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Sowing Charts For Metropolitan Cities

The best part of growing vegetables in your garden is the sheer happiness of picking up fresh, nutritious vegetables and using them right away in your recipes. However, knowing the right time to grow the vegetables is really important. For example – If you are growing indoors, then you have a lot of control over the temperature and lighting and you have lesser barriers to face while you nourish the plants. This is not the case when you grow vegetables outdoors as the environmental factors are not under your control.

 

So the right knowledge while you get involved in the growth of your healthy friends is very important.

 

SOWING CHART IN DELHI

MONTHS VEGETABLES
   
1.     JANUARY Brinjal
   
2.     FEBRUARY Applegourd, bottle gourd and cucumber
   
3.     MARCH Watermelon, Okra and French beans
   
4.     APRIL Capsicum
 
5.     MAY Onion, Pepper,and Brinjal
   
6.     JUNE All kinds of gourds and cauliflower
   
7.     JULY All kinds of gourds, cucumber and Okra
8.     AUGUST Carrot, cauliflower and radish
   
9.     SEPTEMBER Cabbage, cauliflower and peas
   
10.     OCTOBER Brinjal, cabbage and cauliflowers
   
11.     NOVEMBER Turnip, tomato, peas and radish
   
12.     DECEMBER Tomato

 

SOWING CHART IN CHENNAI

MONTHS VEGETABLES
   
1.     JANUARY Lettuce, spinach, melons and tomato
   
2.     FEBRUARY Okra, Brinjal and beans
   
3.     MARCH Gourds, amaranthus, coriander and beans
   

 

4.     APRIL Okra, amaranthus, coriander and tomatoes
   
5.     MAY Okra, onion and chilly
   
6.     JUNE Nearly all vegetables
   
7.     JULY Nearly all vegetables
   

 

8.     AUGUST Cauliflower, carrot, beans and beet
   
9.     SEPTEMBER Cucumber, cauliflower, spinach and peas
   
10.     OCTOBER Cabbage, Capsicum and cucumber
   
11.     NOVEMBER Lettuce, eggplant and cabbage
   
12.     DECEMBER Beet, eggplant, cabbage and lettuce

 

Update yourself about what to sow and when to sow depending upon your geographical location and go on a vegetable gardening spree!!!:)

Merry vegetable gardening peopleJ

 

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Talking to your plants!

Loneliness is a feeling that in the present scenario defines our state of mind.

In an age of cut-throat competition, it is difficult to distinguish between friends and foes. We might have a lot of friends, but what we lack is the quality time that we can spend with them to strengthen our bond.

But how do we stop our impulsive whim of sharing our deepest thoughts, because in an absence of a true friend, who will listen to us patiently?

I have the answer to this. The answer is your plants.

Why not try and disclose all your secrets to your dearest plants?

Dear Plants

 

Well, don’t turn away thinking that this is nothing but a mosaic of my fantasy. Because this not just my emotion that is speaking. I am speaking on the behalf of logic and science too!

Science has validated that talking to plants can actually propel their growth and they are also nurtured better.

It is a known fact that plants are sensitive to the sound vibrations and respond affirmatively. It can be attributed to their strategy of survival and adaptation to the changing environment which is composed of different forms of sound.

German experimental psychologist, Gustav Fechner pioneered research that unveiled that plants have emotions just like human beings. Later Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose from Bengal conducted research that went on to show that plants respond to emotions of affection and violence.

Plants

As a passionate gardener, your diligence is evident from the way you maintain your garden: Timely weeding, periodic fertilization and bathing the seedlings with the right amount of water.

However, all these activities lack that extra personal touch that the plants crave for. You need to make the flora feel special just like you would for a friend on her/his homecoming or her/his birthday. If they possess emotions similar to human beings, then they also desire for a companion who would talk to them. And how will you comprehend that they have responded?

It is simple; they will retort with an enhanced growth as compared to plants who are bereft of a gregarious gardener. It has been proven that plants love to listen to a female voice, however, the reason has remained unfathomable till date. However, many researchers feel that it is the different pitch and tone of the female voice that makes them the favorite speaker for plants.

So now that you know that there is science in theory and practice that supports the idea of talking to your green friends.

But now the next challenge that you might face is what is it that you can say to your plants.

