While a blizzard is howling outside the window, and the temperature fearfully hid somewhere down the thermometer, it's time to remember the delights of the summer season, when it's hot, birds sing, dragonflies fly and the air is filled with millions of aromas. Of course, we will primarily talk about country houses, summer cottages, or just about the garden plots of those lucky ones who have acquired them.
I think it will be useful for all novice summer residents to find out: how can you decorate one of the corners of the garden, give it special charm, beauty, looking at which you can just relax, throw off the burden of working days, or, simply straightening your back, tired of weeding, stop your gaze at the delights of flowering plants. We will definitely tell you about all the varieties of such "decoration", and let's start, perhaps, with discounts.
Rabatki would be sung by famous poets if they knew about their existence at that time! After all, if you put your soul into this garden creation, you can get amazing beauty, a kind of special wonder of the world. Indeed, one has only to open any article about the rabatka, as already at the beginning of the publication we will find almost poetic lines that "... a rabatka, like a young girl's long braid decorated with ribbons, spreads across the garden"... Indeed, it fascinates. Having once seen such a man-made miracle in my childhood, I will forever remember the combination of flowers and the arrangement of plants, which gives the impression of a rainbow descending and lying down to rest on the ground. Only unlike the rabatka in heaven, the earthly rabatka pleases the eyes for much longer, in fact, for as long as you want.
In addition to beauty and charm for the eyes, the rabatka gives positive feelings to our sense of smell. The scent of fresh flowers in their very bloom is able to relax, give joy and a feeling of peace and happiness. Remember the night violet - mattiola, which we also call levkoy? A little imagination and courage, and these marvelous flowers can settle in your rabatka, their aroma will surround you all day long, because they smell even at night.
In fact, this is a rather primitive structure, however, in order for the rabatka to sparkle, you need to show a little imagination and have a lot of desire, then you will definitely succeed. This strip of land should consist of more or less well-chosen flower plants that will be a chic decoration of the space along garden paths, around a gazebo, in the center or around a lawn... Quite often, the discount serves edging fashionable now lawn areas, which are usually located in front of residential buildings, as is customary in European countries and the United States.
As for the types of rabatka, there are actually many of them. It all depends on the desire and on your capabilities - after all, not everyone can afford to purchase various types of floral or ornamental crops. And others simply do not need this, while others will prefer to plant tomatoes or cucumbers to the detriment of the rabat.
But we are now conducting a conversation with those who have already firmly decided for themselves: to be a discount! So what about her size? In fact, the size of the rabat can be any, for example, from 50 cm in width to three or more meters! Some growers who have a craving for gigantism and maximalism, trying to realize the motto "I have more and more!", Create simply gigantic flower beds. However, it must be remembered that any medal has a flip side, which means in this case: caring for it will also be gigantic.
For example, let's take a rabatka three meters wide. For it to become a full-fledged decoration of the garden, it is necessary to plant more than five rows of perennial plants and more than eight rows of annuals on this area. Anyone who understands what is at stake will definitely be surprised. By the way, we have so far only talked about its width, but the rabatka also has a length. And imagine how much labor will be needed here, so we do not advise you to participate in the competition for the longest line. Otherwise, you will have no time to admire it, all summer you will only do what to look after plants and soil.
But let's not get distracted and continue talking about the types of rabatki: the simplest and most understandable are one-sided discounts and bilateral, everything is simple and clear here. Of course, one-sided ridges are much less effective, they can be attributed to a kind of "props". You will ask why? But because such ridges are most often located near the walls of buildings or along the edges of paths. Both simple and quite effective.
Double-sided ridges are more difficult to "manufacture", but such a miracle can no longer be called a support - they are much more spectacular. Most often, such ridges decorate only the central parts of the alleys or large areas of the lawn, being also located in the center.
With the "cover" it is clear, but what is inside? Let's just say: you can use anything you want to make a rabatka, both perennial and annual plants are suitable here. Of the annuals, multi-colored ageratums, peony asters, Chinese carnations and field bindweed, godetia and even coreopsis are primarily used, and the latter of these plants are best suited, as they bloom from mid-June to the first real frost.
Perennials for the rabatka are divided into two large categories: these are tall perennials, which are most often used in single plantings, and such plants, which can be both flowering and differ in their bright color of foliage and stems. It is clear that flowering perennials are the basis of the rabatka, they create the effect of splendor of flowering, while if you combine them with other plants, which, of course, is allowed, the effect will be even more expressive. Most often they combine not only cultures, but also (maybe even more often) colors. So, for example, the colors blue and white, orange and blue, as well as purple and yellow are chicly combined.
