5 Tips on How to Grow Melons

Do you like to eat melons? With a little bit of a green thumb you can grow melons yourself. It isn’t as hard as it might seem. Here are 5 tips on how to make it work.

Tip 1 – Cultivation
High-quality melon seeds are offered in garden centers in local green stores. They need to be first sown in small pots on the windowsill or in a greenhouse, similar to tomato plants. Ideally, about 4 weeks before you plant them outside, put them in seed starter pots or containers with potting soil and cover them with a plastic wrap or transparent foil.

It is important that the containers or pots are kept warm. New seedlings don’t like getting “cold feet.” You can place those starting containers or pots in front of a window with sunlight coming in or alternatively on top of the refrigerator. To avoid those containers from getting cold, you can place them on a piece of Styrofoam.

After about 10 days you will be able to recognize that the seeds have germinated and grown into little seedlings. Now you can remove the foil. From this point you need to water the melon plants regularly, but be careful to avoid water logging. This will prevent building mold around the delicate roots. It is also important to move the seedlings away from direct sunlight, unless you have a greenhouse with special foil or glass that breaks the sun rays.
If the plants seem to grow slowly too big or are growing too close to each other in the pots or containers, then you may want to re-pot them again to allow a proper growth and development.

Tip 2 – Transplanting in the garden
After about a month or so, or with an outdoor temperature of at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (typically mid May), the melon plants can be transferred to the outside. As for the choice of location in the garden, you should select a sheltered, but sunny spot where your melon plants are protected from forceful winds. Assure a planting distance of about 2-3 feet apart. Take good care of those sensitive roots when moving the seedlings outside.

To prepare the new environment, loosen the soil well and add some compost or manure to help the plants getting a good start in their new location. If you use compost, I recommend incorporating it in the soil about 2 weeks before planting. If you expect some cold nights, you can also cover the plants with a frost protection blanket or a garden foil.

Tip 3 – Fertilizing
Add some previously well-enriched soil or manure. You can also use fertilizer just before flowering and when the fruits are just developing. Use a specialty fertilizer for fruit trees or alternatively a tomato fertilizer.

Tip 4 – Melon plant maintenance
You have two options. Either have the melons grow vertically on a trellis or let them branch sideways which will require more space. If the latter one is your choice, you can promote entwining by cutting the main stem after the 6th leaf. Assure your melons get watered regularly, but not excessively, because they do not tolerate constant moisture too well. You must also be sure to avoid water logging. If possible, water the melon plants in the morning. Slightly lukewarm rainwater will make those plants really happy!

Once melon fruits are recognizable, it is important to prevent the fruits from resting on the moist ground. Also here, you can use those Styrofoam sheets. Place the sheets under the melons to avoid rot.

Tip 5 – Harvest
Depending on the plant variety, the melon fruits ripen differently. Fruit ripening is recognizable by the wilting of the leaves, the incomparable melon scent and the sound. Tap on the fruit. If it sounds like a low dull tone, then it’s a sign the fruit is ripe. If the fruits are ready, use a sharp knife to separate them from the branch. To make sure the melons will last longer, cut an inch or two of the branch to leave on the fruit.

For the best garden ever consider Aquaponics

Growing your own crops is undeniably a demanding task even for those deeply in love with gardening. It certainly is a time intensive activity and it requires plenty of energy and dedication. Furthermore, a conventional garden requires fertile land which will sustain your crops. These are generally the main causes for which many people give up their desire to growing their own personal vegetables and switching to home grown organic food. What people dont generally know is that there is a method of growing organic food (pesticide and chemical free) in the comfort of your home. Yes, you read it perfectly: inside of your house.

This new type of farming is called aquaponics and is the simplest way to become a farmer! The great part is that you’ll not only grow vegetables, but you will also grow fish, with the intention to offer your friends and family a diversified nutrition. It all starts fairly simple, with a plain tank filled with water wherein you place some fish. You can get for Tilapia, Chinese Catfish, Crappie, Bluegill or Koi, or whatever species of fish you are allowed to grow in your house. Put them in the water, take good care of them and in about a month position the seeds ensuring they can reach the water and get the nutrients from it. The plants will develop and begin growing using the nutrients offered by the fish. Meanwhile, the fish will enjoy a clean environment as the plants will act as “maids” to them, cleaning and refreshing their water each and every day.

As you can tell this type of farming does not require any type of land, fertilizers or harmful chemicals. Just set up the system and make sure that the water has got the normal PH so that the fish will live comfortably in there. Then, let nature follow its course!

You can grow almost everything you need in the aquaponic farming. Leafy greens, fruity plants and legumes can all be planted within the aquaponic farming. If you have a piece of land where you might cultivate ground-based plants (potatoes, carrots, asparagus, onions, garlic and so on) you can use this water to irrigate it and the results will be spectacular!

This symbiosis between fish and plants is the one which will save you lots of time as well as provides you with a way to take on this activity without compromising your social or professional life. Couple of moments each day will be sufficient for you to make sure that both your crops and your fish are alright! In fact, growing plants and fish with the aquaponic system is so simple that your entire family will be happy to help you with that. Since it involves no dirty hands, bending and digging in the ground, you can even let your little ones help you. It won’t take long so that they won’t get bored and you will get to enjoy moments with them.

