Fall Color 2017 from Growing The Home Garden

I'm a big fan of foliage! There is no better time of the year than autumn for those who love foliage, and naturally fall is one of my favorite times of the year. I thought I would share with you some photos I have taken over the last month of the foliage from my garden. Tennessee often has amazing fall color and this year was no exception. I hope you enjoy seeing some of the fall color from my garden! Fall Color 2017 While its surroundings are lacking in appeal blueberry bushes always have some beautiful fall foliage. They are worth planting for ornamental value in addition to the edible berries. Fothergilla is an amazing plant for fall color! This Japanese Maple is 'Germaine's Gyration'. I missed the peak color by a day! There are few trees that can rival the fall color of a maple! This self sown maple…

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Zinnias and Butterflies

One of the things I love to do, but often don't have enough time to do, is visit gardens. I like seeing what ideas other gardeners have had and taking a bit of their creativity back to my garden. We recently visited a farm and picked some pumpkins for the fall. While a farm and garden can be vastly different operations, many techniques and ideas can be used interchangeably. One simple thing that I thought was very neat was the mass planting of zinnias. I've grown zinnias many times over the years but usually only plant a few here and there. On the farm they planted a massive row of zinnias which attracted loads of butterflies! Zinnias and Butterflies The wide row of zinnia flowers was as long as the first pumpkin field.  Butterflies were EVERYWHERE! This made me start thinking about what we might do done the road on…

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A Temporary Way to Fix a Gravel Driveway Drainage Issue

A couple months ago we finally found and purchased land to build a new home and (of course) new gardens. No matter what property you have there will always be imperfections that need to be addressed in some way. One of the biggest problems with our property is the driveway. It's a LONG driveway that is approximately 1000' before you get to the main property. In my mind this is a feature and not a problem. It puts our home and bulk of the land behind other large acre properties which will give us privacy from the road. The actual problem with the driveway is with the very front entrance to the driveway. It's a gravel driveway with a steep entry from the main road. When it rains the gravel begins to wash away so I needed to come up with way to a fix a gravel driveway drainage issue.…

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How to Buy Mums (Hardy Chrysanthemum)

OK, you might be thinking to yourself that this headline "How to Buy Mums" is about a topic we don't even need to discuss. Really, how hard can it be? You go to the nursery, pick out a full bushy plant full of blooms. You walk to the check out counter buy it and go home to plant it. If that's what you think then let me add one more thing to the purchase of your mums, don't buy the plants when in bloom! The Secret of How to Buy Mums The secret to long lasting chrysanthemum blooms in the fall is to buy your plants from the nursery when they are still in tight buds. If you look around at all the other mums on sale you can identify the colors you like then purchase plants that have little to no blooming. That way when you get them home…

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New Land, New Gardens, and a New Home

It's not everyday I get to write about something this life changing! You may remember that a while back I made an offer for some land. That piece of land didn't work out and I was pretty disappointed. Sometimes life has better plans and we just don't realize it at the time. Recently we found another piece of land for sale. It's not as big as the first property, but in almost all other ways it's better, more usable and still in a great location! It's 7.26 acres and only 6 minutes from town. Our area of Tennessee is a hotbed of real estate activity and this property is an amazing find. We closed on the land on Thursday and now we know where our future home will be! The Plan for the Land Our plan for right now is to maintain the land and hopefully begin building in about…

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Hydrangea Propagation (Natural Layering)

Hydrangeas are fantastic garden plants! The flowers are beautiful but even when not in bloom hydrangeas can be a well formed shrub in the garden. Yesterday while walking through the garden I found a hydrangea that had rooted itself on the ground. This is called layering. Layering is a method of plant propagation where you can encourage roots roots to form. You can encourage layering but many plants will do this naturally on their own with a low hanging branch. Below is a little information on hydrangea propagation through layering. Hydrangea Propagation through Layering To layer a hydrangea branch simply take a low hanging branch and make sure a node makes contact with the soil. Then pin it with a rock or other heavy object. In a few weeks you can come back to check it and see if roots have emerged. Once they have take the hydrangea branch and…

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Plant Propagation Cloner

I came across a video today on Youtube that I thought was a fantastic demonstration of how to build a plant propagation cloner! This is a DIY project I would love to try when I have a bit more time. If you have tried something like this please let us know in the comments on how the project went, any changes you might have made, and how successful you've been at rooting cuttings with the cloner! Plant propagation cloners help to keep the roots hydrated which is one of the major issues with propagating plants. Have you tried to build your own plant propagation cloner?

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Mimosa – Albizia julibrissin INVASIVE PLANT

Over the years travelers have brought back interesting plants from all over the world. Some plants are brought back because of their beauty. Other plants are brought to the U.S. to serve a purpose like roadway stabilization as in the case of Kudzu. Often these exotic plants from overseas become problematic. They can take over the local habitat in ways that are not foreseen and gradually push out other plants that should be growing there. One such plant is the Mimosa tree. Mimosa (Albizia julibrissin) is a small tree that originally came from China and was brought as a landscape tree.   The mimosa tree was brought to the U.S. in 1745 and is still sought after today because of the beautiful fuzzy pink flowers that emerge in the summer. The problem is that these trees produce seeds that get widely distributed and displace native plants. Invasive plants reduce the…

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Troy-Bilt 3100 PSI Pressure Washer Review (Sponsored)

Disclaimer: The following post is a sponsored review of the Troy-Bilt 3100 PSI Pressure Washer. All opinions are solely the opinion of the author who in exchange for goods and compensation was asked to do this review. There comes a time in the home garden when the house needs some work too. The house is (usually) the biggest structure in the yard and sometimes it needs a good cleaning. That's why I applied the Troy-Bilt 3100 PSI Pressure Washer to the job. I have a two story home and it's hard to reach the upper level siding using a standard garden hose. The north side of my house gets frequent mildew since the sun can never shines there. Troy-Bilt provided me with a pressure washer to test and see how it does in cleaning up my house and garden. The Troy-Bilt 3100 PSI Pressure Washer The Troy-Bilt 3100 PSI pressure…

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Oak Leaf Hydrangea – Garden Favorites

Over the years I have grown many plants. I have a bit of a collectors attitude toward my garden and pick out unique plants as much as possible. Some of those plants haven't done well for me, but other plants have simply been amazing. I thought it would be a good idea to go back and look at some of those plants that have been consistently good garden plants. Today I'm starting with the oak leaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia). The oak leaf hydrangea is an amazing plant that can tolerate shade to part sun here in Tennessee. The botanical name Hydrangea quercifolia when broken down describes the oak leaf hydrangea perfectly. The first word is obviously hydrangea which is classifying the plant in that family. "Quercus" is the oak family and "folia" means "leaf". Together they make quercifolia which would mean oak leaf and reflects the shape of the leaf.…

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