10 Ways to Conquer Your Fear of Gardening

You might not believe it, but you were born with a green thumb. It may have gone untended for a while, but it's there waiting for you to nudge it awake. Put away your theory of being a plant killer, that anything dies under your care. Forget those nagging thoughts of where your garden will live or when you'll find the time, it's there somewhere. It doesn't have to cost a fortune and you'll get more than you give. So, here are 10 tips for conquering your fear of gardening:

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Gardening Tips for Renters

Want to bring more green to your house or apartment? Using a few easy, inexpensive techniques, <a href="http://www.thehorticult.com/">The Horticult</a> shows how you can garden like you own the place -- without risking your security deposit. You don't have to own your home to create a garden that reflects your personal style. Grow your favorite plants and create an inspired landscape -- or patio, interior, or balcony -- using these fun, low-commitment methods. (Although you might want to check with your landlord about the larger projects!) And if you move, you can take it all with you. These 10 tips for renters will give your garden a new lease on life.

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Summer Checklist

Summer is a gardener¿s busiest season. If you¿re short on time or not sure what to do, follow this easy summer gardening checklist to keep your lawn and garden in great shape all season long.

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Drought-Tolerant Grasses

Drought! The word itself strikes fear into the hearts of gardeners everywhere. Scarce water resources, especially in hard hit areas such as California and Texas, are making it almost impossible to maintain traditional style lawns. That's why many people are replacing their lawns with groundcovers and native plants. But for those who want a lush green lawn, here are some less-thirsty options.

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How to Improve Garden Soil

Many homeowners inherit bad garden soil ¿ but you don¿t have to live with it! Learn how to get the best garden soil possible through amendments, composting, and more.

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Top Shade Perennials

Shade plants are perfect for those tough spots in your yard. Learn about the best shade-loving perennials, including flowering shade perennials, partial shade perennials, and full-shade perennials.

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Landscape Ideas

Landscape ideas provide inspiration, and studies show that upgrading your landscape will add value to your home. Here are some great landscape ideas to improve your home's outward appeal.

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Popular in Gardening

Terra-Cotta Fountain

Constructed with a strawberry jar, azalea pot, and terra-cotta bowl, this fountain is ideal for a deck or patio. It will beckon you to relax by its soothing bubbling water.

Strawberry jars have openingson the sides.

Because strawberry jars are handmade and somewhat unique, buy the strawberry jar first, then fit the other terra-cotta elements to it.

Create your own tabletop fountain with our how-to.

What You Need:

  • Safety glasses
  • Electric drill
  • 3/8-inch drill bit
  • 3/8-inch vinyl tubing (must be several inches longer than the strawberry jar and azalea pot, stacked)
  • 3/8-inch pipe fittings (male input with barb, reducer, and flare -- see details below)
  • Fountain pump (must fit inside plastic saucer and upside-down azalea pot)
  • Plastic saucer (must fit inside rim of upside-down azalea pot at base of fountain)
  • Terra-cotta azalea pot (Rim of upside-down pot must fit inside base of terra-cotta bowl. Rim also must fit over plastic saucer.)
  • Large tapered terra-cotta bowl (Base must be larger than rim of upside-down azalea pot and large enough to accommodate aquatic plant.) To prevent seepage though the walls of the bowl, choose a glazed bowl or seal the surface.
  • Terra-cotta saucer (must sit neatly in opening on top of strawberry jar)
  • Large strawberry jar (Ours was 22 inches tall.)
  • Silicone glue
  • Pebbles
  • Electrical cord
  • Aquatic plants

Details About the Pipe Fittings:

These are the specific parts we purchased to build the fountain, although similar parts from other manufacturers also will work. To make the fountain bubble gently, use only parts 1 and 2. For a bigger jet of water, use all three parts.

1. Anderson Barrows part #A294, 3/8 x 3/8 inch. This is the i.d. barb to MIP adapter that goes through the hole in the terra cotta saucer. The tubing attaches to the bottom of this part, leading to the pump.

2. Anderson Barrows part #P44, 3/8 x 1/8 inch. This is a brass pipe reducer, which screws onto the adapter in the top of the saucer.

3. Anderson Barrows part #U242, 1/4 x 1/8 inch. This is the flare, also known as tubing to male pipe half union.

Instructions:

1. Put on safety glasses. Drill a hole through the center of the terra-cotta saucer.

2. Using a masonry drill, bore four to six holes 1 inch from the rim of the azalea pot for aeration. Using a file, notch azalea pot for an electrical cord to fit through.

3. Using silicone glue, secure plastic saucer into large tapered bowl (to plug hole).

4. Install brass pipe fittings (male input with barb, reducer, and flare -- which adjusts the height of the water spray) with 3/8-inch vinyl tubing through the bottom of the terra-cotta saucer.

5. To assemble fountain: Place pump in base; attach vinyl tubing to pump; and thread vinyl tubing through the hole in the bottom of the azalea pot, lining up the notch with the cord. Snake vinyl tubing through the strawberry jar and set on top of upside-down azalea pot. Attach vinyl tubing to the end of the pipe fittings,and rest terra-cotta saucer on top of the strawberry jar.

6. Place fountain near electrical source. Add pebbles and aquatic plants as desired. Be sure to purchase plants that thrive with their roots in water. Add stones to secure the roots.

Discover more garden projects you can make yourself.

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