Creating An Exotic Jungle Garden: A Guide To Planting Tropical Plants

Tropical garden planting scheme is one of the most interesting gardening projects. You have to consider many factors when it comes to creating such a garden. There are several things which you need to take into consideration before starting your own tropical garden project. Here are some tips which will help you in making your dream come true!

1. Choose Your Site Properly

The first thing you need to do is choose a suitable site where you want to plant your tropical garden. You may not think that it matters much but if you don’t select the right spot then your tropical garden will never flourish properly. If there are any large trees or shrubs nearby, they could seriously damage your tropical garden.

2. Select Tropical Trees And Shrubs For Your Garden

You must choose tropical trees and shrubs for your garden because these plants require a lot of space. They grow very fast and their roots can reach up to three feet deep. These plants will provide shade to your tropical garden and keep it cool during hot summer months. Some of them are also known as succulents or evergreen trees due to their growth habit which resembles that of tree trunks.

They are extremely attractive and colorful. If you want to build a wooden deck, gazebo or patio in your garden then it is better to plant them at least 15 feet away from these structures.

3. Arrange Your Plants In A Maze Pattern

Instead of arranging your plants in straight rows, make an effort to plant them in a zigzag or maze pattern. When you do this, they will grow in a very natural manner. The more natural your garden looks, the more beautiful it will become.

4. Group Your Plants Together

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Instead of planting your shrubs individually in fours square feet areas, you can also group them together to create a mass of color and texture. Planting trees and shrubs in clusters saves a lot of space and they look much better compared to when they are planted one next to the other.

5. Leave A Few Open Spaces

Although you want to make your garden look full and lush with a myriad of colors, shapes and sizes, there is no need to overcrowd it. Always leave a few open spaces so that visitors can walk through it without any trouble.

6. Add A Water Feature To Your Garden

A water feature can really make your garden look gorgeous. It can be anything from a small water fountain to a pond with water lilies. There are many types of water features that you can choose to put in your garden. It is a very relaxing sight and brings a soothing effect on the mind.

7. Incorporate Organic Materials In Your Garden

While you are thinking about designing and making your own garden, you can also incorporate a few organic materials. If your soil is not good then you can add coconut coir, sand, leaf mold or some other similar materials to improve its quality. These will help your plants to grow much better and you will be able to harvest a lot more from your garden.

These are just a few tips which you can use in your own garden.

If you want to build your own unique tropical garden then why not incorporate a few of your own ideas as well?

Have fun and enjoy the journey of creating your own private paradise.

How to Build a Raised Garden Bed

Do you want a beautiful garden this year? Instead of struggling with weeds and unhealthy plants, why not build a raised garden bed?

Building a raised garden bed is very easy and you probably have most of the materials already. All you need to do is follow these simple steps:

Through rain or shine, your plants will grow better in a raised bed. You can plant them closer together and give them more life-giving nutrients. By raising the ground level of your garden, you will prevent harmful pests from reaching your plants. If you would rather not build a raised garden bed, you can use old bricks or stones to form a square area.

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Raising the bed off the ground allows for proper drainage. Without it, your plants are more susceptible to various fungal diseases that thrive in wet soil.

1. Gather Materials

First, decide on a location for your garden and secure the fencing material to surround this area. You can secure the fencing with stakes and string, or you can use concrete to prevent it from being disturbed. Use wood to make the frame of your bed. It needs to be at least 2x4s or 2x6s and large enough for you to lay down the plastic.

Place a layer of either landscape fabric or large-hole mesh on the bottom of your bed. This will prevent the soil from draining through the bed.

Raise your bed off the ground by placing it on top of cinder blocks, bricks, or wood. If you need help building your bed, ask a construction worker friend for help.

2. Prepare Soil

Fill your bed with good quality topsoil, manure, and compost. Work these ingredients into the top layer of your soil to ensure healthy growth for your plants. If you live in a colder climate, plant something that blooms early in the spring. These plants include crocuses, snowdrops, daffodils, and grape hyacinths.

As spring turns into summer, plant tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, and other heat-loving plants. In the fall, plant basil, cabbage, and other plants that can withstand first frost.

