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How to use and take care of a wooden hot tub in your Garden

In CategoryTim Whitcombe
ByGardenAdvice Tim Whitcombe

Although the idea of a wooden hot tub may seem like a new trend, it is not. Traditional hot tubs were built using wood even though they were mostly found in old castles and palaces. Even then, they didn’t have a stove so the water had to be heated separately. 

Modern wooden hot tubs are well equipped with burning heaters that heat the water to the preferred bath temperature. They also come in different sizes that can accommodate up to 30 people. These tubs are designed for outdoor use and can complement your garden as much as they are functional.

They have a life expectancy of between 10 and 15 years. However, to achieve this you must take care of the tub well. The most common way of taking care of wooden tubs is treating the exterior using a wood supplement or linseed oil at least once or twice a year. You can also use wood glaze or wax in the place of oil. But this is not all. This article takes you through everything you need to know about using and taking care of your wooden tub so that it serves its purpose while adding value in your garden. 

Taking Care of your Wooden Hot Tub 

The wooden tubs require some degree of attention. This means you need to monitor and regularly take care of it to ensure durability. Here are some of the things you must keep in mind if you want to use your wooden tub for a long time:

  • Don’t leave your wooden hot tub without water for a prolonged period or more than a week because this will result in cracking and leaking. 
  • Avoid placing devices or other kinds of warm systems close to the stoves or heating area because wood generally handles large differences in humidity and temperature poorly.
  • Make sure you regularly check and monitor the condition of the tension hoops so that you tighten whenever necessary. 
  • Do not use abrasive substances to clean the wooden tub to preserve the protective layer of the wood. You should clean the inner part of the tub using water soap and soda supplements and a brush to prolong the life expectancy. 
  • Make sure the tub is installed on stable ground so that the water level is even. Avoid a ground that has patches of grass or humus. Most importantly, make sure there is good circulation of air underneath so that the damp can vaporize. 
  • Avoid treating the interior of the tub with oil to allow it to absorb water so that the wood can swell up and keep the hot tub dense. 

Using Your Wooden Hot Tub

Once you have purchased your wooden tub, you must identify a suitable location in the garden to install it. In most cases, your specialist will advise you based on the advantages and disadvantages of different locations.

Here are some guidelines on the proper use of your wooden tub:

  • Determine the best times to use the tub. This is important because these tubs take time to heat up. It even takes longer during the cold season. 
  • Get your firewood ready in time. Make sure the firewood is well dried so that it doesn’t end up smoking.
  • Fill the tub up with water using a water hose making sure the water level reaches the recommended levels. 
  • Check the water level in the hot tub before igniting the heater. You should never start the heating process when the tub is empty or the water is barely at the minimum level. When the water reaches the recommended level, you can turn it off and cover with a lid so that it heats up faster. Make sure you empty the tub after bathing while the embers are still live in the heater. 
  • Begin with tinder and kindling while avoiding paper as its ashes could get into the water. 
  • Burn medium-sized wood to heat the water while maintaining the heat placing. At this point, you can use more hardwood so that it burns for longer. 
  • Check the temperature of the water, if it is too hot then open the lid or even add some cold water and you’ll be ready to enjoy a great soak. 

A wooden hot tub is one other best ways to engage with nature while enjoying the serenity of your garden. However, you must make sure you take care of the tub properly to ensure longevity and great service. 

 

 

Planting for autumn bulbs for spring colour

In CategoryTim Whitcombe
ByGardenAdvice Tim Whitcombe

One of the most rewarding projects in gardening is planting autumn bulbs. It’s one of the easiest gardening projects to undertake with a fantastic return on your time and labour with a spring show of color that rarely fails. 

Autumn garden bulb projects. 

Crocusone of the earliest flowering spring bulbs ideally for planting in lawns as they flower early and die back before you have to carry out the first cut to your lawn in the spring providing a spectacular display of colour.

Ideally for the best effect you need to plant in drifts of 20 to 80 bulbs all in one colour.

With crocus it’s important to get the planting depth correct, ideally they need to be two to two and a half times the size of the bulb below the surface of the soil or turf.

 

Dwarf Daffodilsideal  for early spring colour, planted in herbaceous borders in between the herbaceous pants and and shrubs they will flower before the herbaceous pants spring into late spring growth. Flowering in the early spring colour, planted in groups Dwarf Daffodils can provide  a spectacular display and will die back and be covered by the herbaceous plants after flowering creating a low maintenance situation. 

