Garden paths, no matter what material they are made of, require careful maintenance. In particular, they need to be cleaned regularly. This is because the accumulation of dirt, moss, lichens and snow can destroy even the most reliable cover.
Even if you regularly sweep the paths, remove dirt from them, over time, stone or concrete will still begin to absorb it. Special bleaching and cleaning agents will help restore color, as well as destroy vegetation and emphasize the surface structure. You need to select them depending on the type of material. Before the first use, it is recommended to try the product on a small area. This will allow you to understand exactly how you need to use the tool and evaluate the result, that is, effectiveness.
Manual mechanical cleaning using detergents and a harsh metal brush, for example, will help to clean the garden path. As a detergent, you can choose liquid soap or phosphate-free washing powder.
This is an effective way of cleaning, but it is convenient only if the area requiring attention is small and the contamination is insignificant.
If you need to remove not only surface dirt, but also old stains, limescale or debris in the joints, then it is better to use a mini high pressure washer. It delivers a high pressure of water that literally knocks out all the dirt from the surface. With its help, you can even cope with moss, however, there is a risk that sand will be washed out of the joints and grooves.
Garden vacuum cleaner
This device has the same principle of operation as a household vacuum cleaner, but its design has been slightly changed due to the specifics of use. The garden vacuum cleaner sucks in all the debris and crushes it, can effectively clean the seams of dirt.There are hand-held, knapsack, wheeled and mounted vacuum cleaners, which differ from each other not only in design, but also in power. There are differences in the power supply. You can purchase a cordless, gasoline or electric vacuum cleaner. The gasoline engine is characterized by increased power, maneuverability and the ability to cope with large areas.
This method of cleaning paths can be combined with others, since it allows you to get rid of only weeds and moss. For this purpose, it is recommended to choose continuous herbicides, for example, Tornado. They destroy all vegetation on the garden path. After treatment, the weeds dry out along with the roots. You just have to remove them.
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Soda ash (technical) soda: application, characteristics, advantages and disadvantages
We have a large selection of cleaning and detergents relatively recently. Just thirty to forty years ago, laundry soap and soda ash, sometimes called technical, were used for washing and cleaning. Soda was a universal remedy: it was used to wash dishes, sinks and tiles, to remove grease and stains, and to wash clothes. Summer residents and gardeners knew that technical soda for powdery mildew was the easiest and most reliable way to put things in order on the site, and at the same time alkalized acidic soils. Modern detergent synthetics cope with tasks no worse, but you should not forget folk methods either.
Benefits of using
- Protects the fertile layer of the earth from being washed out by rain, sudden temperature fluctuations, strong wind and sun.
- Beneficial microflora is actively developing under the mulch layer, which increases the content of nutrients and increases soil fertility.
- Mulch suppresses most weeds by keeping out the sun's rays.
- The covered surface of the soil needs to be watered and loosened less.
- With the correct use of organic mulch, the soil gets the optimum acidity level.
- Protects fruits lying on the ground from rotting.
- The mulching layer creates the attractiveness of the site.
Do-it-yourself water drainage methods from home: a few practical tips
The issue of drainage of rain or melt water from the site is very relevant for all owners of houses, summer cottages, and garages with a cellar or a viewing hole. That is why the drainage device is very important. And for sure, it is not worth explaining once again that without certain knowledge, such work is unlikely to be completed. But still, it is not so difficult as to hire professionals for it, which means there is an opportunity to save money. Now we will figure out how to remove water from the site with our own hands and what methods exist for this. In addition, it makes sense to deal with the prices of both the material for drainage and the prices for the services of professionals.
Such a ladder is a must
By the type of device, such drainage can be divided into internal, external and reservoir. In this case, both one of them and a combined drainage can be used, in which two or three methods are used. First, let's take a look at the general rules for arranging each of them:
- Internal drainage - it is used for cellars and basements and serves to drain water that has already been absorbed into the soil.
- External or open drainage removes water from the site directly during rain, not allowing it to linger on the surface.
- Reservoir allotment - is used almost always when building a house. In simple terms, it is a kind of "pillow" under the building that absorbs the accumulated water.
Drainage of a summer cottage is a rather laborious process, but sometimes you cannot do without it. This issue is especially relevant for areas located in lowlands, as well as with a high occurrence of groundwater.
Derivation of the slope of the drainage pipe
Depending on the area of the plot allocated for the garden and vegetable garden, various options for separating the recreation area are used:
- A hedge of flowering low-growing shrubs is planted along the border.
- A border is made of herbaceous perennials.
- A low fence is made of wooden dies, metal mesh, plastic tapes or openwork forged metal. An interesting option would be a wicker fence made of willow rods of thick wire or rope. Strengthening the decorative effect of the fences will allow planting climbing plants, such as clematis, along them. Climbing roses, actinidia look great. You can plant annuals - nasturtium, sweet peas.
- Serve as a visual bright border between the beds and the mixborder recreation area. When creating it, take into account that flowering plants should not be too tall, so as not to create shade for vegetable crops.
In a small area, it is recommended to create a single composition, using the same material to decorate the ridges, flower beds and fences separating the recreation area. This solution gives the landscape a finished look.
A neat decorative garden made in a thoughtful style will serve as an important element of the overall compositional solution of the suburban area.
Soil limingLiming the soil with a garden rake. Photo: ZingBokashi
Soil liming is the most important agrotechnical measure aimed at cultivating the land, contributing to the formation and preservation of a lumpy soil structure.
Lime is a valuable plant nutrient that neutralizes excess soil acidity and:
- on heavy clay soils - improves the structure, promotes the decomposition and transfer of nutrients into a digestible state
- on acidic humus soils - helps to bind harmful acids
- on poor clay and loamy soils - mobilizing nutrients.
