How Dangerous Is Bone Meal Use to Fertilize Tulips?

Employing bone meal to fertilize tulips isn’t dangerous at all — it’s one of the preferred fertilizers for bulb flowers. You do not require much bone meal, and you just need to apply it once or twice each year, making it simple and cost-effective as a way to maintain tulips healthy and profitable. A couple of drawbacks exist, however, so weigh the fluid kind that’s ideal for your flowerbed.

The Way Bone Meal Helps Tulips

Bone meal’s most important benefit is that it also supplies a slow-release form of potassium into the ground. Tulips prefer soil that’s fairly bland, meaning that they do not like it loaded with tons of nutrients such as nitrogen. They require small doses of different nutrients, but too much could cause stunted growth or difficulties blooming for the tulips. The bone meal continues to release the essential phosphorus throughout the growing season, feeding the tulips and assisting them create large, colorful blooms.

How Much You Need and When

It doesn’t take much bone meal to assist tulips thrive. Adding a tablespoon of bone meal at the underside of every wax hole before you plant the wax is all you require. Tulips perform best when planted in the fall, which provides the bone meal a lot of time to release nutrients to the ground prior to the spring growing season arrives. For an added soil boost for next year, add another tablespoon about each plant after it fades from the summer.

Why You Might Want to Supplement

If you forgot to include bone meal to the planting hole in the fall, it’s too late in the spring to get the bone meal to perform any good to your current blooming season because of its slow-release qualities. Rather, add a superphosphate fertilizer around each plant, such as a 0-20-0. Use about 5 tablespoons of granulated fertilizer for each 10 square foot of garden bed to get bulbs. And though tulips do not like overly rich soil, they require a little more nutrients than that which bone meal provides. When your plants are not thriving like you believe they should — if the development is slow or the blooms are not forming in a timely manner from the spring — include a little amount of a balanced fertilizer, such as a 10-10-10. Five tablespoons each 10 square feet must be sufficient.

Bone Meal Disadvantages

Bone meal is traditionally utilized to help bulbs grow, but controversy exists over whether it’s the ideal alternative. Changes to the manner bone meal is currently mass means that the fertilizer doesn’t have the same concentration of nutrients it once did — many nutrients leach out throughout the manufacturing procedure. Also, the smell of bone function, which is made from the bones of creatures, might entice insects, raccoons or other animals to your yard, causing them to dig in your flowerbed to find the source of the odor.

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The Flowering Plum Shrub

Identifying a flowering plum shrub is complex due to a confusion of common names and the distinction between what is a tree and what is a tree. The deciduous purple-leaf sand cherry (Prunus x cistena), also commonly called the cistena plum, can be said to be a shrub or small tree. It will grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 2 through 8.

Origins and Name

Although it is more frequently listed as a purple-leaf sand cherry, P. cisena can be listed as the cistena plum. The frequent name confusion is because both plums and cherries belong to the Prunus genus. In 1910, Dr. N. E. Hansen of South Dakota State University successfully crossed the purple leaf plum (P. cerasifera), indigenous to western Asia, and the indigenous American western sand cherry (P. pumila). To present his plumb-cherry hybrid a botanical name, Hansen combined prunus using cestina, the Sioux word for baby. In answer to the inquiry of whether P. cistena is just a flowering plum or a flowering cherry, then it is a hybrid, half and half.

Shrub Definition

There is no scientific definition that separates shrubs from trees. 1 useful distinction is that a tree is 13 feet tall and contains a back at least 3 inches wide measured 4 1/2 feet from the floor and also has a definite layer of foliage. Shrubs usually are less than 13 feet tall and have multiple transitions less than 3 inches in diameter. Cistena plum grows 6 to 10 feet tall with a spread of 5 to 8 feet, a shrublike height, although it only has a single trunk, suggesting a tree. In these instances plants are generally recorded as a shrub or small tree.


The slow-growing cistena plum requires little upkeep. It has a curved shape with purple-red leaf which turns red in the autumn. After its leaves appear in the spring, the cistena plum yields fragrant, 1/2-inch-wide white flowers tinged with pink. It later produces scattered 3/4-inch-wide fruits that are utilized to make jellies, pies and jams and are much loved by birds.


Although the cisena plum thrives in full sun, it can be grown in partial shade. Both its blossom and leaf have a richer color if it is grown in the entire sun. It will grow in a wide variety of soils which range from light, sandy soils to heavy clays, although they should be well drained. It will tolerate urban growing conditions. The cistena plum is most usefully grown in a raised planter or at regions where it will prosper as a tree. It is usefully planted as part of a hillside mass of shrubs or as little hedge.


