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What Is the Hibiscus Sorrel?

Hibiscus sorrel (Hibiscus sabdariffa), also called Jamaica sorrel and roselle, is indigenous to India, but can grow as a yearly as in most climates. The plant has fleshy, red calyxes that encircle the foundation of its yellow blooms. The red calyxes possess a flavor similar to cranberries or currants and are used to make tea, jellies and used in salad dressings, drinks and frosting.


Hibiscus sorrel can grow up to 7 feet tall using 3-inch-long oval, three- to five-lobed leaves. The stalks and leaves are thin using a reddish-green shade. The calyxes are green when immature and turn into a bright red when ripe. Calyx size may vary and range from 1/2 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter. The yellowish flowers are 5 inches wide using a rose-colored or maroon center that fade into a pink as blooms fade at day’s end.

Climate and Soil

Hibiscus sorrel needs long, hot summers for fruit to ripen and the plant is frost-sensitive. An early frost may prevent a harvest. Rainfall is vital, as blooms thrive in places that receive at least 72 inches of rain each growing season. Hibiscus sorrel grows best in loamy, sandy soil. Necessary growing states are similar to those for tomatoes and the plants need spacing of 18 to 24 inches apart in rows. The plant begins producing blooms since the days shorten during the growing season.

Propagation and Planting

Hibiscus sorrel is usually propagated by seed, but you can also propagate the plant from cuttings. Propagation from cuttings often results in shorter plants and fewer calyxes. The plant may reseed itself, therefore it has the potential to become invasive in some places. You can start seeds indoors and transplant seedlings when they grow to approximately 4 inches tall, or direct sow the seeds at the expanding region, planting in hills with three to six seeds per hill.

Harvest and utilize

When ripe, the fruit is plump and tender and should be harvested before woody tissue grows on the calyxes. Fruits can easily be snapped off the plant by hand early in the day; when harvesting is delinquent the stems toughen and you’re going to need clippers to eliminate fruits. The fruit has many uses other than teas and frosting. After washing, you can chop the fruit and then apply in fruit salad, or cook to make into syrup, marmalade or pie fillings.

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How to Prune Vertical Tomato Plants

Tomatoes are an easy-to-grow plant for home gardeners and among the most widely grown home garden plants. While the plants grow easily, they require care and pruning to keep crops healthy and make a fantastic harvest. Tomatoes need staking to keep fruit off the floor and reduce fruit decay. Pruning can also be significant, as it helps create bigger fruit and slimmer, healthier plants also increases air flow, which reduces the danger of infection.

Choose a couple of main stems. When growing tomatoes with two main stems, choose the 2nd main stem from among the shoots that grow from the first or second leaf-stem axils, and remove all of shoots below it. Growing plants with a couple of main stems sends more nutrients to fruit instead of sending it to unwanted shoots.

Prune to remove any new suckers. Check weekly and remove any new side or lateral shoots while they’re still tiny. You can pinch off the limbs with your fingers if you remove them before they grow larger than 4 inches long; that also helps avoid plant injury. Pinch a sucker between your finger and thumb, bending it to one side until it breaks.

Top the plant in summer season. When the main shoots get to the surface of the service, cut off the tops of the main shoots. This directs plant energies to ripening fruit on the vine. Taking away the tops doesn’t hurt the plant because any new fruit group would not have time to ripen before the growing season ends.

Remove any yellow or wilting leaves as they develop. Yellow and wilting leaves are normal on tomato crops as they grow. Removing these leaves help reduce the danger of infection and maintain the plant looking fresh.

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Clothes to Wear While Mowing

Proper mowing attire is essential to keeping yourself safe when you go outdoors for routine lawn maintenance tasks. Flying debris is the primary danger when mowing. The clothing you wear should defend you from any flying debris without inserting any other dangers, like the clothes getting caught in moving parts.