 

Tulipsthe most spectacular of the spring bulbs available in many colours and stem lengths ideal to create a carpet of colour hovering over the spring flowering plants such as Myosotis and pansies. Tulip bulbs mainly grown in Holland sold around the world have the best return on colour for investment of any flower in the gardeners arsenal for providing spring colour in the garden. 

 

Iris reticulata a very early spring flowering bulb with a striking blue flower simply potting 6 to 8 bulbs in a small clay pot with some John Innes soil based compost covered with golden gravel or horticultural grit will provide a spectacular spring display lasting for several weeks.

 

General gardening tips for planting autumn bulbs 

As a general rule plant depth for bulbs needs to be two to three times the size of the bulb into the ground as a planting depth guide. In heavy clay soil it’s a good idea to dig in some horticultural grit or sharp sand to open up the soil to help with drainage.

 

How CBD Can Make Gardening Easier

In CategoryTim Whitcombe
ByGardenAdvice Tim Whitcombe

 

You may have heard of CBD before. This hemp byproduct has been in the eyes of the media for a couple of years now, and its use is an ever-evolving health trend that has gained the interest of celebrities and athletes alike. However, those are not the only people who benefit from CBD. There is a lot this substance can do to make our everyday lives easier, and that includes helping us do garden work.

But before we cover how CBD can make gardening easier, let’s take a look at the basics.

 

What is CBD and where can you get it?

CBD stands for Cannabidiol, and it is one of the most common active agents found in plants of the cannabis family. This includes hemp, of course, which is the legal term given to any strand of cannabis that has no psychotropic properties. That’s because hemp contains almost no THC, which is the substance responsible for making people high when they smoke weed.

For years marijuana users have understood that strands of cannabis with high amounts of CBD have better medicinal properties. And now that the growth and sale of hemp have been legalized throughout Europe and the UK, products containing CBD can be sold throughout all the aforementioned territories. And while some European countries still restrict who can access CBD, in the UK the product can be freely consumed by the general public. Most UK regulations limit who can sell CBD, not who can buy it.

You can find CBD in pharmacies, headshops, the occasional corner store, and online. There are stores that specialize in CBD products in the UK, but they aren’t that common. Now that you know where you can get CBD, let’s take a look into what it can do for you.

 

CBD and garden work

The health benefits of CBD are often exaggerated in the media. At its core, CBD has three main benefits: it works as an analgesic, an anti-inflammatory, and an anxiolytic. All three positive effects are achieved by the substance’s direct interaction with the endocannabinoid system, a network of neurotransmitters that all mammals have.

When it comes to gardening, here’s how you can use those benefits.

 

1 – Alleviate pain

Long hours working in the garden are bound to leave you sore all over. Since it is a natural analgesic, CBD can reduce that discomfort.

2 – Recover after a long workday

Long hours working in the garden are bound to leave you sore all over. Luckily, the analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of CBD can do more than just alleviate the discomfort. They can help your body recover, so you’ll be feeling fresh and energized the next day.

3 – Relax and enjoy the moment

CBD’s calming properties can help fight off both stress and anxiety. This means it’ll be a lot easier to worry less about things and actually enjoy the time you spend working in the garden.

If you’d like to learn more about CBD and what it can do, try reading Cibdol’s CBD guide.

 

 

Advice from Yukon Experts Regarding Fertilization

In CategoryTim Whitcombe
ByGardenAdvice Tim Whitcombe

A lush green lawn takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and most of all patience. Those who are blessed with green fingers may enjoy the idea of not ever having to spoil their garden with mistakes, however, some of us who don’t necessarily have that advantage need a bit of an extra helping hand from garden stores that sell all types of aids in helping us to keep our backyards well maintained throughout the year.

So, what are these things that one needs to do when striving to keep their green lawns, green?  Well, there’s de-weeding it, then there is improving the drainage, getting rid of thatch and moss, aerating the lawn, seeding it, mowing it, feeding and watering it constantly, to mention a few things. Others can be found here. But nothing works as well as one thing that is a necessity in every garden – Fertilization. Without a good fertilizer, you could go wrong in so many ways and every effort you put into this space will be in vain. 

There is a reason why this one element when added to any type of garden or grass will help it to thrive. We look at everything you need to know about it below. 

 

What Is Fertilizer?

As human beings, it’s important that we take supplements to make sure that we get all the vitamins that our body needs. Much in the same way when soil is lacking in nutrients. Fertilizers are used to take extra care of the grass and as well as plants to grow properly and healthily. 

Most brands on the market include three main minerals in them, one of them is Potassium, which helps the plants and grass to use more nitrogen from the soil. There is also Phosphorous which is a useful substance in helping and encouraging the growth of roots and plants. Lastly, there is Nitrogen which acts as a foliar to promote growth and enhance the color of everything.

