The way to Slim Citrus Trees After Frost

Do not jump too fast to prune what appears to freeze or frost damage in your citrus tree. Instead, remove any damaged fruit and then wait to scope out the rest of the harm in many weeks. Although heavy pruning is not ideal, it’s essential when moderate to severe damage occurs in the canopy of this tree. Unfortunately, in the event the damage extends below the bud union — the area in which the tree has been grafted onto the rootstock — small can be done in order to save the tree.

Wait to trim broken limbs in late spring or early summer so you can certainly determine which branches are actually damaged and which ones aren’t. In the event you prune before, you’re able to accidentally remove healthful branches. Also, some branches can appear healthy but later perish off from winter injury. Therefore, if you prune too early, you might need to conduct another pruning at a later period as damaged limbs become more evident.

Disinfect your pruning tools before use and between trees to protect against the spread of infection. A rag moistened with a very simple bleach and water solution made with one-tenth bleach and rubbed onto the blades works nicely. Depending on thickness of the limbs, then use a sharp saw, loppers or shears.

Cut each damaged limb back 2 to 3 inches into living wood. Ideally, prune just above the topmost sprout, right at a healthy branch. Make cuts right and flush with the parent branch. Do not leave stubs if at all possible.

Paint pruned stems that confront the sun and have very little sun safety with a white latex paint diluted with 50 percent water. This is particularly necessary for larger branches which were pruned.

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Designing With Landscaping Rock

Landscape rock is a key weapon when used with thought and care in your own garden. The rock itself adds structure and variety to your garden, improving your colour palette and garden landscape using components that echo your overall design. Whether serving a particular function or adding interest and texture, use landscape rock to transfer your garden past the usual.

Visual Function

Landscape rock size ranges from large boulders to little gravel. The texture also runs the gamut from smooth-edged river rock to craggy. When adding landscape rock to your garden, determine the visual role the landscape rock serves. Let landscape rock stand out using a rough-edged appearance that you soften utilizing plants using fern-like leaf or gentle vines. Alternately, juxtapose the softness of tumbled river stones against the borders of intense architectural plants, such as succulents or members of the bamboo familymembers.

Practical Function

Landscape rock often serves a particular function, creating low walls or paving walkways. Choose colors and textures that support the garden need and also encourage your design aesthetic. Smooth paving stones, as an instance, with stringent form and sharp angles, work well in contemporary gardens, but don’t suit the delicate surroundings of a cottage garden. Likewise rigidly defined walls with sharp edges provide a clean appearance that supports architectural plantings and design, but compete using a landscape that specializes in natural types and indigenous plantings.

Difficult Growing Areas

Landscape rock is particularly useful in inhospitable areas of the garden, where irrigation is tough to run, the dirt requires substantial amendment, eating up your budget and time, and the sun beats down. In such spots, including a vignette using landscape rock turns an eyesore in an attractive landscape. Place rocks together as if they have tumbled into the location and add plants that thrive in rock gardens.

Solving Problems

Large drains produce a landscape obstacle. You can not plant them over, as roots and dirt interfere with the drain’s vital function. You can also can not plant in them, as plants have been swept away by water leak during seasonal storms. Landscape rock solves the issue. Placing stone over or in the drain creates a meandering river of stone. Dry streams offer a visual border at the edge of a slope and enhance the colour palette of this plantings surrounding the drain. Select landscape rock that isn’t heavy enough to conquer drainage under, or be swept away by moving water, to encourage the purpose of the drain and then turn a potential eyesore into an attractive textural element.

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How to Boost Triploid Watermelons Next to Diploid Watermelons

When you want to enjoy homegrown seedless watermelons, you are likely to need to find a use for a few seeded fruit also, since seedless triploid watermelons don’t create fruit unless seed-producing diploid melons grow nearby. Triploid watermelons, which have three sets of chromosomes, are crosses between ordinary watermelons, called diploids — meaning that they have two sets of 11 chromosomes –and tetraploid watermelons, which were chemically manipulated to have four sets of chromosomes. Triploids can’t produce seed, since their chromosomes can’t line up in pairs. Triploid seeds are catchy to germinate, so purchase them as transplants in the event that you can find them. Once growing, their needs are no different from diploid varieties.

