• Free Gardening Tips

    Insects Found In The Yard

    Insects Found in The Yard

    Below are insects of Wisconsin that can be found while walking trails, working in the garden and flower beds, or they just wandered right into your paths.

    A running list of all that insects that have been found in Wisconsin. It may not look like much now; but eventually, it can be used as a go-to guide to help you ID some of the insects you may come across.


    Caterpillars, Worms & Grubs

    Milkweed Tussock Moth caterpillar - Black, white and brown caterpillar that feeds on milkweed leaves.

    Tussock Moth Caterpillar

    Many people are familiar with the multi-striped Monarch caterpillar that feeds on milkweed, but did you ever see the Milkweed Tussock Moth Caterpillar? They also feed on milkweed and are lesser-known species of caterpillars.


    Caterpillars grow up to become Milkweed Tussock Moths.

    Banded woolly bear or just woollybear or woolly worm caterpillar.  That is all the names this brown and black banded caterpillar goes by.

    Banded Wooly Bear Caterpillar

    The caterpillar is generally found during the autumn months and doesn’t sting or bite when picked up. However, the little bristle hairs can get under your skin and cause irritation. Turns into the Isabella Tiger Moth.


    Eastern Black Swallowtail Caterpillar. - green, yellow & black caterpillar that loves plants in the parsnip family.

    Eastern Black Swallowtail Caterpillar

    Young Eastern Tiger Swallowtail caterpillars are brown and white; older ones are green with two black, yellow, and blue eyespots on the thorax. The caterpillar will turn into Black Swallowtail Butterfly


    White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar Hyles lineata Green caterpillar with two lines running from head to tail.  Inside the lines are oval patterns.

    White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar (Hyles lineata)

    He may not look like much now, but he grows up to be the white lined sphinx moth which most people mistake for a hummingbird.


    Cabbage White Caterpillar is a green caterpillar that create holes in garden vegetable plants.

    Cabbage White Caterpillar

    This caterpillar creates holes everywhere. It loves enjoy: broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, collards, turnips, cabbage, radish & horseradish.

    The pest bores into the interior of the cabbage and other plants feeding on new sprouts. 

    Many people mistake the cabbage white caterpillars for cabbage loopers.


    A white grub looking worm with a brown head.  The white grubs hatch and tunnel in the ground and eat the roots of your plants.

    Corn Rootworm

    A white grub looking worm with a brown head. The white grubs hatch and tunnel in the ground and eat the roots of your plants.

    If you have weak stems, chewed leaves and marks on your fruit, you should start looking for the grubs of the corn rootworm or the cucumber beetles they become.

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    Moths & Skippers

    Brown or tan colored moth  with orange body and black stripes that lays eggs on milkweed plants.

    Milkweed Tussock Moth

    As an adult moth I will go and lay my eggs on milkweed plants, just as the monarch does.

    My baby milkweed tussock moth caterpillars will eat their fill.


    Isabella Tiger Moth - an orange colored moth with black dots on its body.  The caterpillar is the wooly bear caterpillar.  Insects of Wisconsin

    Isabella Tiger Moth

    As a youngin’ I was the banded woolly bear caterpillar, Today I am a beautiful moth ready to start the lifecycle all over.


    Snout Moth - Small white moth that is found flying around your grass and lawns.

    Snout Moth

    Crambus patella aka snout moth. These are the moths you might see flying around your yard at times if you take a walk through during July and August. If you do, you may wish to treat your lawn with sod webworm granulating formulas before you start seeing dead patches. The moths are harmless but lay eggs that hatch into worms that eat the roots of your grass.


    White Lined Sphinx Moth that is brown, tan and pink.  It is often mistaken for a hummingbird.

    White Lined Sphinx Moth

    Often mistaken for a hummingbird because of its size and flight patterns.

    It is a beautiful dark brown hawk moth with a tan, white and pink coloring. Found throughout Central and North America. 


    Butterflies

    Black Swallowtail Butterfly Black Yellow Blue and Orange Butterfly

    Male Black Swallowtail Butterfly

    The butterfly commonly feeds on many different members of the parsley family, including parsley, carrots, dill, and parsnip. It may also feed on Common Meadow Rue.


    Lifecycle of the Monarch Butterfly

    Life Cycle of Monarch Butterflies

    Monarch butterflies go through four stages during one life cycle, and through four generations in one year. It’s a little confusing but let me walk you through the process.


    White butterfly with a black body and black dots on hind wings.

    Cabbage White Butterfly

    The cabbage white butterfly is a white or creamy white butterfly but can have slightly pale yellow coloring too.

    The butterfly itself is not harmful to crops. But, the caterpillars can wreak havoc on your cabbage and mustard family crops. The butterfly lays the eggs on your plants. The caterpillars eat your leaves and can bore inside.


