Creating a Garden That Birds Will Love

How do you bring the birds to the yard?

With the Great Backyard Bird Count upon us, it's time to consider how we're bringing the birds to the yard! Many bird lovers set out bird feeders, water sources and even homes for birds, but your garden can be just as important, if not more so, in attracting lots of birds to the neighborhood.

Yesterday I took a class about native gardening and learned that one of the best things you can do is plant an oak tree! It's home to a myriad of insects, and baby birds eat thousands of insects. An oak tree can provide nutrition to many birds. Colorful plants also attract birds, although many ornamental plants don't do much aside from looking pretty. Make sure you pick native plants to your area to help provide food and shelter to wildlife.

How do you attract birds to your yard? Share your tips in the chat.

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Caring For Air Plants

Do you have any?

I'm convinced that my air plants are dead... but how do you even know? My aunt, a green thumb, says that they are practically dead anyway, and I was just... what does that even mean? I see that there are plenty of articles out there about how you can tell if they are alive or not, and I'm sure she was kidding (she kids me all the time!), but every air plant I've ever had has seemed lackluster to me at best. Like she said... they're practically dead!

Maybe I'm buying them from the wrong sources. Whenever I see one at Walgreens or the grocery store, it ends up being an impulse buy. They're never as green as the one in the photo above and I never feel like I properly take care of them. Maybe I should just stick to my easy spiky succulents.

Do you have any air plants at home? How do you care for them?

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Playing for Plants

Barcelona opera gets help!

Recently the musicians of Barcelona found themselves practicing for a group of not people, but plants recently! As they prepared to reopen, they decided to perform for a room full of plants for their rehearsal performance. Afterward they decided to give the plants to people as a donation to health care workers.

This is such a cute iea that it makes me wonder if people in the United States might do the same. Unfortunately much of the U.S is operating as normal, so it's hard to say. I wonder if the music helped the plants grow? 

What do you think? 

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Plant Memes

Share your faves!

Lately I've been seeing so many funny plant memes, and let me tell you, memes are my favorite way to cope these days. So when I see one, I'm bound to share it. I've even been doing a weekly "meme dump" every Sunday to make people laugh!

The plant memes, though... they work best in my plant groups where my fellow plant lovers can understand and enjoy them, too! My favorites feature jokes about how many house plants we all have, since we all have dozens of plant babies.

What are your favorite plant memes? Share them in the chat!

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Weirdest Garden Ideas for 2021

Share what you're up to in the chat!

If 2020 saw a rise in gardening across the nation, 2021 will likely only see even more gardening take place. I'm predicting lots of funky and weird ideas as creative people stay home and try to find new ways to have fun. I'm already doing some pretty weird stuff in my garden arena this year!

We cut up our Christmas tree and made a bunch of tiny evergreens in our outdoor pots! It looks so cute and people who've passed asked where we got the little trees! Sure, they will die eventually, but for now they are green and pretty. I also painted my own pea gravel! I didn't like the color so I went with black and made a new, bold look in our rock garden.

How about you? Any weird gardening ideas for the new year? 

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Weird House Plants You Want In 2021

I'd love a pitcher plant!

As someone who totally kills plants and once killed a poor Venus flytrap by giving it too many bugs before researching its needs, I really think that some plants just aren't for all zones, no matter what you do to create an artificial environment. Some plants just like their zones better than any other and that's how nature intended them to be.

That said, it's so hard to not want really cool and weird plants, especially my current favorite: the pitcher plant! These plants are so creepy and fun looking. They remind me of the Batman character Poison Ivy. I know I probably would just kill one, which is why I haven't bought one, and yet...

What weird plants are you tending? How do they fare in your home?

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January Gardening Tasks

What's on your list?

Our Douglas Fir is collapsing on itself. We got our tree late in the game and had to pick from the bottom of the barrel, and the tree was already not the top choice. It's also not my favorite kind of tree; I'd much rather get a Frasier Fir. But since I have all of these falling branches at my disposal, I've been slowly chopping them off and using them to create cute greenery displays in my pots outside!

Yeah, it's a little weird, at least for me, but it's 2020. Why not? I've also sprayed a few dead plants silver and made them look really festive! They could definitely still be used for New Year's decorations. But in terms of the garden itself, I don't do a lot in January, especially since I don't keep a winter garden. That said, we've been saving some windows to make a little greenhouse for that purpose, so I thought I'd find out what tasks you do in the winter time.

What winter chores, prep or other work do you do in your garden?

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Plants As Gifts

How do you give them?

In my family, plants get passed around more than anything else. Between my parents, sisters and aunts, we tend to pass around a LOT of stuff, from household items to food we don't like that we bought, but plants are passed house to house at least on a monthly basis. My baby sister and my aunt in particular have huge windows and what appear to be greenhouses in their homes!

It got me thinking about how I'd go about giving a plant as a gift. We give them to one another so often I'd want some way to make it special. I'm so sad that we won't be making our annual pilgrimage  together to the nursury for the January plant sale next month, but I thought I could get everyone a plant.

How do you go about giving plants as gifts? Is there a special way you jazz them up to look extra fancy?

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Evergreen for Days

What are you making or decorating?

There are around 15 million real Christmas trees sold every year and some people estimate that this year there will be even more sold as local farms run out weeks before Christmas. But there are also lots of people who make gorgeous tree swags, wreaths or even decorate real trees in their own yards, and I love it all!

There are so many different styles and every year it seems there are cool new trends to check out. Flocked trees, which are trees with their ends covered in snow, are big this year. Did you know you can make this look with a real tree by brushing on artificial snow powder with water?

How are you decorating your evergreens this year? I'd love to hear about them in the chat.

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Radishes Growing on International Space Station

Cool gardening news from NASA!

Most of us would like to heal the planet we're on before we attempt to colonize elsewhere in space, but whether or not we agree with it, it's definitely a possibility scientists are exploring.

One barrier to space exploration is the availability of food, which we've met with lots of innovative ideas over the years, including fresh lettuce. Now NASA is exploring the possibility of growing even more veggies in space, and they've demonstrated that it's possible.

Fresh radishes have now been grown on the International Space Station. They're in cold storage to be analyzed for the time being, but we know it's definitely possible. Radishes aren't only filling and nutritious, but they're a fast-growing crop that are actually tasty as-grown. They are the perfect food for space travel.

Have you read any other cool gardening news this week? Share it in the chat.