Clear weeds and stones from a website in full sun in the warmest microclimate of the garden — one which receives reflected heat in a south-facing fence or wall, or is in a greater elevation; raised beds are ideal. Allow enough space for a single diploid to each two to three triploid watermelon plants with plants spaced two to three feet apart in rows, together with at least two feet between rows.

Work 5-10-10 fertilizer into the ground with a shovel as soon as it’s dry enough to work. Use the fertilizer at a rate of 3 pounds per 100 square feet.

Spread black plastic sheeting, at least 1.5 millimeters thick, above the watermelon bed or down the row where the watermelons are to be planted. Secure the borders of the mulch with wire garden staples, or soften the edges of the plastic in garden soil. This solarizes the soil, making it 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than surrounding soil for spring planting. Watermelons need both warm air and soil temperatures to grow nicely.

Cut “X”s with a utility knife in the appropriate spacing in Step 1. Peel back the black plastic mulch from the middle of each “X,” and tuck the points beneath the mulch to make a 5-inch-square hole at each cut.

Dig small holes with a trowel from the gaps from the plastic to fit the root balls of the watermelon seedlings. Alternative two to three triploids for every diploid plant on your rows.

Mark that the diploid plants with plant markers.

Give all the plants a good soaking.

Monitor the plants as they grow, watching for flowers to bloom. Female melon flowers occur singly on long stems, have a little bulge at the base of the blossom and are available for only one day. These are the fruit-bearing blossoms. Male blossoms, the pollinators, bloom in clusters on short stems.

Fill an open male blossom from a diploid plant from its stem, and carefully eliminate its petals in the morning to a day when a female flower on a triploid plant is freshly open.

Roll the middle of the male diploid blossom from the stigma at the middle of the female triploid blossom.

Water deeply once a week when leaves wilt from the midday sun. Decrease watering once fruit reaches its full dimensions and starts to ripen. Less water intensifies the taste of the fruit. Fruit is generally older 90 days after planting.

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Care of Potato Vine Bulbs

Ornamental sweet potato vines (Ipomoea batatas) are frost-tender vines with vibrant leaf which climbs or trails. The plants grow from a fleshy underground wax called a tuber. Sweet potato vines are hardy at U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 9 through 11, and at these zones you can leave them at the ground all year. When overwintering sweet potato vines inside, it is possible to dig up the tubers and replant in the spring.

Sweet Potato Vine Tubers

Tubers are much like bulbs. Both are a fleshy area of the stem which grows and rises underground. Roots grow from the tuber to the soil along with the stem rises out the very top, above the soil line. The fleshy tuber stores nutrients, water and genetic material for your plant. Every growing season, the plant produces new tubers. A easy means to distribute sweet potato vine plants will be to split the tubers and replant them from the soil. Each section will grow a new plant.

Overwintering Tubers

In areas outside their plant hardiness zone, sweet potato vines can be grown as annuals. In winter, cut the foliage at the soil line and then dig the tubers from the ground. A garden fork or shovel work well for digging beneath the tubers but it’s critical to be certain not to damage the tubers when they will not store well. Brush of the dirt and they are ready to store. In areas within the climate variety, the tubers may be left at the bottom year round.

Storing Tubers

Store sweet potato vine tubers at a dry, insulating medium. Sand, peat moss or vermiculite work well. Gently clean the tubers to remove the majority of the soil. Avoid rubbing, washing or scraping your skin. Damaged skin allows decay to develop and may ruin the tubers. A bucket or barrel makes a good spot to put away sweet potato vine tubers for your winter. Make certain there’s enough of this packing medium so every one is insured rather than touching. Store the tubers in a cool, dry area for the winter.


Spring is the time to plant sweet potato vines. After removing the tubers from storage, then dip them into sections and plant them directly in the soil. Each department should have an “eye” on it. The eye is an indentation where a new shoot will grow. When planting sweet potato vines from tubers, make sure the eye is facing upwards. After covering each part with 1 inch of soil, keep the area moist and await new shoots over the next couple of weeks.

