Mrs. Avier Pyles, Keep Liberty Beautiful, Volunteer Coordinator, is working on our Pollinator-Friendly Garden located at the Liberty County Community Complex in Midway. She explained to me that, with everything going on, gardening is now a new trend. You see, all types of gardens popping up around Liberty County. She has noticed large gardens, like the one at Diversity Health Center, down to her neighbors, who have container gardens on their back patios. If you are like Mrs. Pyles, you are continually googling and searching YouTube for new ideas or articles on how to diagnosis your plant emergencies. Today, Mrs. Pyles’ decided to share some of the hacks she found helpful for her gardening needs. Elizabeth Flaherty wrote an article, “24 Genius Gardening Hacks, you’ll be glad you know” This was a fascinating read, especially if you are like us here at Keep Liberty Beautiful. You live by the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle lifestyle. She gave such a wide variety of uses for old sponges, toilet paper rolls, recycled aluminum cans, and much more. Here are a couple of hacks Mrs. Pyles found most useful.
Plant-in-a-Pot Landscaping Design: Ever wish you could reorganize your garden after seeing how the mature plants look? Here’s a smart way to do it. You’ll need a bunch of pots of the same size, so they’ll nest in each other. Put your plants in doubled containers, and then bury them at ground level. Whenever you want a change, lift out the top pot and put it in a different one. This method is also really slick for bringing plants indoors over the winter. This method is also excellent for quickly changing out seasonal plants, and allows for easy experimentation with color and placement of plants and flowers.
Saving Soil with Old Cans: For deep planters, fill the bottom with old cans and plant pots. The cans and pots improve drainage and create air pockets for better aeration and healthier soil.
Cardboard Seed Tubes: For an easy and green way to start seeds, save your toilet paper and paper towel tubes. Cut the tubes into 2-inch lengths and set them in a waterproof tray. Fill the tubes with potting soil and plant your seeds. When the seedlings are ready to move to the garden, plant them right in their cardboard tube. The cardboard will decompose. Be sure to keep the tube below the soil surface, so it doesn’t absorb moisture away from the roots.
Healthy Plant Hydration: Water settling at the bottom of pots can lead to root rot. To combat this problem, cut up old sponges and put them in the bottom of the pot. The sponges retain moisture and create necessary air space. They also help prevent water from flushing out the bottom. The sponge acts as a water reserve and keeps moist soil longer. These hacks helped reduce the yellow spots Mrs. Pyles saw appearing from improper watering.
This week is National Pollinator week June 22, 2020 – June 28, 2020, so let’s talk about all the free service our local bees, butterflies, and other pollinators provide so that our gardens can thrive. Pollinators are so crucial to our environment. Mrs. Pyles admitted that she didn’t know that without pollinators that our garden wouldn’t be the marvel that it is today.
What is pollination? Well, simply put, pollination is the transfer of pollen in and between flowers of the same species that starts the fertilization, which ends in the successful production of a plant! Now, I don’t know about you, but Mrs. Pyles did a lot of things to our garden, but transferring pollen was not one of them. So, thank you to the pollinators because this took one task off her list that she could not do without their help. Pollinators’ excellent work help gives us the food we put on the table and the simple smile we get from seeing a beautiful flower bloom.
This week we celebrate all that Pollinators do! Here are some ideas on how you can make pollinators’ jobs a lot easier:
1. Plant a pollinator-friendly garden with a variety of flowering plants to give a succession of bloom from spring to fall.
2. Include lots of native plants in your garden.
3. Include plants to feed all stages of pollinators’ life cycle.
4. Minimize the use of pesticides, even organic ones.
5. Go wild and plant lots of wildflowers!
6. Provide a source of water.
7. Don’t be too tidy, let your garden be as natural as possible without causing harm to your plants
8. Build bee housing
9. Most importantly, spread the word, share your knowledge.
Pollinators would be appreciative of just the little things that we can do off this list. KLB, on June 26, 2020, will provide free seeds to help start your garden. You can go to our Facebook page and register to attend our Drive-Thru Seed Giveaway. The event is from 10am to 6pm at James A. Brown Park, Pavilion Side. We hope to see you there.
To find out more about Pollinator Week or sign up for our Drive-Thru Seed Giveaway, check out Keep Liberty Beautiful Facebook page. You can also contact us at (912) 880-4888 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keep Liberty Beautiful
Karen Bell, Director