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How to Plant, Grow, and Care for Butterfly Bush (Buddleia)

Peacock butterfly feeding on a purple Buddleja davidii flower.

There’s something truly magical about witnessing a butterfly bush in full bloom, its elongated clusters of vibrant flowers swaying gently in the breeze. By midsummer, butterfly bushes (Buddleia davidii) are in full bloom producing graceful wands of flowers and nectar that adult butterflies (monarchs and swallowtails) and other wildlife pollinators can’t resist. These fast-growing shrubs are suitable for planting island beds, cottage gardens, perennial borders, or wherever their loose growth habit won’t detract from a particular landscape design you’d like to achieve. To ensure their optimal growth and to attract a multitude of butterflies, I always made sure to plant them in a sunny spot. Over the years, I’ve found that the more sun they receive (around six hours a day) the more butterflies they attract. It’s a delightful sight when the butterflies flutter around, drawn by the nectar-rich blooms. When it comes to soil, butterfly bushes are quite accommodating. In my garden, I’ve planted them in various soil types, but I always make sure that the soil was well-draining and enriched with organic matter. By amending the soil with compost or well-rotted manure, you’ll provide them plants with the perfect foundation for robust growth. The bushes are low-maintenance, allowing… Read more

Know Your Birth Flower? Learn The 12 Enchanting Flowers of the Zodiac

Woman holding flower over one eye

Each flower carries its own story, symbolizing emotions and virtues, from the delicate blossoms representing innocence and new beginnings to the majestic blooms that remind us of love and loyalty. Join us as we unravel the stories behind these 12 flowers that celebrate each birth month. January (Carnation) January’s birth flower is the carnation, representing love, fascination, and distinction. These delicate flowers have been cherished for over 2,000 years, boasting ruffled petals and a wide array of vibrant colors. Carnations bring good luck and are often found on special occasions like weddings and Mother’s Day. February (Violet) Violets, the birth flower for February, are attributed to loyalty, humility, and faithfulness. Emitting a gentle fragrance, these charming flowers have captivated hearts throughout history. In Greek mythology, Zeus even created violets to symbolize love for his mortal beloved, showcasing their association with romance and affection. March (Daffodil) March’s birth flowers, daffodils, symbolize new beginnings, rebirth, and the arrival of spring. With their vibrant yellow or white petals and distinctive trumpet-shaped blossoms, daffodils fill our surroundings with hope and optimism. These flowers also have medicinal properties and have been used in traditional remedies for centuries. April (Daisy) Daisies, April’s birth flower, embody innocence,… Read more

12 Unbiased Reasons Why You Should Absolutely Be Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar

woman stretching in workout clothes

Get ready to discover the secret weapon that can do wonders for your health: apple cider vinegar (ACV)! It might sound like a common kitchen ingredient, but it’s anything but ordinary. ACV has been used for centuries for its excellent benefits, such as helping with digestion and boosting your immune system. It’s become a go-to remedy for health-conscious folks, and in this article, we’ll explore twelve eye-opening benefits of apple cider vinegar that will leave you amazed! Helps Absorb Minerals Our bodies need minerals like calcium and iron to stay strong and healthy. Apple cider vinegar has an acetic acid that helps our bodies absorb those minerals more efficiently. It also balances the acid levels in our stomach, making it even better at getting those essential minerals where they need to go. It also helps produce more digestive enzymes that make absorption even better! Decreases Acid Reflux Have you ever had that annoying feeling of stomach acid coming back up? Well, ACV can neutralize that pesky acid, making you feel better. It also helps relax a muscle called the esophageal sphincter so that stomach acid doesn’t sneak up into your throat. Plus, it creates extra mucus in your gut to… Read more

Carpenter Bee: What Are They and How to Get Rid of Them

Carpenter bee next to its nest.

A carpenter bee is a type of bee belonging to the genus Xylocopa. These fascinating creatures are known for their remarkable woodworking abilities. Unlike honeybees and bumblebees that nest in hives or underground, carpenter bees construct their nests by tunneling into wood. They prefer dead or decaying wood, such as old tree trunks or untreated wooden structures. Now, you might wonder why we should appreciate carpenter bees in our gardens. Well, they are exceptional pollinators! These bees play a crucial role in the ecosystem by visiting a wide variety of flowering plants. As they move from flower to flower in search of nectar and pollen, they transfer pollen grains, enabling the plants to produce fruits and seeds. By supporting the pollination process, carpenter bees contribute to the overall health and productivity of our gardens. You might have concerns about the potential damage carpenter bees can cause to wooden structures. However, it’s important to note that they typically target untreated or weathered wood. In a sustainable and organic garden, we can take steps to prevent or minimize damage while still appreciating these remarkable creatures. By providing alternative nesting options, such as bee blocks or bee hotels made from untreated hardwood logs… Read more