    The female black swallowtail to me appears to be a lighter color black than the males. It isn’t as vivid. The female doesn’t have the first row of yellow markings on the wings as the male does.

    Female Black Swallowtail Butterfly

    The female black swallowtail to me appears to be a lighter color black than the males. It isn’t as vivid. The female doesn’t have the first row of yellow markings on the wings as the male does.


    butterfly is a reddish- brown winged butterfly with jagged banded outer wings in yellow with bright blue dots

    Mourning Cloak

    The mourning cloak butterfly is one of the first butterflies to be seen in spring.  The butterfly is a reddish- brown winged butterfly with jagged banded outer wings in yellow with bright blue dots


    Beetles

    Blister Beetles - There are about 7,500 species are known worldwide. Striped and not.  When you touch one of the beetles, it can cause the reaction of blisters on your skin.

    Blister Beetle

    One of many beetles in the blister beetle family. The beetle is part of the Meloidae family, they are called blister beetles for a good reason. Touching any variety of them will cause blisters on your body.


    Goldenrod soldier beetle orange and black beetle with two oval shapes on back.

    Goldenrod Soldier Beetle

    One of the most common species of soldier species of Goldenrod soldier beetle in the Midwest. The beetle is also well known by the name Pennsylvania leatherwing and by its scientific name of Chauliognathus pennsylvanicus.

    You will most often find the beetles during the months of July through September on goldenrod flowers. They also enjoy milkweed, rattlesnake master, Queen Anne’s lace and additional meadow flowering plants that produce pollen and nectar that they feed on.

    The beetles do not cause harm to flower beds, gardens, and crop plants and will not bite or sting humans or pets.


    Stink Bug - Most are an olive green and black, although some are brightly colored but all are shield shaped insects.

    Stink Bug

    There are many varieties of stink bugs. Most are olive green and black, although some are brightly colored all are shield-shaped insects.

    They get their name because if you crush them they give off a strong scent. That order odor is a chemical that they produce in glands on their abdomen.


    Colorado Potato Beetle

    The Colorado Potato Beetle is a major pest of plants in the nightshade family.

    Including potato crops, eggplants, peppers, and tomatoes. The beetle has and bright yellow and sometimes tinted orange body along with bold, dark brown stripes that almost look black to the eye that run the length of its body.


    Flies

    Golden Backed Snipe Fly - Black fly with a bright yellow colored back.  The Body of the fly has an almost silver or white shimmering metallic striped look to it. Insects of Wisconsin

    Golden Backed Snipe Fly

    The golden-backed snipe fly is a black insect with a bright yellow back and the body of the fly has an almost silver or white shimmering metallic striped look to it.


    Common Scorpionfly - Black and yellow wings, large black eyes, with a reddish brown head and tail and long nose.

    Common Scorpionfly

    So what is this crazy looking insect? Have you seen one before? This is the common scorpionfly. To me, there is nothing common about the look of this little guy.


    Goldenrod Gall Fly Balck White Green Fly With Black Pattern on Wings

    Goldenrod Gall Fly

    The Canadian goldenrod and a few additional goldenrod varieties are host plants to gall fly larva. The Gall fly produces goldenrod galls which become the food source of gall fly larva over the course of the winter.  The insect has a fairly interesting lifecycle.

    The Long-Tailed Dance Fly – Rhamphomyia longicauda is an interesting insect.  You can see them in swarms a few feet off the ground toward dusk in heavily wooded areas here in Wisconsin.  The males will go around during the day and collect small insects and wrap them in silk to gift to females.  The only way a female will mate with a male is for the male to offer a gift of an insect.

    Long Tailed Dance Fly

    The Long-Tailed Dance Fly – Rhamphomyia longicauda is an interesting insect. You can see them in swarms a few feet off the ground toward dusk in heavily wooded areas here in Wisconsin. The males will go around during the day and collect small insects and wrap them in silk to gift to females. The only way a female will mate with a male is for the male to offer a gift of an insect.


    The eyes on the mayfly (Hexagenia limbata) kill me.  I giggle every time I see them. Around the Great Lakes area we call mayflies fish flies because they tend to cause the areas around water to smell like rotten fish. Over 3,000 species of mayfly are known worldwide,

    Mayfly

    The eyes on the mayfly (Hexagenia limbata) kill me. I giggle every time I see them. Around the Great Lakes area we call mayflies fish flies because they tend to cause the areas around water to smell like rotten fish. Over 3,000 species of mayfly are known worldwide,



    Bees

    Augochlora Pura Bee - A metallic green bee thats name means pure magnificent green - which is fitting.