Here are some tips that will make your talking activity with your flora amigos a cathartic experience:

  • There are certain secrets in our life that we cannot share even with our best friends because we fear being judged by them. We sort of anticipate that being truthful will disrupt our relationship with friends, but at the same time we have this strong urge of unburdening ourselves from that heap of feelings.
  • Sharing whatever you have inside you with your plant buddies can solve this problem very easily. Believe you me that talking about your woes or your confessions will not only make you feel relieved,but will also make you more confident. You will be confident about the fact that you have someone always there to lend an ear to your talks without forming an opinion, because sometimes all you need is someone to just listen to you without passing any remarks.
  • Also, it is important that your plants are not deprived of frothy and happy stories. For that you can arrange a story-telling session or recitation every weekend. You know what is better? Treat them to regular routine of bedtime stories. However, don’t repeat the stories. They say variety is the spice of life.
  • You are head-over-heels in love with the cute boy in your class or gushing over the smartest girl of your college. So what are you waiting for? Go to your green buddies and tell them all about it. They would definitely share the excitement and express it in their own wonderful ways.
  • Encourage children to communicate with plants. This will instill in them a nurturing quality and will aid in sharpening their communication skills. This is especially ideal for introvert kids or children with speech problems.
  • The key to ensure that the plant benefits from all this talking is to speak in a low-pitched voice that evokes your innate love for them.

 

If you are in a sour mood, don’t dump your frustration on the plants by screaming and howling. Plants have immense love for peace, so bestow them the peace that they deserve because these lovely beings are responsible for preserving and sustaining the peace of our environment.

 

Start talking and keep talking to your dear plants!!

 

 

 

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How to plan an organic kitchen garden?

Elevate your life and transform your world with an organic kitchen garden. Having an organic kitchen garden means you can grow your own fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs.

Organic Kitchen Garden

 

You can have your organic kitchen in your kitchen and also where ever there is little space available, that is nearby and accessible. You can start your organic kitchen garden with very basic tools. However, there are a few things that need to be considered before planning your organic kitchen garden; let’s consider them one by one.

Choosing the right place

Organic Kitchen Garden

Starting your organic vegetable garden in the right place makes a huge difference.  You should search for a spot where your plants will get direct sunlight for at least 6 hours. If you cannot have a place that provides the desired exposure to sun, then don’t let out a sigh of despair. There are vegetables such as lettuce, broccoli, peas, cauliflower, etc that can grow without such requirements.

Access to water, tools, compost

Try to have your organic kitchen garden in a place where tools, water, compost and other requirements are easily accessible. You shouldn’t be dragging tools from the other end of your yard and drudging with a heavy watering can. You should grow your plants with ease and convenience without any pressure that droop your shoulders.

Soil quality

Soil

It is very important to access the quality of the soil for growing organic vegetables. Do a Quick D.I.Y. Soil Test: By doing a few simple tests yourself, you can learn a lot about your soil. Learn about what type of soil you have, how healthy it is, how well it drains.

Plants and Seeds

Organic Store

You would require organically grown plants and seeds. And for that, there are several good companies that provide organic vegetable garden seeds. Many nurseries, garden centres, and online stores are also starting to sell a selection of organic seeds. These are usually very clearly labelled as “organic.” Organically-produced seeds are harvested from organically-grown plants, that are never treated with chemical pesticides or fungicides, and are never genetically modified.

Plant, Grow, and Harvest! Now that you’ve got your garden installed and the soil amended, the organic plants and seeds bought — now it’s time to plant and tend your garden. Pay close attention to your garden, so pests and diseases stay away from them.

The simple pleasure of biting into a tomato still warm from the sun picked and eaten on the spot, is almost unbeatable. You can grow just about any vegetable in a container and you can also save serious bucks by growing your own veggies.

 

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Top 5 plants for a miniature garden

“Best things come in small packages.” This statement is nothing but true, especially when it comes to miniature gardening. It’s just like life-sized gardening – but shrunken down.
You can be very creative while you pick plants for such a small-scale garden. It is just so similar to painting a picture on the canvas.
In this blog, we will help you find out about the best plant choices for adorning your miniature garden

1. Ajuga reptans ‘Dixie Chip’/ bugleweed

Ajuga Reptans
So the first in the list is Ajuga or Dixie Chip. This is a dwarf variety and is well suited for small spaces, beds, border fronts, foundations and containers, rock gardens and path edgings. This can be well accommodated with other plant varieties and serves as a fabulous addition to shade gardens.