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The Size of this Pixie Mandarin Citrus Tree

In warm climates, adding a pixie mandarin tree (Citrus reticulata Blanco) to the landscape means fragrant flowers in summer and hot fruit. This diminutive citrus tree is compact enough for a little space. In areas that have cold winters, the tree can be grown in a pot in a greenhouse year or put outdoors only during warm weather.

Mature Size

As its name implies, the pixie mandarin tree is small, which makes it perfect for use as a potted plant or to get a backyard area with restricted space. Many citrus trees develop 20 or 30 feet tall, but breeding and grafting practices have contributed to little varieties. The pixie mandarin rises to only 5 to 6 feet tall and has a spread of 4 to 6 feet.

Hardiness Zones

Pixie mandarin and other citrus tree varieties thrive in the mild, frost-free winters and hot summers of this Mediterranean climate. Pixie mandarin grows best in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 9 and 10. In zone 8 and colder zones, the streamlined citrus tree can be grown in a pot outdoors in summer and shot into the home or a greenhouse for winter.


This citrus tree needs a great deal of sunlight. When intending to plant a pixie mandarin, start looking for a spot that receives a minimum of six hours of direct sunlight per day. Soil drainage is also significant. If the planting area has poor drainage and wet soil, consider creating a raised bed on such website for the tree. If you want to plant the tree in a container, then start using a pot that is only 2 inches larger than the tree nursery pot. As the tree grows, raise its pot size. A high-quality potting soil is a much better option than garden soil for the container.


Even though the tree is a dwarf variety, it produces full-size fruits. Still, mandarin oranges are little compared to other kinds of oranges and grapefruits. Their orange, thin skins peel easily. The fruit is orange, too, and has a delicate flavor. Pixie mandarin produces fruit out of winter into early spring. In mild areas, however, the tree can produce fruit into late spring and early summer.

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How to Plant Avocado Seeds as a Houseplant

Besides bearing delicious fruit that’s full of vitamin E, potassium and folic acid, it is possible to grow an avocado (Peresa Americana) from a hole to your lovely houseplant. The avocado is technically a tree, and takes at least 20 years to bear fruit, which means you’re probably going to have to relocate your houseplant before plucking any bounty to get homemade guacamole. Wash and germinate your avocado hole in the right environment to cultivate a beautiful, albeit uncommon, houseplant.

Eliminate the avocado’s pit and rinse it off under running water. Dry the avocado seed and add three to four toothpicks halfway down the pit side. Suspend the avocado pit over the glass by resting the toothpicks on the glass lip. Fill the glass until the bottom one-fourt of this avocado seed is submerged.

Set the glass in a warm place that’s away from direct sunlight. Refill the glass when required to maintain the first water level. Your avocado must sprout within fourteen days. If the seed doesn’t sprout after three months, toss it out and try again.

Proceed to refill the glass with water and track the avocado hole until the root shoots, which emerge before the stalks, are 2 to 3 inches long.

Remove the toothpicks and plant the avocado seed in a 10- to 12-inch diameter grass filled with well-drained, commercial potting soil. Plant the seed in order that the pointed end is flat with the top layer of the soil.

Maintain evenly moist soil and set the expanding avocado tree in an area that receives full sunlight. Feed the plant every 3 months with an all-purpose houseplant fertilizer.

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Ants in Pineapple Plants

Pineapples (Ananas comosus) are typical edible landscaping plants in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 through 11, though they are gaining popularity since indoor denizens as well. Pineapples are generally hardy and also have few pests, but do suffer from scale insects and mealybugs, both sap-feeding insects which attract ants.


Argentine ants (Linepithema humile), the most common ants in the house and garden, are mainly sugar-feeding insects that live in shallow mounds from the dirt. Sometimes infesting houseplants or finding their way in through tiny cracks in homes, these 1/8 inch long, dull brown ants are not dangerous to humans but can be ascertained nuisances once they’ve located an ample food supply.


Although ants may be drawn to over-ripe pineapples, it’s considerably more likely they are farming scale insects or mealybugs which are feeding on plants. These insects excrete a sticky, sweet substance called honeydew that ants will go to great lengths to procure. When ants find a colony of scale or mealybugs, they’ll protect these nuisance insects, even moving them about from plant to plant to help increase their numbers.

