Tips for Attracting Bluebirds to Your Yard

Attracting BluebirdsAs a homeowner, are you tired of seeing the same boring birds in your backyard each and every day? Do you want a little more variety? A little more color? Well, why not try and attract everyone’s favorite bird: the Bluebird? It is the bird that everyone wishes would visit their backyard and nest in their bird house.

“The bluebird carries the sky on his back”- Henry David Thoreau

What you may not know is that there are actually three species of bluebirds: Eastern, Western and Mountain. Each species is common in residential yards, rural fields and meadows, and occasionally urban or commercial areas. And because eastern bluebirds have made a comeback from near extinction, they are willing visitors to any yard that provides what they like.

Tips for Attracting Bluebirds to Your Yard

  1. Purchase a Bluebird Nesting Box: The best bluebird nesting boxes are well-ventilated, have drain holes, a 4” x 4” square floor, a 1.5” hole, no perch, and are made from cedar.
  2. Avoid The Tree: Believe it or not, the best place to hang your bluebird nesting box is not on a tree, but a pole or post with a baffle. It is even better if this pole is in an open area away from other bird houses and bird feeders. Bluebirds like the nesting box 40” high to the center of the hole in the box. Use Diatomaceous Earth or Snake repellent sprinkled around the base of the pole to deter snakes.
  3. Monitor the Nesting Box: Look for and remove bumble bees, wasps and ants.
  4. Food and Water: Around this time, most bluebirds have fledged their first brood and are presently feeding those new hungry mouths. They love live mealworms, bluebird nuggets, and Patio Low Millet blend seed. They respond to a dinner bell announcing your presence to fill their feeder box. It is best to employ a bluebird feeder that has a hole in each end, a top that flops up and a plexiglas front for viewing.
  5. Landscape: Bluebirds enjoy landscapes with dogwood, serviceberry, viburnum, sumac and mulberry.
  6. Don’t Use Pesticides: We repeat: do not use pesticides.
  7. Visit Ace: Ace Hardware & Hearth in Pasadena and Ace Home & Leisure in Edgewater have extensive birder sections. We have live mealworms, bluebird suet nuggets, nesting boxes, mealworm feeders, and everything you need to turn your backyard into any bluebirds dream home. We also have a cute selection of bluebirds gifts and flags.

Bluebirds will often have two more broods in a summer, so, get ready for the fun!

If you have any other questions Attracting Bluebirds to Your Yard, our experts are here to help. Please visit AceHardwareAndHearth.com today! You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

Grafted Tomato Benefits: An Age Old Technique for Better Tomatoes

Ripe Tomatoes on White with Clipping PathWhen it comes to gardening, there is no reason to reinvent the wheel or, in this case, the tomato plant. Grafted Tomatoes have been around since the 1920s and are known for their superior taste and quality, increased production rates, ability to resist disease, and much more. Tomato grafting is the process of attaching the stem of one tomato plant to the rootstock of a different plant. This allows farmers to select a tomato based on taste and graft it to another rootstock with a more vigorous habit and superior disease resistance.

“What the rootstock variety brings to the partnership is a larger, more vigorous root system that lets the plant take up more water and nutrients,” said Barbara Damrosch, author of The Washington Post article, “The benefits of grafted tomatoes.”

“Rootstocks are also developed for their resistance to the many ills that can befall these plants (tomatoes, especially), which are mostly from soil-borne fungi, bacteria and nematodes,” she added. “There are also rootstocks that enable plants to withstand extremes of hot and cold, wet and dry — even salty conditions.”

Grafted Tomato Benefits

  1. Production: Grafted tomatoes produce 4-5 times the fruit of standard tomato plants.
  2. Quality: Grafted tomatoes are known for their quality and superior taste.
  3. Durability: Grafted tomatoes are more resistant to disease and soil borne pathogens than other tomato plants.
  4. Harsh Conditions: Grafted tomatoes stand up better to extreme elements and harsh conditions, like extreme temperatures or poor soils.
  5. Pesticides: Grafted Tomatoes reduce or even eliminate the need for pesticides.
  6. Harvest: Grafted tomatoes have a lengthier harvest season than standard plants.

Grafted Tomatoes Available at the Ace Home & Leisure in Edgewater, Maryland

The Ace Home & Leisure in Edgewater hand-selects the best vegetable seeds, seedlings, and plants – including Grafted Tomatoes – from local growers. With a little help from Ace, you could be enjoying fresh tomatoes and other vegetables all summer long.

If you have any other questions, our experts are here to help. Please visit AceHardwareAndHearth.com today! You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

Sources:

  1. The Benefits of Grafted Tomatoes The Washington Post

Add Curb Appeal to Your Home with Japanese Maple Trees

Japanese-Maple-Tree-MarylandAre you looking for the perfect way to Add Curb Appeal to Your Home this spring? Well, look no further. The answer is right in front of you. Well, it is in the picture to the right. Japanese Maple Trees (Acer palmatum). These beautiful trees can be the perfect accent piece for your yard.

“Japanese maples are an excellent choice for the beginning gardener, as they are essentially carefree once established,” said William B. Shell, an expert on growing Japanese maple trees. “They offer year-round interest with their ever-changing beauty.”

The Japanese Maple Tree is notorious for its ever-changing nature. Some of these trees – which range from 2-30 feet tall and come in various forms, including weeping, rounded, dwarf, mounding, upright, or cascading – leaf out in a beautiful red in spring, change to green in the summer, and transform to yellows and oranges in the fall. Others stay red from spring to fall. Either way, and no matter what form you choose, Japanese Maple Trees offer an aesthetic appeal unmatched by other trees. And with so many forms to choose from, you are sure to find a Japanese Maple Tree that will fit your needs, your landscape, and your budget.

Best of all, Japanese Maple Trees are very easy to grow and maintain when properly planted.

  1. Soil: Most any garden soil is suitable for these trees, as long as the soul drains well. Otherwise, you may start to notice browning on the tips of the leaves. This is a sure sign that your soil is not well drained and too soggy for the Japanese Maple. Fix the drainage issue ASAP.
  2. Sun: These trees grow well in sun or shade, but prefer an environment with filtered sunlight.
  3. Watering: Young trees should be watered consistently during the first 2 or 3 years after planting. It is also important to water these trees during prolonged periods of dry, hot weather. Water problems during the first few years is the number one killer of young Japanese Maple Trees.

Ace Home & Leisure in Edgewater, Maryland: Your Source for Japanese Maple Trees

Ace Home & Leisure in Edgewater features a large selection of garden supplies, flowers, fertilizers, soil, mulch, and the equipment you need to care for your beloved garden. We also have tons of Japanese Maple Trees in stock.

If you have any other questions, our experts are here to help. Please visit AceHardwareAndHearth.com today! You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

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About Us: Ace Hardware & Hearth, Ace Home & Leisure is a Premier Caldera and Bullfrog Spas Dealer Serving Washington DC, Greater Baltimore with Stores in Glen Burnie, Edgewater, Pasadena, MD.
We Sell and Service New, Used Hot Tubs, Portable Spas, Gas, Electric, Pellet, Wood Stoves, Fireplaces, Inserts, Gas BBQ Grills, Bird Watching, Paint, Gardening, Patio Furniture, Hardware and so Much More!
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Service Area: We sell and Service Washington DC, Baltimore, Glen Burnie, Lake Shore, Severna Park, Annapolis, Edgewater, Pasadena, Severn, Parole, Crofton, Catonsville, MD