2.Variegated Boxleaf Euonymus/ Euonymus japonicus ‘Microphyllus Variegatus’

Varigated-Boxleaf-Euonymus
Apart from standing out on the green lawn and providing a great contrast to dark green shrubs, it also acts as a barrier to heat and can even sustain in bad soil.
These plants can be used as edgings, hedges or small topiary forms. It can also be used as shrubs or perennial borders to create neutral fields of color that accentuate other foliage and flowers.

3.Miniature Ivy

The name says it all. Its tiny plant body is embellished with a bronze texture, oak-like leaves, and elongated wiry stems. Their growth is flexible, and hence they can be grown on a trellis as well. When it’s grown in the soil as a groundcover, its stems appear to touch the ground. It should be kept evenly moist while it is kept in terrariums.

4.Lemon Cypress

This is a soft little tree/shrub for miniature gardens and landscapes. It has got an evergreen foliage which is marked by a bright lime green color which upon meeting the sunlight turns to yellow.
It provides the required height and structure necessary for realistic miniature garden scenes. It can be trimmed easily with scissors to give a “Christmas Tree” shape. Trimming also releases an aroma of fresh lemon which is a delight to one’s senses.
This is easily manageable and can grow under the sun, indoors, in containers or planted in the ground. It is the perfect choice for miniature gardens, fairy gardens, little landscapes and railroad gardens.

5.Muehlenbeckia axillaris (Creeping)

This is a small bushy plant with a very fine foliage. The stems are wiry and are coated with rounded leaves that are about half the size of a regular Wire Vine.

These the perfect sized plants for miniature gardens and fairy gardens and is easy to grow in sun, shade and indoors that have good lighting.
They also make great little plants for wild gardens, woodland scenes. This pretty looking plant is also a personal favorite for many.

 

We hope you liked reading about these plant varieties. We also hope that very soon you would be adding one of these to make a beautiful miniature garden for yourself!

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Top 5 Orchids For Your Garden

Orchids are a statement of elegance and everything luxurious in life. There are about 20,000 different species of orchids known, all of which are different in colour, shape and size. So choosing the right variety for your garden is imperative. Below is a list of 5 orchid species that you can consider planting in your garden:

Phalaenopsis: Phalaenopsis also known as Moth Orchids are very rewarding and in the right conditions, they will reward the growers with months of showy blooms. If you are a beginner and are set to experiment with gardening this is the perfect flower to start with. They are easily available and are also very sturdy, as they can last for 4 months or more if proper care is provided. From pure whites to unusual spotted harlequins, Phalaenopsis are sure to please. Unlike many other orchids, Phalaenopsis can be repotted anytime, though it is usually best to do so when not in bloom. Phalaenopsis are low-light orchids and will thrive in an east window, or a shaded southerly or westerly exposure. They can be grown in most orchid potting media, such as chunks of pine bark, clay aggregate pellets, charcoal, perlite, sphagnum moss, and styrofoam.

Phalaenopsis

 

Dendrobium: Native to Southeast Asia, the genus Dendrobium is one of the largest of all orchid groups
 They are perfectly shaped, elegant-looking and are found in a variety of colours.There are about 1200 varieties of this flower that grow in all manner of climates, from hot, wet lowlands to high-altitude, colder mountains etc.

They are considered warm-house plants by growers as they require bright sunlight. They are long-lasting and can survive upto 6 weeks. They are extensively used in flower arrangements because of the elegance that they provide. They can easily thrive in hanging baskets with little or no potting media.

Dendrobium

 

Cattleya: These are a pretty popular variety of orchids and comes in many shapes, sizes and colours along with its hybrid varieties.

These orchids like bright light and will not flower without sufficient light. They can even be acclimated to some direct sunlight, although you should avoid direct summer sunlight. In the right light conditions, the leaves are apple green.

They might not be aesthetically pleasing as the above-stated varieties, but their lovely fragrance is reason enough to have them.  However not all Cattleya flowers are fragrant, so ask your grower if that’s a priority. These are found in colours of red, pink, white and yellow. The biggest mistake most people make with Cattleyas is not supplying enough light for the plant to bloom well and/or overwatering. If proper care is provided, they might bloom twice in a year.

Cattleya are not difficult plants, and their flowers are incredibly rewarding. Depending on the species, they may produce just a few showy flowers or bunches of smaller, waxy flowers.