    Augochlora Pura Bee

    A metallic green bee that’s name means pure magnificent green – which is fitting. You will see this bee out pollinating flowers until late October in Wisconsin when it goes into hibernation under tree bark or in logs until spring.


    All species of sweat bees have a metallic green or blue sheen to them.  The bees are ground dwellers nesters. Why are they called sweat bees? Bees in this family are attracted to human sweat, and they use the salt from the sweat for nutrition. Only the females can sting.

    Sweat Bee

    There are 42 species of sweat bees worldwide. All species have a metallic green or blue sheen to them. The bees are ground-dwelling nesters.

    Why are they called sweat bees? Bees in this family are attracted to human sweat, and they use the salt from the sweat for nutrition. Only the females can sting.


    Spiders & Spider Like

    The Eastern Harvestmen are similar to and often misidentified as spiders. But they are not. They are Opiliones which have extremely long legs compared to their bodies and lack the venom glands of spiders.

    Eastern Harvestmen

    The Eastern Harvestmen are similar to and often misidentified as spiders. But they are not. They are Opiliones that have extremely long legs compared to their bodies and lack the venom glands of spiders.
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    Dragonflies & Damselflies

    Awe, shucks. I haven’t added anything under this category. Soon. Promise.


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  • Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips/ Insects

    The Eastern Harvestmen

    The Eastern Harvestmen Daddy Long Legs Spider

    The Eastern Harvestmen

    Around our parts of the nation we call the Eastern Harvestmen creatures daddy longlegs, but the real name is the Eastern harvestmen. There are 6,650 species of harvestmen worldwide.

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  • Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips/ Insects

    White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar

    White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar is a lime green caterpillar with line of black with orange spots

    White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar

    This White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar (Hyles lineata) might not look like much now, but he grows up to be the white lined sphinx moth which most people mistake for a hummingbird.

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  • Free Gardening Tips

    New To Gardening?

    New To Gardening?

    Are You New To Gardening?

    If you are new to gardening and find yourself yearning to start a garden of your own, this is for you! It can be a little overwhelming and you may be unsure how to take the first steps.

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  • Free Gardening Tips

    Picking the Right Gardening Tools

    Picking the Right Gardening Tools The Right Tools For The Right Job

    Picking The Right Gardening Tools

    If you’re thinking about taking your gardening seriously and getting out there every day to increase the attractiveness of your garden, then you will want to be picking the right gardening tools to help you achieve this.

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  • Free Gardening Tips/ Insects

    Leafhoppers and Planthoppers

    Leafhoppers and Planthoppers in the Garden

    Leafhoppers and Planthoppers

    There are over 12,500 varieties of leafhoppers and planthoppers, that feed on the sap from plants, grass, and trees but most are harmless to the plant.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Flowers and Plants/ Free Gardening Tips

    Low Down on Neem Oil For Plants

    Low Down on Neem Oil For Plants

    Low Down on Neem Oil For Plants

    Neem oil is fantastic if you purchase the correct kind and use it properly. Most of the time when I hear someone complain that Neem oil didn’t work for them it is because they were misguided.  So, here is the low down on Neem Oil For Plants.

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  • Flowers and Plants/ Free Gardening Tips

    How To Dry Herbs and Flowers

    How To Dry Herbs and Flowers

    How To Dry Herbs and Flowers

    Step by step guide of the 5 methods of how to dry herbs and flowers. I have preserved flowers and herbs for many different projects over the years. There are several different ways to accomplish preserving flowers and herbs, but what it really boils down to is what kind of project you will do with the end dried herb or flower that matters.

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  • Free Gardening Tips

    Starting A Compost Pile

    Starting a Compost Pile For The Garden Cold-Composting

    Starting A Compost Pile

    Today I am going to walk you through starting a compost pile or aka cold composting which is composting kitchen scraps and yard waste this year into rich, beautiful soil for next year.

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  • Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Free Gardening Tips

    Top 10 Purple Garden Plants

    10 purple flowers for flower gardens

    Top 10 Purple Garden Plants

    Here are my top 10 purple garden plants to be sure to add to any purple flower garden.

    The color purple contains a wide variety of floral garden choices.  From plum flower shades to striking mulberry tones, right down to the romantic and early spring  lilacs. 

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  • Birds/ Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips

    Pileated Woodpecker

    How to tell the male and female pileated woodpecker apart

    Pileated Woodpecker

    The pileated woodpecker is the largest woodpecker in North America. The term pileated comes from the Latin word pileatus meaning “capped”  which refers to the red crest on the top of the birds head.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Free Gardening Tips/ Fruits Herbs and Veggies

    How Long Does It Take Seeds To Germinate

    Testing How Long Does it Take Seeds To Germinate

     

    How Long Does It Take Seeds To Germinate ?

