POSTS WITH TAG: gardening

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    Do you ever look over your garden in the summer and wish you could bring it all indoors for the winter? I miss the green like crazy once it gets cold out. Of course, there are house plants. But if you're feeling like you may miss some of your favorite outdoor plants, good news. Many plants are fairly flexible about living indoors or outdoors. 

    To thrive indoors, most of these plants will need full sun. If you don't have a large window space, especially a south- or west-facing window, special florescent plant lights will work, too.

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    You've probably seen all of the houseplants in this slide show. They're all lovely -- and they're all poisonous. When I talked with landscaper Lisa Cangialosi of When In Bloom about protecting kids from plants, she told me something a little shocking: Poisonous houseplants can sometimes be more toxic than garden plants. Fortunately, most of them cause so much pain in the mouth your child is not likely to swallow them as well.

    That doesn't mean you shouldn't keep any of these poisonous houseplants in your home at all. Cangialosi recommends you keep them well out of reach of babies and small children. For that matter, you should make sure your pets can't get to these plants, either, as they can be harmful to animals as well.

    If your child does happen to eat or taste any of these toxic houseplants, the New York Botanical Garden recommends contacting your local poison control center. Find out how much your child ate and watch for any adverse symptoms.

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    If you are a parent living in a house with any outdoor space, then you know the pain of trying to kill weeds without resorting to using any number of the dangerous chemicals and pesticides that make your lawn pretty, but are known to be carcinogenic -- or worse.

    This summer, my husband and I finally broke down and hired a landscaping service that doesn't use harsh chemicals because it seemed so incredibly daunting. But not everyone has to resort to paying a landscaper. In fact, if you have the desire (or the time), killing weeds without chemicals is actually quite easy.

    There are several low-cost, highly effective ways to rid yourselves of those annoying plants once and for all without being forced to compromise your family's health.

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    One of the highlights of summer for any home cook is the ability to run out to the garden -- rather than the supermarket -- to gather fresh herbs. But just because the seasons change doesn't mean you have to say good-bye to your beloved backyard bounty of herbs and spices

    Planting an herbilicious garden indoors is not only easy, fun, and flavorful, but also it can save you from spending a bundle at the grocery store or farmers' market. Getting going, or growing, is simpler than you might think. Start by picking up planters, potting soil, and some seeds. Or get a head start by choosing already-mature healthy plants. 

    Even if you're short on space, don't worry: Some herbs make fine "roommates" and can be planted in the same pot. You'll find that basil, parsley, thyme, sage, chives, oregano, and rosemary will be happy house guests long after summer has ended if you follow these three tips for growing herbs inside:

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    You've heard composting will save the world -- or will save us all from our garbage and feed our gardens, anyway. But isn't it smelly? Doesn't it attract pests? Isn't it just a complicated hassle for hippies? Well, maybe I'm kind of a hippie, but I've been composting for over a decade. And if a flake like me can do it right, anyone can. It's actually easier than you think.

    Here are 7 tips for turning your kitchen scraps into a rich, nutrient-dense fertilizer your garden will love.

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    A garden is an amazing wonderland for children. There's so much to learn from plants, from smelling, touching, growing, and even tasting them. But not all plants are friendly to kids. Especially if you have a curious baby or toddler exploring your yard, you'll want to be extra watchful of them when they're near plants that are poisonous. 

    Keep in mind, nature has its own defense mechanism to help protect your kids. Babies and children are extra sensitive to bitter tastes and will usually spit out toxic plants they taste, says landscaper Lisa Cangialosi of When In Bloom

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    Nobody starts out wanting their garden to die on them over the summer. But somehow it just ... happens. You begin with the best intentions, watering regularly and making all your plants happy. And then all hell breaks loose. The kids are out of school, you're always out at some activity, you go away on vacation, and it's just too hot to work in the yard. By summer's end your paradise is a disheveled graveyard where beautiful botanical dreams go to die.

    I know. It's happened to me. But there's hope! Here are 8 clever hacks that make summer gardening so much easier. This is how to not let your yard die on you this year.

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    I know we just barely started summer, but there's one big autumn event you should be thinking about right now: Halloween. Why? So you can have your very own backyard pumpkin patch, of course! Oh sure, you and your kids could visit one of those farm patches to pick out the perfect gourds for your Jack 'o Lanterns. BUT! Wouldn't it be amazing to grow your own pumpkins? To see those squashes get bigger and bigger over the summer and into the fall?

    If that sounds like a fabulous idea, NOW is the time to get planting. Those pumpkins won't just pop up overnight. We rounded up gardening expert Shirley Bovshow of Eden Makers and Foodie Gardener to show us how.

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    Walk into any garden store and you may notice something: Most plants are divided into two groups, annuals and perennials. So what's the difference between the two? Is one better than the other? And with so many different kinds of flowers, how on Earth do you pick any?

    The main difference between the two groups are as follows: Perennials usually come back every spring or summer without having to be replanted. Annuals usually die once temperatures drop in the fall or winter. There are some exceptions -- an annual in a cooler region may be a perennial in a warmer region. Plants come with tags that tell you what to expect.

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    I love to garden. Unfortunately, I live in an apartment, so for the most part, I'm limited to working on my fire escape and the "extra" room I have in my kitchen. The fire escape is reserved for flowering plants -- less worry about pigeons or other undesirables going after those. But I use my kitchen for all my edibles. In fact, I've sort of redefined 'kitchen garden.' It isn't just the stuff you grow FOR your kitchen, your kitchen can become your garden.

    I'm always on the hunt for sustainable vegetables and fruits I can grow in my kitchen. At this point, it's a veritable bounty of goods! My favorite things about growing stuff in my kitchen? Not only does it give me access to the ingredients literally right when I need them, but it gives me no excuse to throw away my veggie scraps. So many of them make great starter plants!

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