Archive for November, 2020

December Garden Tips

Monday, November 30th, 2020

December Garden Tips

Working in your garden is an excellent escape during the holidays. It’s a great time of year to do some of the heavy work in the landscape as opposed to sweating it up in the heat of the summer.

Don’t put up the mower yet. Although turf grasses have stopped growing, you can use the mower to chop up and recycle the leaves back into the lawn or for a compost pile.

Prepare gas-powered engines for winter. The owner’s manual is the best guide to winterizing a lawn mower, tiller, garden tractor or other power equipment.

Drain and store garden hoses and watering equipment in a readily accessible location. Lawns and other plants may need an occasional watering during a prolonged dry spell.

In general, once the weather gets and stays cold, pruning of deciduous plants (ones that lose their leaves) can be safely done. Evergreen hedges can be sheared or cut back in the winter also. Wait until February to prune your roses. Remember – Do Not Top your Crapemyrtles! Simply prune to remove seed heads and shape.

Prepare for the cold weather before it hits! One of the best things you can do for your landscape plants is to provide a 2 to 3-inch layer of mulch. Mulching is necessary year round but during the colder periods, it provides a layer of insulation for the roots. Water your landscape well before a cold spell. A drought-stressed plant is more susceptible to freeze damage. For more tender plants, purchase frost cloth for extra protection. Cover the plant completely allowing the edges to come all the way to the ground, utilizing the heat which radiates from the ground.

December is a perfect time to plant trees and shrubs so they can develop a strong root system for next Spring. Cool weather color such as Pansies, Snapdragons, Cyclamen, Flowering Cabbage and Kale add splashes of color to your landscape. Spring flowering bulbs can be planted now once they have been properly chilled.

Make your home beautiful for the Holidays with a stunning assortment of floral quality Poinsettias, Cyclamen, freshest greenery and Christmas Trees. Add a mix of new indoor and tropical plants to energize your home décor.

Remember to provide food and water for the birds this winter. You can attract just as many birds with a bird bath as with food, especially during the dry spells. To draw a diversity of birds provide a variety of seeds, like sunflower, thistle, safflower, and millet; plus suet. Once you begin putting out bird food, continue feeding them through the springtime.

Winterize your Chicken Coop

Monday, November 2nd, 2020

when will pullet start to lay eggs- https://www.jandnfeedandseed.comWinter is upon us and egg production tends to slow down in late fall due to the shorter days. Lighting is a huge component to this decrease as well as the temperature drop. A laying hen’s endocrine system is stimulated by light so the shorter days slow egg production or can stop it completely. Some flock owners look at winter as a dormant break for their laying hens.  Other owners like to keep the production throughout the winter months. In order to do this, hens need more than 14 hours of light during the day.

Lighting:

A nine-watt compact fluorescent bulb is all that’s needed for a typical backyard coop. Plug the light into a timer and have it come on early enough in the morning to give the birds 15 hours of daylight, and egg production will be improved through the shorter days of winter.The light needs to light up the largest area possible. Clean the lamps once a week to keep them clean to output as much light as possible.

Heat Lamps:

Start this process in late fall since the lighting changes at that time. Make sure to hang the lamp or bulb up in the coop where the chickens can’t snuggle up to the lamp and cinge there feathers. Make sure the light reaches the whole coop and offers heat throughout.

Other Tips on Winterizing:

Keep the coop dry and clean. The best way to do this is to keep make sure the coop will not have standing water if rain comes. Make sure to replace the bedding with dry bedding each week.

Bedding also provides insulation for the chickens. Cover large holes where drafts or critters can enter. Be careful not to cover up all the holes so proper ventilation can occur.

Freezing temperatures can freeze up the water source. Think about getting a heated water source or pour fresh water each day.

It’s important to gather eggs daily because those can freeze as well.

Throw down extra feed or corn before they head to roost at night. This will provide energy and keep them warm at night.

Your flock needs some time and attention during the winter months to keep up with egg production. The extra work is worth it! You’ll have a full carton of eggs all winter!

 

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