    How long does it take seeds to germinate ? Having the exact knowledge of when a seed will germinate is important for a variety of reasons, the most important reasons are to save you time, energy and money. There is a way to know when this will occur fairly easily by creating a germination table and testing how long does it take seeds to germinate.

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  • Free Gardening Tips/ Planting Containers

    Just Humming Along

    The just humming along wagon is an old wagon repurposed into a hummingbird flower feeder fiesta

    Just Humming Along Wagon

    The just humming along wagon is an old wagon repurposed into a hummingbird fiesta,

    Create your own hummingbird oasis by painting a wagon a bright, vivid red coloring and add flowers that hummingbirds enjoy.

    This feeding garden station on wheels is easy to pull into the garage in cases of frost and pull it back out when the frost clears.

    Here are 10 flowers to plant.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Free Gardening Tips

    How To Get Rid Of Fungus Gnats on Houseplants

    Small flies hanging around your plants. Ugh! Fungus Gnats.  Let me share with you how to get rid of fungus gnats on houseplants. For indoor & outdoor use.

    How To Get Rid Of Fungus Gnat on Houseplants

    The weather turns colder and immediately you turn your attention to bringing in some of your outdoor plants.  A day or two goes by and you find a wealth of small flies hanging around your plants. Ugh! Fungus Gnats.  Let me share with you how to get rid of fungus gnats on houseplants.

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  • Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Free Gardening Tips

    Use Less Soil in Your Planting Containers

    Use Less Soil in Your Planting Containers

    Use Less Soil in Your Planting Containers

    Use these tips to use less soil in your planting containers. We all have those x-large outdoor pots that need to be filled with soil for holding beautiful flower arrangements, herbs and produce.  Over the years I have used several items to serve this purpose.  Some were excellent choices and some, poor choices.

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  • Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips/ Garden Pests/ Insects

    Keep Ants Out of Hummingbird Feeders

    Keep Ants Out of Hummingbird Feeders

    Keep Ants Out of Hummingbird Feeders

    Ants are attracted to sugar and sweetness and since hummingbird feeders are made up of sugar water, they, of course, are going to go straight for the mixture.  Here are 6 ways to keep ants out of your hummingbird feeders.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Free Gardening Tips

    Prepping For a Garden

    Prepping Garden Soil For Garden

    Prepping For a Garden

    The greatest determining factor for the garden and prepping for a garden placement is the sunOnce you have chosen the ideal location for your garden it is time to start planning. Not sure where the best placement is to read the article choosing a location for the garden to help you decide.

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  • Bird Recipes Crafts & Care/ Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips

    Keep Birdbaths Fresh and Clean

    Tips to keep bird bath clean copper pennies algae products from pet store and copper pieces

    Keep Birdbaths Fresh and Clean

    I’m a little embarrassed to say that my birdbath is a mess right now.  Overtime, the summer weather turns hot and I get “busy.”  Too busy to stay on top of cleaning a bird bath.  If I am not out there to change the water every day it isn’t easy to keep birdbaths fresh and clean.

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  • Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Free Gardening Tips

    Achillea

    Achillea - excellent for floral cuttings

    Achillea

    Achillea, or better known as yarrow is one of the flowers that I grow in my flower garden for cutting purposes. There are over 1000 varieties of this beauty.  The plants range from small border type plants, to giant, show stopping backdrops.

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  • Planting Containers

    Old Birdhouse Planter

    Repurpose an old birdhouse as a flower pot planter with low growing annuals and greens

    Old Birdhouse Planter

    Repurpose an old birdhouse. An old birdhouse planted with low growing annuals like geraniums and other greens look terrific.

    Looking for more inspiration for pots, planters and containers? See the planting container category for ideas.

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    Please don’t share my images on your blog.

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  • Free Gardening Tips/ Planting Containers

    Old Bird Cage Garden Planter

    Old Bird Cage Garden Planter Filled With Geraniums Flowers For Outdoor Yard Decor

    Old Bird Cage Garden Planter

    This old bird cage garden planter is amazing.  Plant your overwintered geraniums in early spring and by midsummer the entire bird cage is flowing with greens and flowers.

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  • Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Free Gardening Tips

    Pink Garden Phlox

    Pink Garden Phlox

    Pink garden phlox is a tall perennial that is planted as the backbone in a flower garden. The Purplish-pink flowers provide crisp, clean color all summer long right into fall and produce a fragrance that welcomes any garden visitor. Striking blooms when planted en masse.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Free Gardening Tips

    Digging up Canna Bulbs for Winter

    Digging up Canna Bulbs for Winter

    Digging Up Canna Bulbs for Winter

    In the Midwest we find ourselves digging up canna bulbs to store for winter.