Your feet are close to the spinning blades and flying debris that the entire time you mow, especially when using a push mower. Never wear flip flops, sandals or open shoes of any kind when mowing. Close-toed shoes are essential to maintaining your feet protected. Choose sturdy shoes made from thick material, like leather work boots or tennis shoes. Check the soles for holes before wearing the shoes for mowing.


The potential for flying debris implies you ought to cover as much of your skin as possible with clothing. Long pants are ideal for your lower half of your body. It is tempting to wear shorts, especially when mowing in hot summer temperatures, but long pants protect your legs. The close proximity to the blades puts your legs in a higher risk for cuts or scratches from mowing debris. Your arms aren’t as likely to be hit by debris, but long sleeves are greatest. The coverage from the clothes also means less exposure to the sunlight so you don’t end up with a lint.

General Clothing Guidelines

Whatever you wear, the clothing should fit snugly. Loose-fitting clothing can get caught while mowing. If the sleeve of your shirt gets caught in a moving part, it can pull your arm and potentially cause significant injury. Jewelry also poses a tangling and injury risk. Pick old clothing, as they tend to get dirty from the debris of mowing. 1 choice is to set aside a mowing outfit that fills all of the guidelines. Wear this outfit every time you mow so you don’t destroy different clothing.

Protective Gear

Wearing protective gear together with suitable clothing increases your safety while mowing the yard. Goggles or sunglasses that wrap around your face shield the eyes if debris flies up from the lawnmower. Ear plugs reduce damage to your own ears from the loud mower motor noise. Protective gloves cover your fingers to reduce blisters or cuts from flying debris. When dust or grass clippings bother you, then a face mask or bandana on your mouth and nose while mowing may help.

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How to Paint Metal Doors With Oil-Based Paints

Painting a steel door is somewhat like painting a car — the quality of the project depends on a large extent on how much effort you put into preparation. You need to fill and flatten dents, or else they will appear, and you’ve got to clean, etch and prime the surface, or the paint might lift. You get the best results using oil-based paint with a sprayer, but should youn’t have spray gear, you’ll get excellent results with a brush. The important thing is to thin the paint so it flows out and also to propagate it in thin coats.

Remove all the door hardware, for example, knob, deadbolt and latch, with a screwdriver. Cover the hinges with masking tape and also the windows with masking tape and paper. If the door has weatherstripping, pull it off and wash the adhesive off the door with acetone on a rag. Unscrew and remove the sweep on the bottom of the door, if there is one.

Wash the door with soap and warm water. After the door dries, wipe it down with a rag dampened with acetone to remove any grease that the detergent did not dissolve.

Fill dents, depressions and other defects with auto body filler. Mix the filler with the hardener that comes with it at the proportion recommended on the container and then spread it where required with a putty knife. Scrape it flat with the knife before it hardens. When it hardens, sand it flat with 120-grit sandpaper, then sand the entire door with 220-grit sandpaper to etch the old finish. Wipe the door with a rag.

Prime the door with an oil-based metal primer. Spray the primer with a compressed air spray gun or disperse it with a brush. If you spray, keep the door open and then cover the door with vinyl sheeting. Put on a respirator while spraying or painting with a brush.

Let the primer dry completely, which requires about 2 hours, then sand the door lightly with 220-grit sandpaper and wipe the dust off.

Spread one thin coat of oil-based paint by spraying by painting it with a brush. Whether you wax or spray, thin it with about 10 percent mineral spirits to help it flow out. Do not worry should youn’t get complete coverage with this coat.

Let the paint dry overnight, then sand it with 220-grit sandpaper and apply another thin coat. You might be satisfied after this coat, but otherwise, apply a third coat after sanding the second.

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Landscaping suggestions for a Burning Bush

Burning bushes (Euonymus alatus) are deciduous shrubs desirable for their brilliant fall color. The leaves turn vibrantly red in fall, giving rise to this plant’s nickname. Burning bushes are hardy shrubs and thrive in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 4 to 8, according to Ohio State University. Use these showy plants as focal points on your lawn.

