Picture Snob

December 29, 2009

10" Copper Plant Markers will mark where the bulbs are planted

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This is a good time to get the tulip and daffodil bulbs planted and these copper plant markers will let you know where you put them. Here in New England our neighbor was planting tulips remarking that the squirrels would probably dig them up and eat them which in Boston is probably true. I have the problem of planting bulbs and then when planting something else, discovering I have sliced the bulbs in half, ruining them. Sad to say, I"m too lazy to make my own plant markers, and so must buy them ready made. These are made of plastic and have a space at the top to label the variety.

At 10" Copper Plant Markers - 5 pack

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December 28, 2009

Large Leaf Italian Basil Heirloom Seeds for a stocking stuffer surprise

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If you're going crazy thinking of stocking stuffers, why not try some seed packets like these Italian Basil seeds. It novel, inventive and holds the promise of spring and the growing season. Seeds should please any gardener and might interest children in a indoor winter time project of planting seeds and waiting for the exciting results. Herbs would do well indoors and flower starts would be fun.

At Large Leaf Italian Basil Heirloom Seeds

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December 24, 2009

Outdoor Fireplace with Copper Accents is perfect for outdoor fun

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If you're tired of being couped up in the house, especially with all the relatives around, this outdoor fireplace would get everyone out of the house and bring a welcome change of scene. If the weather's very cold and snowy, the snowball fighters, sledders, and hikers can come and get warms while they tell about their adventures. Outdoors, at night, it gives a lovely light and a 360 degree view of the fire. A large, hinged access door makes it easy to throw another log on the fire. A heavy mesh surround ensures optimal warmth and safety--keeping sparks off the deck. A heavy grate is built to last and support plenty of wood for less refueling and a large cooking grate lets you warm up buns and snacks. This could save everyone's sanity and bring extra enjoyment during the holidays and all the rest of winter.

At Uniflame Black Outdoor Fireplace with Copper Accents

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December 23, 2009

Woodstock Canon Chime plays Pachelbel's Canon

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A lovely wind chime that plays Pachelbel's Canon and makes a great gift for the garden, patio, or door. It's on sale now.

At Woodstock Pachelbel Canon Chime

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December 22, 2009

The Medici Creating Sacred Space for Healing, Celebration, and Tranquillity

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Here is a inspiring book to give to someone interested in healing arts and garden herbs. It give ideas for creating garden space that uses Native American mystical symbolism to describe how to put together a garden that heals body and soul. The author clearly explains the basic layout of a "medicine wheel" garden. Also covered are traditional plants and why certain colored plants belong in the different quadrants of the circle. He also offers an illustrated encyclopedia of 50 healing herbs, as well as recipes that incorporate those herbs. The author observed that his happiest and healthiest patients had green thumbs. He introduces his concept of the "soul garden" and he draws from literature and scientific studies, among other sources, to back up his claim that, like Voltaire's Candide, people would be happier and less stressed out if they would just sit back and watch their gardens grow.

At The Medicine Wheel Garden: Creating Sacred Space for Healing, Celebration, and Tranquillity

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December 21, 2009

Winter Solstice is a time for stillness and contemplation

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It's always a good idea during this holiday season, to take time for quiet reflection and the winter solstice provides that opportunity. The garden has usually been put to bed, the days are short, and the growing season over. It's important in the our life as well as the garden's life to take time to think over the year, it's gains and losses, the successes and failures and assess the everyday projects and activities that keep us going. It's most important of all to JUST STOP DOING ANYTHING AT ALL and feel what it's like to be at rest.

We can learn a lot from gardening about nurturing, about persistance, about fruition and about being still. The earth, the soil and our efforts need a time of rest. It's something our culture does not value, but it is essential to life and health that every once in a while, we stop trying and sit quietly. Just stare out the window for a while or shut your eyes, or be grateful for what you have. So you might use this solstice as such a time. I wish you many more such times over the holidays and in the new year.

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December 18, 2009

TELESCOPING POWER-LEVER BYPASS LOPPER IS A TIMELY GIFT

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I decided to try this lopper on a neighbor's pear tree that the bear wrecked, breaking limbs while it ate all the fruit. Just one look at the tool lets you know it is good quality. The feel of it is heftly and strong. The tight-Lock flips up to extend tool, and flips down lock handles at desired length and there was no wobbliness or give when cutting with the lopper extended. The cuts were clean and easy so that it went right through 1 1/2" limbs and worked even on slightly larger ones. There was n struggle to make the cut. When extended the handles are a wide reach apart but that didn't affect the way it cut. A really sweet tool which I will use for many years. I want to thank Fiskars for the opportunity to review this item.loppers4.jpeg

At TELESCOPING POWER-LEVERĀ® BYPASS LOPPER

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December 17, 2009

Juniper Bonsai Tree makes a great gift


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Bonsai plants make a great gift. Creating small, visually pleasing and interesting shapes is an art practiced in Asia and today particularly identified with Japan. It makes a wonderful hobby for those indoors in winter. There are many websites which give instructions for the care of bonai trees, but this one comes already started and carefully packaged so that you or another can begin at once to work with it. Juniper trees are hardy and easily cared for and the leaves are small so that visually they are lovely to look at.

At Juniper Bonsai Tree From Bonsai Boy

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December 16, 2009

Backyard Greenhouse is a perfect big splurge gift

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This greenhouse is a blowout gift for the gardener in your life(or your own garden). It is easy to assemble, sturdy and durable and will extend the growing season and give healthier veggies, more vibrant flowers, and abundant herbs year-round. It uses solar heat and the glazing resists fogging. The roof is strong enough to hold a snow load and the greenhouse makes a beautiful accent to the garden. Here is a great way to protect seedlings from frost for an early start. So if you want to splurge on a loved one or on yourself, this is the item to choose.

  • Hobby greenhouse with sliding door
  • 100 percent UV protection: protects glazing, plants, and gardener from harmful rays
  • Classic apex roof design for head room; roof vent for proper ventilation
  • Aluminum frame, powder coated galvanized steel base;
  • Measures 6 by 8 feet, manufacturer 12-year warranty

At Rion Greenline 6- By 8-Foot Backyard Hobby Greenhouse

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December 15, 2009

Tall Tulip Garden Lantern Feeder provides both food and entertainment

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The lantern feeder holds 6 pounds of seeds and lets you see when the feed is getting low. My aunt who lived to be 92 loved this bird feeder. It gave her hours of enjoyment watching from her kitchen window and she only had to fill it once every three weeks. The birds came all winter long. This is a great gift for the bird lover or someone who delights in nature.

At BirdscapesĀ® 366 Tall Tulip Garden Lantern Feeder, 6 lb capacity (Colors May Vary)

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December 14, 2009

Prepara Power Plant Mini grows plants hydroponically

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This small hydroponic grower has a clean, svelte design looks great on any counter or window sill. You don't need experience to use it; just set it up, plant your seed, and let the Power Plant Mini do all the work. It can grow up to 50% faster than potted plants do. It uses distilled water, nutrient, and air to grow abundant harvests. A good starter kit for someone in the family.

At Prepara Power Plant Mini

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December 11, 2009

Indoor Culinary Herb Garden Starter Kit is a perfect gift for the cook or gardener in your life

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An indoor herb garden is the perfect gift for the gardener or the cook in the family who would love to have some fresh herbs this winter. The herbs can then be repotted or planted outdoor when the weather warms up. You get seeds for 12 herbs, peat pellets, the tray and instructions for each herb. A very foolproof way to grow your own seasoning and a treat for the gardener trapped indoors who will love this gourmet project.

At Indoor Culinary Herb Garden Starter Kit- Start Growing Fresh Cooking Herbs & Spices- Great Gift Idea!- Seeds: Parsley, Thyme, Cilantro, Basil, Dill, Oregano, Sweet Marjoram, Chives, Savory, Garlic Chives, Mustard, Sage

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December 10, 2009

EZ Leaf Hauler proves impossible to set up

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I visited a friend who was very disappointed that her EZ Leaf Hauler had arrived after she had raked her leaves, but she got it out for me to see. The problem begain when she tried to put it together. No matter how she pulled, stretched, bent the fabric and/or the poles, no matter how much she gritted her teeth, she could not force the pole into the pocket which would hold up the sides. She is very disappointed and is returning it. The tarp will work just fine until the design is improved.
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At EZ Leaf Hauler Sport 6-by 4-feet #0037

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December 9, 2009

Ritz Adult Leaf Pattern Apron is practical and cheery

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This apron is cotton twill bib and it adjusts to fit most adults. It's cheery pattern keeps your good clothes fresh while you cook or run to the garden to get some more herbs for the salad. It has a large front pocket and is 33" long. It's very practical and also pretty and it machine washes and dries.

At Ritz Adult Leaf Pattern Apron

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December 8, 2009

From Vines to Wines: A complete beginners guide to making wine

51JSHJSKA8L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA240_SH20_OU01_.jpgNow that I am set on planting some wine grapes, I'm getting this book recommended by a local vintner. This book gives the basics in understandable terms. It helps you select the best grapes for the area and discusses varieties so that you can choose a grape that will grow and produce the wine you want. But it doesn't stop there. It goes into the winemaking process and does so in a conversational tone which gives you confidence that, you too, can make some really good wine. I'm still thinking about "new wine" and have decided that 10 plants should give me enough juice to have several gallons of tangy fermented grape juice. A great holiday drink.

At From Vines to Wines: The Complete Guide to Growing Grapes and Making Your Own Wine (Paperback)

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December 7, 2009

Christmas Village Standard House Flag celebrates the season

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Amazon has a great selection of holiday flags to hang on your porch. It's an easy way to decorate. This one is from Breezeart and is heavyweight 600 denier polyester which has superior fade and mildew resistance, and is also machine washable and iron safe. The colors are VIVID! Size: 28 in. x 40 in.

At Christmas Village Standard House Flag

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December 4, 2009

New wine in old bottles is a delicious autumn drink!

I have some friends who are wonderful organic gardeners and they have introduced me to Federweisse or new wine. It is wonderful, light, fruity and tangy and slightly bubbly! Now I have a reason to plant some wine grapes just to make this wine. All it takes is pressing the juice so that it is free of skins and seeds and then bottling the juice and letting it set until the fermentation process starts. The yeast on the grapes provides enough starter, nothing else has to be added. The alcoholic content gets higher the longer it sits, but I love it when it is still sweet and fruity, reminding me somewhat of sangria. Definitely a cheery drink, shown here with a chocolate cake for a afternoon treat.
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At Chardonnay Grape Vine One Gallon

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December 3, 2009

Lawn Boy Briggs & Stratton Variable Speed Self Propelled Lawn Mower does double duty in the fall.

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I finally got out the lawn mower and started making the last cut of the year. There are places on my lawn that keep growing even in cool weather. The grass cutting did double duty as leaf shredding. I never bother raking leaves off the lawn, I just run the lawn mower over the them and it shreds the leaves nicely. It's particularly easy if you have a grass catcher on the lawn mower as the leaves and debris can be thrown on the compost pile. Here is a picture of the result of my efforts--a clear path free of leaves and high grass. IMG_1082.JPG

At Lawn Boy 10646 20-Inch 6.5 GT Briggs & Stratton Gas Powered Variable Speed Rear Wheel Drive Self Propelled Lawn Mower (CARB Compliant)

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December 2, 2009

Ground covers will transform bare dirt into lawn and flowers

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I'm building a house and all around the building site the ground is muddy and scarred. So just before the rains I drove into town and bought rye grass, something called sod buster, and some wildflower seed. It took a couple of hours to spread the seed. I could have used this Earthway 1001-B Precision Garden Seeder with 6 Seed Plates, but time was precious and I had to get the seed broadcast before the rain.

I used 50 lbs of rye seed(local feed store) and 25 lbs of sod buster mix(Peaceful Valley farms #SCM620). The sod buster will be good on the flat where heavy machinery has compressed the soil into hardpan. The wildflower seeds were pricey(again Peaceful Valley #SWF620) but I think they will be worth it. I planted them right around the house where mud and puddles make walking unpleasant. In the spring there will be flowers of all kinds making the landscape lovely. Transforming thisIMG_1074.JPGhopefully into something like thisswf620.jpg

Right now, after the rain, we have the small beginnings of the transformation.IMG_1069.JPG

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December 1, 2009

Renovation Nation: Watch Your Green Grow is a dvd to inspire and inform you

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You can learn how to get the biggest environmental benefit from your own backyard. From simple water conservation techniques to plant selection and placement, it s all about keeping your landscaping in tune with nature. This dvd shows us how planting smart can reduce runoff, boost the ecosystem, clean and filter water and provide a healthy, organic food source. It also means less maintenance and long-term expense. And you don't have to turn a page!

At Renovation Nation: Gardening - Watch Your Green Grow (2009)

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