    If we chose not to; we will lose our plant and have to purchase new bulbs the following spring. Some gardeners prefer to purchase yearly.

    Others, including myself, will lift our bulbs and reuse them.
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  • Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips/ Insects

    How to Tell the Male and Female Monarch Apart

    How to Tell the Male and Female Monarch Apart

    How to Tell the Male and Female Monarch Apart


    Ever wonder how to tell the male and female Monarch apart? Maybe, the thought never crossed your mind. Well, in order to capture the lifecycle of the Monarch you would need to know your male from your female.

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  • Bird Recipes Crafts & Care/ Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips

    Homemade Birdseed Ornaments

    Homemade Birdseed Ornaments Recipe For Birds Wedding Favors

    Homemade Birdseed Ornaments

    Follow the recipe for these homemade birdseed ornaments and the next day you have a sweet treat for your birds.  The ornaments would make wonderful holiday gifts for friends and family as well as wedding favors for your guests.

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  • Backyard Projects and Crafts/ Lawn Yard Care

    How to Make a Quikrete Walkway or Patio

    How to Make a Quikrete Walkway or Patio




    How to Make a Quikrete Walkway or Patio

    Making a custom concrete walkway or Patio takes some time and effort but the end results look professional. The materials needed are minimal and allow for you to take your time and create a visual appealing outdoor space. You will need a Quikrete walk maker (choices below), QUIKRETE Concrete Mix, Quikrete Liquid Cement Color (optional), wheelbarrow and trowel.
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  • Backyard Projects and Crafts/ Free Gardening Tips

    Raised Garden Bed Out of an Old Dresser

    Raised Garden Bed Out of an Old Dresser

     

    Raised Garden Bed Out of an Old Dresser

    Raised Garden Bed Out of an Old Dresser. Here is taking recycling to extremes one might think.  I think it is a creative way to recycle and make use of something that would just end up in the landfill.  For those of you without a lot of space or love vertical gardening this might just work for you.

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  • Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Free Gardening Tips/ Planting Containers

    How to Build a Terra Cotta Clay Pot Garden Person

    How to Build a Terra Cotta Clay Pot Garden Person

    How to Build a Terra Cotta Clay Pot Garden Person

    How to Build a Terra Cotta Clay Pot Garden Person. This is a creative way to spruce up your garden and use chipped or repurposed terra cotta pots. There is no “wrong” way to build a terra cotta clay pot garden person.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Free Gardening Tips/ Fruits Herbs and Veggies

    Why Tomatoes Get Blossom Rot or Dark Spots on Bottom

    Why Tomatoes Get Blossom Rot or Dark Spots on Bottom




    Why Tomatoes Get Blossom Rot or Dark Spots on Bottom

    You can’t wait to pick your first red ripe tomatoes of the season. As the tomato grows larger you notice a lesion forming on the bottom. It quickly turns from a water soaked patch to a dark colored  lesion. Some of your tomatoes have a small patch, some larger, what the heck is it? Why tomatoes get blossom rot or dark spots on bottom.
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  • Free Gardening Tips/ Garden Pests/ Lawn Yard Care

    Common Lawn Pests and How To Control Them

    Common Lawn Pests

    Common Lawn Pests and How To Control Them

    Common Lawn Pests and How to Control Them – Disease and grass insect pests can be prevented or cured by following a few basic steps. Be sure to set your low mower height to 1-1/2 inches, have a sharp blade, have the proper fertilizing, drainage and water. Even following each and everything above still can bring on unwanted insect attacks.  So what pest is your culprit?

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  • Feathered Friends Backyard Guests/ Free Gardening Tips

    Making Your Yard Hummingbird Pleasant

    Making Your Yard Hummingbird Pleasant

    Making your yard hummingbird pleasant – How can you get hummingbirds to visit your yard year after year?

    It’s not as difficult as one might imagine. If you provide your feathered friends with a reliable food source they will come back at visit you throughout the years.

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  • Dividing and Plant Care/ Free Gardening Tips

    Choose a Garden That Is Perfect For You

    Garden seeds for flower garden

    Choose a Garden That Is Perfect For You

    If you’re thinking about starting a garden, the first thing you need to do is choose a garden that is perfect for you. There are many different choices and often it can be hard to pick just one, but hopefully you can narrow it down to choose a garden that is perfect for you.

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  • Free Gardening Tips

    Creamy Cucumber Salad

    Ingredients for creamy cucumber salad

    Directions:


    All of these ingredients will go into a medium bowl:

    1.) Peel and slice the cucumbers very thinly.  Add to bowl.

    Sliced Cucumbers




    2.) Peel and slice the medium onion into thin rings.  Add them to the bowl.