This bed is perfect for people who don’t have a green thumb. With a little preparation and TLC, you’ll be able to grow the most delicious fruits and vegetables all season long.

If you want to build a raised garden bed, but are lacking in creative juices, try visiting a few home improvement stores. These stores offer garden boxes that are pre-built and very easy to assemble.

Raised bed gardening is the easiest and most efficient way to grow a garden. By following these steps, you can have a successful vegetable garden without wasting time, energy, and money. So get out there and start planting!

Benefits of Raised Bed Gardening

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If you have a backyard, yet lack the skill or patience to garden, then raised bed gardening may be for you. Raised bed gardens are easier to maintain and perfect for people who don’t have a green thumb.

When to Start

If you live in a colder climate, start your seeds indoors around six to eight weeks before you plant your garden. If you live in a warmer climate, you can start your seeds indoors or outdoors. If you choose to start them indoors, keep the lights on for 14 to 16 hours each day.

Once your seeds have sprouted, move the pot to a sunny window or put it under a grow light. Once the plants are a few inches high, harden them off by exposing them to the elements for an hour or two each day.

If you start your plants outdoors, you can plant them in the ground after the risk of a frost has passed. If you have trouble remembering when that is, wait a week after the day the latest frost occurred.

You can also start your plants outdoors by planting them directly into the ground. Keep in mind that if the weather hasn’t warmed up by mid to late spring, you will need to protect your plants from a late frost.

When to Plant

Plant your seeds or seedlings in your garden after the last frost has occurred. You can check with the local nursery or the agriculture department to find out when this will be.

If you live in a climate with a short growing season, due to either cold winters or hot summers, it is best to start your seeds indoors or buy plant seedlings at the nursery. If you start your seeds indoors, keep the lights on for 14 to 16 hours each day.

When to Harvest

Once your fruit and vegetables are fully grown, you will need to harvest them. Most fruit should be harvested when it is ripe, but you can harvest some produce before it ripens if you want to eat it earlier. Some vegetables, such as carrots, should be harvested before they reach full size. Others, such as pumpkins, should be left to grow until they become ripe.

Most vegetables can be harvested as soon as they are ripe. Harvesting them early can affect the quality of your produce. If you want to harvest produce early, do so before the vegetable reaches its full size.

Chapter 2: Starting Your Garden

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Soil

In nature, plants grow in soil. No matter how big or small the plant, it gets all of the nutrients that it needs from the soil. However, if you have bad soil, your garden won’t grow well. This chapter will provide tips on how to create the best soil for your plants to grow in.

Ingredients

Soil is made up of several organic and inorganic ingredients including sand, silt, clay, decayed plant matter, animal waste, and more. The different types of soil include topsoil, subsoil, and sterile soil. You will need to add nutrients in order to give your plants the right balance of nutrients in the soil.

Topsoil

Topsoil is the layer of soil that is richest in nutrients. It ranges in color from dark brown to a lighter brown. This is the soil that you want to use when creating your garden beds.

Subsoil

This is the layer of soil beneath the topsoil. It is not as rich in nutrients as the topsoil, but it has more nutrients than the layers of soil beneath it. This soil is usually a reddish color.

Clay

Clay soils have very small particle sizes, which doesn’t allow for the soil to hold nutrients well. These types of soils combine with organic matter to create the best fertilizer.

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Silt

Silt is a fine soil that also has small particle sizes. This makes it similar to clay, in that it doesn’t hold onto nutrients well.

Sand

The opposite of silt and clay, this soil has very large particle sizes. This doesn’t allow for nutrient retention.

To create your garden, you can either bring in bags of ready-made garden soil or you can make your own. If you decide to make your own, you will need to gather several different types of soil to mix together in the right proportions.

Garden Soil Recipe

2 Parts Topsoil

1 Part Compost or Manure

1 Part Peat Moss or Crushed Limestone

To create your garden soil, first decide how big you want your beds to be. You can make them as large or as small as you want, depending on how many plants you want to grow. Once you have decided on the size of your garden beds, you will need to create borders. You can do this by staking the area or you can use wood or brick sides.

Once your garden beds are ready, you can start adding the ingredients for your soil. You can either buy bags of topsoil and ingredients from a gardening store or you can gather the ingredients yourself. If you choose to gather your own, be sure to get as many different types of soil as possible, in order to ensure that you get the best quality of soil for your garden.

