8 budget tips for summer cottages that will save you money and time
Every good gardener has his own little tricks that help him save on summer cottage work.
Soak the seeds
Most of the seeds of garden plants are covered with a dense shell, which opens during germination. It happens that germination falls precisely because the shell of some seeds in the soil does not lend itself to germination and does not germinate.
To prevent this from happening, you need to soak the seeds before planting - this will soften the coating and allow some seeds to hatch immediately. You need to take gauze or clean cotton cloth, moisten it abundantly, put the seeds on top and cover with another cloth layer. When dry, it is necessary to additionally spray the gauze with water from a spray bottle.
We use ground coffee
Coffee is a valuable organic raw material with a variety of health benefits. Its benefits for the garden and vegetable garden is to repel insects that can harm plants.
It is enough to distribute ground coffee or coffee grounds between the beds, and the garden will no longer be disturbed by snails, garden bugs and ants. For a more lasting effect, you can mix coffee with grated orange or lemon zest.
Making a herbal garden
Ordinary wooden boxes or pallets will help save space in a small area - they can be used to grow herbs and spices. Dill, basil, green onions and garlic, cilantro and parsley feel great in mini-beds.
It is necessary to fill the boxes 2/3 with soil, add a small amount of organic matter (compost or humus) and plant the seeds of fragrant plants.
Such boxes can be arranged horizontally in the form of a border along the wall of the house or vertically, one above the other - this creates an interesting decorative effect.
Improvised watering can
If you don't have a watering can at hand, you can make it yourself from an old plastic bottle of 2 or 5 liters.
It will be enough to make a few holes in the lid with a hot nail, large enough to let the water through, and the watering can is ready.
We use our old boots
Used footwear can be a great design solution for the garden - old shoes and boots can be used as flower pots or planters.
So, multi-colored rubber boots can be used to grow medium-sized, brightly blooming annuals, old high-heeled shoes will make an excellent pot for succulents, and worn-out sneakers covered with acrylic paint can be used as an original stand for ordinary flower pots.
We use eggshells
There is no need to throw away the shells from the eggs - it will be an excellent fertilizer for plants.
Eggshells ground into small crumbs are an excellent source of calcium, in the fall they are brought into the top layer of the soil and dug up. Also, the shell is irreplaceable on soils with high acidity - it neutralizes the soil, leading it to neutral indicators.
In addition, the shell can be used as a means of fighting the bear and the Colorado potato beetle. It is enough to mix the grated shells with vegetable oil or simply dust the foliage of plants with them.
We plant seeds in fruit
The citrus scent helps ward off pests. In situations where there are too many harmful insects in the garden, you can use an interesting trick and plant seeds in halves of grapefruit or lemons.
To do this, cut the fruit in half and carefully remove all the pulp. The remaining skin must be washed well and filled with soil, and then the seeds must be planted in it. After germination, the seedlings can be sent to the garden along with an impromptu "pot".
We use beer
The smell of yeast and beer attracts slugs. They are very easy to deal with with beer traps. To do this, you need to take several plastic cups (the larger the area of the site, the more containers you need) and distribute them at a distance of about 90 cm from each other.
The glasses are filled with any beer about 2/3 and dripped into the ground so that there is an edge of about 2 cm outside.
Slugs creep on the smell of beer, fall into a glass and die. Every few days, the liquid must be changed to fresh.
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Correct arrangement of the utility block
The main problem with many outbuildings that are used to store inventory is that tools are stored haphazardly in them, and therefore, when needed, they are difficult to find. This means that the first thing to start with in order to make it easier for yourself to find the necessary adaptations is with systematization. We are talking about arranging shelves, cabinets, racks, hooks, holders, stands. Each gardening tool and device needs to have its own place. Many summer residents have already appreciated the convenience of a glove hanger made of clothespins. The holders can be easily glued with a glue gun anywhere - on a wall, door, nightstand, cabinet door, stand, etc. Every time you use the gloves in the garden or vegetable garden, they should simply be hung on a clothespin.
Continuing the topic of organizing space, we propose to consider the option of making a trolley for tools on wheels. In it, you can both permanently store garden tools and transport it to the garden, to the garden, and at the same time save time for going to the shed after it. Similar designs are available for sale in hardware and garden stores ready-made. If you like tinkering, then a cart or organizer is easy to make yourself from available tools. The simplest, but very convenient device for storing and transporting garden tools comes out of an ordinary, already unnecessary barrel or tank. If a lid is provided for the barrel, holes should be made in it, into which the inventory can be inserted later. The plastic container should be made heavier to avoid overturning under the weight of the instruments. If you have an unnecessary tank on hand, then a grate with large cells must be attached to its top. It can be hoisted onto a wheeled stand for easy transportation around the site.
What should be considered when choosing dwarf deciduous plants?
Before deciding on a particular plant, consider its requirements for environmental and weather conditions. Drought has a detrimental effect on some trees and shrubs, while others, on the contrary, do not tolerate a large amount of rain. It is necessary to take into account the winter hardiness of plants.
For example, it makes no sense to plant conifers in wetlands, since they will quickly die there. But deciduous species such as birch, willow and alder need moisture. Their big plus is that they are presented in a variety of forms. Willow comes with climbing branches, birch with golden foliage, and alder with split leaves.
For any, even the most unfavorable, terrain, you can choose a suitable dwarf deciduous plant, since these species are divided into two groups: for sunny and shaded places. Before buying a seedling, ask the experts which group the species you have chosen belongs to.
What's good for the soil
The now fashionable mulching with decorative materials has a rich background. So, in the garden, on the soil occupied by plants, for a long time, they tried to cover it with slabs (weed out weeds), straw and mown grass. When they decompose, nutrients are returned to the soil.
All types of organic mulch (straw, leaf litter, wood chips, bark) stabilize the moisture and temperature conditions of the soil, promote the development of soil animals, in particular earthworms, which improve the structure of the soil. Mulch also inhibits the growth of weeds. Read: Proper mulching.
Mulch made of inorganic (gravel, expanded clay) and artificial materials (plastic film, lutrasil) has a lesser effect on soil fertility and chemical processes in it. Than, for example, mulching with sawdust.
It is important to remember that soil is not an interesting substrate, but a living system. In intensive gardening, this is neglected, and as a result, over-processing destroys its structure, on which fertility depends.
In your garden, you need to use the soil carefully, helping to preserve its natural properties, skillfully improving them. Do not get carried away with artificial fertilizers, preferably compost, ash, lime. It is worth reading on this issue additionally:
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