    3.) If using fresh dill, strip the dill from the plant with your fingers.  Measure out 1/4 cup.  Remember it takes more fresh dill then dried.  If using dry dill; measure out 2T. Place dill into medium bowl.

    Fresh Dill

    All of these ingredients go into a large bowl:

    1.) Roll the lemon back and forth on a cutting board to get the juices inside flowing. Cut the lemon in half.  Remove seeds from both halves. Squeeze the juice from both halves into the large bowl.

    Rolling Lemon

    2.) Measure 1/2 of Mayo or Miracle Whip to the lemon juice.

    3.) Mix the two ingredients together;well.

    Mix Both Ingredient Bowls Together:

    1.) Then pour the medium cucumber bowl contents into the larger bowl of liquids and mix.

    Making Cucumber Salad


    2.) Add salt and pepper to taste.


    Creamy Cucumber Salad

    3.) Let the bowl chill for an hour or so.  Use a slotted spoon to serve.

    Creamy Cucumber Salad I NikkiLynnDesign



    Enjoy!

    Creamy Cucumber Salad

    This light and refreshing creamy cucumber salad is infused with a lemon kick. Perfect to use those fresh garden cucumbers, onions and dill.


    Vegan? Exchange the Mayo in this recipe for vegan mayonnaise for a tasty dish.

    Ingredients

    Ingredients for creamy cucumber salad
    • 2 Medium cucumbers (Peeled and sliced very thin)
    • 1 Medium sweet onion sliced thin
    • Juice squeezed from one lemon
    • 1/2 cup mayo or vegan mayo
    • 1/4 cup fresh dill weed or 2 tablespoons dried
    • Salt and pepper

    Directions

    All of these ingredients will go into a medium bowl.

    1.) Peel and slice the cucumbers very thinly.  Add to bowl.

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  • Free Gardening Tips

    Mosquito Repellent Plants

    Mosquito Repellent Plants

     

     

    As summer fast approaches, I would like to suggest plants that will repel mosquitoes in your landscape and how to use these plants to enjoy the outdoors during summer. In addition to the plants that repel mosquitoes I would like to suggest additional, eco-friendly ways to keep mosquitoes from your outdoor living spaces. The picture on the left is Ageratum.

     

    Some areas of the southeast have had drought busting rainstorms and even with the tremendous amounts of rainfall, these areas are still considered to be under drought conditions.  With the severe amounts of rainfall that comes into an area, and the warmer temperatures of the season that is a sure sign the pesky mosquito is not far behind. The picture on the right is Basil.

     

    The plants that I am suggesting will repel mosquitoes from your outdoor living space. There are a few suggestions when planning to use the plants mentioned to enhance the natural repelling abilities:

    v      Use the plants in containers around your patio, deck, or outdoor living space such as patio tables and chairs.

    v      Use the plants in containers or planted in the ground by your front door and your back door.

    v      Lemon Grass is the #1 recommended plant to grow in the landscape and in containers to use around your patio, deck or outdoor living spaces to repel mosquitoes during the summer.

    v      Before having outdoor activities brush the Lemon Grass to release more of its fragrance.

    v      Lemon Grass can be used in cooking.

     

    Here are a few suggestions recommended to do in addition to using the recommended plants:

    v      Fix all outdoor facets that drip.

    v      Drain your birdbath twice a week and refill your birdbath.

    v      Turn your empty outside pots and containers upside down to prevent the containers from collecting water.

    v      Drain your plant saucers that collect water once a week, mosquitos lay their eggs in stagnant water.

    v      To reduce numerous other flying insects, including mosquitoes, plant marigolds in containers or in the landscape.

     

    There are additional benefits to adding mosquito-repelling plants to your landscape. A few of the benefits are that the mixture of plants listed can be used in addition to repelling mosquitoes, but also used as herbs in cooking, the trees listed will attract additional wildlife such as birds to the garden to give natural predators of mosquitoes a safe heaven, the majority of the plants are nectar and larval food plants for butterflies in your area, and the Silver Dollar Tree can be used in your fresh cut flower arrangements as greens. The picture on the left is Cadaga Tree.

     

    Ageratum or Floss Flower: Ageratum houstonianum. Type: Annual. Height: 6-12”. Spacing: 6-8” apart. Light Requirement: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Butterfly nectar plant.

    Basil: Ocimum basilicum. Type: Annual. Height: 2 feet. Spacing: 18-24” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Butterfly nectar plant, the leaves are used in cooking. Click To Purchase.

    Cadaga Tree: Eucalyptus torelliana. Type: Tree. Height: To 80 feet. Spacing: 20-30 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun. Additional Uses: Attracts wildlife to the garden.

    Catmint: Nepeta faassenii. Type: Perennial. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 12-18 “ apart. Additional Uses: Butterfly nectar plant, and your cats will love it. The picture on the right is Catmint.

