Tropical Style

Cedar Sawdust & Mulch

Cedar sawdust and chips function as both mulches and soil amendments. But you might be avoiding cedar goods due to reports that they leach toxic substances, which in turn make their way to waterways in which they poison fish. It is also a frequent belief that substances in cedar stop seed germination and harm plants. There’s minimal evidence cedar sawdust and mulches are a threat to plants and aquatic creatures, but the insect-repellent and pathogen-inhibiting properties of cedar have been documented, according to Linda Chalker-Scott Ph.D. with Puyallup Research and Extension Center at Washington State University. Alleopathy Alleopathy refers to the release of poisonous substances that affect plants and animals. Plants in the Cedrus and Thuja genera include chemicals within their heartwood that protects the plants in decay. These very same substances, thujaplicin and thujone, inhibit bacteria and fungi and deter insects, like ants, cockroaches and beetles. These chemical compounds…

Tropical Style

How to Top a Fruitless Pear Tree

“Off with his head” worked well for the Queen of Hearts in Alice in Wonderland, but it is not an proper approach for a gardener. While young pear trees (Pyrus spp.) Can be trained to several growth habits where the pear whip is topped after planting, the upper crown of a mature tree should never be lopped away. Nor will topping a pear tree encourage fruit production. Gentler alternatives are available to decrease the size of the overgrown pear. Pear Tree Training Most gardeners who plant pear trees aspire to relish pears in their pantry. To ease the anticipated harvest, they prune the pear tree to make sure that its divisions are big enough to keep the weight of their fruit and reduced enough to be within easy reach. Often young pear trees are educated to a central leader; this usually means the gardener allows you to central erect trunk…

Tropical Style

The way to stop Crabapple Root Sprouts

Tree root sprouts, commonly called suckers, sometimes grow around the base of several tree species, including crabapple. Crabapple trees (Malus) are in the Rosaceae family, and many varieties, like “Profusion” and “Indian Summer,” are hardy to U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 8. When a crabapple tree is beneath a certain amount of anxiety, it starts to spread itself by creating shoots, or suckers, from its root system. All these suckers drain energy and other resources from the parent plant, causing more pressure for the tree and also more suckers. The best method to prevent a crabapple tree from generating suckers is to take preventive measures and keep the tree as healthful as possible. Factors like drought, overwatering, extensive pruning, diseases and insects threaten and pressure that a crabapple tree. Establish a watering hose at the bottom of the crabapple tree, and use it to water the…

Tropical Style

What Is the ideal Time of Year to Cut an Apricot Tree?

An apricot tree blooms profusely in spring, creates stone fruit in summer and provides colorful foliage in autumn. Apricot trees (Prunus armeniaca) remain relatively small, especially when grown on dwarf rootstock, and also grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 8. They require a pruning schedule that differs from that of other stone fruit trees in the Prunus family. With proper management, including yearly maintenance pruning, one apricot tree can create up to four bushels of fruit. Timing An apricot tree requires pruning in mid- to late summer. Pruning your apricot in late August gives it the best chance of avoiding diseases brought on by wet conditions while it has fresh pruning wounds. Apricot fruit usually ripens in July and August, giving you time to prune after fruiting but well before the wet season. You may have to delay pruning to prevent stressing the tree in…

Eclectic Homes

How to wash Slime From a Drip Tray in a Vertical A-Coil Air Conditioner

A drip tray gets the thankless task of guiding air conditioning condensation in the coil to the exterior of your home. A continuous supply of water allows algae and fungus to form on the surface of the pan, creating a thick coat of slime. Over the years, the slime will build inside and shake the drain line guiding the condensation. Taking away the slime in the tray is essential to the health of the air conditioning system. After removing the slime, a couple of simple measures will ensure it doesn’t return. Turn off the power to the air conditioning system. Lift up the coil access door and pull it away in the unit to gain access to the coil and drip tray. If your accessibility panel has screws, then remove them with a 5/16-inch nut runner or Phillips screwdriver prior to lifting the panel. Put on chemical-resistant gloves. Spray an…