Imagine being able to pick fresh lemons, limes and oranges right from your patio! Read more »
Cutting overgrown grasses by more than an inch or two at a time can create unhealthy brown and bald spots in your lawn – or ev... Read more »
Kids are eager gardeners. They love to experiment with colorful flowers, have an adventurous sense of design, and getting dirt... Read more »
Our Shear Ease® Grass Shears include a patented mechanism that prevents the blades from jamming or sticking when you’re trimmin... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear® Hedge Shears, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented gear techno... Read more »
Our Easy-Pour Watering Can offers both capacity and control. The 2.6-gallon volume holds a generous amount of water that is eas... Read more »
Put your crafting skills to work and create a beautiful and unique fascinator that reflects your personal style. Read more »
“Painting” with tissue paper is not only fun but beautiful! Read more »
Mosaic tile frames are a beautiful way to display photos. Read more »
Designed for long, easy cuts down strips of Duck® Tape, our Duck® Edition Scissors feature a non-stick blade coating that preve... Read more »
Add distinctive style to craft projects of all kinds with a Squeeze Punch that makes every embellishment up to 2X easier to pun... Read more »
Designed for tight, precise cuts through Duck® Tape, our Duck® Edition Detail Scissors feature a non-stick blade coating that p... Read more »
A colorful, roomy bag is just the thing you need to carry all your belongings for a day at the beach. Read more »
Keep the kids busy on a road trip with their own art bag full of inspiration and the essentials. Read more »
This easy pillowcase dress looks adorable with pretty fabrics. Plus, it is super simple to put together, even if you have not... Read more »
Only our Stitcher Scissors provide precision and control that meet the needs of the most demanding sewers and quilters. Micro-T... Read more »
Our Seamstress Scissors are the perfect all-purpose scissors for anyone who cuts fabric frequently. The smooth action of these... Read more »
Choose our Dressmaker Shears for long, smooth cuts through multiple layers of medium to heavy fabrics. Extra-long blades maximi... Read more »
Looking for a sure cure for bored kids - make sparkly sea creatures! Read more »
Open-ended activities like this Busy Book can keep kids occupied in the back seat of a car AND spark fun family conversations! Read more »
It doesn’t take much to turn an everyday snack into something a little extra special. It is great to see how quickly you can a... Read more »
Our Preschool Training Scissors features a special training lever that opens the blades after each cut, helping children learn... Read more »
Children love our Designer Non-stick Blunt-tip Kids Scissors for the colorful handle patterns that make cutting fun and the non... Read more »
Our Designer Non-stick Student Scissors are larger than our Kids Scissors but smaller than adult scissors, perfect for those ol... Read more »
The beautiful mood lighting of lanterns at outdoor gatherings is fabulous, so why not craft up a set to use this summer. Read more »
Treat your children to their own special tent hideaway, then stand back and watch as the fun and adventures begin! Read more »
Make a thoughtful gift for someone this summer! Read more »
The StaySharp™ Max Reel Mower combines patent-pending technology with superior ergonomics to deliver best-in-class cutting perf... Read more »
Great for beginners, the unique design of this tool makes cutting perfect shapes from fabric a breeze — since you’re not managi... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of sewing and quilting tasks, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears sense blade separation and force t... Read more »
Choosing plants carefully for local conditions and planting them where they will thrive is a fundamental concept of landscaping, and it conserves water, says Steve Windhager, director of landscape restoration for the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas. In Austin, that might mean planting a lively perennial garden of black-eyed Susans, purple coneflowers, and various shades of bee balm: these are all beautiful drought-tolerant native plants. Established plantings will bloom extravagantly, without consuming resources. “If you do native plant-use right, it’s an opportunity to create a beautiful habitat that takes advantage of the water that falls from the sky,” Windhager says.
Water conservation is an important practice at the Wildflower Center, where a handsome limestone cistern and aqueduct system collects and supplies water to the gardens. Windhager doesn’t just preach, however: he installed a 5,000-gallon water tank at his home to collect rainwater for use in his own garden.
Of course, even drought-tolerant perennial plants must be watered while they are becoming established.
During their first year in a new place, trees and shrubs also need regular, deep watering. Healthy, established plants can then tolerate drought and deluge, bugs and blight. Here are some tips to help you conserve water while cultivating a robustly healthy garden:
• Group plants according to their needs: plant moisture-loving plants together, where they can all benefit from occasional watering. If you have a spot where water tends to collect after a rain, it’s a good spot for plants that need more moisture.
• Drought-tolerant plants should be fine even beyond the reach of a hose.
Carry water to them in a watering can until they are established. A five-gallon bucket with a few small holes in the bottom will deliver a slow soaking of water directly to trees and shrubs.
• Use mulch.
A layer of organic mulch (compost is my favorite mulch) limits moisture lost to evaporation. It also helps keep the soil temperature even and helps control weeds.
• Limit the size of thirsty lawns, and, when you water. Water lawns deeply. Thorough watering encourages roots to grow deeper into the soil, where they have access to moisture and nutrients in the ground. Frequent, superficial watering doesn’t help solve the problem.
• Practice smart watering.
Sprinklers with big, sweeping sprays look like they have a broad reach, but, especially on hot days, a lot of water evaporates into the air before it reaches plants’ roots. Use a soaker hose or a drip irrigation system to water flower beds. A smaller sprinkler helps concentrate the water where it is needed and doesn’t fling it so high in the air.
• Adjust sprinklers to water the garden, not the sidewalk or driveway.
• Use a timer. You can buy a timer for your spigot, or just set a kitchen timer so you don’t forget the water is running.
• Check outdoor faucets. Replacing hose washers every year will limit the amount of water lost at the spigot.• Install a rain barrel. You can capture enough rain in a quick rain shower to water a flowerbed, and every little bit helps.
• The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, the U.S. Botanic Garden, and the American Society of Landscape Architects are co-sponsors of a program called Landscape for Life, which is based on the principles of the Sustainable Sites Initiative. The organizations are working together to develop a rating system for sustainable landscape design comparable to LEED certification for buildings. Americans use more than seven billion gallons of water a day on gardens and landscapes, according to Landscape for Life, and careful planting will both conserve water and limit pollution of waterways by runoff of excess fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides.