2022 December Gardening Tips

2022 December Gardening Tips

December?! When did that happen? Well, folks, whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just getting started, December can be a busier month than you might expect. After all, preparing for your best growing season yet takes plenty of work and preparation. That’s why in this week’s blog, we’re here to share a handy to-do list to keep you busy this December.

Lawn & Pond

If you run your pond pump during the winter, raise it on to a ledge in the pond to recirculate only the top layer of water.
Watch water levels, as ice can cause overflow and cause damage to surrounding fixtures or plants.
There are two key elements when it comes to helping your pond fish survive the winter. The first is to ensure your fish don’t freeze and the second is to ensure they’re getting adequate oxygen. To do this, you’re going to want to have a Pond Aerator or Aqua Jet Pump. Both will create a more stable environment for your fish by increasing air circulation which will prevent your pond from freezing and provide your fish with the oxygen they need to survive while preventing unwanted gas build-up.
Add cold-water beneficial bacteria.
If keeping your pond running during the winter, add pond de-icer.
Due to their natural ability to hibernate, you must not feed your fish during the winter months. To survive such cold temperatures their bodies adapt by lowering their metabolisms and using their energy to stay moving, instead of digesting. Feeding your fish during this process is likely to cause damage or death by choking or toxicity.
If your pond is already frozen, do not break the ice. Breaking into a frozen pond could be deadly for fish either by striking them or stunning them from the vibrations.
To prevent damages, turn off any water fixtures like waterfalls.

Plants

Try growing popular varieties of indoor forcing bulbs are Paper White NarcissusAmaryllis & Prepared Hyacinth! They need approximately seven weeks to bloom.
Watch for the first Christmas rose (Helleborus niger) blossoms outdoor and Chinese witch hazel (Hamamelis Mollis) branches can be brought indoors for fragrant blooms.
Poinsettia care: Remember the 3 M’s. Moderate bright light, moderate watering and moderate temperature. Avoid access to hot or cold areas.
Protect fragile plants by staking, wrapping and mulching. Such as dahlias, trees, azaleas and rhododendrons.
With proper care, a real Christmas tree should last 5 weeks or longer, making the first week of December the perfect time to put up a real Christmas tree. Remember to water the root ball and spray the branches with “wilt proof” to prevent excess drying. If the weather is severely cold after Christmas, acclimatize the tree by hardening off in stages.
Do not cut holly while the weather is freezing. This will make the berries black. Fresh evergreen boughs can be cut anytime to maintain a fresh supply indoors. Spruce, balsam and cedar boughs will last the longest.
The best selection of spring bulbs is available now. Wildwood Outdoor Living has the largest selection around, online and in-store! Be sure to plan out your garden ahead of your visit to make sure you have the right growing conditions for your bulb choices.

Miscellaneous

Clear gutters of all debris to prevent damage and ensure proper drainage for spring.
Keep feeding birds to help them during harsh winters.
Continue composting, everything you save now with warm up in no time in the spring.
Remove heavy snow fall from branches as the weight can cause damage which will invite unwanted pests and disease.
Looking for more to do this December? Check out the latest episode of Get Up and Grow with our President, Gord Nickel for a little bit of indoor inspiration, below.
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Let us know at info@wildwoodoutdoorliving.com.
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How To Grow Succulents

How To Grow Succulents

The colder it gets outside, the more time we get to take care of our indoor plants! – Is one way for us gardeners to look at it. If you are already counting down the days until spring, it’s time to try something new to keep you busy this winter. In this week’s blog, we’re here to teach you everything there is to learn about growing your own succulents. Plus, follow along as our President Gord Nickel shows us exactly how he does it himself.

What are Succulents?

plants that enjoy sunny, warm climates with very little moisture. Increasingly popular, you might notice them in various intriguing shapes and colours with leaves that swell with stored water. Succulents are native to desert areas such as North and South Africa but can also be found in some rainforested and mountainous regions.

Popular Succulents

Aloe Vera

Burro’s Tail

Hens-and-Chicks

Pincushion Cactus

Living Stone

Zebra Cactus

How To Grow Succulents

To grow your succulents, you can choose from two popular methods. Below we’ve detailed everything you need to succeed, including a quick and easy video with our President, Gord Nickel.

