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What's Growing in Your Garden & Landscape?

 

Hydrangea on Corona Tools PlantchatFrom azaleas to zucchinis and everything in between, homeowners have planted a wide variety of plants species in most every possible zone. Plants reflect our personal preferences for color, depth and texture in our landscapes and each yard is unique. As plant lovers, a hybrid tea rose can provide immense joy for one, while the smell of a blooming gardenia shrub greets another happy gardener. Sharing personal plant choices, successes and inspiring others is how gardeners connect with each other and it's our topic on this week's plantchat!  We'll also have a Corona Tools prize package in store for the most active participant during the live chat!

You're Invited to Tweet 

Join @CoronaTools and plant lovers from all over the Twittersphere for the topic, What's Growing in Your Garden? The live chat begins Monday, July 28, 2014 at 11 a.m. PST / 2 p.m. EST, were we come together with green industry experts and fellow horticultural tweeps each week to discuss all things related to plants and horticulture, since 2014.

Discussion Overview 

Our discussion is a free forum format for everyone to share what they are growing in their gardens and landscape.  We'll have some questions for participants including;

Plant Choices - Share what types of plants you have selected for your landscape and why you choose them.

Hits and Misses - Discuss what plants you've had great success with and those you haven't.

Plant Favorites - Show off your favorite plants, flowers, trees and shrubs by tweeting pictures of plants that bring you joy.

Indoor Plants - Bringing nature indoors adds warmth, beauty and fresher air that says "welcome" to homeowners and guests.

Sources of Inspiration - Where do you get your planting inspiration from to try new plants and planting techniques 

Join the Conversation

Plantchat logo on Corona ToolsDon’t miss out on this exciting topic and join the conversation via Twitter. Just sign into #plantchat with your Twitter ID and you can follow the conversation and share with the community. Be sure to add the hastag to all your tweets or join us in the plantchat room on Tweetchat.  They will automatically add it for you and it's easy to watch the conversation as it happens!

If you do miss the live event, you can still access the Storify recap, accessible 24/7 that will be posted following the live chat. The transcript includes all the information and links shared during the discussion. 

About Plantchat

Connect and share with the green industry leaders live on Twitter and 24/7 to learn and share about hot topics in the green industry. Plantchat is part of the Green Industry Leaders Network (GILN) presented by Corona and its partners.  We are an alliance of professional organizations who are advancing the horticulture, tree care, and landscaping industries.  Register now to get weekly updates of upcoming chats, links to transcripts, chat reminders and more!  Register now on the GILN website!

Benefits of Companion Planting in the Garden

 

Corona Tools Hydrangea on PlantchatNative Americans discovered centuries ago, the tremendous benefits of planting certain together.  It became known as 3 Sisters which benefited the plants and the soil, creating a symbiotic relationship. They realized that this method led to healthier plants, soil and ultimately, bigger and better crops. This week we will talk about this technique and all about companion planting on #plantchat!

BONUS GIVEAWAY: During the live chat, the most active participant will win a set of Corona ComfortGEL garden hand tools!  Tune into the live chat for details!

You're Invited to Tweet 

Join @CoronaTools and #plantchat co-partner, Aaron Kinsman, of Rodale Institute @RodaleInstitute for this week's topic, Benefits of Companion Planting. The live chat begins Monday, June 16, 2014 at 11 a.m. PST / 2 p.m. EST, were we come together with green industry experts and fellow horticultural tweeps each week to discuss all things related to plants and horticulture, since 2014.

Discussion Overview 

3 Sisters Method - Hear how the method was used by early Native Americans and why this practice is still being used today in organic gardens.

Benefits of Companion Planting - Explore the tremendous benefits that happen when paring certain plants together.

Plant Selection - Discover what plants make great companions, yield bigger and better crops, prevent insect damage, and improve the soil

Importance of Companion Planting - Understand what makes companion planting so important for organic gardening.

Tips and Resources - Get the latest tips and information from the Rodale Institute for achieve growing success in the time honored tradition of companion planting.