Cattleya

Paphiopedilum: These orchids are best for indoors as they love low lighting and are easy to maintain. Known for their large sized blooms, these are a good variety to have even if you are a beginner. It is important to water these orchids in the morning. This ensures complete water evaporation on the foliage as well as the crown by nightfall, thus preventing bacteria and fungus rot. The best time for repotting is the spring or early summer or fall when temperatures are mild.

PaphiopedilumOncidium

These flowers are perfect for pininterest boards.  Commonly known as ‘Dancing lady orchids’ these flowers add an element of sophistication to any space. They ride high on popularity amongst the florists and the reason is their large sprays of flowers that often sag with dozens of blooms. They have a very strong fragrance and hence are a delight indoors. They grow best in bright light. They also have a very strong fragrance, so are great to have indoors. They grow best in bright light and require regular watering when they are in their growth stage. They can withstand considerable drought because of their large pseudobulbs.

Oncidiums are magnificent in bloom. A large, well-grown plant might send out six or seven-branched sprays of yellow flowers.

oncidium

 

With this, we come to the end of this article. We hope that you quickly choose one of these orchids for your gardens and make it look even prettier!

Happy Gardening!

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Swinging Through The Rythm Of Winds

Don’t you feel your excitement rise up when you sit on a swing? Doesn’t the to-and-fro motion give you an adrenaline rush? It does, right?

Swings bring in a flood of childhood memories of us having a gala time with our friends in a park spring, or of us swinging in the playgrounds of our school.

Swings have given and still continue to give this sense of freedom and independence, where each movement is under the reins of our senses.

The sheer euphoria of surrendering to the swing and being yourself without any inhibitions reminds me of Virginia Woolf’s famous quote from ‘A room of one’s own’-“No need to worry, no need to sparkle, no need to be anybody else but be oneself.

Let us take our love for swings to another level by not restricting it to just a splendid childhood memory.Why not take a step ahead and install swings in our garden?

For a child-friendly garden, swings are ideal as they will engage your children when you want to peacefully accomplish all your gardening endeavors. However, having swings in the garden doesn’t mean that they would simply appeal to your children.

In fact, swings can serve as one of the most interesting garden accessories.

Even for an aged individual, relaxing in the swing provides coziness and a temporary refuge from drudgery. The best attribute about the swings is that they are both functional as well as aesthetic. A lazy winter afternoon blended with warm sun rays can be spent well on a swing along with the company of a good novel or some soothing music.

The type of swing that you want to install should be determined by the space in your garden. Let us discuss the different types of swings and then you can decide the one that can be well accommodated in your garden spaces.

1.Wooden Swing

A wooden swing has the propensity to rot and demands your full-fledged attention. The wooden swing with its innate old-world charm and a vintage allure works best in the backdrop of a neatly manicured landscape and plump bushy trees. If you want the swing to cater to more than one person then you should go for a variety that resembles a couch. Throw in some black embroidered or tangerine color block pillows to bid adieu to the baldness.

 

2. Metal Swings

Metal Swing

Swings in metal are prone to rust but are high on durability and strength quotient. Also, they enhance your outdoor patios and verandas with their sleek look.

 

3. Toddler Swings

Toddler Swings

Toddler swings are the swings that come in a bucket shape accentuated with holes so that your child can easily place her/his legs. Sometimes they are shaped like a half-bucket with a safety belt that zeroes the possibility of child injuries.

 

4. Porch Swings

Porch Swings

Porch swings are the ones which are mounted to the roof of the porch and are basically swinging benches for the adults. It comes with large seats that can easily accommodate three people.

 

5. Canopy Swings

Canopy Swings

Canopy swings function as a canopy to offer protection from harsh sun beams. Often equated with a porch swing, they are hung on a distinct frame and are favored for their portable trait.

 

6. Hammock Swings

Hammock Swings

Hammock swings are usually fastened to the trees or to a hammock stand. Hence, these are light-weight and they function as a portable bed when you want to catch a quick nap.

 

Add swings in the garden, be bold with your stupefying choice, stun the onlookers and immerse in pride when they marvel your impeccable taste

Happy swinging folks!!

Zodiac Gardening

Flowers can brighten your mood even on the darkest of days.Be it an elegant bouquet for your mother on mother’s day, a red rose for your beloved or a pretty bunch for a sick friend, flowers have a way of conveying feelings when words fail.