Cutting

If you or someone you know has a succulent, look for tiny droplets of leaves that might have shed from the plant and collect these leaves to propagate your succulent. Or, just cut a few leaves off the host plant, and place them in well-draining soil (just lightly on top of the soil) somewhere sunny to dry out completely while it establishes shoots. Once roots have been established, you’re ready to gently press them into the soil further and water sparingly.

Rooting

If no leaves have dropped, you can carefully remove “pups” or “hens” from the mother plant for use. If using the small pups or hens, you can directly plant these into well-draining soil (cactus or succulent soil is best). Place them in direct sunlight and wait a day until providing them with water sparingly.

TIP: Pups and hens are another way to say ‘plant babies! Look for mini-succulents surrounding the host plant for re-planting.

Create your own Succulent Display

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Top 5 Reasons to Compost

Top 5 Reasons to Compost

It’s 2022, and sustainable gardening is a crucial way to save your money and your plants too! In this week’s blog, we’re here to share the top five important reasons to start your own compost bin from scratch! Plus, follow along as our President Gord Nickel Shows Hannah Lepine the perfect way to start your compost bin at home!

1.) Enriches Soil

Growing your own supply of compost is the best way to retain as many nutrients as possible in soil without using chemicals and providing your plants with a rich collection of micronutrients, potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen! While your scraps decay, they create good bacteria and fungi, which work to block unwanted pathogens from infecting your soil.

2.) Retains Moisture

One of the best reasons to grow your own compost is its ability to retain moisture. Though each compost is different, the ability to hold moisture is entirely up to you and what you feed your own compost. However, due high impact of nutrients and microbiomes, composts can retain water for longer, which will also help your plants to establish good healthy roots!

3.) Prevents Disease

Though you can’t expect to add compost to a dying plant to save it immediately, you can expect to prevent a vast amount of disease when growing from compost. The build-up of microbiomes creates a more significant amount of microbes which work together to fight pathogens—reducing unwanted diseases from infecting your plants so that they can grow big and strong!

4.) Reduces Waste

As you’ll learn from Gord, compost bins are great for putting waste to good use. Like food scraps that are returned to the earth after decomposing, yard waste can also feed your compost. Think of all the space you’re saving by breaking down matter and returning it to the planet instead of taking up space in landfills.

5.) Reduces Costs

Why buy the cow if the milk is free? Not only have you got the most out of your money when you put your scraps to good use, but when you compost, you’re cutting down on annual gardening supplies. Think of the money you’ll save on soil, fertilizer and even water year after year! 

 

How To Start A Compost Bin

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Bobbex 101

Bobbex 101

Deer Repellent has come a long way to ensure that the safety of ourselves, the deer and our plants are the top priority. If you’re in the market for an effective deer repellent, we’ll share everything there is to know about our favourite product, Bobbex! Plus, follow along as our President Gord Nickel shows us a few special Remembrance Day bulbs and how he keeps them deer-free!

What is Bobbex?

Bobbex is an eco-friendly solution designed to deter deer, rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, and groundhogs; you name it! Unlike most pest deterrents that are filled with unsafe chemicals that can harm pets, humans and plants, Bobbex is eco-friendly and safe for everyone when used as directed.

Long-lasting and easy to apply, Bobbex is a natural solution that provides your plants with nutrients. Meaning you can never over-spray your plants! Once used, it’s there to stay. Lasting through rain or snow for weeks and even longer during dormant seasons.

How Does It Work?

Well, it doesn’t smell like roses, that’s for sure! Bobbex is formulated with a wide variety of natural ingredients, including fish meal, fish oil, garlic, clove oils, putrescent eggs and more. As you can imagine, it’s not a pretty smell, and that’s precisely why it frightens and naturally repulses pests like deer.

With additional Nitrogen and Phosphorus properties, Bobbex is highly beneficial for plant growth. One of the best reasons to use Bobbex verse other chemical-based repellents is that it offers twelve nutrients that, once sprayed in a clear coat, can provide plants with additional moisture retention. Keeping them happy and healthy even during droughts!