Join the Conversation

Plantchat logo on Corona ToolsDon’t miss out on this exciting topic and join the conversation via Twitter. Just sign into #plantchat with your Twitter ID and you can follow the conversation and share with the community. Be sure to add the hastag to all your tweets or join us in the plantchat room on Tweetchat.  They will automatically add it for you and it's easy to watch the conversation as it happens!

If you do miss the live event, you can still access the Storify recap, accessible 24/7 that will be posted following the live chat. The transcript includes all the information and links shared during the discussion. 

About Plantchat

Connect and share with the green industry leaders live on Twitter and 24/7 to learn and share about hot topics in the green industry. Now plantchat is part of the Green Industry Leaders Network (GILN) presented by Corona and its partners.  We are an alliance of professional organizations who are advancing the horticulture, tree care, and landscaping industries.  Register now to get weekly updates of upcoming chats, links to transcripts, chat reminders and more!  Register now on the GILN website!

Hydrangea Myths and Misconceptions on Plantchat

 

Corona Tools Hydrangea on PlantchatWithout a doubt, one of the most beautiful flowering shrubs is the hydrangea.  Known for the colorful clusters of blooms and broad green foliage, these plants can bring a touch of formal to any garden.  Hydrangeas can be quite a mystery to some gardeners so this week we uncover the myths and misconceptions on #plantchat!

BONUS GIVEAWAY: During the live chat, the most active participant will win a Proven Winners hydrangea and a pair of Corona ComfortGEL pruners!  Tune into the live chat for details!

You're Invited to Tweet 

Join @CoronaTools and #plantchat co-partner, Stacey Hirvela, of Proven Winners @Proven_Winners for this week's topic, Hydrangea Myths and Misconceptions. The live chat begins Monday, June 9, 2014 at 11 a.m. PST / 2 p.m. EST, were we come together with green industry experts and fellow horticultural tweeps each week to discuss all things related to plants and horticulture, since 2014.

Discussion Overview 

Types of Hydrangea - Explore the various types of hydrangea available to gardeners and landscapers.

Similarities and Differences - Learn what these majestic plants have in common and what makes each unique.

Plant Selection - Understand how to choose the right hydrangea for you based on your personal preferences and planting environment

Container Growing - Discover how to enjoy hydrangea in containers and dress up any patio or balcony.

Hydrangea Resources - Get the latest tips and information from Proven Winners and achieve growing success with your hydrangeas.

Join the Conversation

Plantchat logo on Corona ToolsDon’t miss out on this exciting topic and join the conversation via Twitter. Just sign into #plantchat with your Twitter ID and you can follow the conversation and share with the community. Be sure to add the hastag to all your tweets or join us in the plantchat room on Tweetchat.  They will automatically add it for you and it's easy to watch the conversation as it happens!

If you do miss the live event, you can still access the Storify recap, accessible 24/7 that will be posted following the live chat. The transcript includes all the information and links shared during the discussion. 

About Plantchat

Connect and share with the green industry leaders live on Twitter and 24/7 to learn and share about hot topics in the green industry. Now plantchat is part of the Green Industry Leaders Network (GILN) presented by Corona and its partners.  We are an alliance of professional organizations who are advancing the horticulture, tree care, and landscaping industries.  Register now to get weekly updates of upcoming chats, links to transcripts, chat reminders and more!  Register now on the GILN website!

5 Cool Garden Projects to Make Composting Fun for Kids

 

Corona Tools Kids Garden AdventuresHow many of us grew up being told by our parents, not to play in the dirt or get dirty when we went out to play? I’ve found out, it’s great to get your hands a little dirty making fresh and organic compost. Composting is very simple, costs virtually nothing and is one of the best outdoor family activities you can do. Here is some quick information to share with kids about the benefits and how-to’s. I’ve also included a list of things we do with our kids to help make it fun and educational for them.

The Dirt on Compost

The “behind the scenes” science is what makes composting pretty cool. All organic scraps or wastes break down over time. When nitrogen and carbon wastes are combined, tiny microbes, insects and worms, help them to decompose. What’s left is organic matter, or “humus”, that is very nutrient-rich, medium which plants grow and thrive in. It all comes from things you throw away everyday and it costs nothing. When you compost you are also reducing your carbon footprint on the Earth and helping our fragile environment. To learn more about your family’s footprint, visit the Nature Conservancy for this easy to use interactive calculator.

