PRFCT Tips

Tagged with "Weeds"

April 9, 2020

The PRFCT Relationship

April 09, 2020

Why not take advantage of this at-home opportunity to get to know your property better -- to work on your relationship? Have you spent quality time with your place, looking and listening? Learning from it. Do you understand and embrace its needs? How do you decide what is best for it? All on your terms?   
 
Go outside and take a good look at every square foot of your place, without judgement. What is going on? What is doing just fine, and what needs you? Appreciate all that is beautiful that happened all on its own. 
 
You and your land have been living together;  is it time you took a vow to be true to it? No cheating.  A relationship based on mutual input, not domination.    
 
What does that mean? This year’s PRFCT Tips will be your guide. 
 
Step One: Review all the maintenance and fertilizer/pesticide treatments you or your professionals have been applying to your property. What are they? Why are they needed?  
Check out their health and environmental effects here:  https://www.beyondpesticides.org/resources/pesticide-gateway
Or email us with questions: info@perfectearthproject.org 
 
Go back outside. Is your property bursting, buzzing and chirping with life? Treasure it. Make that vow: I will do this place no harm. Practice.  
 

Oct 8

BLAME GAME

October 08, 2019

Is Goldenrod aggravating your allergies? Nope, not likely. How do I know? Because it has bees! Goldenrod has sticky pollen that attracts and sticks to insects who then carry it around to do the pollination thing. Alternately, wind pollinated plants have light and airy pollen that spreads by air. The only way that Goldenrod pollen is going up your nose is if you stick your face in it. The real culprit is Ragweed, whose innocuous green blooms produce billions of delicate pollen particles that can travel invisibly through the air for miles, and make millions (of people) miserable. They open at the same time as Goldenrod's bright yellow, hightly visible flowers. So guess who gets the blame?

There are close to 100 native species of Goldenrod (Solidago), some of them rather aggressive, but many are well worth considering for your garden. We love the one called “Fireworks”. And, of course, they are all great for bees, and hundreds of other beneficiall insects as well. Go Goldenrod! 

And, just to be fair, Ragweed (Ambrosia) is a native plant too.  It provides food for over 400 different insects. 

A Sad note: I took these photos recently on a field trip in Ohio. There were farm fields all around. There was not a bee to be found.  

Milkweed

On Beyond Milkweed

July 23, 2019

July 23, 2019
On Beyond Milkweed   
Now that everyone LOVES milkweed, what’s next?  Milkweed only serves one insect, the Monarch Butterfly. You can do more! How about adding some other historically “weedy” native wildflowers to your garden and expand the pollinator banquet?  How about Thistles? They provide pollen, nectar, leaves and seeds for hundreds of insect and bird species. They are beautiful and structural, and seriously deer proof! There are some invasive ones and massive eradication programs have pretty much wiped out the good with the bad, so...

Do your bit for the good ones, get to know your thistle. 

If the answer to ALL these questions is NO, you probably have a native, let it be! 
Is the thistle spiny along the entire length of the stem? 
Are the bracts (the bulbous part below the brushy flower) triangular, firm, and spine-tipped? 
Are the bracts thick, and leathery, and jagged? 
Are the roots rhizomatous (running underground and popping up all over)?
The thistle in the photo inspired this tip. Found it growing in my yard, Goldfinches love the seed. Somewhat common on LI, endangered in Ct. Keep an eye out for some of your own and welcome it to your expanding world of pollinator plants. 

Thanks to Lindsay Karr https://weedwise.conservationdistrict.org

Weeds are defined as unwanteds plant. So why are people telling me their lawns are full of weeds; and they love them?  What’s not to love about a lawn full of little flowers? 

Weed


Not only lovely, but good for pollinators, biodiversity, soil, and you: they tell the world that no nasty chemicals have been applied.  

Known as Freedom Lawns, Eco Lawns, English Lawns, Flowering Lawns…Whatever…please don't call them weedy lawns. 

Irrigation running all spring!!….Your lawn needs deep roots; down where it is cool and damp when the heat of summer comes.  Best way to get them down there is to let them go looking for it now. Watering early in the season makes roots lazy. They stay on top, where they will be susceptible to insects and sun later on. Watering now can cause fungus and disease problems later. Watering now encourages weed seed germination.  Watering now breeds mosquitoes and ticks, so... 

WAIT TO IRRIGATE!  

Don’t run your system until the weather is hot and dry.  Lawn grass will need watering when it wilts. How will you know? Wilted grass shows your footprint. Generally, late June.

Contrary to conventional wisdom, letting your lawn dry out is actually good for it. Periods of dryness allow the grass to develop deeper, stronger roots that are better able to resist pests, weeds, and drought conditions over time. Too much water promotes fungal growth and nutrient run off, and creates ideal conditions for mosquitoes and other water-loving pests to flourish. Plus, why waste water that your grass doesn’t need anyway?

Rule of thumb for well-established lawns: Wet the soil 6" down, then allow to dry 4-6" down before watering again. How to tell? Dig a hole or use a soil moisture meter.

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