Center Stage

Many varieties of this plant exist, from dwarf forms to towering bushes that grow nearly as tall as trees. The smallest cultivar, alternately called “Odom” or “Small Palestinians,” attains a maximum height and width of approximately 3 feet. The species attains a maximum height and width of 20 feet. Burning bushes have pleasingly curved shapes, regardless of cultivar. This makes the plant an excellent choice for a centerpiece. Put it in the middle of the lawn for a burst of colour and to split up an otherwise boring expanse of green. Alternatively, center it on your lawn and surround it with brightly colored fall blooms such as mums, which will well set off the brilliant red fall foliage.

Potted Flames

Some burning bush cultivars produce excellent container plants. Try “Rudy Haag,” that takes about 15 years to grow to a typical maximum height of 3 feet. Put one of those bushes on either side of your front porch for an appealing but low-maintenance statement. Alternatively, anchor the corners of the deck with these potted beauties.

Understory Showoff

Burning bushes are exceptional understory plants. They thrive in the dappled shade offered by bigger deciduous trees. Most do well in partial shade, though in cooler climates, the plant colors will be more vibrant when exposed to full sunlight. Plant burning trees under spring-flowering trees such as ornamental pears or crab apples. In the fall, once the leaves have dropped in the tree, the burning bush will continue to light up that corner of the lawn with its brilliant fall foliage.

Colorful Hedge

Burning bushes are not thorny, but they’re very dense and will grow into a neat, compact hedge punctually. The small leaves are very appealing, and the hedge will need little maintenance since the plants have such a slow rate of growth. Plant several burning bushes about 1 foot apart to create a drop or a boundary.

Urban Jewel

Burning bushes are excellent plants that are urban. They tolerate a wide assortment of adverse environmental conditions, such as poor soil and pollution. If your landscape has a problem area, think about putting your burning bush in that area. They can tolerate almost anything apart from very wet soil.

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Partial Shade Landscaping Ideas

Adding plants to partly shaded spots in your yard will brighten the dark area and increase its attractiveness. When selecting plants for a partly shade area, consider the requirements of this landscape. As an instance, use ground covers beneath trees and evergreen shrubs to conceal unsightly areas.

Evergreen Shrubs

Evergreen shrubs are versatile plants you can use to conceal unsightly foundations, border walkways and act as a living fence. Several evergreen species grow well in areas where they will get little to no sunlight. North Star boxwood (Buxus sempervirens “Katerberg”) is a compact evergreen shrub growing in U.S. Department of Agricultural plant hardiness zones 5 through 9. This shade-loving plant attains 24 to 32 inches high and is resistant to deer. North Star boxwood is an easy-care plant also functions well as a border, hedge or base pant. “Picturata” aucuba (Aucuba japonica “Picturata”) grows in shaded areas in USDA zones 7 through 10. It grows between 4 and 6 feet tall, producing deep green foliage accented with golden yellow centers. This seacoast exposure evergreen has various landscaping applications like a specimen or — when planted in groups — border plant.

Ground Cover

Ground covers are low-growing plants using a spreading or creeping habit which engulf the area, covering the unattractive ground. Yellow archangel (Lamium galeobdolon) is a shade-loving repeated reaching 1 to 2 ft tall in USDA zones 4 through 9. Its green leaves are splashed with silver accents and little yellow flowers appear in after spring. Yellow archangel tolerates dry, shallow and rocky dirt and is resistant to deer and drought. Cymbalaria (Cymbalaria aequitriloba) grows to just about 2 inches tall in USDA zones 6 through 10. This compact mat-forming perennial has small dark green leaves and lilac blue flowers. Cymbalaria is a quick grower, tolerates foot traffic and functions well as a ground cover in dense shade but can also grow in partially shaded areas.