Aquaponics is the easiest way through which you will have tasty, fresh and healthy vegetables on your table everyday. There is no need to be afraid. Its easy.

Most Popular Bonsai Trees

Bonsai plants are very well-loved miniature saplings that are cultivated to capture the beauty of a large replica tree. The tree is planted in a small ceramic container, pruned and potted to keep the tree from growing to full size. Like other potted plants, there are some bonsai trees that are more popular than others. There are literally thousands of plants and varieties that might be considered for a bonsai plant, however there are a select few that are easy to sustain and grow. The following is a list of five bonsai plants that range from most popular to least popular, and a short summarization of each amazing specimen.

JUNIPER BONSAI TREE
The Juniper bonsai tree is easily the most popular genre of bonsai saplings used, because of the ease of growth and sustaining. The branches of a Juniper have adjustable branches, which makes it easy to shape and prune for both beginners and bonsai enthusiasts alike. Junipers are found throughout the Us, makings it easily accessible and ready to prune.

CHINESE ELM BONSAI TREE
The Chinese elm bonsai is another popular selling tree because of the beautiful leaves and the unique twisted tree trunk. This beautiful bonsai is strong, sturdy and forgiving if you are a new to bonsai, and forget to water or prune regularly. The Chinese elm adapts to either indoor or outdoor climates, makings it an extraordinarily favorite choice for bonsai.

FICUS BONSAI TREE
The third most popular bonsai is a stunning specimen with wide leaves that is great for pruning. The ficus bonsai tree has a thick trunk and wide roots that adapts well in many environments. The hardy wood should be kept indoors, which makes the bonsai popular for mens and women who dwell in the city and do not have room to grow trees outdoors.

JAPANESE MAPLE BONSAI TREE
The Japanese maple bonsai tree is best known for its one-of-a-kind leaf shape, and remarkable seasonal changes. The maple trees have a deciduous behavior, meanings they lose their leaves in the winter and bloom again in the spring. The tree would be more popular, if it kept its leaves on year around.

CYPRESS BONSAI TREES
The cypress bonsai trees are popular, and can possibly be found in the genus of pine and palm trees. The bonsai trees have deep green foliage, with a variety of branches that can make it the perfect bonsai for trimming and maintenance. Many like the cypress bonsai tree as a result of the unique beauty and exotic appearance.

SATSUKI AZALEAS BONSAI TREE
The Satsuki Azaleas bonsai tree is a popular bonsai because of the beautiful flowers that bloom tight small flowers that are perfect for miniature plants. The plant blooms at least two times a year, which makes it popular during those times. The marvelous bonsai tree can come in a variety of colors, and is considered as being a very feminine bonsai tree.

This bonsai list is made from a list of favorites bought in garden nurseries throughout North America. There are many other exotic and beautiful trees that can be planted as a bonsai, and have yet of being seen. It doesn’t matter which magnificent bonsai plant that you chose, you are sure to have a wonderful conversational piece!

Tips On Choosing An Outdoor Garden Fountain

Garden fountains add beauty and charm to home gardens, especially in places where you want to create the perfect appeal. It is not always easy to choose the right type of garden fountain. Several factors should be considered.

SIZE of the garden fountain should be the first thing to consider. A fountain may be great to look at but more importantly it needs to fit into your garden landscape. If you have a relatively small garden, it doesn’t make sense to install a grand fountain that covers most of your garden views. The fountain must not stand out and be the sole focus in your garden. It should either blend in with the rest of your garden or the garden must enhance the fountain. Picking the right size outdoor garden fountain is vital.

SHAPE of the garden fountain is the next important thing to decide. This has less to do with garden space and more to do with you and what you prefer. You need to determine what suits your garden and more importantly, what expresses you and your lifestyle. Garden fountains come in a variety of shapes including animals and wildlife, statuary, tiered, pedestal, rock and wall, just to name a few. Deciding on the shape of your fountain may be your most difficult task.

TYPE of fountain water flow must be considered when you are deciding on a shape.
BUBBLING FOUNTAINS are the most versatile and perhaps best-suited for most home gardens. Typical design involves a single jet of water produced below the water surface in the center of a glazed pot. The water runs over the edges of the pot and runs quietly down the sides into a basin where it’s collected and recycled by a small pump. These fountains are perfect for smaller, intimate spaces since they don’t make much sound, just quiet bubbling.

SPILLING FOUNTAINS have water exiting from a spout and dropping unimpeded into a basin. Be sure you listen to these types of fountains before you make your purchase. They can produce quite a bit of sound. Even a single arc of water splashing into a basin can be too much sound for a small space. Unless it’s just a drip, the sound is energizing and active, not relaxing,

JET FOUNTAINS are perfect for large spaces since the water becomes rather architectural and rather dramatic. In a large space, seen (and heard) from some distance, these fountains can become a main focal point. But there are also simple, small-scale jet fountains for small spaces, too. The water hits the surface as multiple droplets and jet fountains are typically not as loud as spilling fountains.

SEASONAL or YEAR ROUND Another important factor to consider when deciding on a garden fountain is whether you want it functioning year round. A seasonal fountain must be shut down in the winter months if you are in a colder climate. Otherwise the water could freeze and cause damage. You may also need to relocate it inside to protect it from harsh temperatures.Year round outdoor fountains are heated and can be left running in the winter months. The two main types are solar powered or electrical.