Cistena plums are prone to numerous diseases and insect pests, with the result that they frequently do not live longer than ten years. Japanese beetles such as their leaf and boring insects attack their trunks. Other issue insects include aphids, caterpillars, leafhoppers, scale, spider mites and tent caterpillars. Diseases include dieback, fireblight, honey fungus, leaf curl, leaf spot, powdery mildew and root decay.

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The Size of Azaleas

The azalea, a subgenus of the genus Rhododendron, is a flowering shrub that grows in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 8. With several varieties and a selection of heights, blossom sizes and leaf lengths, then there’s an azalea that fits your landscaping needs. The plants commonly referred to as azalea and rhododendron, though both at the genus Rhododendron, are distinctly different plants. The classification of the azalea may cause some confusion if you aren’t familiar with the size and characteristics of the shrub.

Shrub Size

Azalea shrubs can be found in a number of varieties and a range of sizes. The height may reach up to 10 feet or as low as a 12-inch-high ground cover. Environmental conditions like water availability, soil and sunlight nutrition can impact the mature size of azalea shrubs. Seasonal pruning maintains a desirable shrub height and prevents the shrub from overgrowth. According to the Azalea Society of America, the shrubs may develop 2 to 10 inches taller annually. An azalea’s width is similar to its own height.

Flower Size

Azaleas produce funnel-shaped blooms in sizes which depend on the variety. The flowers range in size from 2 to 4 inches long with five stamens on each. Varieties can be found with multilayered petals on open flowers for a complete look or with small, delicate blooms. Tall-growing varieties tend to have larger flowers than shrubs of a compact dimension.

Leaf Size

Azalea shrubs have lush leaf growth in a medium-green to dark-green color. Some varieties have variegated leaves with white or yellow stripes. The leaves range in dimension from 1 to 6 inches long, depending on the range. Evergreen varieties often have shorter leaves than those of deciduous varieties. The leaves have a soccer form and may be narrow or broad.

Planting Details

The size of the planting hole leads to the proper increase of this azalea. Azaleas have a shallow root system and a wide spread. Place the shrub in a planting hole that is deep enough so the cover of the root ball is even with the bottom level or just above ground level. When you plant at least two azalea shrubs at the same area, the space between them is a significant consideration. Calculate their planting spaces by adding together the mature spread of this shrubs and dividing this value by the total number of shrubs, to give them room to develop to their entire display.

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Can You Cut Honeysuckle Down to the Ground?

Honeysuckles (Lonicera spp.) Contain both vine and shrub varieties and produce their signature accent flowers, which are often fragrant and attract hummingbirds and bees to your lawn. When these plants may be satisfying to the senses and attract wildlife, most honeysuckles are vigorous plants that frequently outgrow their designated area, and some could become invasive. When this occurs, you may cut honeysuckle into the ground, and it should not kill the plant. If you want to eliminate the plant, then cutting it isn’t the way to go.

Invasive Honeysuckle

Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica) is a number known to be invasive and grows in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 though 10. This extremely vigorous variety can easily take over an whole area. Since cutting it to the ground, even, is not likely to kill the plant, then you will want to have a different approach. Digging out the plant’s crown is the very best way to eliminate this plant. Once the crown is removed, the plant won’t grow back.

Effects of Serious Pruning

Because cutting honeysuckle into the ground does not kill it, you can severely prune overgrown or scraggly honeysuckles by cutting them into the ground before new spring growth starts. Following a serious pruning, the honeysuckle will continue to grow rapidly, but won’t bloom the following season. If you want the vine to blossom, leave some of the older plant growth. Shrub varieties of honeysuckle may also withstand severe pruning and will send up numerous new shoots that require pruning to maintain the bush’s natural shape.

Care After Serious Pruning

Honeysuckle vines and bushes that have undergone serious pruning or that have been cut into the ground require special care as they work to grow new shoots. As the honeysuckle grows new shoots, make certain that the plant is well nourished and utilize an organic mulch, such as bark chips, around the plant’s base to help retain moisture and to inhibit weed growth. You can feed the plant using a general fertilizer once the plant’s earliest shoots develop full-sized leaves.

Regular Pruning

Since honeysuckle grows rapidly, it will not require pruning to thin vines or bush growth. You should prune to thin plants after the plants have been finished blooming. Thinning includes cutting back long shoots and removing broken or weak stems. Honeysuckles utilized as ground covers require pruning to thin out the dense canopy and keep the plant within its boundaries.

