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Make plans now to join Melinda on her famous Garden Walks at Boerner Botanical Gardens in 2014!

Nationally renowned garden expert Melinda Myers helps everyday gardeners find success and ease in the garden through her Melinda’s Garden Moments radio segments. Melinda shares “must have” tips that hold the key to gardening success, learned through her more than 30 years of horticulture experience. Listeners from across the country find her gardener friendly, practical approach to gardening both refreshing and informative! On this page, Melinda shares some more extensive garden tips, which expand on the information provided in her one-minute radio segments.

New tips are added throughout each month, providing timely step-by-step tips on what you need to do next in your garden! Visit Melinda’s website www.melindamyers.com for more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and answers to your questions.


Dress Up the Table with Poinsettia - National Poinsettia Day (Dec. 12th)

Move those poinsettias out of their foil wrapper and onto your table for the holidays.

Use miniature poinsettias like Mini Star as a place setter. Some come in their own decorative pot or dress them up with a bit of festive tissue, wrapping paper or fabric and ribbon. Then send your guests home with their own mini poinsettia to enjoy throughout the holidays.
 
Or dress up each place setting with a cut poinsettia bloom. Simply cut the flowers off a potted poinsettia plant to the desired length. Sear the end over a flame and place it in a florist water pick. Tuck the bloom into a napkin, set it in a small bud vase or add a ribbon to dress it up.
 
Don’t have the heart to remove the flowers? Then place several potted poinsettias in the middle of the table. Cover the pots with greens. Then add some colorful pepper berries, cranberries, apples or ornaments.
 
A bit more information:  Use poinsettia flowers to add beauty to other holiday adornments. Individual cut blooms make great package adornments. Or use cut poinsettia flowers to create a centerpiece for the table. Combine with greens or display a single bloom in a decorative vase. Dress up your arrangement by adding some faux snow or filling the vase with cranberries, small ornaments or other colorful adornment.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.


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12/06/2013 1:50PM
Dress Up the Table with Poinsettia - National Poinsettia Day (Dec. 12th)
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Eco-friendly Control of Thrips
Poorly developed flowers, stunted plants and silvery streaks on leaves are indications thrips may be feeding on your plants. These tiny insects have file-like mouthparts they use to puncture the outer surface of leaves, stems and flowers and suck out plant sap. They are very small and difficult to detect. Hold a white piece of paper under the plant and shake. Or remove the petals of damaged flowers, place in a sealed jar with 70% alcohol and shake the jar to dislodge and detect the pests. Control is difficult and often not needed as the damage is discovered after the thrips have finished feeding. Provide the proper growing conditions and care for your plants. Avoid excess nitrogen that promotes lush succulent growth these pests prefer. And remove spent flowers that tend to harbor the insects. Manage weeds in the garden and keep thrip-susceptible plants away from weedy areas where the pest populations tend to be high. A bit more information: Beneficial insects like predatory thrips, green lacewings, minute pirate bugs and some parasitic wasps feed upon plant damaging thrips. Invite these good bugs into the garden by planting a diversity of plants and avoiding persistent pesticides. Visit the University of California IPM online for more details on this pest. For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
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