If you are not sure which of the three is lacking in your lawn, doing a soil test is a quick and easy way to figure it out, so you can choose the right type of additive for your garden. There are four easy ways to do this, which can be found here: https://www.thespruce.com/easy-diy-soil-tests-2539856

 

 

When Is Fertilization Needed and Things to Consider

There are many formats of fertilizer, for instance, one could acquire granules for their lawn, or a foliar spray, stakes, or even time-release formats, whichever one you choose to add to your backyard, timing is the most important element to take into consideration. 

For most professional gardeners they would already know that the general rule of thumb is to apply this during early spring time. This is especially great if you’ve got plants that bear fruits or flowers, however, in some regions, this may not be the case, especially where there is snow, which will freeze the plants and as such one should consider doing this application during the date of the final frost, one the snow season is over. 

The most effective time, in general, is during the peak growing cycle. When the plant leaves are starting to pop out, which is usually during springtime. This however will differ with indoor plants, where if they are pot bound, they may need a liquid format and fed every month. 

The advice from C Green Lawns – Fertilization in Yukon, is to use a slow-release type of fertilizer and only during the spring, summer, and fall seasons, but not during winter as they do not have an active growth period at this time, especially if your growing vegetables in your garden as well. Other application times will be found on the manufacturer’s instructions on the bag you buy or you can seek the advice of a professional gardening service.     

Another thing to consider is how much to use. The general estimation is for 3 pounds nitrogen per 1000 square feet should be enough for “woody” plants, sometimes people prefer to add half that, especially to flowering or ornamental types of plants. For instance, if your growing “Perennials”, they would only need 1 pound per 1000 square feet.

In any type of application, the fertilizer needs to be watered thoroughly as well, this helps to get it where it is most needed in the roots. 

 

 

 

What Makes a Succulent Rare

In CategoryTim Whitcombe
ByGardenAdvice Tim Whitcombe


What Makes a Succulent Rare?

Are you new to growing and maintaining succulents or have you been interested in them for some time? Whatever stage you are at, it’s likely that the reasons you have succumb to succulents like so many other people. They have a very natural appeal. If you spent any time browsing Pinterest, Pinterest, and Facebook on the subject you would see a whole array of posts and images of people who have succulents of all kinds around their homes. 

Aside from their very organic aesthetics, succulents are not very hard to look after. They can survive anywhere, are extremely affordable compared to other exotic flowers and plants, and offer their indelible charm throughout the year, which is not something you can say about all plants.

Once you get the succulents bug, you want to expand your collection and look for rare succulents. But what is a rare succulent? That’s what we are going to discuss in the following post.

What is a Succulent?

Just so we are completely clear about the kind of plants we are talking about on a basic and fundamental level, before we look at the rarer varieties, we’ll explain what succulents are for the beginners. As a botanical term, succulents or succulent plants refers to plants that are exceptionally engorged, fleshy, and thickened. They are also able, depending on species and variety, to retain water and survive in arid soil and climate conditions. 

Rare Succulents, How?

Given their popularity, you may wonder how any succulents could still be considered rare. There are several reasons why experts refer to specific succulents as being rare.

Let’s examine a few of the most important.

Rare Succulents – Succulents That Are Hard To Find

As we said, it doesn’t feel like you can go anywhere, especially on the internet, without coming across something about succulents. Especially if you are looking at an indoor plant. Whereas in the past it was quite a rare sight to see someone with a miniature cactus in their living room or another form of succulent in their conservatory, those days are gone. While no one is taking away from them their charm and elegance, the novelty has worn off a little. 

Well, if it wasn’t for the fact that there are a multitude of succulents out there that are different from the run-of-the-mill kind you’ve seen in people’s homes on people’s social media and that you may have in your own house. These are much harder to find, especially on the commercial succulent’s market. 

They are less popular because they are not as easy to source. However, there is another key reason why they are so rare.

Rarer Succulents Are Harder to Maintain

Earlier we established that one of the defining qualities of succulents that makes them so popular is that they are much easier to care for than other house plants and exotic flowers. Although that’s true of the most popular species and varieties, there are some, the more exotic and rarer, that are much trickier to maintain

 

Trickier to Maintain, In What Way?

That’s a very valid question. It seems to be different from one to the other, but these gorgeous and intriguing rare succulents that look like they’ve come from Jupiter or the furthest points of space, are harder to care for in several ways.

While some take a lot of effort to get them growing, others don’t put down their roots as easy as the more common varieties of succulents. Some do not produce seeds and some that do not propagate, due to the very few offsets they actually produce.