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How to Care for Strawberry Begonias

Strawberry begonia (Saxifraga stolonifera) gets its name because it spreads with runners — or stolons, as the species name suggests — to create new plants, like strawberry crops. Also known as strawberry geranium, creeping saxifrage and mother-of-thousands, strawberry begonia thrives in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 6 through 9 and is commonly grown as a houseplant in colder climates. Grown outside as a ground cover, strawberry begonia grows gradually with an average height and spread of 1 foot. The plants show white asymmetrical flowers in late spring to early summer and provide evergreen foliage through the winter.

Plant strawberry begonias at an area which receives partial shade to full shade. They function well as a ground cover at border plantings, shaded rock gardens and woodland gardens. The space should have ample, well-drained soil. You may incorporate 4 inches of organic humus fabric with a rototiller, including materials such as compost, leaf mold, grass clippings, manure and sphagnum peat to enhance the structure of clay soils, if necessary.

Water the plants to keep medium moisture, allowing the top 1/2 inch of soil to dry between deep waterings.

Fertilize the plant with organic fertilizers, such as fish emulsion or blood and bone function, implemented as a side dressing around crops, if wanted. You could also add compost into the soil around plants to restore nutrients into the soil or utilize complete fertilizers, such as 10-10-10, conservatively to avoid cutting back the plants.

Spread a 2-inch layer of organic mulch material, such as shredded bark or humus, around the plants to help retain moisture in the soil. Do not push the mulch directly against plant stems.

Remove runners in the plant to prevent them from taking root and spreading into unwanted regions of the garden. If you would like the strawberry begonia to take over a flower bed, then it is possible to instead plant the runners so that they take root. These slow-growing plants do not need pruning except to remove dead plant material.

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How to Level a Yard Full of Holes

To avoid breaking an ankle while strolling through your yard, holes must be filled in — particularly several ones. Whether they are caused by animals or settling, the remedy would be exactly the same; filling the hole with quality soil to encourage the growth of new grass roots for a healthy lawn.

Dig under the grass in long bob with the spade and set the sod aside; this is reused after the hole is filled, if the grass seems to be healthy.

Mix the potting soil with compost or sand in equal parts in the bucket or wheelbarrow with the trowel.

Put spadefuls of the soil mix to the hole. To fight settling, bring the soil mix about an inch over the surrounding soil.

Put the removed sod back above the filled hole and then pat it in place. Water the sod extensively to establish root growth in the new soil.

Fertilize the lawn to encourage healthy root growth. Natural fertilizers — like compost or grass clippings — may provide the ideal combination of potassium or nitrogen to the soil without needing a soil test. Simply sprinkle it on the sod or new grass seedling to provide nutrients.

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Bringing in an Potted Arborvitae

Although typically grown in rows to form a hedge, arborvitaes (Thuja occidentalis) can also be grown separately in containers. When grown in pots, compact varieties like “Golden Globe,” “Sunkist” and “Woodwardii” make attractive patio plants or function as focal points in the backyard. Because containers provide little insulation into a plant’s root system, cold winter weather can harm or kill the plant. Bringing your container-grown arborvitae inside or finding other methods to protect its roots will assist the shrub endure the winter.

Making the Go

You should prepare your arborvitae because of its indoor home in late autumn. A sudden change from the bright exterior to a dark garage will confuse the plant and also weaken its increase. Aim to expose your shrub to two to three hours of sun every day by moving it into a shady spot in the backyard or sheltering it under the eave. Once the plant has been in complete shade for a week, it’s prepared to move indoors. During the arborvitae’s transition time, check and treat it for any insects. Before bringing your arborvitae indoors, add a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch into the ground.

Indoor Conditions

The purpose of bringing in your arborvitae inside is to keep the roots from freezing, not to give it a room that is heated. Arborvitae stay semi-dormant during the winter and exposing them to warm temperatures will stir them from this dormancy. The perfect home for your arborvitae is at an unheated garage where it can receive indirect lighting. You do not need to provide direct sunlight, but should avoid placing the plant in total darkness. Water the plant well once you have it indoors. Next, you should only need to water the plant when the soil gets dry to a depth of 2-3 inches. As it’s mostly dormant, the plant will not need much water and watering it too much will encourage dangerous fungal growth.

Returning Outdoors

Just because you did when bringing the plant indoors, gradually get your arborvitae acclimated into the outside world. Once the threat of frost has passed and nighttime temperatures stay above 40 degrees Fahrenheit, you can start the process of hardening from the shrub. This simply means gradually exposing your plant to outdoor conditions. Throughout the afternoon, take your plant out to a secure and shady location for two to three hours. Over the following two weeks, increase the total amount of time your arborvitae is outside until it’s outside full time. During this transition, gradually increase the amount of sunlight your arborvitae receives and how much wind it’s exposed to.