Entrances and Corners

Shrubs with a narrow kind will help soften the harsh lines of corners and will frame entries, drawing the eye to the front of your property. “Iowa” Chinese juniper (Juniperus chinensis “Iowa”) grows in partial shade to full sun in USDA zones 3 through 9 using a narrow, columnar shape. This evergreen shrub reaches 10 to 15 feet tall and tolerates moist dirt. “Iowa” produces grayish green foliage and ornamental silvery blue grapes. “Sky Pencil” Japanese holly (Ilex crenata “Sky Pencil”) is grows in partial shade to full sunlight in USDA zones 6 through 8. Its narrow shape gives it a pencil-like appearance because it grows 4 to 10 feet tall but just 1 to 3 feet broad. “Sky Pencil” has little, deep green leaves and small greenish white flowers. If these flowers are pollinated, purplish drupes using a berrylike appearance will appear once the blooms are spent.

Flowering Perennials

Flowering perennials offer color to partially shaded areas. “Do Tell” peony (Paeonia lactiflora “Do Tell”) is a 30- to 36-inch tall perennial producing big pink blossoms with a gentle fragrance and deep green foliage. It grows in partial shade to full sun in USDA zones 3 through 8 and attracts butterflies. This moderate grower functions well as a specimen plant or planted en masse to make a border. “Floating Hybrid Yellow” bush lily (Clivia miniata “Belgian Hybrid Yellow”) is a tropical perennial growing in areas with partial shade or full sun. In spring, clusters of yellow blooms appear on tall flower stems that protrude up from the broad, bladelike leaves. “Belgian Hybrid Yellow” grows in USDA zones 9 through 11 reaching 2 feet tall. It can grow alone or in group plantings. The blossoms of the “Do Tell” peony and “Belgian Hybrid Yellow” bush lily really are a lovely addition to cut floral arrangements.

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The way to Build Ponds With Concrete Blocks

Including a water feature to your landscape is a fantastic way to draw wildlife to your lawn and infuse your outside space with a component of tranquility that beckons one to pull up a chair and relax. If you want to add a pond to your landscape but aren’t interested in spending a great deal of time digging a hole, then an appealing above ground pond designed with concrete blocks provides the option.

Pick a level location for your pond. Don’t place your pond beneath trees that may shed leaves into the water. If you plan on using a fountain or even a pump that requires power, make confident the pond is situated close to a grounded electrical outlet.

Step half of the diameter of your pond on a piece of garden twine and cut the twine to this space. Place a stake in the ground to indicate the middle stage of the pond. Bend the measured string to the stake. Rotate the string around the stake and mark the outline of the pond by means of a rope.

Eliminate the sod, if needed, from inside the pond outline and set it apart on a tarp. Rake the excavated area until it’s smooth. If there is no sod, rake the area and remove any debris.

Lay your initial plan of conrete blocks around the roped outline.

Scatter 4 inches of crushed gravel above the pond website. Compact the gravel by means of a hand tamp. Lay a 2-by-4-inch round the gravel and use a level to verify the website is level.

Position a second path of blocks in addition to the first, offsetting the blocks so the ends are staggered.

Line the interior of the pond with roof felt and make it overhang the cinder blocks by at least 18 inches. This will definitely pad rough corners and provide a buffer for the lining.

Place the flexible pond lining within the pond, in addition to the roof felt. The lining should fully cover the exterior of the cinder blocks with a 24 inch overlap at the ground level.

Fill the pond with water.

Stack flat stones around the pond one row at a time. Arrange them so that the lining is completely covered. Fill small gaps with smaller stones, top soil or clay for a natural appearance.

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What Can I Use to Stop My Lawn From Growing So Fast?

A lush, beautiful lawn looks like a dream come true until it’s time to mow. During the peak growing season, lawns sometimes need mowing as often as once a week, and the job is time consuming in the event that you have a huge yard. To mow less often, try planting slow-growing grasses, applying growth inhibitors, not fertilizing or installing artificial turf.

Slow Growers

Some grasses naturally develop more slowly than others, therefore replacing your current grass with these varieties may drastically reduces mowing frequency. Fescues, for example, need mowing just four times per year. Some species to attempt include hard fescue (*Festuca longifolia*), chewings fescue (*Festuca rubra var. commutata*) and creeping red fescue (*Festuca rubra var. Rubra*), all which thrive in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 2 through 7, but can be grown successfully in a Mediterranean climate. You might also consider replacing your grass using a green alternative which doesn’t grow as tall, like clover (*Trifolium repens*), that rises in USDA zones 3 through 10.