Potted Pineapples

Pineapples in pots may host ants as permanent guests in their land, especially if the ants are feeding on honeydew produced by insects living on the plant. If you discover that ants are living on your own potted pineapples, take the plants outside and submerge them into the very top of their pot for approximately 20 minutes in a bucket of water laced with 2 tbsp of insecticidal soap each quart of water. This will kill all the ants living in the pot without damaging the plants. Treating the leaves of the pineapple for sap-sucking insects is crucial to keeping ant control — spray them using the undiluted insecticidal soap you used to kill the ants.

Outdoor Control

Ants in exterior pineapple plantings can be more difficult to handle, but it’s not impossible once sap-feeding insects have been controlled. Argentine ants easily accept sugar-based ant discharges when they are put on each side of their paths. Check these bait stations regularly so the food supply doesn’t run out as worker ants carry the poisoned bait back to their nests, slowly poisoning the entire colony. Any pineapples planted in containers or raised beds can benefit from an application of a sticky barrier.

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How to Adjust Garage Door Tension

You need proper tension on a garage door to operate the door by hand or with an automatic opener. If the tension is too loose, the springs that help lift the doorway are ineffective as well as the weight of the door causes this unsafe. Too much tension equates to a door that does not shut all the way or stay closed. If your garage door has torsion springs throughout the inside of the door opening, then you need a professional to adjust the tension. Sectional doors and hinged doors have been corrected with a basic procedure for each kind.

Extension Springs

Close the garage door. Position a stepladder in the locale of the automated opener. Unplug the power cord to the opener. Pull down on the emergency release cord to disconnect the door in the opener’s track.

Lift up the doorway halfway in the inside, using one of the cross members. If the door stays at the halfway position without assistance, the tension is correct. If it lowers by itself, the tension is too loose. It is too tight if it increases beyond halfway without assistance.

Open the door fully by hand. Cut a two-by-four brace that installs vertically in the outer border of the doorway, using a handsaw. Place the brace in place in the outer border of the doorway.

Move the stepladder to the area of an extension spring in the upper end of the doorway in the trail on a single side. Loosen the lock nut on the threaded adjuster stem in the outer end of the pulley and spring assembly with an open-end rhythm.

Tighten the adjuster three full turns clockwise to include tension in the event the door closed and did not stay open halfway. Loosen the adjuster three turns counterclockwise in the event the doorway raised without assistance. Repeat the exact same adjustment in the pulley and spring adjuster on the opposite path.

Hold the outer border of the door open with one hand and get rid of the two-by-four brace. Lower the door halfway and test the tension. Repeat these steps, as necessary, until the door stays open halfway.

Lower the door by hand. Pull the disconnect cord to re-engage the closer. Plug in the power cord to the automated opener.

Hinge Springs

Disconnect the doorway in the automated opener, using the disconnect cord. Go to the exterior of the garagedoor.

Raise the door with the handle on the exterior. If the door is difficult to increase, the tension at the hinge springs is too loose and the automatic closer must work too difficult to raise the doorway. If the door increases too fast, the tension is too tight and the automated opener must work too difficult to shut the door.

Open the door fully to relieve the tension on the hinge springs at each side of the doorway opening. Put in a vertical two-by-four brace in the outer border of the door to prevent the door from dropping closed when the springs have been adjusted.

Ask an assistant to help fix the tension on the springs.

Put on gloves. Begin at the hinge and spring at the same side of the doorway opening. Note the link in the anchor chain where the hook in the lower end of the spring is attached, such as the third or second link in the upper end of the string.

Grip the spring together with both hands and pull downward so your helper can disconnect the anchor chain from the hook in the lower end of the spring.

Pull downward on the spring and reattach the hook in the lower end of the spring at the following link down the string to increase the spring tension. Reattach the hook at the following join to loosen the tension. Repeat the identical procedure at the hinge and spring in the opposite side of the doorway.

Hold the door open and remove the brace. Reattach the doorway in the opener track utilizing the disconnect cord.

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What Chemical Can Affect the Growth of Banana Trees?

