Stemware Inspired Gardens For Kitchen Herbs

Stem Garden 1024x797 Stemware Inspired Gardens For Kitchen Herbs

Here’s a bright way to grow your own kitchen herbs from Quirky.com!  The folks at Quirky pride themselves on creating innovative products that can’t be bought in stores, and this flexible stem garden makes a charming addition to the kitchen counter.

The stemware garden hold 6 small planting cups made from terra cotta, and is the perfect size for the kitchen herb garden.  Each cup is removable for easy planting, and features a hole in the bottom to prevent too much water from being trapped inside.  Excess water flows down the flexible stems into the terra cotta reservoir at the bottom, which can be emptied easily. The plastic cups are sturdy enough to last for a while, and light and airy enough in construction to work well in a decorated kitchen without looking clunky.

The garden will run you about 34 dollars, and soil and seeds are not included.  If you’re looking for a creative planter for yourself, or for a garden buddy, check out the link above.

Scotts PatchMaster ‘Sun and Shade Mix’ Review

IMG 2566 1024x768 Scotts PatchMaster ‘Sun and Shade Mix’ Review

A bag of Scotts PatchMaster ‘Sun and Shade Mix’ will run you anywhere from 10 dollars for a five pound bag, to 25 dollars for a 15 pound bag.  It is advertised to be a complete blend of seed, shredded cotton and paper fibers, and fertilizer, blended into a pellet form. This all-inclusive, quick, grass growing system is advertised to grow grass within 7-10 days, with regular watering, and to quickly fill in bare spots with turf grass.  I have used this personally in my own yard, and professionally in the land care business, and with proper application this product will provide you with perfect results every time. New grass seedlings emerge often within 5 days, and continue to emerge for several weeks. The end result with Scotts PatchMaster Sun and Shade Mix, is a quick, healthy carpet of grass in any bare spot, that blends in wonderfully with the average home owner’s lawn grass varieties.

How To Use Patchmaster For Best Results:

PatchMaster is a quick and easy way to grow grass in bare patches, and erosion zones, but even it is not a miracle worker if the soil you throw it on is hard-pan and compacted, or chemically burned from winter salt, or pet urine.  In areas of heavy foot traffic [Read more...]

‘Dogipot Pet Stations,’ A Review

roundholespetstationalumstationi 542x1024 ‘Dogipot Pet Stations,’ A Review

Dog poop isn’t exactly a polite subject to talk about, but for park and property managers like myself it’s unfortunately a problem that needs discussion, and careful supervision over.

Wherever the human population is booming there are by default a large number of pets as well. While much of the population can be trusted to clean up after their pets and provide their own waste removal bags, many owners are not as fastidious, and the nearby community or a land manager may need to step in to provide a better option. Dog waste, both urine and poop, can do damage to a lawn or garden,and large amounts of regular “visitations” can cause damage all the way through the soil, causing costly repairs.

[Read more...]

The Concise Guide To Self-Sufficiency; A Book Review

Self-Sufficiency.  What a satisfying phrase!  It was a phrase that seemed particularly satisfying when I pulled this book off the Library shelves this winter and then promptly got snowed in with it during a blizzard.

I had heard that John Seymour was a practical and inspiring author and teacher, but he proved to create quite an escapist read in his book The Concise Guide to Self-Sufficiency The Concise Guide To Self Sufficiency; A Book Review

4528025509 The Concise Guide To Self Sufficiency; A Book Review


John Seymour, the author of this book, is a well established Irish writer, and teacher of the self-sufficient lifestyle. He opened a “School of Self Sufficiency” in Ireland after his books and radio programs about his own journey into traditional living became increasingly popular. Resurrecting the concept of simple living in the 1950′s and 1960′s before the environmental movement caught steam, John’s unique perspective was not only focused on crops and farming, but also on preserving the traditional tools, skills and crafts that where dying out in the modern age. “The Concise Guide To Self-Sufficiency” neatly explains in stories, pictures, charts and diagrams all the old “lost wisdom” of the previous era’s to the modern reading audience.

[Read more...]

Bulk Bluebird Boxes For A Steal

lg 71985 52118 wild bird Bulk Bluebird Boxes For A Steal

I oversee a few walking trails, and reforestation areas that are broadly laced with functioning bluebird boxes.  Every year the number of houses that need replacing can vary, but I inevitably need to purchase boxes in bulk for to have a few on hand for quick replacement every Spring.  Since pre-fabricated Bluebird houses can run you anywhere from $25 all the way up to $70 a piece, finding a good deal is essential!

This year Dr. Foster and Smith have a bulk Bluebird box package for sale from their “Wild Bird Catalogue” that will run you $109 for 6 Bluebird boxes, costing you only about 18 dollars per box.  This is the best deal I’ve found yet, and one that is perfect for those of you in property management that read this blog!  It’s also a great buy for homeowners and park volunteers who are trying to add bird housing to urban, and heavily trafficked areas.

[Read more...]

A Quick Fix For Sparrow Problems

magic halo 300x249 A Quick Fix For Sparrow Problems

Looking for a way to prevent House Sparrows from eating out of your feeders?   The Sparrow Free Magic Halo A Quick Fix For Sparrow Problems is a product I’ve been able to view up close for several months, thanks to a friend and avid birder. He amazed me with this simple Sparrow-proof fix for his woodside garden!  Don’t let the picture fool you, this little wire gadget works on the real deal even confusing Starlings, while allowing songbirds and woodpeckers to eat in peace.