They are sometimes the central theme for a poet’s verse and sometimes a muse for the artist. The sheer beauty of a flower makes it a natural go-to choice for decoration and gifting.

Have you ever wondered if there is a certain flower for every person of a zodiac sign? Well there is and the concept is called Zodiac gardening. Zodiac gardening as the name suggests, is planting and growing flowers according to your zodiac signs. For many out there, Zodiac flowers are a way of self-discovery. These flowers are a reflection of one’s personality.You don’t need to be a believer in zodiac astrology to try this out. All you need is a curious mind, the desire to experiment and of course an unrequited love for gardening which all of you visitors at GreenMyLife surely have.

Go on and find out the flower of your zodiac sign!

ARIES- THE FIERY HONEYSUCKLE

Honeysuckle

A fire sign Aries represents confidence, dynamic energy, and true adventure. They are true leaders and trendsetters. The fiery nature of Aries syncs perfectly with its birth flowers thistle and honeysuckle. There are some other flowers too that suit the characteristics of Aries such as bryony, peppermint, tiger lily, geranium, hops, impatiens, onions, hollyhock, thorn-bearing trees, and shrubs.

TAURUS- THE SENSUOUS FOXGLOVE

Foxglove

Taurus is an earth sign and its attributes are stubbornness, sensuality, and sensitivity. Along with those characteristics, they show humility, strength, warmth and are well grounded. Apart from Foxglove, other flowers that signify the characteristics of Taurus are poppy, daisy, violet, columbine, mallow, berries, sundew, ash, cypress, vine, apple, crab apple, pear, fig, citrus, and palms.

GEMINI-THE PLAYFUL LILIES OF THE VALLEY

Lily Of The valley

Known for their multifaceted, playful personalities Gemini also embodies deep passion and an introspective attitude. Their creative and illuminating imagination blends in with their birth flower: Lillis of the valley. Other flowers that symbolize the characteristics of Gemini are lavender, maidenhair fern, myrtle, fern, orchid, chrysanthemum, lilac, azalea, nut-bearing trees and hazel.

CANCER-THE SERENE WHITE ROSE

White roses depict the emotional, strong-headed and sensitive nature of the Cancerians. Other flowers that bear these characteristics are bear’s breeches, morning glory, geranium, lily, water lily, cabbage, lotus, verbena, Southern magnolia, cow parsley, and white flowers

LEO-THE CYNOSURE MARIGOLD

Marigold

Bold, energetic and extrovert, Leos surely love attention and their birth flower Marigold mirrors these traits. Other flowers that depict their personality traits are sunflower, passion flower, vines, rosemary, aster, larkspur, dahlia, heliotrope, palm, bay, laurel, walnut, olive, and citrus trees.

VIRGO-THE METICULOUS BUTTERCUP

Perfection is the middle name for those born under the zodiac sign Virgo. Along with those traits, an analytical, methodical and reflective approach makes buttercup the birth flower for the people with this zodiac sign. Other flowers in the gamut are narcissus, chrysanthemum, aster, all brightly colored small flowers (particularly blue or yellow), cherry and nut bearing trees.

LIBRA- THE BALANCED BLUEBELLS

Bluebells

Librans are known for their ethos of justice, belief in truth and their penchant for striking a balance in their life. Since the birth flower is bluebell for Librans, these flowers should be grown in a well-organized and balanced proportion(owing to their characteristic of balancing things in life). Other flowers that depict the characteristics of Libra are large roses, aster, hydrangea, mint, daisy, berries, plum, ash, and poplar.

SCORPIO- THE PASSIONATE GERANIUMS

Germaniums

For the passionate, intense, insightful, creative and tenacious Scorpios, Geraniums are the flowers that embody all of these traits. Other flowers that symbolize these attributes are rhododendron, holly, black-eyed Susan, scarlet monkey flower, anemone, heather, gardenia, honey suckle, cactus, Arian flowers, yew, blackthorn, and bushy trees.

SAGITTARIUS-THE INTENSE CARNATION

Carnation

Sagittarians represents intellect and strength. They also have an eye for adventure. So, the Carnation is the flower that perfectly symbolizes all of these qualities. Other flowers that symbolize the characteristics of Sagittarius are – Pinks and carnations, dandelion, clematis, peony, blackberry, thistle, moss, sage, rush, lime, birch, mulberry, oak, ash, and chestnut.

