aeration soil

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Q: Who aerates soil in the wild?
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A: Worms and other burrowing insects. Since we don’t welcome them in our homes, our house plants expect us to do their job. Read more on soil aeration in my blog post (link in profile)

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Worm transplantation

If you’re serious about balcony gardening, or container gardening in general, I think you should perform worm transplantations. The occasional worm gets in with planting material of course, but the soil in containers and pots is usually pretty dead as far as larger animals are concerned. Certainly worms, which can’t climb up multiple stories of a building to get to your balcony, will not often be present in great numbers.

We all know the benefit of worms: they aerate the soil, eat dead material and deliver it back to the soil in the form of fertile castings. If, like me, you don’t want to change the soil of your containers every year, worms are essential in making fertilising your soil easy to do.

You can buy them at a worm farm of, but a kilo may be a bit to much if you only want them to live in some containers or pots. Also price wise, collecting the worms yourself is a better option. To do this, you need to know someone with a garden. Go there, turn over logs, look under paving slabs or water the soil, then put moist cardboard on top. You’ll find worms by the dozens, all for free and easy to pick up. I also included some woodlice, for the odd bit of wood I may have lying around.

If the person with garden you know doesn’t want you to turn over logs and look under pavers, you may want to reconsider your friendship.

Of course, not all worms are created equal. Some live deep down in the earth while others prefer compost heaps and the top layer of the soil. I’d recommend you to only take those that live in the top layer or the compost heap, as they are the ones that munch on the dead plant materials.

When plants grow, they use nutrients from the soil, so you need to feed the soil to keep up with the growing needs of the plants, no matter if there are worms in it or not. If you take parts of the plant to eat, like fruit, leaves or roots, you use some of the nutrients from the soil to sustain your body. Other nutrients from the plants are sadly lost as ‘human waste’ in the largest waste of resources the earth is currently experiencing: sewage.

As people who don’t even have a garden probably don’t have the means of composting their own humanure (the worms don’t eat fast enough to keep up with your production!), the next best option is to buy pelleted manure to feed your soil with. Also add nails and hairs you loose or cut off, combined with old plant materials your balcony- or container garden produces, as well as kitchen waste.

Especially the manure, but also the scraps and body parts, should contain the trace elements your plants need. If you can get your hands on it, garden compost (made by a gardener, not bought in an anonymous sack you don’t know the origin of) could also give you these needed elements, maybe even in greater abundance than manure.

Balcony gardening is limiting the possibilities will be great still. Certainly if you enlist the help of the rest of the animal kingdom.


14 May 2017 © Dirk Hulst of @mijntuin.

Pokémon in our Biomes pt. 15: Caves and Underground

“I’ve recently decided to make a series of posts with hypothetical thinking and analyzing of what Pokémon species could potentially be found in the world’s biomes. Not at all relative to the games, I will be focusing primarily of the elements, design, and relativity to real life flora and fauna of Pokémon to depict where different species would roam on our big blue marble.”

I won’t rant for too long, but there are a couple things I want to say before I start my fifteenth biome post. One, I always feel like a thank you isn’t enough, but I honestly and genuinely love you all. I have had a really, REALLY rough couple of weeks, and seeing people still liking/reblogging my biome posts while life got trying for me actually made it all a lot easier to bear. Thank you, followers. Secondly, I recently decided to create an alter-ego for myself as Professor Spruce. I mentioned in a previous post I will be referring to myself as Prof. Spruce, who specializes in Pokémon ecology and evolution. I’m really excited for the rest of summer as I plan on spending a lot more time working on posts and whatnot.

Moving onto the actual biome post, it will focus on caves and underground. I originally had intended to focus on the underground and cave biome together separately, however I decided to combine them because although technically speaking they are quite different, many of the species I have already touched up on are burrowing species. (Sandshrew, Rattatat, etc.) I figured instead of having to touch up on some already mentioned burrowing rodent Pokémon, it might make more sense just consider everything that spends most of its life either underground, or in a cave.

I don’t really have a map because realistically if a certain species tends to create dens for itself to sleep in or hibernate in then it will live somewhere on land. The underground biome literally covers (almost) all the land mass on the globe.