How It Works:

The metal hoop attaches to, or can be hung over a wide variety of feeders. The strings of fishing line attached to the hoop are allowed to dangle free over and around the feeder. Sparrows and Starlings are strangely unnerved by the motion and appearance of the fishing line, and abandon the feeders leaving them alone permanently. It’s that simple, and yes, it really works!

Sparrow problems can be solved quickly with this 100% effective deterrent system from the pest control experts at “Bird-X.”  I’ve seen it work myself, and can attest to it’s usefulness.  Try it out around your favorite feeders to bring the birds you want into closer view

Product Review: Black and Decker 24” Hedge Hog Hedge Trimmer

00000119440 blackdeckerhedgehognht518hedgetrimmer large Product Review:  Black and Decker 24” Hedge Hog Hedge Trimmer

I made sure to add to the Hedge Hog Trimmer to my personal tool kit this past spring, and have been pleased with its operation, and “greener” profile in my tool shed. Black and Decker is following the current lawn tool trend to create cleaner and greener battery operated tools for the mass market. This tool is a must have for any gardener or landscaper with hedges or ornamental grasses that need annual or bi-annual trimming and shaping. Holding a full charge for about an hour of heavy use, this tool may not stack up in longevity against its gas and 2cycle cousins, but for the average homeowner it will tackle your jobs admirably. Batteries for the Hedge Hog Hedge Trimmer are the standard “one battery for all” 18 volt batteries used in all of their tool line-ups, and can be swapped out and charged one at a time for ever-ready power for jobs where you may run one battery down.

Here’s what I like about these tools. Since they are from Black and Decker, these tools are tough, and reliable.  Being battery operated they are easier for anyone to store, since they don’t require bi-yearly service, or the storage of gasoline and other chemicals for their operation.  They also are easy starters for those of us who struggle with choke operated machinery, and make sense for urban dwellers who need power tools to maintain the rooftop gardens that are quickly coming back into vogue.  They are also the safe and preferred choice of landscape contractors who need battery operated tools when traveling through buildings in the city to maintain the courtyard gardens of hotels.

[Read more...]

Innovative Indoor Plant Grow Light

grow light Innovative Indoor Plant Grow Light

I’ve got some corners in my house that would be perfect for  a little planter or two, my only problem is that these dark corners are beyond the reach of my windows, and completely unsuitable for large grow lights. I discovered this small scale grow light this week while “window shopping” that was just too great not to share!

Solutions Catalogue online has this great tabletop sized grow light for small spaces, that is perfect for small spaces, tabletop containers, or shelf displays.  These grow lights run about 29 dollars, and are a great way to keep indoor plants healthy where window light is scarce.  I know a few friends who would love something like this to cheer up a dark corner in a basement apartment, but there are plenty of ways to incorporate something like this into your desk at work or even on a bookshelf at home.

Check it out if you are looking for something small to get things growing in your space!

Review: Pet Alive’s “UTI-Free” Homeopathic Treatment for Urinary Tract Infections

PUTI001 Review: Pet Alive’s “UTI Free” Homeopathic Treatment for Urinary Tract Infections

I view my pets as important members of my family, and I’m always on the lookout for new ways to keep them healthy and happy without breaking the bank. Due to the expense that veterinary bills can be I recently decided that in non-emergency cases I would use natural remedies on my pets to lower the cost of maintaining them, while still providing them with natural care that won’t have the adverse side-effects that common drugs can have.

My male cat recently supplied me with a reason to do some research into natural remedies for bladder and urinary tract infections, and in the process I discovered Native Remedies”UTI-Free” .  The product is created by Homeopaths, and Pharmacists to treat the symptoms of, and prevent occurrences in cats and dogs of urinary tract infections.  While the product is registered with the FDA, and uses plant extracts (Berberis vulgaris, Cantharis, Staphysagris,  Sucrose) that have been used by herbalist for thousands of years to treat various ailments, the product does not promise to fully cure a serious infection. I propose that the formality is mostly legal in nature, because I used on tiny bottle to treat a serious urinary problem from Thanksgiving day to New Years, and found the change in his health to be a relief to both myself, and to the cat. [Read more...]

Review: Organic “Deer Stopper” by Messina Wildlife

deerstopper Review: Organic “Deer Stopper” by Messina Wildlife

Messina Wildlife has a great organic, deer repellent spray that is safe on everything from your Pansies to your veggies.  Tested and given the seal of approval by the “National Home and Garden Club,” this ready to use pump spray bottle is easily used, and comes in 1 quart containers that will cover 1,000 square feet.

The product repels Elk, Moose and Deer, and the active ingredients are Eggs, Rosemary Oil, and Mint Oils, so you will feel no guilt in the process!  I use the product myself commercially, and find that it works for the average of 30 days, making the plants inedible for grazers.  The formula takes 20 minutes to dry and leaves a light herb smell in the area that is not unpleasant, or offensive. For a moderate deer population this product will end the desruction of your garden plants, and will need to be applied about every 30 days for season long deterrence.

I picked up my trial bottles at Home Depot, but they are sold nation-wide at home and garden centers in the pest control isles.  I highly recommend this product for its “green” ingredients, and its effectiveness.  Try this product next if you have a deer problem in your neighborhood!