CAPRICORN- THE ROOTED PANSY

Pansy

Practical and willful Capricorns are synonymous with deep-rooted flowers like Pansy. Other flowers that mirror their persona are Ivy, heartsease, love-lies-bleeding, pansy, knapweed, hemp, Scotch broom, trillium, baby’s breath, camellia, magnolia, pine, elm, yew, willow, aspen, poplar, and hemlock.

AQUARIUS-THE INSIGHTFUL ORCHID

Orchid

Insightful, independent, romantic and faithful Aquarians have Orchids as their birth flower. Orchids is a perfect symbolization for their ever-romantic personalities. Other flowers that symbolize the characteristics of Aquarius are Solomon’s seal, orchid, golden rain, goldenrod, jack-in-the-pulpit, bird of paradise, gladiolus, trillium, kiwi, fruit trees, elderberry, olive, and alder.

PISCES- THE COMPASSIONATE WATER LILY

Gentle attitude, imaginative thinking, and reactive nature makes water lily a beautiful birth flower for this water sign. However, there are other flowers too symbolizing its nature. They include poppy, rhubarb, yarrow, clematis, wisteria, lilac, orchid, willow, fig, and other trees growing near water.

Now that you know your birth flowers, select flowers that would complement your personality and garden on!

How to make your own seed bombs ?

What is a seed ball/seed bomb ?

Seed bombs/seed balls are a fun and effective way of re-seeding depleted landscapes where you reintroduce. Seed bombs are usually small balls of about 1-3 inch diameter – made of clay, potting soil or compost and seeds. Once they have been made, and dried for 24-48 hours – they are then either sown or more commonly “thrown” across land which needs new flora. Perhaps throw them on the land on the side of highways or barren patches of lands in urban areas like apartment complexes etc or soil on road dividers, to create a green cover.

There are some advantages of using seed bombs instead of using seeds directly:

  • Because there are nutrients in the seed bomb in the form of compost or potting mix or cow dung,  it gives a leg up to germinating seeds – gives them nutrition in the early days when the young plant needs a little help to survive in harsh conditions.
  • The ball prevents animals or birds from eating up the seeds.
  • It takes less time to cover a large area – since you can simply throw the seed bombs – so you could, for example, drive around in a car with thousands of seed bombs and a slingshot, and disperse the seed bombs all around while cruising in your vehicle. In fact, there have been scenarios where seed bombs have been used for aerial reforestation by dispersing hundreds of thousands of seed bombs using a low flying aeroplane !

What sort of seeds should you choose ?

You should choose seeds of varieties of plants or trees that are native to the region where you are going to carry out your seed-bombing activity, so that they are likely to survive. You can choose trees as well as plants – for foliage, flowers or even vegetables !

When is a good time for seed-bombing ?

In India, doing it a little before the beginning of the rainy season is great – that’s when the tiny saplings would grow very fast when the first rains hit. Doing it in the middle of the rainy season may wash away the seed bombs.

Steps to make your bag of seed bombs

Here’s what you need:

  • 2 parts potting soil or compost
  • 5 parts pottery clay mix from an arts and crafts shop or some river bed clay
  • 1-2 parts water
  • 1-2 parts seeds of your choice
  • a bucket to mix ingredients
  • a cardboard box to dry and store seed balls

Directions:

1.Mix the potting soil, clay and 1 part water thoroughly. Make sure there are no lumps.
Slowly add more water until the mixture is the consistency of play dough or toy store modelling clay.
2.Add seeds. Keep kneading the dough until the seeds are well mixed in. Add more water if necessary.
3.Take small bits of the clay mixture and roll into ball about one inch in diameter.
The balls should hold together easily. If they’re crumbly, add more water.
4. Dry seed balls for 24-48 hours in a shaded place before sowing or storing. They store best in a cardboard box. Do not use plastic bags.

This is a great activity for both adults and kids alike – its great fun making these seed bombs with your own hands, as well going on a seed bombing drive with friends and family, once your hand moulded seed bombs are ready !

Health Benefits of Gardening

HEALTH BENEFITS OF GARDENING

Gardening has been recognized for its recreational benefits for long now. A lot of people see gardening as an escape from the chaotic world around them. Little did we know that along with peace of mind, gardening also brings us physical well being. That is because happiness and health are mutually related entities.