    Catnip: Nepeta cataria. Type: Perennial. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 12-18 “ apart. Additional Uses: Butterfly nectar plant, and your cats will love it.

    Citronella Grass: Cymbopogon nardus. Type: Perennial in USDA Zones 9 and 10, annual outside zone 9. Height: 5-6 feet. Spacing: 3-5 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The oil from the plant is used in citronella candles. The picture on the left is Catnip.

    Clove Tree: Syzygium aromaticum. Type: Tree. Height: 20-30 feet. Spacing: 25 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The flower buds are the spice of commerce, and attracts wildlife to the garden.

    Horsemint or Lemon Beebalm: Monarda citriodora. Type: Perennial. Height: 12-30”. Spacing: 12-24” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The flowers can be used in fresh cut arrangements, nectar plant for butterflies and hummingbirds.

    Lavender: Lavandula angustifolia. Type: Perennial. Height: 18-24”. Spacing: 12-18” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Nectar plant for butterflies, flowers can be dried, in potpourris, and sachets.

    Lemon Balm: Melissa officinalis. Type: Perennial. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 12-18” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: All leaves can be used in potpourris, flavor hot and iced teas, and used as a substitute for lemon peel in cooking.

    Lemon Grass: Cymbopogon citrates. Type: Perennial to USDA zone 8, treat as an annual elsewhere. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 3-5 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The leaves are used in cooking.

    Lemon Scented Geranium: Pelargonium crispum. Type: Perennial. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 12” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Nectar plant for butterflies, leaves are used in cooking, in potpourris, and sachets. The picture on the right is Clove Tree.

    Lemon Verbena: Aloysia triphylla. Type: Perennial to USDA zone 8, treat as an annual elsewhere. Height: To 4 feet. Spacing: 18-24” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The oil is used in perfumes; the leaves are used in flavoring teas and jellies. The picture on the left is Lemon Grass.

    Mexican Marigold Mint: Tagetes lucida. Type: Perennial. Height: 24-30”. Spacing: 12-18” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Butterfly nectar and larval food plant, fresh flowers are used in salads, leaves are used as a substitute for French tarragon.

    Mindanao Gum Tree: Eucalyptus deglupta. Type: Tree. Height: To 225 feet. Spacing: 30 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Attracts wildlife to the garden.

    Pennyroyal: Mentha pulegium. Type: Perennial. Height: 6-12”. Spacing: 12” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: A groundcover, nectar plant for butterflies, the leaves are used in the flavoring for fish dishes.

    Peppermint: Mentha piperita. Type: Perennial. Height: 24-36”. Spacing: 12-18” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Leaves are used fresh in hot and iced teas, butterfly nectar and larval food plant.

    Pitcher Plant: Nepenthes alata. Type: Herbaceous perennial. Height: To 14 feet, usually grown in a hanging basket. Spacing: N/A. Light Requirements: Partial shade to shade. Additional Uses: Will attract and capture all types of pesky insects from your garden. The plant is available at local garden centers in hanging baskets and can be placed in tree limbs or placed on patio plant stands. The plant uses the insects it captures as fertilizer. The picture on the left is Mindanao Gum, and the picture on the right is Mexican Marigold Mint.

    Prostrate Rosemary: Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Prostrates’. Type: Perennial shrub or groundcover. Height: 12-18”. Spacing: 2 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The leaves are used in lamb and fish dishes, butterfly nectar plant, drought tolerant plant.

    Red-Flowering Gum Tree: Eucalyptus ficifolia. Type: Tree. Height: 25-30 feet. Spacing: 20-25 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun. Additional Uses: After establishment in the landscape the tree is very drought tolerant, the leaves are fragrant, attracts wildlife to the garden, very showy red flowers in spring and summer.

    Roman Wormwood: Artemisia pontica. Type: Perennial. Height: 18-24”. Spacing: 12” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun. Additional Uses: Nectar and larval food plant for butterflies, drought tolerant plant.

    Rosemary: Rosmarinus officinalis. Type: Perennial shrub. Height: 4 feet. Spacing: 3-5 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: The leaves are used in lamb and fish dishes, drought tolerant plant, and butterfly nectar plant.

    Silver Dollar Tree: Eucalyptus cinerea. Type: Tree. Height: To 20 feet. Spacing: 25 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun. Additional Uses: Attracts wildlife to the garden, the foliage is used in fresh cut flower arrangements as greens, and dried floral arrangements.

    Tansy: Tanacetum vulgare. Type: Perennial. Height: 3-4 feet. Spacing: 12-18” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Nectar food plant for butterflies. The picture on the left is Prostrate Rosemary, and the picture on the right is Pitcher Plant.