Like many plants, banana trees ( Musa species) are nourished by sunlight, water and several elements found in the soil. All these elements are crucial to the development of the banana tree; a deficiency or excess can affect the tree’s capacity to grow, grow to adulthood and fruit. Additionally, several chemicals used in elimination of damaging plants in the lawn or landscape can affect the growth of a banana tree.


Banana trees require several chemical elements, called macronutrients, in good amounts for healthy growth. Nitrogen is a essential driver of growth, supplying energy for the synthesis of protein. Potassium helps shore up the plant’s defenses against disease and regulates the metabolism of the plant. Phosphorus promotes cell division and calcium strengthens the cell walls. A deficit in any of these vital elements can stunt a banana plant’s growth. An excess in compound component, such as nitrogen, can burn the main system of the banana tree, preventing it from obtaining sufficient nourishment to thrive.


Several micronutrients can also be crucial to the energy processes of the banana tree. Sulfur, magnesium, iron and manganese play a part in the development and deployment of chlorophyll, which the plant uses to harness energy from the sun. Zinc, boron, copper and molybdenum are essential components for a healthy antioxidant tree, regulating and supplying materials for distinct developmental processes within the plant.

Broad Spectrum Herbicides

Herbicides designed for use with numerous species of plants are used for control of unwanted or infected banana trees. Chemicals such as 2,4D and glyphosate can kill banana trees within a matter of weeks using constant therapy. These substances have to be sprayed directly on the plant for complete effectiveness. Using the substances elsewhere on the lawn shouldn’t significantly influence the growth of desirable banana plants.


Just as much as a cupful of spilled kerosene that gets into the main system of the plant may severely harm the banana plant or kill it. The compound, used as a fuel in mobile heaters, penetrates the plant’s root system and keeps it from absorbing nutrients. Enough kerosene can kill a banana tree in as little as five days.

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The way to Reduce Garage Humidity

Excess moisture in your house can damage both your home and your wellness. High indoor humidity leads to mould and mildew growth and offers an ideal breeding ground for dust mites, which can trigger allergies and asthma symptoms. Unwanted moisture can also result in rot, which might damage the finishes and construction of your house. While excessive humidity is common in bathrooms and toilets, it can also be a major problem from the garage, which is very prone to moisture infiltration.

Boost Ventilation

Increasing ventilation is still one of the easiest and most cost-effective methods of decreasing garage humidity. Open windows or doors in the garage whenever feasible to permit moisture to escape, and turn on exhaust fans in the garage if you have them. A portable fan can also help to dry up moisture and blow moist atmosphere outside. Clear the floor to avoid moisture getting trapped between the floor and your poles or other items, and stick to open shelving, which allows air to circulate. If you would like not to open the windows, even opening coverings or blinds to permit sunlight inside can help warm the space and dry up moisture. If you reside in a new house, keep in mind that it can take several months for materials and finishes to dry out, as stated by the Michigan State University Extension. Avoid making major changes to address humidity in the garage till you’ve given your house time to dry out after moving in.

Redirect Exhaust Vents

If garage moisture is a persistent problem, check whether your dryer vent is directed to the garagedoor. All exhaust fans and exhaust systems in your house should vent outside, but contractors may alternatively direct exhaust to the attic or garage to decrease costs. Moving your drier, bathtub and oven exhaust vents to the exterior can cut garage humidity considerably. In case you have a utility sink or alternative supply of moisture in your garage, consult a contractor around adding an exhaust fan to eliminate unwanted moisture.

Assess for Plumbing Issues

Plumbing leaks and pooled water are common sources of unwanted garage moisture. Leaking washing machine hoses and leaking water heaters represent two of the best causes of moisture damage in the house in accordance with Ringling College of Art and Design. If your washing machine or water heater is located in the garage, check for leaks and have them repaired whenever possible. You can also start looking for humidity-causing leaks at utility sinks in the garage. Besides leaks, it’s also essential to ensure moisture can drain properly. Assess drains around utility sinks or any other drains in the garage to be certain they’re working properly.

Use Your Air Conditioner

In case you have a central ac system, then the air conditioner itself can act as a dehumidifier. If you’re garage is currently insulated and conditioned, turn the machine to circulate air and eliminate extra moisture. Otherwise, consult a contractor about adding a cooling vent for your own garage and tying it to the present cooling system.

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