10 Eye-Opening Benefits of Being in Nature That Will Flip Your Entire Worldview

Woman excited and happy

We live in a world where everything is go, go, go, so it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. But only a few of us take advantage of a fantastic solution waiting right outside your door: NATURE!  That’s right. Nature has incredible benefits for both your body and mind. Let’s unlock the magic of the great outdoors and dive into 10 insane benefits nature can bring to your life.  Boosts Cognitive Functions Did you know that nature can actually make you smarter? It’s true! When you hang out in nature, your brain gets a super boost. You’ll notice improvements in your attention, memory, and problem-solving skills. Plus, being surrounded by nature’s sights, sounds, and smells stimulates your senses and helps you think more creatively. Reduces Stress Are you feeling stressed out? Nature is your secret weapon! When you spend time outdoors, you’ll instantly feel more relaxed. The calming sounds of birds chirping and leaves rustling in the wind work like magic to soothe your mind. Nature also helps you connect with something bigger than yourself, bringing peace and happiness. Increases Energy If you’re feeling drained, nature has your back. Spending time in nature gives you a significant energy boost. The fresh air… Read more

12 Everyday Items That Take an Absolutely Crazy Amount of Time to Disappear

Woman holding plastic bottles and looking nervous.

When we throw something away, it’s likely that the discarded item ceases to exist in our minds. However, the item’s journey to decomposition has just begun. While decomposition rates can vary depending on conditions, knowing how long everyday items take to decompose in a world overflowing with trash is essential for protecting future generations. Cardboard – 2 Months While you can recycle cardboard, it has many other uses. You can use cardboard as garden mulch or creatively repurpose it as a crafty DIY for pet bedding or other crafty items. Compared to the other items on this list, cardboard breaks down quickly when exposed to the elements, but if it’s tightly packed, it can endure for years. Waxed Cartons – 3 Months Recycling plants can’t take waxed cartons; that’s why you can find millions of these waxed cardboard packaging in landfills. Waxed cartons have a low packaging-to-product ratio and usually hold milk and other liquids. Cigarette Butts – 20 Months to 10 Years Cigarette butts are probably the most common litter on Earth; around 5 trillion cigarettes are consumed yearly, most of which end up dropped on the street or flicked out car windows, where they wash into drains and… Read more

Homeowners Beware: 9 Subtle Signs of Termite Infestation That Could Cost You Thousands

Woman looking shocked.

Seeing severe termite damage is every homeowner’s worst nightmare. So it’s incredibly important to spot the signs of a termite infestation as soon as possible so that you can treat them and limit the damage they do. According to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), it’s estimated that termites cause over $5 billion in property damage each year in the United States. And, unfortunately, just about every property is at risk of termites in this country. Learning the signs of termite damage can help reduce costs significantly. In this article, we go over 9 the early warning signs of termites and how to know if you have any on your property. Flying Termites (Swarmers) Seeing swarmers are generally one of the first signs of a termite infestation. Swarmers are termites that leave their nests in large groups and have wings. These flying termites are males and females that have left the nest in search of a suitable mate, and this could be close to or in your home. Several species swarm at night and are drawn to lights. Some species will swarm during the day, but all drywood termites swarm after rain at specific times of the year. And so,… Read more

If You Care About Your Health and Only Have a Patio Then Grow These 10 Edible Plants

Woman giving thumbs up

Do you have a balcony or patio and want to add some greenery? Growing plants on your balcony is a fun and rewarding activity that can also provide fresh produce right at your fingertips. You can turn your outdoor space into a thriving vegetable garden with some creativity and these helpful tips. So grab your gardening gloves and get ready to enjoy the fruits (and veggies) of your labor! Tomatoes  Tomatoes are one of the easiest and most popular vegetables to grow in containers. They come in various sizes and colors and can go in an endless number of dishes. Growing tomatoes on a balcony or patio is a great way to enjoy fresh, homegrown produce, even with limited outdoor space. If you have a small balcony or patio, you will want to choose a dwarf or patio variety. Tomatoes need at least 6 hours of sunlight daily, and rotating your pots will help ensure that all sides of the plants get equal amounts of sunlight. Tomatoes are susceptible to several pests and diseases. Inspect your plants regularly and take action if you see any problems. Salad Greens Lettuce, spinach, arugula, kale, and other salad greens are great options for… Read more

The Hidden Meanings of These 12 Common Plants Will Easily Up Your Gift-Giving Game

Woman with balloons.

