Tag Archives: Giordanos

Fix Blossom End Rot

Tomatoes, peppers, squash and eggplant often suffer from this affliction. It shows up as a blackish spot on the end of the fruit, opposite the stem. It is usually the result of overly wet or acid soil keeps the plant from absorbing calcium that builds cell strength. To prevent blossom end rot, apply a half cup of lime around the base of the plant, and water in. Mulch around the plant to help the water drain properly.
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Look for signs of this scale in the next few weeks!

Az+bark+scale    crypto scale

Azalea bark scale and cryptomeria scale can be seen in our area. Apply insecticidal soap or horticultural oil to treat crawlers in late June through late July. Giordano’s has these organic treatments by Bonide in stock.

Do you have scale in your landscape?

Learn how this harmful insect can be recognized & treated using organics. Scale can be treated using insecticidal soaps or horticultural oils that we sell here at Giordano’s in Sea Cliff.

The scale insects are small insects of the order Hemiptera, suborder Sternorrhyncha. They comprise the superfamily Coccoidea, previously placed in the now obsolete group called “Homoptera”. There are about 8,000 described species of scale insects.
Armored scale insects:(A) Lepidosaphes gloverii, adult females. (B) Parlatoria oleae, adult females (circular, with dark spot) and immatures (oblong). (C) Diaspidiotus juglansregiae, adult female walnut scale with waxy scale cover removed.
Oystershell scale (Ceroplastes sp.), a waxy scale on young blueberry

Contents

1 Description
2 Ecology
3 Economic significance
4 Systematics
5 See also
6 References
7 Further references
8 External links

Description

Scale insects vary dramatically in appearance; some are very small organisms (1–2 mm) that grow beneath wax covers (some shaped like oyster shells, others like mussel shells), to shiny pearl-like objects (about 5 mm), to creatures covered with mealy wax. Adult female scales are almost always immobile (aside from mealybugs) and permanently attached to the plant they have parasitized. They secrete a waxy coating for defense; this coating causes them to resemble reptilian scales or fish scales, hence their common name.

The group shows high degrees of sexual dimorphism; female scale insects, unusually for Hemiptera, retain the immature external morphology even when sexually mature, a condition known as neoteny. Adult males usually have wings (depending on their species) but never feed, and die within a day or two.

Species in which males do have wings generally possess only one pair of fully functional wings, and in particular, the fore-wings. This is unusual among insects; it most closely resembles the situation in the true flies, the Diptera. However, the Diptera and Hemiptera are not at all closely related and do not closely resemble each other in morphology; for example, the tail filaments of the Coccoidea do not resemble anything in the morphology of flies. The hind (metathoracic) wings of scale insects are reduced, commonly to the point that they generally are overlooked. In some species the hind wings have hamuli, hooklets, that couple the hind wings to the main wings, a condition usually associated with the Hymenoptera. The vestigial wings often are reduced to the point where they are referred to as halteres or pseudohalteres, but again, their resemblance to the halteres of flies is analogous, not homologous.[3] It is not at present clear to what extent the pseudohalteres have any substantial control function to match the true halteres of the flies.

The first instars of most species of scale insects emerge from the egg with functional legs and are informally called “crawlers”. They immediately crawl around in search of a favourable spot to settle down and feed. In some species they delay settling down either until they are starving, or until they have been blown away by wind onto what presumably is another plant, where they may establish a colony separate from the parent. There are many variations on such themes, such as scale insects that are associated with species of ants that act as herders and carry the young ones to favourable protected sites to feed. In either case, many such species of crawlers, when they change their skins, lose the use of their legs if they are female, and stay put for life. Only the males retain their legs and use them in seeking females for mating.[4]

The specifics of their reproductive systems vary considerably within the group, including three forms hermaphroditism[5] and at least seven forms of parthenogenesis.

6 Amazing Facts About Earthworms

Introduction

A garden without earthworms is simply amiss! Earthworms help to aerate your soil, break down essential nutrients, and improve water retention. Earthworms can grow up to 14-18″ in length in North America and can live for up to 8 years, though 2-3 years is much more likely as they support a large variety of animal species that eat Earthworms as a primary source of protein.


6 Amazing Earthworm Facts:

Click any picture to read the full text…

Many thanks to Noreen Sequeira for the Infographics


The Power of Worms

Though having earthworms in your garden isn’t to be discouraged, in un-contained gardens it can be difficult to maintain a large colony. To that effect we have 2 recommendations.

  1. Buy Worm Castings (we have worm castings in stock) and spread liberally throughout your garden. If you have questions about how much to buy for your garden or landscape, stop by and we’ll be happy to help.
  2. Build a worm bin! We recommend worm bins as the best and most efficient way to keep and utilize the power of worms. Being that each worm can eat up to 100% of it’s own body weight every day, worms make ideal compost “machines”! By combining a small amount of soil, and rotten/discarded food scraps in a worm bin and then adding worms, you can produce your own organic worm castings which you can then add to your garden soil for it’s nutrient-rich contents and high moisture retention.

Variety = Resilience! Permaculture Tips & Techniques

Ever heard the phrase, “diversity makes us stronger”?

