Category: Features

Gardening Also Offers Stress Relief and Boosts Brain Health

Many people get headaches around flowers and simply assume they’re allergic. This might not necessarily be true, however. It could be that you’re having a reaction to the chemical residues on the flowers. Flower growers are actually among the heaviest users of agricultural chemicals, including pesticides that are suspected of being among the most toxic.
“Two separate studies that followed people in their 60s and 70s for up to 16 years found, respectively, that those who gardened regularly had a 36 percent and 47 percent lower risk of dementia than non-gardeners, even when a range of other health factors were taken into account. These findings are hardly definitive, but they suggest that the combination of physical and mental activity involved in gardening may have a positive influence on the mind.”

Gardening Tip


Here’s another thought to keep you lounging comfortably on your patio. Contrary to popular belief, there are no pixie gardening teams armed with spades that come out at night to dig over the soil around plants in nature. Why on earth did we get into that habit in our gardens? Digging over the soil literally turns the habitats of beneficial soil micro-organisms upside down and leaves a new section of soil exposed to the elements. If you mulch, your soil will be kept naturally well-drained, soft and fed.The hardest part of this will be to persuade your gardener that he no longer needs to get stuck into the beds with that dreaded fork because to him, loosened and dug over beds show you that he hasn’t been snoozing in the garden shed all day J. Patience! Persuade him to use the extra time to build and maintain a compost heap for you instead. Find out how to do it the lazy way in the next article. 

The circadian clock

The circadian clock provides key input required for plants to attain maximum freezing tolerance. The integration of cold-signaling pathways with the circadian clock may have been an important evolutionary event that has contributed to plant adaptation to cold environments," Thomashow said.Thomashow, who is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences for his contributions to the field of plant biology, has focused his research on the identification of stress response pathways involved in freezing and drought tolerance. Stresses, including extreme temperatures and water deficit, are major factors that limit the geographical locations where food and potential bioenergy crops can be grown.edit.


Inside Out Garden design A5 Leaflet
Soulcare with its various partners can asist with residential, corporate landscaping, irrigation, instant lawn, supply of compost, topsoil, lawn dressing and tree felling. I strongly encourage you to consider adding biochar to your garden, to optimize the health of your soil. This soil amendment can truly transform your garden, in terms of dramatically boosting yields. One of the keys to a truly successful garden is to improve the microbiology of the soil. It is this diverse collection of bacteria, fungi, and parasites that actually transfer the nutrients from the soil into the plant.
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Aloe Vera

Herbs are basically plants that are being used for their medicinal, culinary, topical and aroma effects. The term Herb in general use refers to any part of a plant that is being used for these purposes. Specifically in regard to cooking, the term Herb usually means the leafy green parts (that can be either fresh or dried), whereas the term Spice usually refers to any other part of a plant that is being used for similar purposes (though usually dried only, not fresh)

aloe veraAloe vera is a succulent plant species that is found only in cultivation, having no naturally occurring populations, although closely related aloes do occur in northern Africa. The species is frequently cited as being used in herbal medicine since the beginning of the first century AD. Extracts from A. vera are widely used in the cosmetics and alternative medicine industries, being marketed as variously having rejuvenating, healing, or soothing properties.Aloe is also an excellent treatment for skin conditions such as burns and eczema. It is often reported that burns can be healed remarkably quickly and the pain reduced very quickly with topical application of Aloe Vera to the burn area.

As well as applying topically, Aloe can also be taken internally so it is just as useful for internal epithelial tissue as it is for the skin. For example, mouth and stomach ulcers, nasal and sinuses, bowels, lungs and genital tracts. Aloe works on membranes and surfaces.Aloe also seems to be excellent at regulating the immune system (an immunomodulator). This means it can both stimulate the immune response for those with weakened immune systems either from exisiting conditions or post-illness fatigue. It can also calm the immune response, such as for Hayfever where less immune reaction is beneficial.Although Aloe is about 99% water, the remaining 1% is extremely powerful and it is thought this is because the close to 100 ingredients work extremely well together (synergistically). The ingredients in Aloe can be grouped into the following categories: Vitamins, Minerals, Sugars, Enzymes, Lignins, Amino Acids, Anthraquinones, Saponins, Fatty Acids, Salicylic Acid.

Gardening Is an Excellent Way to Improve Your Nutrition

Keeping a garden can also improve your health by providing you with fresher, uncontaminated, nutrient-dense food that you can’t buy in your local grocery store. It will also help you reduce your grocery bill.  Urban gardening is an important step toward building a more sustainable food system. In fact, I’ve been encouraging everyone to plant a “Victory Garden” as a proactive step toward fixing our broken food system and to improve your health. Food grown in your own garden is overall fresher, more nutritious, and tastes better than store bought food—and you can’t beat the price!

No pesticides

Researchers at Aarhus University in Aarhus, Denmark, noted that urban dwellers were twice as likely to incur inflammatory bowel diseases as people who grew up on a farm with some animals.We know that development of the immune system is finalized in the first years of our lives, and we suspect that environmental influences may have a crucial effect on this development. The place where you grow up may therefore influence your risk of developing an inflammatory bowel disease later in life.