KEY TAKEAWAYS: Composting creates a medium for plants that is filled with the nutrients they need to flourish, made up from things you already have in your home, helps the environment and reduces the trash we send to the landfills...A major win/win/win!

Making Compost – What You Need

There are many great reasons to compost. It’s easy and the materials are readily available in everyone’s home. Here are some examples of what you need;
Corona Tools Kids CompostNitrogen or “greens” - Produce scraps, grass clippings, coffee grounds, aquarium water (freshwater), and weeds that have not seeded.
Carbon or “browns” - dried leaves, paper towel/ toilet paper rolls, newspaper, cardboard, paper egg cartons, and sawdust. TIP: The smaller the pieces, the faster they break down.
General rule of thumb: a 50/50 balance of each in your compost and you will be well on your way to achieving compost! There is plenty of research and information on ratio balance. Compost will happen regardless so there is no need to do the math.
Water - without moisture your compost pile will become too dry for the microbes and insects to their thing. There should be a source of water nearby to help keep the compost moist.
Air – proper air flow will aid in the composting process. For larger compost piles it’s best to turn it occasionally, exposing the inner layers to the outside air.

Making Compost a Family Affair

Now we get down to the dirty fun part and how my family shares in the joys of composting. Besides teaching my kids about reusing and recycling much of the waste we produce, we make sure to involve them in every step of the process. They are thrilled to head out in our garden to do projects. We’ve even made a game which they enjoy too. Here’s a list of 5 cool composting projects you can all do together.

#1 – Make a Compost Bin

There are many solutions available for making a compost bin; discarded wooden pallets, cinder blocks, trash cans or even a plain old pile. All these will work but I tend to use whatever I have on hand. For this project I used wire garden fencing material left over from last year’s garden. It’s an easy weekend project that’s fun for you and the kids, inexpensive (under $20 to buy), and makes a great compost bin! For other great ideas, check out the Organic Gardening website and search for “compost”.

Step 1: Tools needed – wire garden fencing (36”x36”) available in most retail hardware stores and garden centers, wire cutters, gloves, safety glasses.
Step 2: Wearing safety glasses and gloves, unroll the fencing having your kids help by holding it in place. Cut a section 36” leaving enough wire to secure the bin together.

Corona Tools Compost Bin
Step 3: Roll the section into a cylinder (cut edge to uncut edge) bending the wires on the end you cut around the edges of the uncut side.

Corona Tools Compost
Step 4: Put into place and start adding waste to your compost pile.

Corona Tools Compost


#2 – “Seek and Find” Compost Game

A great way to make composting fun for kids is to make it a game. We play this at home and the kids love it!
Step 1: Review the list of compostable materials, the browns and the greens they need to find. If you need a quick reference on materials to use and what not to use, check out this handy guide published by the EPA.

FUN TIP: Create flash cards with pictures of what to look for! I’ve found this to be a very helpful visual!

Corona Tools Kids Compost

Step 2: Create a chart with each family member’s name, with check boxes for finding browns and greens.
Step 3: Give each kid an empty pale or sealable plastic baggie (it can get messy!). Spend 20 minutes walking around the house and outside for materials to compost.
Step 4: Each item they find is worth 1 minute of “screen time” or time with their electronic devices.

Corona Tools Kids CompostThere are so many cool things about this game. Kids go looking for materials everywhere…even outside! Like raking up leaves or grabbing the junk mail and newspapers to shed. To keep track of points and a log of what goes into your compost pile, we made simple spreadsheet to track it.  The kids know how many points they have and it helps maintain that 50/50 balance. If you see they are collecting more greens, ask them to look for more browns to even out your compost.

#3: Compost Bug ID

Corona Tools CompostOnce you get your compost started you’ll want to turn it occasional to speed the process. A garden fork works well for this and helps get air to the materials on the inside. As it begins to break down, you will find all sorts of bugs and crawly things in the pile. Take a camera so kids can take pictures of the bugs they find and look them up online. It’s a great way to get them outside and learn about nature. They also love that they get to use the electronic devices to look them up. Okay, so it’s still techy but we get to spend time together, learn about bugs, and the kids think they are playing on the tablet.