The second group of plants is low perennials. Here, the brightest and most commonly used plants are considered - rudbeckia, chrysanthemums and lupines, irises, lilies and, of course, phlox - where can we go without them? But not only annuals and perennials rule the ball in the rabatka, there is also another group of plants - bulbs, those that live for several years, and, of course, carpet plants. Here, the kings of the group are daffodils and tulips, pansies and forget-me-nots. Sometimes conifers are also used in the rabatka, preferring exclusively their dwarf forms, and low lawn grasses are also used, in general, as they say, who what ...
However, you should not make an Olivier salad out of a rabatka, nevertheless, you need to carefully select combinations of plants. For example, when choosing early-flowering crops, one should give preference to those that, after flowering, retain their former attractiveness, having green foliage, and do not form spots with a rotting mass or just bald spots, which is not better. Naturally, it is possible to close these "holes", for this there are dwarf conifers, which we have already mentioned above, but they do not always combine, because not all primroses grow and bloom in the shadow formed from them, more often they prefer open meadows.
In conclusion, I want to share my experience, albeit a small one, that fits into a few lines. But still, I hope my advice will be useful to someone. So, it is very important to maintain the correct position of the plants, always take into account their height, try to choose the optimal distance between them. Imagine or look for a photo where this or that culture is shown to an adult, find its description.
If we talk about the area of plant nutrition and touch on the scheme of their planting, then it can be noted that three or four large tall plants fit on a square meter of the bed, about five medium-sized and about nine undersized.
When planting, be sure to pay attention to the entire high-rise "floor" as a whole, make sure that there are no gaps between the tops of the plants - empty spaces.
Well, and as an epilogue - pay attention to the zigzag shape of the rabatka. It is clear that it will be interrupted, however, small flower beds can be placed in places of breaks, filling them with group or specimen plantings, in which miniature roses, dahlias, tulips of different colors or peonies will shine.
Researcher, Candidate of Science
GNU VNIIS them. I.V. Michurin Russian Agricultural Academy,
Scientific Secretary of ANIRR
Photo by Denis Avdeev
Let's now find out which lamps are most useful for seedlings, and which ones will not bring the desired result, or may even harm. When choosing a lamp, be sure to find out (in addition to the price, of course, and its performance) the power of the light flux emitted by the lamp, the spectra that it emits and the "utility" factor of the lamp.
It's great if the lamp on which you, as they say, "put your eyes" already has a built-in reflector, which is located right inside the lamp (although it is permissible outside, the main thing is that it should be), then to design something else additional, perhaps not necessary at all.
So, let's start with a description of probably the most common fluorescent lamps... They are called differently, for example, "fluorescent lamps" or abbreviated LBT, or even shorter LB. What are the obvious advantages of these types of lamps - this is naturally more than their low price; in addition, such lamps do not heat the air and are extremely easy to install, remove, change, which a person can make almost any return.
There are also disadvantages - this is a very small power of such lamps, in connection with which you need to install three or even four of them on a relatively small box with seedlings, and on top of that, very high energy costs from such a lamp: "the meter will wind up" you a decent amount.
And that's not all: there is very little red light in the spectrum of the red light studied by such lamps, and therefore they have to be installed at a distance of about 20-25 cm from the seedlings and literally wrap everything in foil so that not a single photon of the red spectrum is wasted.
There are other types of fluorescent lamps, be careful here - it is permissible to use LBT and LB, but it is unacceptable to use LD and LDC, the light from such lamps (namely LD and LDC) will oppress the seedlings.
The next type of lamps is phytolamps, or more, probably, phytoluminescent lamps known to us (as they often write on the packaging). The advantages here are such obvious advantages as economy and rather high efficiency. In addition, phytolamps are small in size, they work for a very long period of time, and with proper careful handling, they will last not for one, but for several seasons, in addition, such lamps are completely safe.
Among the phytolamps there are mirror lamps, for example, Enrich is so widely advertised, which gives a spectrum of light that does not strain the optic nerve of the human eye at all. Also, a lamp that does not lead to overheating of seedlings even with prolonged use is Fitosvet-D. Such lamps, alas, also have drawbacks, their emission spectra are almost entirely composed of lilac-pink light, it requires a reflector aimed specifically at plants, because such light has a depressing effect on most people.
The next series of lamps is sodium lamps, for example, there are many Reflax varieties of these lamps, depending on the complexity of the design (often the price for them depends simply on the presence of a built-in reflector). So, the more expensive modification with a reflector is Dna3, it has an extremely convenient mirror reflector that allows you to direct the beam of light in the right direction, but the second option is cheaper - this is DnaT, it does not have such a mirror reflector, and you will have to design it yourself.