Natural ways to ward off garden pests

800px Coccinella magnifica011) Buy ladybugs. Many garden centers have ladybugs in bulk which can be purchased as a natural aphid controller. Ladybirds are generally considered useful insects, because many species feed on aphids or scale insects, which are pests in gardens, agricultural fields, orchards, and similar places
2) A mixture of Himalayan salt and warm water can treat areas infested with spider mites when sprayed on the areas in question. If ants are a concern, break out citrus essential oil and combine it with a teaspoon of cayenne pepper and one cup of warm water. Shake the mixture and spray.

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The nematodes are the species which occur naturally on earth and already present in the soil. They are not unsafe and risky. But all of the nematodes are not safe as some of them are parasites which causes diseases in animals and human beings. And also there a few species that are used to control pests in the garden in a natural way while some attack the living plants and feed on them.

Some describe them as worms as they are related to true worms. Actually they are the species with smooth and unsegmented bodies which are so tiny to see them. Some are of pear shape and others are long in shape and slender. They are environmentally friendly and fit to use in the garden to get rid of uncontrollable pests.


On what do they feed?

Some nematodes makes burrows into the tissues of plants while some feed on the outer surface of plants and damage stems, flowers and foliage. It does not matter where they feed but these tiny creatures seriously spoil the plants with their sharp mouth which they use to puncture the sell oof leaves and plants. Actually the main damage to the plant occurs when the nematodes inject its saliva into the plant cell and then sucks the useful nutrients of plants by damaging them or leading them to lifeless.

Benefits of using nematodes in your garden

You find general nematodes and beneficial nematodes which are friendly to gardeners. You can use them in your garden in an easy way.

They are very effective on pests and insects.
Easy to apply before dawn and after dusk.
Are harmless to birds and children.
Are perfectly safe to use on food crops and other useful plants.
Most of the commercial gardeners and farmers use these nematodes to control pest in their farm and garden and can be found more in number if you plant the trees and plants by which they get attracted.

How to get the best from nematodes?

To acquire the best from these worms, you need to apply them to the moist soil as it lets them to move freely in moist soil. It is best if you apply them in the evening when watering the plants. You can use fertilizers with nematodes as it works best with plants and even in killing the pests. Make sure that the soil is always damp as it is useful for nematodes to come above the soil and feed on pests and insects.

In what way do they work on pests?

Being aggressive in nature, they attack the insects and pests by entering into the body openings of the insects and release bacteria that kills insects. This way it kills the pests quickly. As the nematodes reproduce inside the dead pests, a new generation is formed to disperse the nest pests from the garden without harming the plants.

Thus, ensure that you are watering the garden and lawn continuously after applying nematodes in every corner of the garden where you feel the pests located over there. Make sure that the grass on the lawn does not get dry after applying nematodes as it won't prove effective in dry conditions.

What are Beneficial Nematodes?

Those who are garden enthusiasts and has a good collection of different plants in the garden attain benefits through this beneficial nematodes. It gives value to plants and soil by controlling the unwanted insects and flies present in the soil. It is sometimes so hard to manage the different types of insects, worms, ants, flies and cutworms which spoils the growth of plants.


When you treat the plant with beneficial nematodes which are present in the soil , then they control pest insects , larvae or grubs that are always harmful to the growth of plants. These nematodes target only the pests from entering through the mouth of larvae, respiratory opening or any other opening and starts feeding on them. This product is not open to the elements like animals and human beings which causes health risk

How to apply these beneficial nematodes?

You need to follow certain steps in applying them. Actually, nematodes require damp soil to find the host as it becomes difficult for them to move in dry soil. You must add water to the pest infested region before adding nematodes. There should be limited water as excessive amounts of water will not attack the pests.

It is very simple to apply in an optimum time when there are larvae in soil. You must mix this with water and spread on the soil where there are crops and big useful plants.

What actually are these nematodes in general?

They are roundworms from a film nematode class which reside in huge amounts in the soil. Most of them are better known as plant parasitic organisms which are found upon plant roots. On the other hand , researches have proved that nematodes are more advantageous which help in a complete way in controlling harmful pests and also in the degradation of organic matter.

Best natural way to get rid of insects that destroy lawns and useful plants

Beneficial nematodes are very effective on grubs, larvae, flea beetles, cutworms, black vine weevils, June beetles, rose chafer, army worms and other insects. To control all these pests, nematodes are the only organisms that naturally attack a wide variety of pests in agricultural farm and in your garden.

Storage and handling of this natural pest control

You have to follow the instructions on the package for best method of mixing it in water. There are different formulations for different insects.
They can be mixed in water and stored in a cool place, but should not be placed in a hot vehicle or left in spray bottles or tanks for a long time.
It is because, nematodes require moisture to move freely in soil. Take care to use the only required amount of water to soak the soil.

Application is easy to follow

Sometimes, most of the nematodes are compatible when used in a pressurized form, through aerial sprayers, in the form of mist or through pump sprayers. Every method you follow to apply it works well. Nowadays the farmers are using these for an irrigation system to save some useful crops.

They don't need any mask or other safety equipment as they are safe for animals and human beings as they don't leave any residues after application.

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