Lime is a fertilizer for the soil, but on sandy soils, lime is used only with the introduction of organic substances, since it increases the moisture capacity of the soil, binds grains of sand and, by cementing them, worsens the structure.
Optimal conditions for plant development noted at pH ... Only a few plant species deviate from these indicators, for example, heathers, which love acidic soil.
Free-living nitrogen fixers, especially azotobacter, develop normally only in a weakly acidic or neutral environment.
Soil microflora, mineralizing humic substances - ammonifiers, nitrophysics, phosphoromineralizing microorganisms, as well as microflora decomposing plant residues - butyric acid and cellulose-decomposing bacteria, are no less demanding on the reaction of the soil. The optimum of their vital activity is within pH .
On soils with an acidic reaction, the effectiveness of mineral fertilizers is sharply reduced, turning into forms that are indigestible to plants.
|Soil type||Lime rate, kg / m 2|
|A raised bog with poorly decomposed peat|
|Upper bog with moderately decomposed peat|
|Transitional swamp with a powerful layer of sphagnum fleece|
|Transitional swamp with poor sphagnum development (pH less than 4.8)|
|Lowland swamp (pH less than 4.8)|
The general rules for liming are as follows:
- In summer and early autumn, liming is carried out in hilly and waterlogged areas.
- Well-drained areas become limestone in late autumn and early spring.
- Before liming, mineral fertilizers are applied, since the simultaneous use of lime and fertilizers impoverishes and binds fertilizer forms little.
Preparation of spray solutions
For amateur flower growers, copper-soap solution and lime-sulfur broth are not always successful. To prepare the drug with high quality, the following technique is carefully observed.
For a copper-soap solution, take only warm soft water, preferably rainwater. If it is not there, add 5 g of soda ash or 2 g of dry mustard per 10 liters of water to soften the water. The solution should not be stored for more than 5 hours - it quickly deteriorates. The solution is prepared at the time of use in a wooden or enamel bowl.
In nine liters of hot (50-60 ° C) water dissolve 300 g of liquid green soap, in the absence of it, use 72% household soap. Then, 30 g of copper sulfate are dissolved in 1 liter of hot water.
In a hot state, a solution of copper sulfate is poured into a soapy stream in a thin stream. The place of contact of the solutions is immediately shaken quickly or the liquid is stirred with a wooden stick. The solution turns blue. Before spraying, the preparation is cooled to 20-25 ° C. If flakes fall out in the liquid, the solution cannot be used.
Lime-sulfuric broth is prepared as follows. For 17 liters of water, take 2 liters of ground sulfur and 1 liter of good-quality quicklime (or 1.5 liters of slaked lime). Lime is slaked in a small amount of water, without bringing it to a violent boil. When the lime heats up, add sulfur to it and, stirring thoroughly, add the rest of the water. The mixture is boiled over a fire for about 50 minutes from the moment it boils, until it turns cherry red.
During boiling, add water to the original volume. Stop adding 15 minutes before the end of cooking. The finished broth is cooled, defended and filtered through a canvas into a glass, earthenware or enamel dish. The strength of the broth is determined with a hydrometer. Usually its density is 1.152-1.162 g / cm3 (10-20 ° according to Baume).
For spraying plants take 180-220 g of ready-made broth (concentrate) per 10 liters of water. Two to three days before the start of treatment, a test spraying of one or two rose bushes is done. In the absence of burns on the plants, the solution can be used for spraying. In case of burns on the bushes, lime should be added to the solution. Store the broth in a well-sealed container in a cool dark place.
To prepare 10 liters of 1% Bordeaux liquid, you need to take 100 g of copper sulfate and 100 g of quicklime or 150 g of slaked lime. In one glass, earthenware, enamel or wooden dish, lime is quenched or diluted (milk of lime is obtained), in the other, copper sulfate is diluted. Then slowly, in a thin stream, with rapid stirring, a solution of copper sulfate is poured into a solution of milk of lime. The resulting mixture is called Bordeaux liquid.
You can determine its suitability for processing as follows: a knife or a nail, cleaned from dirt and rust to a shine, is dipped into the prepared solution. If the iron object removed from the solution is covered with copper, then lime must be added to the Bordeaux liquid until the plaque stops forming. To prepare 3% Bordeaux liquid, the amount of quicklime is respectively increased to 300 g, copper sulfate - also up to 300 g.
How to choose agrofiber
Before choosing agrofibre, you need to consider the purpose, scope and characteristics of the material.
To do this, you should pay attention to the following factors:
- For greenhouses and greenhouses, it is best to choose only white materials. They transmit light well and at the same time protect plants from the aggressive effects of ultraviolet radiation. You can cover greenhouses in early spring - this will allow the soil to warm up well and protect the sprouts from frost.
- The density of the material and its light transmission - it is best to change the agrofibre several times throughout the season. In March, the thinnest spunbond is used, which does not interfere with the active growth of seedlings. During the formation of fruits, it is replaced with a denser material (up to 35-40 g / m2).
- To increase the yield of horticultural crops, it is best to choose agrofibre with a colored coating - yellowish, purple, pink. It cuts off harmful ultraviolet rays, protecting crops from the aggressive effects of temperature extremes and other external factors.
- For growing strawberries, it is best to use black material. It stops the growth of weeds, makes it easier to care for strawberries and makes harvesting easier.
Agrofibre can be used to grow not only strawberries, but also other crops - cucumbers, tomatoes, cabbage.
Agrofibre is an irreplaceable "helper" when growing vegetables, garden and ornamental plants. This material reliably shelters plants from frost and the scorching sun, protects against harmful environmental factors, prevents weed growth and allows you to get a rich, bountiful harvest.