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Once you have your ingredients ready, you can get started. You will need a total of two parts topsoil, one part animal waste (compost or manure), and one part peat moss or crushed limestone. If you don’t have peat moss or limestone, you can also use sand, silt, or clay in its place.

Begin by thoroughly mixing two parts topsoil with one part animal waste and one part peat moss or crushed limestone. Add water to the ingredients until everything is nice and moist, but not soaked through. Add more ingredients if necessary.

Once your ingredients are mixed together, your soil should be ready to use!

Weed Control

Weeds are a gardener’s arch-nemesis. They can quickly take over a garden and deprive your plants of nutrients. In order to prevent this from happening, you should make sure to remove all weeds before planting anything in your beds. You can do this by hand or by using store-bought chemicals.

Once you have removed all the weeds from your beds, you can get started with planting.

Planting Your Garden

While you can plant anything you want in your garden, some plants just aren’t worth the effort. Leafy greens and other crops that haven’t been proven to provide effective medicines tend to be a waste of time and energy, as they require more maintenance than they are worth. Some other plants are easy to grow, but have limited uses. Always remember to think about how useful a plant is when adding it to your garden.

Below are some basic guidelines on what to plant and how much of it to add to your garden:

Tomatoes (Lycopersicon Esculentum) – Tomatoes are one of the easiest plants to grow in terms of maintaining a healthy amount of nutrients and getting the most out of them. Tomatoes are worth growing and can be turned into sauce or other dishes for preserving.

Carrots (Daucus Carota) – Carrots are another easy-to-grow vegetable that requires very little maintenance. They can be a little harder to grow, as the seeds need to be kept moist for a long period of time before they sprout.

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Green Beans (Phaseolus Vulgaris) – Green beans are similar to carrots in that they need a lot of moisture before they will sprout. Green beans are a very versatile food item, as they can be eaten raw or cooked.

Onions (Allium Cepa) – Onions are easy to grow and can provide your food with a nice flavor. Be warned, however, because they can be a little smelly when you grow them.

Potatoes (Solanum Tuberosum) – While not as easy to grow as tomatoes, potatoes are worth the effort of growing. They can be eaten raw and are very healthy for you.

Strawberries (Fragaria Vesca) – While strawberries do not take much work to grow, they do require a large amount of space. You can, however, reap a large quantity of them at a time.

Other important things to keep in mind are the length of time before you harvest your plants and how much work is required to maintain them. Always try to find a good balance between easy to grow but still worth the energy to harvest.

Once you have figured out which plants to add to your garden, you are ready to start planting!

Both of you seem to understand the process of creating a garden, and you are ready to get started. You and your partner each take a bed to begin working on.

Once you have finished preparing your bed, you grab a few packets of seeds from the storage shed and plant them in the ground. While your partner plants the remainder of their seeds, you go back to the storage shed to make sure you didn’t miss anything.

While you are in the shed, you see a few jugs of fertilizer. While you don’t need to use any since you have a nice even patch of soil to work with, it may be necessary for others who don’t have as much luck. Fertilizer is a key ingredient to growing plants successfully, so it would be beneficial if everyone had some.

Since you are thinking about others, you decide that it would also be a good idea to stock the shed with some extra tools, just in case someone forgets theirs. Having others contribute to the garden will make it grow much faster, so it’s a win-win situation.

You’ve taken care of everything for your garden, so you head back outside to help your partner finish up.

Everything is finished and prepared for planting. You and your partner have decided to plant the rest of the seeds in your packs, just to get a head start on things.

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After getting all of the seeds planted, you and your partner water them, then pat the dirt around each one to make sure it sticks. Now all you have to do is wait for them to grow!

Over the next few weeks, you and your partner will occasionally water your plants. Once they actually start sprouting, however, you will have to move onto the next step.

This should be simple enough: all you have to do is keep an eye on your plants to see what kind of care they need. Depending on how much attention each plant needs, you may or may not need your partner’s help.

Once you know what to do, there’s not much else to it. It’s all a matter of getting the job done!

Now that you have finished preparing your garden, it’s time for you to begin growing some food!