As I’m sure you can imagine, many cave-dwelling animals in real life are often colourless, and have very limited vision. Some are completely blind if they never have to leave the light-ridden depths of caves and tunnels. Species that live only in caves are referred to as troglobites, and species that spend most or some of their life in caves are trogoloxenes or troglophiles respectively. There are also many different kinds of caves, different regions in a cave, and many different temperatures in caves. Much more than a rocky hole in a Cliffside, caves serve as a home for many interesting species. I was also going to focus on spiritual Pokémon that have some kind of relation with tombs and burials as tombs can be considered “underground,” but I think I’m going to save that for a different day.

Let’s get started!

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Do you want to level up your #plantparenthood? Read my short blog post about soil aeration…your tropical foliage plants will be happier and live longer! (link in profile)

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Herb of the Week-Borage

Common names

Bee Bread
Bee Plant
Borage
Burage
Cool Tankard
Langue de Boeuf
Ox-tongue
Star Flower
Tailwort
The herb known as the borage is a common plant found growing in the wild areas of most European and Mediterranean countries, where the climate suits the herb. While borage does not grow native in North America, herbalist are very familiar with the plant and the herb borage is cultivated now in some places in the North American continent. The herb is difficult to grow in cultivated gardens and nurseries, strangely though, this herb is found to grow well as a weed in unlikely places such as junkyards and other waste spaces, cultivating the plant in ideal herbal nurseries is hard - the herb is well known for many healing properties and is used in a variety of remedies by traditional herbalists around the world.

The herb is characterized by the presence of numerous white, very stiff, and prickly hairs which covering both the leaves and the stems of the entire plant - for this reason, gloves are always required to avoid the stings of these outgrowths from the plant. During the summer months the plant gives off star shaped flowers which are blue or purplish in coloration, the plant itself reaches only about two feet in length.

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Aerating your soil is essential for maintaining good soil structure and keeping your plants happy in the long run (this applies to most tropical foliage plants) #fittonia #nerveplant #timelapse #houseplantjournal #plants #gardening #leaf #botanical #greenthumb #greenery #foliage #plantlife #botany #urbanjungle #greenfingers #houseplants #indoorplants #plantlove #plantstagram #indoorgarden #instaplants #plantsarefriends #plantlover #indoorgardening

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FAQ: after some time, soil becomes compacted and roots in those dry pockets start to die. Some corresponding leaves will show signs of wilting (leaves curled up). If all you did was try to water more often, it may not help since water would drain right past the dry pocket. The best way to deal with this is to aerate the soil, which not only breaks up these pockets, but also encourages air flow to the roots (they need oxygen too). Aerating can be accomplished by GENTLY poking the soil with a chopstick. When you do this occasionally before watering, it helps the soil absorb more of the water you pour in instead of it draining through the drainage hole. Here I’m also using a turkey baster to remove the excess water after a few hours (this baster is dedicated for plants; don’t borrow the one in your kitchen!)

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Hi!
This is my first time owning a succulent, and I was wandering what it’s called and any tips to care for it? (My mom keeps saying I have to water it very often) I think the leaves might be painted but I’m not entirely sure. I saw some dead leaves on another one at the store and the pink was still there despite the rest being brown. (Also my cacti were painted and it was visible cause it was a sloppy job)


Hi,

This plant is painted, unfortunately. It should survive, as it has some green showing through, but it may take a while to grow out of it. I’d strongly recommend removing all the old soil and repotting it into a well-aerated soil mix. A 50/50 mix of perlite/potting soil would be good. The old soil has shrunken and become compacted, as you can see some empty space between the soil mass and the pot. This makes the soil hydrophobic and unable to take up water, slowly starving the plant. Repotting it into fresh soil remedies this. Keep it dry for a week after repotting and then you can give it some water. Keep it in a bright spot with some direct sunlight, water it roughly once every two weeks and it should do well.

Happy growing!

faggotsagainstfeminism  asked:

How would Frisk survive the fall from the surface to the underground? Could some flowers REALLY break his/her fall?

Children actually have a significantly lower terminal velocity, and considering they landed on pliant herbaceous tissue in loamy moist aerated soil flowers need, it can slow down a fall considerably.
They also land horizontally and thus have more air resistance and is thus falling as a slower speed.
Without a proper canon weight and height of Frisk and the quality of the ground and height of the flowers I can’t give an estimate of the force and resistance over time to calculate the g force, but I do know it would likely be survivable the way they fall, but would be possible for them to lose consciousness and they would probably get a bruise or bump whatever part of their back hit the ground first.