    Wormwood: Artemisia absinthium. Type: Perennial. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 18-24” apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Nectar and larval food plant for butterflies, drought tolerant plant.

    Wormwood: Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’. Type: Perennial. Height: 2-3 feet. Spacing: 3 feet apart. Light Requirements: Full sun to partial shade. Additional Uses: Nectar and larval food plant for butterflies, drought tolerant plant.

    Mosquitos

    I find this to be a great subject to start, what shall be my award winning series delving into monthly newsletters.

    I find the little bloodsuckers to be a nemesis of all that is true to babes, beer and bar-b-que.

    First of all Babes….Guys, these are the women that you married, the ones that come complaining to you because these little critters (mosquito’s) are flying around sucking on all the friends that your babe invited to your palatial kingdom for an afternoon/evening of food and festivities. Not only are they sucking on flesh that well…we’ll leave that to your imagination. Obviously this is a problem that you will have to deal with to keep your babe..shall we say babe-o-lisous (after the party clean up). (The picture on the left is Rosemary.)

    Next Beer…. With mosquito’s this should not be much of a problem, as it would take a pretty darn big mosquito to wrestle a good cold beer from one of YOUR buddies (if not get bigger buddies). If a large mosquito did manage to do that I’m sure your buddy would kill it, take his beer back and suck the blood out of him just for fun. Texas style.

    Finally Bar-b-que…. This also should not be much of a problem, when you have a good smoking fire going. Most of the mosquitos that I hang out with (and I have been known to do such) do not like flying around in smoke unless they are at Snoop Dog’s party!!!! Keep the pit going good, hot and long (he, he) and the little flying blood donation receptacles will probably stay away. (The picture on the right is Silver Dollar Tree.)

     

    Please note that the aforementioned plants in this newsletter have been known to keep the little flying critters away. Also you always have your local mega mart to help you with the problem. If you do have to go your mega store please mention hibiscusandmore.com as they have no idea who we are, but we are trying our best to make your gardening/after gardening experience all that it can be. (The picture on the left is Silver Dollar Tree – Leaves.)

     

    With peace for all and grounded roots,

     

    H I Biscus

     

    Editor’s Note:

    Mr. Biscus will be here indefinitely. We would appreciate all comments and concerns to be voiced through your registration and e-mail to cheryl@hibiscusandmore.com. As always your comments on products are always welcome through your membership at www.hibiscusandmore.com

    Hibiscus and More announces lower shipping rates for the entire store. The more you purchase on a single order the more you will save at checkout. Click Here to Visit The Store. The picture on the right is Tansy.

    Tropical Hybrid Hibiscus Plants on Sale. Buy 2 Double Apricot/Peach Tropical Hybrid Hibiscus and get 1 Orange Lagas Tropical Hybrid Hibiscus for FREE!!! Click Here to Order Your Tropical Hybrid Hibiscus Plants. Don’t Forget Your Hibiscus Food With Your Order.

     

    Do You Need Tropical Hibiscus Food or Hibiscus Fertilizer? Our Fertilizer is Especially For Tropical Hibiscus and Tropical Plants. Click Here to Order Your Hibiscus Food.

    Do you have any gardening questions? Ask the Horticulturist.

     

    June is National Rose Month. Click on Hibiscus and More’s Blogspot for more information on growing and caring for your roses.

    Need New Cedar Planters and Cedar Boxes For The Summer? Click Here to Visit The Store.

    Visit our Store at: www.hibiscusandmore.com

     


    1.) Lemon Grass

    • Annual for all growing zones from 1-11.
    • Requires full sun.
    • Mature plant Height is 36-48″.
    • Excellent choice for deck pots.
    • Leaves can be used in kitchen recipes.

    Lemon grass would be a wonderful addition to plant in pots on your decks and patios. As the season wear on the plant has a beautiful bushy appearance.

    The leaves of the plant produce a lemon scent from its production of citronella oil.

    Have a Thai or Asian market? Here is another option for growing lemongrass.


    2.) Creeping Lemon Thyme

    • Hardy in zones 3-10
    • Easy to grow perennial
    • Edible herb
    • Reaches height of 4 inches tall
    • Full sun

    Plant has a lemony scent that serves as a mosquito repellent. Plant around your deck and walkways and let it slowly creep around your flower gardens.

    Safe for pets and is 100% human edible.


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  • Flower Garden Plants and Pots/ Flowers and Plants/ Free Gardening Tips

    Saving Flower Seed

    Saving Flower Seed

    I remember as a little girl my great-grandfather and also my grandmother saving flower seed from the plants they loved to grow.

    They looked for characteristics in certain flowers, and then picked out the best plants of the batch to save the seeds from.

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