Well as it turns out, that is true in your garden too! Permaculture is an agricultural philosophy that subscribes to the notion that diversity of plant-life = resilience in your garden/landscape. Or in other words the wider variety of plants you have growing close to eachother, the less likely it is that your “ecosystem” will succumb to disease & pests. Sounds good? We thought so too!
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Sorry Gertrude Stein!

Sorry Gertrude Stein, but a rose is not a rose, is not a rose. All roses, and for that matter, all plants are not created equal. Looks can be deceiving; the same type of plant that is offered for sale in the marketplace may look the same, but often it is not. A superior plant is bred from superior genes.

All plants can appear healthy in a nursery where they are maintained by a professional staff and receive just the right amount of care. But when you buy a plant for your home, you want to select a plant that will perform well under normal growing conditions and will do so for years to come with a minimum of care. That is why it is essential to purchase quality grown plants.

Question: What does it take to produce a quality plant?

Answer: Good Genes!

There are better grades of plants. A commercial plant grower creates new plants by taking cuttings from existing plants. He then places these cuttings in a rooting media that encourages the new cutting to grow roots from the point at which it was cut. After a few weeks the cutting is growing roots and has become a new plant. It is critical that the grower takes cuttings from only superior grade plants since these cuttings will have the same genetic characteristics as the parent plant.

Selecting a superior plant from which to take these from cuttings is the key to creating superior plants.

cut_below_last_bud_and_wound_the_stem

Why is this important?

Once you have selected a plant that is suitable to the location you wish to plant in, a superior plant will produce the results you desire, namely the following:

  • Good heat and cold tolerance
  • Better pest and disease resistance
  • Good growth with a minimum of care
  • Adaptability to soil conditions and harsh weather
  • Performance consistent with desired traits:
    • Dwarf plants that remain dwarf
    • Flowering plants that flower as advertised

Here at Giordano’s we question our growers on their growing practices and often visit their nurseries to inspect their product. This insures that our customers continue to receive the quality plants that they have come to expect.

Eating pumpkins has health benefits!

They are loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties which help prevent cholesterol buildup in blood vessels. According to Oregon State University’s Linus Pauling Institute, pumpkins can help prevent or alleviate certain conditions, such as depression, kidney stones, cataracts, skin damage from the sun, and enlargement of the prostate gland. The best pumpkins for cooking and baking are the sugar pie, baby bear and cheese.

pumpkin1

Why plant pansies in the Fall? They are a hardy cold weather flower that can handle temperatures down into the 20s and usually return in the Spring spectacularly!

pansies

To add color to your fall garden, Giordano’s has beautiful pansies at this time of year! Stop by today for our colorful selection.

  • 3 for $8.99
  • 5 for $12.99

For your soil, we recommend changing out the soil in your pots with fresh new potting soil! If you’re planting in the ground, consider a soil enhancer such as Bumper Crop (also available at Giordano’s).

Come in to our nursery at 295 Glen Cove Ave in Sea Cliff and have one of our trained employees help you pick out a beautiful selection of brightly colored pansies to enhance your fall garden.

House-Plant Propagation

Nature has had billions of years to perfect it’s strategy for survival. Plants especially are capable of fascinating reproduction. For example by clipping the leaf from a Snake plant, such as the one pictured below, cutting it into three pieces and planting it in soil, a new plant will emerge in 12 weeks. In contrast a spider plant sends shoots out from it’s base and on the end of each shoot grows a replica of the “mother” plant that can be rooted by placing the “baby” in a glass of water for 10-12 days. Once new roots are 2 inches the “baby” can be planted in soil & will eventually become a mother plant itself! Begonias are yet entirely different! To propagate begonias, take a clipping with at least 2 leaves and place the stem in a glass of water and new roots will emerge in 5-7 days, roots need to be 3-4 inches long before planting for best results.
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Angel-Wing Begonia

Angel-Wing Begonia


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Snake Plant

Snake Plant


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Spider Plant

Spider Plant


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Propagating plants is a wonderful way to give presents and promote sustainability. Check out this article on how houseplants actually keep you healthier! House Plants Keep You Healthy!

Just a Quick Post from a Proud Web Admin!

Hi there Giordano’s Blog Fans!

Just a quick announcement, no frills attached. Giordano’s after 1 month of being online is now 1st-page-indexed on Google “naturally”. What does that mean? It means that you can search on google for ‘Giordanos’ (just that as a single word) and we’re on the first page for the first time! Why is that great? Before our launch we were buried on the 4th page and NO ONE ever reads the 4th page of Google unless they’re desperately searching for something that’s fairly obscure.

What’s the big deal? Well, without advertising, it takes quite a bit of information, relevancy, consistency, time and a plethora of back-links out there on the web to get natural 1st page search results. Typically, it takes a business with great content 3-6 months to achieve natural first page results. Giordano’s did it in 34 days and I couldn’t be more proud of the whole team!

Recognition is DESERVED!

Paul, Chris, & Rachel, the three of you have done an EXCELLENT job thus far! Keep up the great work

-Dave from Web Garden Consulting