#4: Give Your Compost Bin a Makeover

Decomposing waste may not be a focal point in yard but it doesn’t have to stick out like a sore thumb. Here are a couple of great ideas that you and your kids can do to help dress it up.
Corona Tools Kids Compost• Plant seasonal flowers and vines that can grow along the outsides of wire bins and add some visual color to your yard. Trim stray vines to keep it looking tidy and toss them right in the compost.
• If you are using wood to support your compost pile, give it a coat of paint and let kids add their touches. Putting their hands in paint and leaving their mark all over the outside is just plain fun for them. It’s also like having kids’ artwork out in the yard too!

#5: Take a Compost Coffee Break

It may sound hard to believe, but composting is a little addicting. Once you have seen the fruits of your labor you may just become compost crazy. I’m always on the lookout for more waste wherever I go. A good source is your local barista. Many coffee shops will bag up coffee grounds for you for free! Take your kids with you later in the morning and have them ask the barista for any left over coffee grounds. 9 times out of 10, it works if someone doesn’t beat you to it! It’s also a great time out with the kids, you get your morning latte and your compost gets a mega-shot of nitrogen.

There you have it, 5 great ways to get kids interested in compost while having fun and learning in the process! Do you teach your kids about composting? Share what works in your family in the comments!

Gardening Tidings of ComfortGEL® and Joy from Corona® Tools

 

ComfortGEL_family_CoronaPreparing for the holidays? Relax with ComfortGEL® tools from Corona® and create those topiaries, natural wreaths, floral designs and tree trimming the easy way. Season after season, garden and landscape maintenance is a breeze with soft, ergonomic, comfortable ComfortGEL® grips. On this year’s holiday wish list there are six tools from Corona® that keep garden and holiday décor projects down to size. And just in time for the holidays, Corona is offering some special discounts on ComfortGEL®, helping gardeners save time and money.

Corona Makes it Easy to Spread Holiday Joy

Gifting your gardener with ComfortGEL® Tools from Corona® takes the “chore” out of home gardening and holiday preparations. Specially coated, non-stick blades help to maintain maximum sharpness through numerous cuts. ComfortGEL® soft, ergonomically-shaped grips provide maximum comfort, fit and control, while the integrated Shock-Guard® bumpers on selected models, reduce strain and hand fatigue. and the volute spring resists dirt build up and clogging. ComfortGEL® tools with longer handles are equipped with extra strength, ergonomically advantageous trapezoidal steel handles that fit snugly in the hand. Easy open locks accommodate both right and left-handed users.

Six Tools in the ComfortGEL® Series

The indispensable ComfortGEL®  Bypass Pruner (BP 3214, $16) are perfect for keeping woody ornamentals in line and are useful a thousand times every gardening day. Trim evergreens for making holiday wreaths, swags and bunting. Clip stray branches out of the way of windows, doors or walkways. Prune dormant ornamentals and eliminate crossing and rubbing branches with ease.


Corona_Comfortgel_pruner
To ensure your hand pruners always within reach, add Corona’s universally designed nylon scabbard (AC 4510, $10) that makes the ComfortGEL® Bypass Pruners easy to carry using the metal clip or belt loops. It’s made of durable Cordura nylon construction and is the perfect fit for hand pruners and folding pruning saws. On the scabbard front is a storage pocket for the accessory sharpening tool (AC 8300, $10) to keep pruner blades sharp in the field. Together, this $36 bypass pruner, scabbard and sharpener set make a memorable stocking stuffer.

The ComfortGEL® Hedge Shear (HS 3244, $29) is ideal for smoothly sculpting rosemary or ivy topiary cones and spirals, or hedges in the landscape and traditional holiday decor. The 9 inch non-stick blades maintain maximum sharpness, and cutting performance is enhanced with a 3/8 inch limb notch.


Corona_HedgeClippers0010
The long-reach 25 inch ComfortGEL® Bypass Loppers (SL 3264, $28) make short work of larger branches. The Dual Arc blade design provides a 1-1/2 inch diameter capacity that easily eliminates rangy Christmas tree branches or protruding limbs. These loppers will also come in handy during winter months to remove damaged tree limbs caused by excess snow, ice and heavy winds.


Corona_ComfortGEL_lopper
On every floral designer and herb gardener’s wish list, the ComfortGEL® Snips (FS 3204, $16) are simply the best choice for herbs and floral design. Lightweight construction combined with the integrated thorn stripper and floral wire cutter make a great all-in-one tool for the artistic gardener.

Sticky tree sap easily wipes off the non-stick, specially coated blades for maximum cutting performance. Then use them to cut some fresh herbs for your holidays meals making this one of the handiest tools in your shed all year long. Corona’s ComfortGEL® Snips are member tested and recommended by the National Home Gardening Club, an independent third-party group.


CG_snips_med
ComfortGEL™ Anvil Pruner (AP 3234, $17) has a 3/4 inch diameter branch capacity, and like all of the hand tools in this series accommodates right- and left-handed users, and designed for pruning dry and woody growth. The sharp blade comes down on the anvil and readily cuts extra hard wood of dead branches or rose canes.


CG_Anvil_med

Finally, the ComfortGEL® Veggie & Fruit Shear (BP 3224, $16) is great for harvesting cabbage, Brussels sprouts, lettuces as well as quickly harvesting fruits off trees, bushes and vines.  A quick wipe of the specially coated, non-stick blades with a rubbing alcohol wipe also helps prevent spreading diseases to other plants during harvest.


veggie_shear

Your Gardener’s Gift List

What does YOUR gardener dream of? The holiday season is now, and ComfortGEL® tools from Corona are all about comfort and decreasing wear-and-tear on the gardener.  Order these very special comfort-minded tools at CoronaToolsUSA for yourself, or delight your special gardener this holiday season with ComfortGEL® gifts that physically demonstrate your thoughtful caring in a tangible way.

Right now, through the holidays, all ComfortGEL pruning tools are 20% off when ordering on coronatoolsusa.com and using COMFORTJOY code before check out.  And for ComfortGEL orders $75 or more, receive free ground shipping using code CGFREESHIP.  Free shipping applies only to ComfortGEL tools.  Orders on items other than ComfortGEL will be subject to standard shipping rates.

Which ComfortGEL is right for you? With six great tools designed for specialized garden and craft tasks, Corona has the right tool for the job.  Check out the ComfortGEL video to see them in action and tell us in the comments which one is your favorite!

Carve Pumpkins, Share it, Win Garden Tools

 

It’s that time of year when there is a fall air starts getting a crisp chill and spirits become restless in anticipation of the wicked fright-night on Halloween. As a kid growing up, I couldn’t wait for this holiday and I always associated the ritual of carving pumpkins to celebrate it. Okay the candy was a pretty “sweet deal” too but the build up to that special day of coming up with a costume, picking out the perfect pumpkins, and sitting around the table making scary or goofy looking faces, was something I still remember to this day. The great part is I get to relive it all with my young kids now and hand down this awesome tradition.

Corona tools garden pumpkinWhile I was out at the pumpkin patch with the family a couple weeks ago, I found what I thought was one of the most unusual pumpkin that I had ever seen. So of course I snapped a picture on my phone and shared it on Corona Tools Facebook. Some of the comments were so creative and well thought out, it made me think, why not have a pumpkin carving contest as part of our weekly giveaways…?!? So viola…here we are, the 2013 Corona Tools Great Pumpkin Carving Contest!

The Basic and Easy Rules

Have fun. It is Halloween after all! This is something that can be great fun for the whole family no matter how old you are.
It makes difference if you carve it or paint it, it just needs to be a pumpkin that is all made up for Halloween and gets people talking.

This is the 2013 Corona Tools Great Pumpkin Carving Contest, not 2012 or any other previous Halloween…it must be something you’ve created this year. And just to make sure there is no sneaking in your previous pumpkins designs or someone else’s (not that anyone would do that…!) you will need to get the Corona Facebook Page in the picture with your design. Place it next to your monitor showing the page or have the Corona page open on your mobile phone or tablet and grab a picture of your ghoulish creation! It’s that easy…

Submit your picture to Corona Tools Facebook. Just send it to us from the page and include;

  1. Your name
  2. Your email address (or other method to contact you if you win)
  3. The category you are entering (in case it isn’t obvious)

 As soon as we get your picture, we’ll upload it to an album on our Facebook page and let people vote and comment on them. The more likes you get and the more comments you get, the better, so you will want to share it with your family and friends to vote for yours! You can also submit up to 3 pumpkin carving pictures to increase your chances of winning from 3 categories.

This contest starts 10/25 and ends at 11:59PM EST on 10/31! We’ll announce the winners on 11/1 but you’ll see how you are doing on Facebook. The one with the most like and comments on 10/31, in each category, will be deemed the winner.

The Categories and Winners

Since there are so many ways to decorate a pumpkin, we don’t want to limit creativity. We’ve come up with 3 categories to give you a shot at winning this promotion.

    • Scariest
    • Funniest
    • Most Creative

Corona Tools GiveawayThe Prizes

Wouldn’t it be nice if you did all this work, and people chose your design and you won? Well this contest is all about YOU! You carve it or decorate it, YOU share it to get people to vote for it and YOU WILL WIN*…!!! Let me state that again…if you get the votes, YOU WILL WIN! There is nothing left to chance so you can make it happen. And since YOU are doing all the work, YOU get to choose your prize. That’s right…YOU PICK your favorite Corona Tool prize from all the previous giveaways we’ve done with the exception of our partner giveaways. Prizes include only Corona tools so if you’ve had your eye on that set Corona garden tools with tote, the extendable handle tools or any other prize we have done, if YOU WIN…YOU CHOOSE! It’s that easy.

So go get your creative juices flowing, seek inspiration online, grab the family head out to the pumpkin patch and join us for this fun-filled event. There is no such thing as “chance” in this giveaway. If you are in need of new Corona garden and landscape tools, or ever said “I never win the giveaway…”, YOU have the power to win this week!  Good luck to all and happy Halloween!

*Continental US, AK & HI.  Complete giveaway details, terms and conditions.

5 Tips to Beat Summer Heat in Your Garden

 

As Americans prepare to celebrate the 4th of July this weekend, many of us will enjoy fireworks and cookouts in parks and backyards.  It also means that summer is here and temperatures are on the rise.  Folks out in the western states are hitting record highs so early in the season.  And excessive rains are causing severe flooding in the East.  Regardless of where you are, the summer heat and sun is sure to wreak havoc in your garden this season.

Here are a few things you can do to help keep your garden growing, even in the harshest summer conditions.

Corona tools mulchSpread a Layer of Mulch – a 2-3 inch layer of organic mulch helps the soil retain moisture and helps reduce the rate of evaporation.  It also helps to suppresses weed growth which if allowed to grow, take up precious water and nutrients from your plants.  Natural mulches will also break down over time and provide nutients back into the soil.   DON'T FORGET: When it comes to your trees, avoid piling mulch up around the base of the tree and trunk.  I can damage your tree by inviting fungus or unwatned pests.  Better to mulch out than up!

Convert Spray System to Drip – The key to proper watering is a slow and steady drip that has time to penetrate the soil.  Over head sprinkler system have come a long way in being more efficient but are still prone to evaporation and excess run off.  Converting a planter with a drip system can be quick and inexpensive.  You'll see the return on you investment in your monthly water bill too.  Less water and healthier plants, even in the hot summer months.  For more information, check out the EPA WaterSense website

corona tools wateringWater Early Mornings – a good long soak in the early morning hours allows more water to absorb in the soil and minimize water evaporation.  Avoid watering in the afternoon or hottest parts of the day as the majority will evaporate quickly and never penetrate the soil or reach the plant's roots. Another reason early mornings are best is the air is typically calm with less wind.  Spray from sprinklers is more likely to water your lawn instead of being carried off to your neighbor's! 

Set Lawn Mower to Highest Setting – If you have a lawn, keeping your grass taller is better for its overall health.  Taller grass will help it retain moisture in the soil during extreme temperature and heat.  Think of it as a thick blanket on top the lawn's root system.  It protects the soil from the hot mid-day sun, will require less water to keep it green and saves you some green in your utility bill too.

corona tools nativeUse Native Plants – Natives and adaptive plants can survive on less water or tolerate excessive rains and humidity.  And these days your choices are not limited to cacti or succulents either. Your local garden centers offer a wide selection of native plants.  Just look for lables that state low water or thrive in the local climate.  Your county extension can provide you with a list of natives for your area.  

There you have it, 5 easy ways to help beat the summer heat in your garden this summer.  What other things do you do to help plants survive in your garden when it's hot?  Share it with us in the comments below!

5 Easy Garden Projects for Memorial Day Weekend

 

Memorial Day weekend is time to raise the stars and stripes and to honor the American service men and women who gave their lives while defending our freedom. It’s also the first long holiday weekend in Spring and a time when many Americans take advantage of the extra day off to get projects done. We’ve put together a list of 5 garden and landscape projects that are easy to start and finish over the weekend.

Set Up a Compost Pile

Corona Tools composterOne of the best things you can do for your garden is to save your brown and green wastes and make nutrient-rich and organic soil right in your backyard. Whether you use a readymade composter or put together a basic cage, your plants and vegetables will love it. It so simple to do and it’s always a good time to get started. Check out the Organic Gardening website for some great composting tips.

Check Sprinklers for Leaks

corona tools leakWhile you’re out in the yard this weekend, do a quick check for any leaking sprinkler heads. A leaky sprinkler is easy to spot, whether a gusher or that slow and steady leak that keeps the sidewalk wet, it’s an easy weekend fix. Sprinkler heads can wear out over time so it good to check them periodically and replace them when you detect a leak. It will save you some green on your monthly water bill and help to conserve water.

Mulching Planters

corona tool wheelbarrowAs summer months get hotter and drier plants need to maintain proper hydration. Many people think that means add longer watering cycles, however, spreading a layer of mulch is a much better option. Mulch will help keep moisture in the soil and prevents weed growth which means more moisture for your plants and less watering. Just think of what you can do with the time saved weeding and money saved watering!

Organizing Your Garden Tools

corona tools organizeHow many times have you headed out to the garden and realized you’ve misplaced the tool you need? You spend 30 minutes looking for it, give up and have to run to your local garden center to find a replacement. The long weekend is a great time to organize your tool shed to maximize your space, make it easy to find and store your tools, and easy to spot when something is missing which helps remind you to replace your tools when finished. There are many racks available in local hardware stores, a simple peg board and hooks or come up a creative way to organize them. And next time you head outside you will be so glad you did!


Green Up the Yard

corona tools epaDuring the long weekend it’s a great time to assess how efficient your garden and landscape is. If you are putting new plants in this season, look for native species that require less water. Ensure that your lawn mower is adjusted to its highest setting which helps to reduce the amount of water needed to keep it green. Or add a smart controller to your irrigation system to automatically turn off the system during rainy days. You’ll spend less in water while conserving this precious resource. And for more great ideas to green up your yard, spend some time this weekend on the EPA WaterSense website to learn how to make your landscape greener.

There you have it…Corona Tools' 5 easy projects to get your yard and tool shed into shape this weekend! All things that you can complete in a weekend, cost you a little time or a few pennies, and guaranteed to reward you all season long. These are just a few ideas, what kinds of garden projects are on your list?

Mom's Top 5 Corona Garden Tools

 

Spring may have begun in March but as part of the country has started to see temperatures pushing triple digits, in other areas there’s still snow on the ground. Regardless of strange weather patterns, Mother’s Day is one Spring event that comes to moms across the country. A day to honor all the moms out there (not that we shouldn't everyday!) for the hard work they do throughout the year.

To honor all the garden moms on Mother’s Day (and everyday…!) we wanted to put together a list of her top 5 favorite tools as shared with us by our many Facebook friends and Twitter followers of Corona Tools. With over 600 tools in our catalog, we’re bound to have missed a few fan favorites… based on what we hear from gardeners like you, we know this list will help ensure Mom has a great day in her garden on Mother’s day, and every day, season after season.