In urban areas, people lose touch with the simple wonders of nature. They live a stressfully scheduled life. Gardening is one good way to deal with all the stress going around in one’s life. Gardening helps us lower Cortisol (stress hormone) levels in our body. Chronically high Cortisol levels not only influence our mood but also affect our immune system, heart health and memory. So gardening helps us in directly combating the ill effects of elevated Cortisol levels in our body. Few researches have also shown that people assigned to gardening experienced a more significant decrease in stress level as compared to people assigned to reading. So yeah, gardening proves to be a better stress-buster than reading a good novel.

Gardening can easily replace the 2-2 ½ hours of exercise each week. Which means regular gardening can yield benefits equal to regular fitness exercise. Gardening keeps heart diseases at bay just like regular exercise does. Regular gardening is known to decrease stroke and heart attack risk by 30% for those who are over the age of 60. Gardening is like a work out for the body and releases endorphins (happy hormones), which eases the stress level of our body. For elderly people, gardening provides the best kind of physical therapy since strenuous exercise cannot be a wise option for them. Mid-day is the most efficient time for gardening for them, at least for 10-15 minutes, when they can soak in the beneficial vitamin D from the sun, which, in turn reduces the risks of various heart diseases and osteoporosis (condition of having porous bones due to loss of bone tissues).

Vitamin D soaked in by the body from the sun helps in regulating the immune system. it helps us fight off cold and flus. Also, the friendly soil bacteria, Mycobacterium vaccae commonly found in garden dirt, if inhaled or ingested helps in alleviating the symptoms of allergies and asthma, all of which is an outcome of poor immune system. Thus, we see, gardening helps us in regulating the immune activity of our body.

Gardening keeps our blood moving and makes us sweat out and burn the extra calories in our body. It is a kind of work-out for the respiratory and cardiovascular systems.

Apart from physical health benefits, gardening also helps us enhance mental health. The process of gardening involves a lot of attention and all the critical brain functions are involved. This proves as a mental exercise and enhances our abilities like thinking, problem solving, endurance, patience etc. Various researches suggest that the activities involved in gardening can help lower the risk of dementia (a condition of mental deterioration).

For people who are already suffering mental decline, just a simple walk in a garden may prove to be therapeutic. An emerging field of treatment called horticultural therapy is providing best results for patients with depression and other mental illnesses. These results are an outcome of the combination of physical and mental activity involved during gardening.

A garden can prove to be a peaceful sojourn. A place of solace and serenity. Just sitting in a garden and observing nature closely can be a therapy in itself. It teaches us to be humble, calm and sensitive. It makes us believe that nature has its own call in everything. Just by looking at the greens around, we can soothe ourselves and a feeling of tranquillity sets in.

Gardening offers a relationship with nature which provides a sense of psychological well-being. One cannot really be in a bad mood for too long when they are working in a garden.

Food gardening can be even more beneficial. Along with the health benefits we can get fresh produce as a by-product. The joy of seeding to the thrill of harvesting, all the tasks involved, big or small, can be a source of physical exercise for us. And at the end of all this, during the growing season we can get fresh produce as a by-product.

So, why don’t we start gardening already? If you have some employed men to take care of your garden then you’re actually paying them to take away all the benefits gardening would otherwise provide to you.

It’s time we awaken the gardening enthusiast in us and evolve as healthy and responsible gardeners. Happy Gardening!

Top-10 ornamental plants for vertical garden

Top 10 ornamental plants for vertical garden

In a vertical garden, we can grow a wide range of plants; some are edible, some strictly for beautifying purposes, while some are for both. Vertical gardens are a green solution to urban gardening problems within a limited space. Ornamental plants not only add to the aesthetic sense of the place but also help in making the space eco-friendly.

In this write up we will discuss the various ornamental plants including both foliage and flowering plants.

NOTE: Check out our portable vertical gardens – these are easy to install and maintain – and you can buy them online and get them home delivered anywhere in India !