What are the advantages of such lamps? Relatively low cost, high efficiency, also because such lamps consume very little energy. Perhaps the main plus is the ability to form the luminous flux of the spectra of light necessary for plants, and, of course, with careful handling, such lamps will last far more than one season. The general radiation that this lamp emits with our eyes is perceived as orange-yellow, warm, it does not irritate the optic nerve of the eye at all and "does not affect the nerves."
LED lamps, for the price they are the most expensive, but believe me, if the lamp is without defects, then it will pay off very quickly. The service life of such a lamp, with proper careful handling, is estimated at ten, and sometimes more, years, even if the lamp is used for a whole day, that is, 24 hours. Such lamps are the most economical and consume several times (three and a half, to be precise) less energy than fluorescent ones.
LED lamps are quite suitable for growing seedlings due to their very bright and absolutely even flow of light, in their spectrum there is a sufficient amount of both red and blue colors, and all other vital seedlings.
Among other things, such lamps are very small, they do not take up much space, they are mounted extremely quickly and even on an extremely small surface it is possible to place many LED lamps, increasing the effect of their use.
The question immediately arises: what to pave with? A very successful design trick is to build garden paths from the same material from which a country house or summer cottage is built. Moreover, you probably have the remains of building material: brick, stone or boards. For example, if the basement of a house is faced with white stone, then lay out the paths that "run away" from the house into the garden with a stone, and then the stone can be replaced with paving stones, gravel or something else. If your country house is built of wood, then in the design of a garden path with your own hands it is good to use a combination of wooden beams with stone, porcelain stoneware slabs or gravel. And a solid brick path will be combined with a brick house, only brick for garden paths you need to use paving clinker, because the usual building one will fall apart in a couple of years. In general, look around and be smart))
Seedling lighting: the effect of different spectra on seedlings. Seedlings - every self-respecting gardener grows it, since what is sold on the market is often not worth trusting. The seedlings there can be stocky, lively and healthy, but they do not correspond at all to the variety that you need, and the seller with a sly grin will nod in the affirmative to any question about the variety. So why take risks, why overpay, why buy "no one knows what", it is better to grow seedlings with your own hands and then blame only yourself or, conversely, be proud of yourself. But the difficulty is that seedlings are often grown during that period (February-April), when the day outside the window is very short, when even the southern window sill, on which boxes with seedlings can be placed, cannot save the situation. The light is simply catastrophically small and it is necessary to artificially add it, and for this there are a variety of additional lighting lamps.
Let's talk today about how to grow full-fledged seedlings using artificial light, when and for how long to turn on the lamps, which ones are suitable for seedlings, and which ones will be of little use, and, finally, we will touch on the most reliable and proven types of lamps in different price categories. Let's see if you really need to chase an expensive brand or you can get by with something inexpensive and familiar, but no less effective. So, let's go to the world of light.
Another important criterion for choosing is the functionality of the premises. In the photo of gazebos for summer cottages, it can be clearly seen that if this is just a place for gatherings, then a small canopy or a classic building is enough, in which benches and a table are installed in a circle in the center.
Gazebos for summer cottages with barbecue are usually built of brick or stone, as these are fire-fighting materials. In this case, a kitchen-working area is immediately attached to the stove. The place for feasts should be located at least 3 m from the hearth, therefore such buildings have a large area.
There are other options for organizing a barbecue gazebo. For example, you can install a classic building, and next to lay out a platform with a canopy, on which the oven will be installed.
A do-it-yourself gazebo in the country does not have to be of a stationary type. It can be a prefabricated frame structure, covered with a special awning. This lightweight tent can be quickly installed as needed anywhere in the garden area. The average area of the tent is about 9 m 2, so comfortable wicker furniture can be freely placed in it for a comfortable stay.
A summer garden structure made of a light metal or wooden frame, entwined with weaving plants, will decorate any garden. This is a great area for relaxation in good weather, and besides, the construction of such a gazebo requires practically no financial costs.
It looks good in the garden decor of the path, made with your own hands in the form of large stones. You can use this material in the construction of alpine slides (For). rock gardens of this we erect from stones a ring-shaped tub with a height of 70-75 cm and a diameter of 80-120 cm.If you do not want to use a solution, then you can apply dry masonry, having previously selected stones by size, choosing flat specimens for your design. Then fill the ring obtained with earth, apply fertilizer (compost) and plant flowers. If you have already done it, then simply overlay the flower beds with beautiful stones. You can use similar ideas for your garden cottage.