Geri with Corona Lopper

Dual Cut™ Pruning Series – Mom’s love the Dual Cut’s patented blade and hook design and the 20% extra cutting power that makes the cuts with less effort when trimming shrubs, trees, roses and thicker, woodier stems. They are forged steel and built to last.

Razor Tooth Saw – Mom’s tell us this saw helps to empower them to tackle the larger pruning jobs in the garden. Thicker limbs and roses that are 1-3” can take quite a bit of upper body strength to make a cut with a lopper. And rather than calling for help, the Razor Tooth makes quick work out of the task with its special saw tooth-pattern design to make faster cuts with less effort.
bggarden picComfortGEL® Pruning Series – Mom’s can’t seem to get enough of these pruning tools that are not only comfortable in their hands, these tools limit the amount of shock to the hands or upper body. That means she can do the activities she enjoys with all the gain and without the pain to hands, wrists, arms and shoulders.
2-Handed Pruner – Somewhere right in between smaller green steams and tougher, woodier limbs hand pruners can be too big and loppers are back in the tool shed. One tool offers them the best of both worlds, the 2 – Handed Pruner. A pruning blade that makes cuts up to ¾’ in diameter combined with lopper-like handles for added leverage on larger cuts.
eGrip Garden Hand Tools – Mom’s like the ergonomic shape of these garden tools that help with planting, weeding, digging and cultivating soil. With handy features like built in bag rippers and depth markers, these are some of the handiest hand tools in the garden.

WellnessThere you have it, a short list among the many of garden tool favorites for many of our favorite garden moms. And while we couldn't mention all of them, we couldn’t leave it off the Extendable Handle garden tools as we hear from many who love them. They are perfect for using in raised beds and other smaller planter areas due to their solid designed handles that extend from 18” to 32” and perfect moms of all ages.

Did your favorite tool make the list? Share with us in the comments below or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter!

Geri Laufer and Dual Cut Lopper from "How I Roll"
ComforGEL snips courtesy of Brenda Haas
Residents of Wellness by Nature's Design a Corona Cares partner
 
 

Grow A Sequoia in Your Living Room? It's Bonsai on #Treechat

 
bonsai1Ever thought about how great it would be to grow a Sequoia tree in your living room??? Okay, sounds impossible, right? But not when it’s a bonsai tree. Even a tree like a California Redwood can be grown in the smallest of spaces using the time-honored techniques of bonsai, developed centuries ago in China. Join us as we explore this ancient art form on this week’s treechat,  

The live chat begins at 5/7/13 at 11AM PST with guest host, Ron Elardo, Ph.D. @Whadyacallit. Ron is an author, editor for American Conifer Society's Conifer Quarterly and has been practicing the art of bonsai for 6 years at Hidden Lake Gardens in Michigan. Join @Coronatools and other industry experts each week at 11AM PST via Twitter for #treechat. Discussing all things related to trees and tree care since 2010!

Topic highlights in covered during this week’s chat includes;

  • Plant Selection – what you need to know and look for when making a selection for bonsai
  • Materials and Tools – a look at the materials used and tools used to maintain their shape 
  • Planting – understanding what goes into planting and tips for success
  • Pruning and Shaping – understand the fundamentals shaping and pruning your bonsai 
  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM) – a healthy bonsai includes regular IPM schedule
  • Watering and General Care – learn about general care and maintenance tips 
  • Overwintering Your Bonsai – what you need to know about to successfully overwinter your bonsai

Corona curved snipsRon has lots of great tips and information in store so you won't want to miss it. You can also submit questions to him before the chat so he can cover it during the live session. Just post your question in the comments here or tweet it to @Whadyacallit by 5/7/13, 12N PST.

During the chat we encourage participants to ask questions, learn about bonsai and also grow their own. To help inspire you, Corona is giving away a pair of curved snips to help make cuts in small spaces. All you need to do is win is tweet during the chat and ask questions. The most engaged participant during the live chat wins and will be announced on 5/8 at 8AM PST.

What if you miss the live session? You can access the #treechat Storify 24/7 that will be posted following the chat with all the information and links we discussed. 

Come share with us on this great topic and discussion! See you on the chat!

bonsai image courtesy of Ron Elardo
Corona curved snips image ©Corona Clipper
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