems. These fleshy or succulent parts are used to store water in arid climates or soil conditions. They are grown as ornamental plants because of their striking appearance and they are always considered to be in style. They are surging in popularity because they are rather low maintenance and are cool to look at and collect. They grow well in containers and even if you neglect them chances are they’ll be fine.

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The color variation of succulents is almost endless: blue-green, pink, red, white, burgundy, yellow, almost black, and more. The leaves may be needle like, spiky, berrylike, ruffled or rounded. Many succulents come from dry areas of the topics and subtropics such as semi-desert, desert and steppes. The high temperature force these plants to collect and store water to survive long dry periods.

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Here are common types of succulents that are easy to care and find:

Aeonium – it has rosette leaves on a basal stem and resemble big, fleshy-petaled daisies. It occurs in colors green, yellow and garnet. They are not frost-resistant and only require little water.

Burro’s Tail – is a succulent perennial producing long, with fleshy blue-green leaves and terminal pink to red flowers in summer native to Mexico and Honduras.  It prefers medium to high light for best performance.

Agave – it is a rosette-shaped succulent are native to the Americas. There are a dozen species of agave, most of them small and beautiful. The juice from many species of agave is known to cause acute contact dermatitis.

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Christmas Cactus – also known as Thanksgiving Cactus, Crab Cactus and Holiday Cactus. Its flowers occur in white, pink, yellow, orange, red or purple. Prefers medium to high light and fertilize three times in the summer to promote blooms.

Crown of Thorns – it is a succulent climbing shrub imported from Madagascar. It has long, spoon-shape leaves appear at the ends of spiky branches, along with clusters of tiny flowers.

Echeveria – popular ornamental garden plants, they are drought-resistant however they do well with regular deep watering and fertilizing. They are also ideal for planting in containers.

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Jade Plant – also known as friendship tree, lucky plant or money plant is a succulent plant with small white or pink flowers native to South Africa. It has thick branches and thick, shiny, smooth, leaves in rich jade green shade that grow in opposing pairs along the branches. It is an old-fashioned favorite simply because it is very easy to grow and very vibrant.

Aloe – known for its healing sap which has been used to treat wounds and sunburns for centuries. Any species of Aloe appear to be stemless, with the rosette growing directly at ground level.

Panda Plant – also known as pussy ears and chocolate solider. It is a popular houseplant on account of its small size, dark-red foliage and ease of care.

Pincushion Cactus – also known as foxtail cactus. They are the most common cacti grown in the home. They can remain small and may take the form of clumps, they are often flowering indoors.

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The Great Horned Owl

August 10, 2014

The Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus) is an adaptable bird with a vast range. It is sometimes called the Tiger Owl, Hoot Owls, Cat Owls or Winged Tigers. It was first seen in the Virginia colonies and it got its species name “virginianus” from the Latinized form of the colonies’ name. This owl is the heaviest owl in Central and South America and the second heaviest owl in North America.

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The Great Horned Owl is easily recognized by its earlike tufts, intimidating yellow-eyed stare and deep hooting voice. It is the owl depicted in the storybooks and is one of the most common birds in America equally at home in the deserts, wetlands, forests, grassland cities, backyards and almost any other semi-open habitat between the Arctic and the tropics.

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The female Great Horned Owl is slightly bigger than the male, an average adult weighs about 3 pounds has a length of 22 in with a wingspan of 49 in. There is a considerable color variation of the owl’s plumage between subspecies but the body shape remains the same. They are heavy built, with barrel shaped bodies that has broad rounded wings and large heads. The facial discs are rusty brown to ocher-buff, paler around the eyes with a prominent blackish rim on each side and there is a white patch on the throat.

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The iris is yellow except in the amber-eyed South American Great Horned Owl. The upper parts are mottled brown and the underparts are light brown. The feet and talons are slightly feathered and are large and powerful. The overall color tone of the Great Horned Owl varies regionally from sooty to pale. They are also natural predators to prey heavier than themselves like the skunks and porcupines.

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Great Horned Owls have adapted to many different places and climates. You can find this widespread owl in woods, particularly young woods interspersed with fields or other open areas. Its breeding habitat extends from subarctic North America throughout most of North and Central America then going down to South America.

The Great Horned Owl is nocturnal and activity begins at dusk but in some regions may be seen in late afternoon. Both sexes may be very aggressive towards intruders when nesting. They hunt by perching on poles watching for prey. From their high perch they would dive down to the ground with folded wings before snatching up their prey. The prey almost always dies immediately when grasped by its large and powerful talons. Common preys of the Great Horned Owl are medium-sized mammals such as rabbits and hares, moderately sized rodents such as squirrels, mice, rats and voles.

Breeding season is in January and February when the male and female hoot to each other. Unlike other birds they do not build their own nest instead they utilized nest from other birds like the crow, hawk or heron. They sometimes use the nests of squirrel’s nests, abandoned buildings or artificial platform. Two to four eggs are laid which are incubated by the female for 26 to 35 days. For 6 to 7 weeks, the young would start roaming the nest and other branches, they don’t get to fly well until they are 9 to 10 weeks old.

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A Great Horned Owl in captivity is known to live up to 29 to 38 years and wild owls can live up to 13 years. Most deaths are related to man through shooting, traps and road kill. Their only natural enemy is the Northern Goshawks over nest disputes. The Great Horned Owl is not considered a globally threatened species.

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Terra Cotta Pots

June 17, 2014

A Brief History on Terra Cotta:

Terracotta was the only ceramic produced by Western and pre-Columbian people until the 14th century, when European higher fired stoneware began production. Terracotta has been used throughout history for sculpture and pottery as well as for bricks and roof shingles. In ancient times, the first clay sculptures were dried (baked) in the sun after being formed. They were later placed in the ashes of open hearths to harden, and finally kilns were used, similar to those used for pottery today. However, only after firing to high temperature would it be classed as a ceramic material.  Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terracotta

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See more lovely broken china jewelry in our shop HERE www.brokenchinajewelryshop.com

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“Great piece!” ~ Mario

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Pastels

June 9, 2014

Perfectly pretty pastels!

China painting, or porcelain painting, is the decoration of glazed porcelain objects such as plates, bowls, vases or statues. The body of the object may be hard-paste porcelain, developed in China in the 7th or 8th century, or soft-paste porcelain (often bone china), developed in 18th-century Europe. The broader term ceramic painting includes painted decoration on lead-glazed earthenware such as creamware or tin-glazed pottery such as maiolica or faience.

Data Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/China_painting

 

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Porcelain painting was developed in China and later taken up in Korea and then Japan. Decorated Chinese porcelain from the 9th century has been found in the Middle East. Porcelain for trade with this region often has Islamic motifs. Trade with Europe began in the 16th century. By the early 18th century European manufacturers had discovered how to make porcelain. The Meissen porcelain factory in Saxony was followed by other factories in Germany, France, Britain and other European countries. Technology and styles evolved. The decoration of some hand-painted plates and vases from the 19th century resembles oil paintings. In the later part of the 19th century china painting became a respectable hobby for middle-class women in North America and Europe. More recently interest has revived in china painting as a fine art form.

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All Natural Gardening

June 3, 2014

The Rusted Garden mixes sprinkled cinnamon on the seedlings as a way to kill off the fungi or ‘damping off’ disease and stop its potential spread. You could also lightly sprinkle your starting mix with cinnamon right after the seeds are planted.  I think cinnamon makes a great third defense against diseases that may attack your seedlings.

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Instead of throwing away used coffee grounds, save them in a container to reuse in your garden. The dried grounds provide organic soil nutrients and can act as mulch to your vegetables. Used coffee grounds are not acidic because most of the acid remains in the coffee beverage. Composted coffee contains high levels of nitrogen and helps to neutralize compost piles. Read more about it here.

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According to Bob Vila, cornmeal is birth control for seeds. Sprinkle it on your garden and it will keep weed seeds from germinating and growing into plants. Of course, cornmeal will keep any seed from germinating, so don’t try this on your vegetable garden until your plants are established and you’ve finished planting 

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“Happy repeat customer. Beautiful jewelry, great service. Thanks!” ~ Corinne

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Creative Easter Ideas

April 11, 2014

Looking for some creative ideas this Easter with the kids or grandkids? Here are a few we found helpful…

Visit One of a Kind for creative Easter Egg Hunt ideas including assigning each child a color! Perfect idea for balancing out the baskets or managing an allergy.

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Want to give something other than candy to little ones this year? Click here for a list of 45 non-candy ideas including new sunglasses for summer!

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Looking for a craft to entertain the kids during Easter weekend? Here is a list of 75 crafts including lots of low cost ideas!

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Learn how to make these cute fuzzy Easter eggs HERE.

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See more lovely broken china jewelry in our shop HERE.

What our customers are saying…

Thank you so much! I love wearing this pendant and it gets attention where ever I go.” – Stephanie

Easter Tea Party

March 31, 2014

Artful Affirmations shared a beautiful Easter tea party on her blog!

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Don’t you just love the white chocolate bunnies sitting in tea cups?

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Visit Artful Expressions for more photos here.

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See more lovely broken china jewelry in our shop HERE.

What our customers are saying…

This pin is even more beautiful in person then what the photos showed. I am trully thrilled, especially with the quality of Vintage Belle’s items. Thank you for another great sterling silver broken china pendant/pin to add to my growing collection. – Stephanie

Easter Tables

March 29, 2014

Architecture Art Designs shared 28 inspirational tables on their site and I had a hard time picking my favorites! Check out all 28 here.

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See more lovely broken china jewelry in our shop HERE.

What our customers are saying…

“Exquisite pendant. Given as a gift and very well received!”– Deborah

 


Blue Eggs

March 24, 2014

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See more lovely broken china jewelry in our shop HERE.

What our customers are saying…

“This is my third purchase of broken china jewelry and it lives up to the excellent artistry of the other two. Very nicely crafted!” – Deborah