How To Use Bobbex

Used as a topical spray, it is essential to note that Bobbex shouldn’t be used on ripened plants (you can only imagine what the solution must taste like!). It should not be digested. 

Bobbex is often applied approximately every two weeks during peak growing season or when two inches of growth have developed. Once dormant season approaches, less frequent applications are necessary as the plant grows much less.

To apply Bobbex, be sure to follow the instructions on the label. For best results it is recommended to use a pressure washer. Once applied, Bobbex will take approximately six hours to dry, where the smell will also become almost undetectable to the human scent but remain strong to critters.

Spring Application 

Begin by spraying in the Spring when the plants are approximately ½ inch out of the ground.

Summer Application 

Bobbex should be sprayed in the early morning rather than in the day’s extreme heat. Plants may encounter phytotoxicity if spread when temperatures are above 85 degrees F. This is not due to the ingredients in the product, but rather the magnification of the sun through the water spread on plant’s surfaces. During Peak Growth season, application of Bobbex Repellents should be done about every 7 to 14 days, or when one to two inches of new growth has developed.

Fall Application

Bobbex should be used in fall months even though plants are no longer at their peak. If applications of Bobbex are interrupted, deer may lose their conditioning to avoid previously treated plants. Regular spraying of Bobbex trains deer to seek nourishment elsewhere. Bobbex is necessary in the fall (and winter) months for damage prevention to shrubs that keep their leaves throughout the year. These shrubs include rhododendrons, arborvitae, holly, and yews— all common plants that deer prefer the most!

Winter Application

Winter application should not be done below 35 degrees F. Water freezing on leaves can draw out moisture, harming the plant and causing browning along leaf edges. (This cautionary recommendation should be followed for all water based horticultural products.) During winter (dormant) season, Bobbex Repellents will endure much longer, (up to two months) so less frequent application is required.

Note: Bobbex will not stick well to wet surfaces, so be sure to apply to only dry plants.

 Ask Gord Nickel

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2022 November Gardening Tips

2022 November Gardening Tips

2022 November Gardening Tips

2022 November Gardening Tips

It’s November 2022 and another beautiful gardening season is coming to a close, but not just yet! There is lots you can do in November to improve your garden for next year. Check out our handy list of November to-do’s to keep you growing and outside before snowfall in this week’s blog November Gardening Tips!

Lawn & Pond

If you run your pond pump during the winter, raise it on to a ledge in the pond to recirculate only the top layer of water.
Remove pond netting and clean the bottom of the pond after the leaves have fallen.
Clean the skimmer basket. Check less often after all the leaves have fallen.
Trim waterlilies two inches above the crown and move to a deeper part of the pond.
Add cold-water beneficial bacteria.
If keeping your pond running during the winter, add pond de-icer.
Last chance to apply fertilizer to your lawn!
Maintain a clean lawn by removing leaves, toys and tool to keep it healthy.
As long as the grass is growing, keep mowing!

Plants

Keep watering plants as needed until frost.
Continue weeding as much as possible.
Divide overgrown perennials and replant. No room? They make a good Christmas present in a pot for a gardening friend (make sure to tag them).
Start paper whites and other indoor forcing bulbs for Christmas color. They need approximately seven weeks to bloom.
Plant evergreens, perennials, containerized fruit & shade trees.
Prune back Rose of Sharon and P.G. hydrangeas. Tidy up perennials.
The best selection of fall bulbs is available now. Wildwood Outdoor Living has the largest selection around, online and in-store! Be sure to plan out your garden ahead of your visit to make sure you have the right growing conditions for your bulb choices.
Add organic compost to beds and borders.
Cover your compost piles to retain nutrients.
Start seeds indoors according to your region!

Miscellaneous

Tie up cypress and globe cedar trees so heavy snows will not destroy their shape.
Construct a comport bin and create your own organic rich soil with garden refuse and leaves. Use Rot-it to quicken the process.
All your bulbs should be dusted with sulfur or bulb dust prior to storing them away.
Before storing all your tools, use rubbing alcohol to disinfect and clean them. This will prevent rust and disease.
Looking for more to do this November? Check out the latest episode of Get Up and Grow with our President, Gord Nickel to learn a few helpful tips for planting fall bulbs below!
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