Growth Inhibitors

Plant growth regulators (PGRs) are available at almost any hardware store and may be used to chemically slow the growth speed of your grass up to 50 percent. Ideally, you should start looking for PGRs labeled as Type I, as these slow plant growth by retarding cell division and are absorbed easily through the plant’s leaves. Common substances in this class include mefluidide, chlorflurenol, and maleic hydrazide. Avoid using other Type I inhibitors which are actually herbicides and may do more harm than good or Type II inhibitors which require root absorption and work more slowly. Plant growth regulators can easily be sprayed onto your lawn, but take your time and be thorough when applying, as any grass you miss will not be impacted. Keep children and animals away from the grass immediately after spraying and never spray on windy days.

Withhold Affection

If you fuss over your lawn, stop. Watering and fertilizing both promote faster growth and more mowing. Let your grass grow at its own pace instead of encouraging it. In many parts of the country, grass will go dormant during the hottest part of the summer if left unwatered and will slow or stop its growth on its own without the compound intervention of PGRs. Even though a watered and fed lawn looks great, it requires more upkeep than you may be able or willing to supply.

Fake It

Unless you have a stringent homeowner association to contend with, there’s absolutely no reason that your grass has to be real. Artificial turf grasses are available in a wide array of green hues along with varying degrees of softness. Artificial turf looks much more realistic than it ever used to, so you really can have a gorgeous lawn that looks amazing and remains soft on your bare feet with no requirement to mow at all.

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How to Clean Stone Coasters

Use a particular set of maintenance instructions to keep your stone coasters looking their best. You can maintain the natural beauty of stone without causing damage to the surface from identifying the stone and where it came from. For best results, check the manufacturer’s directions prior to using any cleaning products on natural stone.

Sandstone Coasters

Sandstone is just a porous substance that instantly soaks upward moisture and holds onto it until it evaporates. As it’s highly absorbent, liquids like tea, coffee, wine and fruit juices can cause stains if not flushed out immediately. Run under warm water and scrub lightly as soon as the staining material comes from contact with sandstone. A delicate alkaline cleanser containing a stone and tile cleaning product may be used if needed. Avoid using cleaners containing bleach because they might leakage and damage the surface.

Slate Coasters

Slate is harder and more durable than sandstone. Slate coasters are comparatively absorbent and are resistant to scratches and stains. Slate does not need as much upkeep as other stones and can be washed with warm water and a small quantity of a mild soap when cleaning is needed.

Marble Coasters

Marble requires extra maintenance, especially in regards in contact using an Poisonous liquid like juice or tomato sauce. Immediately wipe a marble coaster with a damp cloth if it comes in contact with a staining fluid. Use a marble-cleaning product to remove stains. Don’t use soap or chemical cleansers that are acidic in nature.

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The way to Prevent Water From Sloshing to the Floor From a Kitchen Sink

While water on the floor might not be a huge deal on a modest scale, it might cause a slipping hazard or hurt that a hardwood flooring if not wiped up immediately. To prevent water from reaching the floor, adjust the water flow emanating from the tap and guard the floor in the front of the sink with a mat.

Preserve Water Off the Floor

Adjust the water flow from the tap to less than full velocity, which causes the water to splash back when it hits the sink or objects inside it, such as a dish drainer. Angle items toward the back of the sink as you wash or rinse them, or even position items within the sink so that the water hitting them does not deflect toward youpersonally. When using less water, then it might take longer to fill a pot or rinse a dish however, the water will not splash nearly as much. If the messiness is caused by how you hand-wash dishes, then roll up a dish towel to put at the front of the sink lip to catch drips. Use a mat or carpet on the floor in the front of the sink to catch errant drips. On a wood floor, pick a carpet or mat designed for a wood floor rather than a mat with rubber backing.

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