Foliage:

  • Sword Fern: They are most common vertical garden plants used, nowadays. Often grown in hanging baskets on green walls.
  • Botanical name: Nephrolepis exaltata
  • Light and temperature: light to heavy shade; most ferns like an average temperature of 65-75 degrees F
  • Soil: pH should be around 7-8
  • Water: regular watering and never let the soil get completely dry.
  • Height: up to 4-5 feet

 

  • Golden Pothos or Money plant: It is a vining plant that is super easy to care for. They easily grow and spread over a wide length of the wall. Botanical name: Epipremnum aureum
  • Light and temperature: money plant prefers indirect light and will tolerate low light; thrives better in humid areas such as bathroom walls
  • Soil: grows best in fertile loamy soil of pH range 6.0-7.5;
  • Water: needs watering every 7 to 10 days when the top 2 inches of soil is dry
  • Height: grows up to a length of 20 feet
money plant

money plant

 

  • English ivy: Ivy is a hardy, evergreen vine. It attaches itself by aerial rootlets to the walls and other surfaces. Grown primarily for its lush foliage, which forms a cool green cover on walls or whichever vertical surface they’re grown on.
  • Botanical name: Hedera helix
  • Light and temperature: full to partial sun; 50-70 degrees F
  • Soil: well-drained loamy soil, either acidic, neutral or alkaline in nature
  • Water: average watering is required
  • Height: 20-90 feet
english ivy growing vertically

english ivy growing vertically

 

  • Giant lilyturf: They have dense spreading strap-like leaves that are glossy and dark green. Though it is grown for its dense green foliage, it does bloom in summer and its flowers are quite showy.
  • Botanical name: Liriope gigantea
  • Light and temperature: full-sun to full-shade; 60-70 degrees F
  • Soil: well-drained loamy or clayey soil with pH ranging from neutral to acidic
  • Water: needs regular watering throughout the growing season.
  • Height: up to 4 feet tall.

 

 

  • Philodendron: It is easy to take care of, because if you watch the signals, the plant will tell you exactly what it needs. They are comfortable both as indoor and outdoor plants.
  • Botanical name: Philodendron scandens
  • Light and temperature: bright indirect sunlight; 75-85 degrees F
  • Soil: a soil of pH 6.0-6.5 is ideal for philodendron
  • Water: while watering philodendron plants, allow the top inch of the soil to dry out between watering.
  • Height: grows up to a length of 10-20 feet
philodendron and peace lily distinctly visible on a wall

philodendron and peace lily distinctly visible on a wall

Flowers:

  • Geranium varieties: They bloom in burst of deep reds, scarlet, pinks, white, purple etc. with flowers lasting the entire gardening season.
  • Botanical name: Geranium dissectum
  • Light and temperature: bright to medium light is needed along with 60-70 degrees F.
  • Soil: well-drained potting soil of pH range 6.0-7.5
  • Water: known to be drought tolerant, occasional watering can be carried out
  • Height: grows up to 12 inches tall
  • Flower colours: pink, blue, orange, white, red.
geraniums

geraniums

 

  • Wedding vines: Wedding vine derives its name from the decoration purpose it serves at weddings. It’s grown vertically widely for its pure white, waxy, intensely fragrant flowers.
  • Botanical name: Stephanotis floribunda
  • Light and temperature: 70-90 degrees F
  • Soil: high content of loam and peat moss.
  • Water: water until the soil mixture is drenched; the mixture should drain freely
  • Height: grows up to 6 feet or more
  • Flower colours: pure white

 

8) Peace lily: Peace lily is used in a vertical garden owing to its quickly growing ability. Easy to grow as they are tolerant to lower light and low humidity.

  • Botanical name: Spathiphyllum wallisii
  • Light and temperature: bright to medium light; 65-80 degrees F temperature
  • Water: water at least once a week and spritz the leaves with distilled water throughout the summer growing season.
  • Height:up to 2 feet (60 cm)
  • Flowers: white
peace lily on a green wall

peace lily on a green wall

9) Star jasmine: Evergreen plant and can be easily trained on trellis.

  • Botanical name: Trachelospermum jasminoides
  • Light and temperature: full to partial sun
  • Water: average watering is needed.
  • Height:3-9 metres
  • Flowers: white
star jasmine vine

star jasmine vine

10) English lavender: Evergreen garden herb thrives in summer heat and dry weather. They are also grown for its medicinal and culinary uses.

  • Botanical name:Lavandula
  • Light and temperature: full sun; 70-75 degrees F
  • Soil: neutral to alkaline soil
  • Water: regular watering is not required
  • Height:1-2 metres
  • Flowers: lavender in colour

 

english lavender

english lavender

NOTE: GreenMyLife offers landscaping services in Bangalore – we can build beautiful vertical gardens for residential and commercial spaces ! Get in touch.