Flowers, plants, and other foliage can symbolize emotions, actions, or ideas. Each plant has been given meaning throughout the years, and surrounding yourself with plants whose symbolism you know and value can create a more meaningful environment. Symbolism became a popular subject after the Dictionnaire du langage des fleurs by Joseph Hammer-Purgstall was published in 1809, which introduced a formalized study of plant symbolism. With so many plants and flowers to choose from, here’s the ultimate guide to plants and their meanings to help you make the best choices for future life events. 1. Bonsai (Juniperus procumbens) Bonsai trees symbolize calmness, wisdom, and harmony. These plants are an excellent option for someone who needs balance in their life. This hardy plant loves plenty of direct sunlight and should be watered once a week, but its leaves need regular misting so its pores don’t get clogged. Bonsai care entails pruning, a tricky process that becomes easier with practice. 2. Ficus (Ficus microcarpa) Ficus plants symbolize abundance and peace and are an excellent gift for a new leader to symbolize success and unity. Ficus trees need indirect sunlight and should be grown in temperatures above 60°F. Water these mini trees weekly during… Read more

Embrace Better Air Quality With These 13 Detoxifying Plants

Woman sitting at a desk with a few plants

Scientific studies have proven that choosing air-purifying plants for your home helps detoxify the air in your living spaces, so not only do these houseplants look lovely, but they also clean the air you breathe in. Several air-purifying plants can detoxify the air in your home from the airborne toxins and germs found in different household products or furniture. Here are the best air-purifying plants and where to keep them to give your home a breath of fresh air. 1. English Ivy (Hedera helix) English ivy is an easy-growing perennial vine that can effectively reduce airborne fecal particles, making this green vine the perfect air-purifying plant for your bathroom. This perennial vine needs generous watering and prefers 2–5 hours of direct daily sunlight to return the love with clean, fresh, and detoxified air. 2. Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum indicum) Brighten up your living room or kitchen with this beautiful flower. Chrysanthemum helps filter out toxins, such as benzene and ammonia, often found in detergents, plastics, and glue. Chrysanthemums love plenty of sunlight, so place them near a sun-bathed window and water every day or every other day, depending on the weather. Water the soil at the base of the plant, not the… Read more

13 Fascinating Non-Dairy Milk Alternatives You Absolutely Need to Try

happy man drinking milk

Non-dairy milk is an excellent alternative to cow’s milk for people who are lactose intolerant, have allergies, or simply want to reduce their intake of animal products. There are many different types of non-dairy milk available, each with its own unique flavor and nutritional profile. The world of non-dairy milk alternatives is brimming with many delicious options that cater to everyone. These 12 non-dairy milk alternatives are here to change your thoughts about milk. Soy Milk Made from soybeans, this plant-based alternative offers a rich and creamy texture along with numerous health benefits. Soy milk is notably high in protein and calcium, making it a valuable source of essential nutrients for strong bones and muscles. It is also low in saturated fat and cholesterol, contributing to heart health. In addition, soy milk is a good source of iron and vitamin B12, which are vital for maintaining energy levels and supporting the nervous system. Almond Milk Almond milk is made from ground almonds and water, and this alternative offers a delicate flavor and smooth consistency. Almond milk is low in calories and fat, making it an ideal choice for weight-conscious individuals. It is also a good source of vitamin E, an… Read more

Avoid A Basic Bouquet With These 36 Blissful White Flowers That Bring Instant Calmness

Woman smelling white flower.

White flowers are a symbol of purity, innocence, and peace. They are admired for their elegance and simplicity, and have been used in various cultures and traditions for their beauty and symbolic meaning. Whether you are looking to create a serene garden, or decorate your home by growing them indoors, white flowers are a classic choice that never goes out of style. And what’s best is that they provide a striking contrast to the dark greens and browns of the majority of gardens and add more balance to any space or garden. The sheer variety of white-flowering plants, though, might make it difficult to choose the right ones for your yard and climate. Fortunately, there is a wide variety of white flowers to pick from because they can thrive in almost any climate. In this slide show, we have curated a list of the 37 most popular white flowers to grow, including perennials, annuals, and evergreen shrubs. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, you’re sure to find something on this list that will inspire you to create a beautiful and serene space. 1. Daffodil Botanical Name: Narcissus Hardiness Zones: 4 – 8 (USDA) Plant Type: Perennial Sun Exposure: Full or partial… Read more