Your garden is small, so you figure you should be able to grow a substantial amount of food. It really all depends on how much time you’re willing to put into taking care of it.

Now that you’ve got everything ready, it’s time to get to work!

Packrafting

Outfitting

By: Alexander (Sasha) Jankowski

“I’m just saying, we should have grabbed more than one of those O.E. lights! I mean I know they’re expensive and all, but we really should have grabbed at least two, if not three!” Lucy complains.

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“I get that we were in a hurry to leave, but come on. We could have taken the time to go back. I mean we had the extra rafts with us, surely one of those would have worked as a second light source.”

“Lucy, I told you I tried! The place was wrecked. I don’t know if it was animals or what, but there was so much damage that I couldn’t find any more O.E.

lights. Besides, we’re doing just fine with the two that we do have, all we have to do is split the batteries between the two! As it is, we have them on the lowest setting at all times, and they last for days!”

“I know that, I just, I dunno, think that we should at least try to find some more. Like I said, those things are expensive! I mean we could probably sell them and get a decent amount for them.”

“Yeah, because places like that are just littered around the place.

And what are we going to use to barter with?

All the supplies are either on our backs, or repacked into the raft.”

“Hmm… yeah I guess your right.

Still, it doesn’t hurt to look though, right? Rather not and be right, than not look and be wrong, you know?”

“I understand what you’re saying, but we have to keep our priorities straight. We have everything we need to survive. The most important thing is making sure we keep a low profile, and the next most important thing is keeping ourselves alive. If that means we have to live without the luxuries, then so be it.” You reply.

“Yeah, yeah, I know.

Still, can you blame me for wanting just a little bit of comfort now and then?”

“Comfort’s overrated.” You say half-jokingly.

“Maybe for you, Mr. Stoic.”

Before you have time to retort, you hear a very loud noise coming from up ahead. It sounds like a gunshot, followed by several others.

“Shit! That came from just up ahead!” Lucy says.

“I know, let’s go!” You say, increasing your pace.

You continue running, and it isn’t long before you see a man standing in the middle of the trail. He has Doberman pinscher by a leash, and is aggressively yanking it forward. The dog itself looks very aggressive; it’s teeth are bared and it’s running toward you with a growl.

Hey, you guys hear all the shooting? What the hell is going on up there?”

He asks aggressively.

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You stop running, and Lucy does likewise. The man’s aggressive tone is making you uncomfortable, but you see no need to immediately resort to violence.

“There’s a bunch of raiders up ahead. We heard shooting and everything.”

Well what the hell were you guys doing?

Wait, nevermind, I don’t care.

What’s going on with the raiders?”

“From what we saw, it’s a whole horde of them. They’re all armed to the teeth, and there’s a lot of them…” You start to say, when the man suddenly cuts you off.

“Well that doesn’t make sense. There weren’t supposed to be this many. The briefing said a few dozen at most, and there’s no way the Church could have gathered a force that large on such short notice…” The man says to himself, before continuing.

“Look, there’s more to this than you know. I’m going to have to talk to my superiors about this, they’ll want to know exactly what’s going on here.

So you guys go on ahead and leave this to us, ok?”

“Sir, we really think you should just get out of here. They saw us and they saw your raft, they’ll be coming this way!” You say.

“Hey man, I’m not arguing with you. Now go home and stay there!” He says, taking a step towards you in a threatening manner.

For a split second you think about punching him, but decide it’s not worth it and turn to walk away. You quickly motion for Lucy to follow you and the two of you swiftly move away from the man and his dog.

Who was that idiot?”

Lucy asks.

“I have no idea, but he’s going to get himself killed if he goes up there alone.”

You don’t think we should follow him?”

And do what?

If he sees us following him, he’ll just get mad and shoot us too.

Besides, weren’t you the one telling me to avoid confrontation a minute ago?”

“Yeah I guess so…wait! He’s coming over here!”

The man in the raft is indeed coming straight at the two of you. You start to get nervous and consider running, when he arrives.

“Hey, I’m sorry about how I was talking to you guys earlier. It’s just, I’ve been looking for someone to help me with this thing and no one’s willing to help, and it’s really frustrating, especially since I think my time here is running out.” He says.

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