Overwintering Options

If your arborvitae’s container is too large to transfer easily or if you don’t have indoor space for it, you will find other techniques to defend the roots during the winter. 1 option is to transplant the shrub into the ground in late autumn or to bury the container using the plant in it. In either circumstance, the surrounding garden soil provides a natural insulation for the arborvitae’s roots. If your area receives only a few days of freezing weather, then it may not be worth the attempt to bury the plant. Rather, when you learn cold weather will hit, move the pot to a protected area and surround the pot with wax or blankets. Irrespective of how you overwinter your own arborvitae, keep the shrub in partly shady conditions and reduce watering to keep the roots from rotting.

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How to Improve Soil for Grass Growing

The perfect land for grass growing is well drained and fertile with a pH of between 6.5 and 6.8. Occasionally, soil has to be amended because it does not satisfy the perfect conditions to nurture grass development. Amendments can help the top 6 inches of dirt loosen and have a crumbly, loose texture with a neutral pH level. Amending can help dirt include about 5 percent organic matter and a balanced combination of sand, silt and clay.

Testing Soil

Grab a handful of dirt, and roll it into a ball. Press the ball of dirt into a ribbon-shaped strip between the fingers and thumb.

Hold the ribbon from the atmosphere. The soil is considered sandy if it won’t ribbon; the dirt is considered clayey if the ribbon stays together for 2 or more inches.

Take 1 tablespoon of dried dirt from six to eight areas. Put the soil in a bowl and mix it until it’s well combined. Add a few drops of vinegar. Notice that the soil pH is above 7.5 if the dirt fizzes.

Take 1 tablespoon of moist soil from six to eight areas. Put the soil in a bowl, and mix it until it’s well combined. Add a pinch of baking soda. If it fizzes, note that the soil has a pH less than 5.0.

Applying Amendments

Till 12 cubic yards of topsoil and 12 cubic yards of organic matter each 1,000 square feet to the upper 4 to 6 inches of sandy soil. Till 12 cubic yards of organic matter each 1,000 square feet in to the very best 4 to 6 inches of clay soil.

Spread 20 pounds of dolomitic lime per 1,000 square feet in a crisscross application pattern for soil with a pH lower than 4.9. Apply 50 pounds of iron sulfate per 1,000 square feet in a crisscross application pattern for soil with a pH higher than 7.5.

Till the amendments to the top 6 inches of the soil.

Mix four parts cottonseed meal, 1 component phosphate, one-half part lime, two parts greensand and one component gypsum. Implement 3 pounds of fertilizer per 1,000 square feet. Till the fertilizer to a thickness of 4 to 6 inches.

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Varieties of Strawberries That Are Good for Organic Production

As fast fruit manufacturers requiring minimum room, strawberries are excellent for home gardens. This berry favorite has many culinary uses and a high vitamin C content. Studies by John Reganold of Washington State University have discovered that organically grown strawberries offer you several advantages, such as fewer pesticides used, much healthier land, 10 percent more vitamin C and greater antioxidant levels and, in some instances, better taste compared to chemically grown strawberries. Variety selection is vital to successful organic strawberry production.

Disease-Free Certification

When selecting strawberry varieties to grow organically, the first step is to be certain you plant certified disease-free stock. This certification helps to ensure that young strawberry crops are free of any potentially threatening insect or disease pests and confirms their cultivar. By planting certified disease-free strawberries, threat of future pest problems is reduced. When purchasing disease-free varieties, gardeners should request that sellers offer certification tags for evidence of authenticity.

Disease Resistant

Like many fruit and vegetable crops, strawberries can suffer from plant diseases and other pest infestations, which in traditional non-organic agriculture have been prevented and treated using manufactured chemical solutions. Growing disease-resistant strawberries lessens the risk of the difficulties in your natural strawberry patch. As an instance, that the “Sequioa” strawberry, known for its large fruit and excellent flavor, is immune to the typical Verticillium wilt, as are “Earliglow,” “Guardian,” “Surecrop” and “Tribute.” Red stele is just another serious fungal problem that afflicts strawberries and immune varieties include “Midway,” “Redchief,” “Delite” and “Lateglow.” A few leaf spot and leaf scorch resistant varieties are “Albritten,” “Allstar,” “Atlas,” “Hood” and “Jewel.”


Organic growers shouldn’t miss strawberry varieties also renowned for their great flavor. The “Douglas” cultivar produces large tasty fruit, as does the “Pajaro” variety. The medium-sized “Irvine” and bigger “Camarosa” varieties both have received excellent ratings due to their taste. “Chandler” is the conventional amount grown in California — America’s largest strawberry producer — and produces incredibly well-flavored fruit. The “Honeoye” variety has a distinctive flavor, which a few strawberry enthusiasts love but others find less enjoyable. Other cultivars receiving high marks for taste include “Earliglow” and “Jewel.”


Selecting local strawberry varieties that are either native or adapted for cultivation in your area is important for growing your own organic produce. These varieties will already have a level of resistance to diseases common in your area, which decreases the need for pesticide use and typically makes strawberry crops easier to take care of. To ascertain the strawberry varieties best adapted for your individual area, consult experts in the local nursery or extension workplace to get their recommendations.

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Fruit Trees Which Flower Pink

Whether you are interested in fruit trees to their ability to attract wildlife to your garden or for their own delicious, edible fruits that blossom in a shade of pink is an added bonus. From trees so coated with blooms they resemble snow to people with warm-hued blossoms, the significance and interest pink flowering fruit trees bring to your outdoor space is enormous. Consider your options and make the decision that best matches your distinct landscape needs.

Fragrant Flowers

Japanese apricot trees (Prunus mume) bloom in white, red or pink, fragrant flowers. Pick a pink cultivar, such as”Dawn” to make sure pink blossoms. These trees reach a height of 10 to 20 feet. The fruits measure about 3 inches in diameter and attract birds. It is primarily prized for its value, though the fruit is edible. Japanese apricots thrive in full sun to partial shade and function best in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 6 through 9. Star magnolias (Magnolia stella) create multi-petaled, pink, fragrant blossoms on cultivars, such as”Pink Stardust.” In addition, these deciduous trees take on a oblong to round shape with foliage which takes during the fall to a yellow hue that is gentle. This tree reaches a width of up to 15 feet and a height of up to 20 feet. Star magnolias thrive and function best in USDA plant hardiness zones 4. The fruit attracts birds.

Drooping Branches

Yoshino cherry trees (Prunus x yedoensis) develop into a vase-like shape with drooping branches while displaying plenty of pink spring blossoms in cultivars such as”Daybreak.” The berries that are tiny are inconspicuous, but often lead to a trip from birds. Having a height of up to 45 ft and spread of up to 40 ft, this deciduous tree grows most successfully through 8a. Peach trees are prized for their flowers, which bloom in cream, red and pink along with big yellow to blushed fruit. Peach trees reach a height and spread of about 15 to 25 feet with fall foliage branches and a rounded shape. These deciduous plants function best in USDA plant hardiness and thrive in full sun zones 5b.

Bold Red Fruit

Flowering dogwoods (Cornus florida) bloom in spring, followed by little red fruit during the fall season. Cultivars, such as”Rubra” display pink to red-tinted blossoms. This deciduous tree offers a shape as well as added interest with foliage which becomes purplish-red during fall. Flowering dogwoods attain a height of up to 25 ft and prefer full sunlight to partial shade. In USDA plant hardiness zones 5 through 15, grow these dogwoods. Flowering crabapple trees (Malus species) are known for their abundance of pink showy blossoms and 1/2-inch diameter, vivid red fruit which brings birds into the landscape. To enjoy this deciduous shrub in your backyard, choose a crabapple that performs well in your region, such as the”Prariefire” crabapple (Malus x”Prariefire”), which thrives in full sunlight within USDA plant hardiness zones 4 through 8a. These smaller trees, using a height and spread of 15 to 20 ft, add powerful interest.

Delicious Fruit and Green Leaves

The frequent flowering quince (Chaenomeles speciosa) provides showy, 2-inch, yellow-green fruit that is often utilized to make marmalade. An abundance of pink blossoms develop on cultivars such as”Cameo.” The foliage of this tree may start bronzed, but becomes green fall color change without developing. This deciduous shrub to small tree thrives in full sun and grows to a height and spread of 6 to 10 ft. Grow flowering quinces in USDA plant hardiness zones 4. The Barbados cherry tree (Malpighia glabra) also produces pink flowers that show up through April through October. Having a height of up to 12 feet and a spread of up to 15 ft, this little evergreen tree foliage stays green through fall. In addition, the tree produces delicious red tomatoes that are cherry measuring 1/2 to 1 inch in diameter. Barbados cherry trees thrive through 11 in full sun to partial shade with development that is greatest in USDA plant hardiness zones 9b.

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