Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Power of Pink

Suzy’s Garden, added to the Race in 2014 and sponsored by Star Nursery, was outstanding!  
We were so pleased with the participation and have decided to create this beautiful garden again for 2015!  
For those who are unfamiliar with this component, Race participants, volunteers, sponsors, etc., can purchase
and decorate a pink flower to honor and celebrate those who have fought this disease, volunteered, supported you
through your journey or remember those we have lost too soon.  Click here to view the order form and flowers will be
available for pick up beginning March 3rd in the Komen office. Let's make a beautiful pink garden in the middle of
downtown Las Vegas!!
Flowers are $20 each, so place your order today! Click here to download the form.
Hope to see you there!

Friday, April 24, 2015

This Saturday, April 25th!

Join us for GREENfest this Saturday, April 25th at Downtown Summerlin for a full day of green living festivities.
Admission is free and there will be fun for the whole family.
Come visit Star Nursery in the kids zone for an earth friendly planting project!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Earth Day Everyday

Have some old or broken furniture that you're not sure what to do with?
Plant it!
In honor of Earth Day, we encourage you to reduce, reuse, or recycle something that you would otherwise throw away. Turning this chair into a planter was a cinch!
Here's how we did it:

Take a chair that is missing the seat and remove any pieces that are still attached. 
Use a medium grit sand paper to even out the surface and get rid of any imperfections.

Picking the paint color is a good majority of the fun. We wanted something that was cheery and bright and would really make the green of the plants pop. 
It's a good idea to use a primer before you paint if your furniture is a dark color like this one.

Next you'll want to pick out the pot and the plants to go in it.
We went with a plastic terracotta colored pot to contrast the yellow paint.
Remember, whenever you're planting into a container, you want to make sure to use a potting soil as opposed to a garden soil or mulch.

Here are the plants we chose:
Little One Verbena 
Baby Snapdragon
Cherry Star Million Bells

Place the plants that will give you the most height towards the back and the shorter (or trailing) ones toward the front so that you will easily be able to see your selections.

Get creative and see what else you can transform into a beautiful living piece of garden art!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Stars for a Cure

Together, we are fueling the best science, boldest community and biggest impact in the fight against breast cancer. And we will not stop until this disease is gone forever. That’s our promise.
Will you please join us in this fight by making a donation today?

Friday, April 17, 2015

Tomorrow! Saturday, April 18th!

Join us this Saturday, April 18th from 11am-4pm at the beautiful Town Square Las Vegas.
We'll have some good examples of reusable gardening containers and we'll have a recycled planting project for the kids!
Stop by and learn how to PLANT YOUR TRASH!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Pond Ponderings

Canna Water Plant

Having a desert pond may seem like an oxymoron at first thought but it can actually be a low water addition to your landscape as long as you are mindful of some key elements in your planning, prep and maintenance.
Ponds can help create a soothing place to spend your time in the garden, and being near the water actually does cool down the space when things heat up.

Parrots Feather Water Plant

The trick is to make sure that you take all precautionary measures to lose as little water as possible to the big E word.
Donating water into the thin air is bad.
That's where the plants come in handy.
Not only are they a beautiful piece to the water gardening puzzle, they are a necessary one.
They help to filter the water and provide oxygen if you have fish.

Giant Pennywort and Parrots Feather

Let's start with pond placement in your yard and look at the best possible spot:
  • North, Northeast, or Eastern exposure - Morning sun is less harsh and temperatures are always cooler in the am. This area will typically be the coolest sides of your house without completely sacrificing the sun. We are still talking about plants after all, and they still need sunlight to thrive.
  • Near trees for shade - Placing your pond near or under a tree to provide shade in the warmer hours will also cut back on how often you need to refill the water that is lost. Keep in mind that deciduous trees can make fall and winter cleaning rather difficult in your pond, so consider an evergreen tree or maybe a pond cover.

Tropical Water Lily

Now for the fun part; the water plants!
There are so many interesting varieties of water plants that can fill your water space with lush, green, and colorful life.
Water lilies, water hyacinth, and water lettuce are excellent for covering the surface area of the pond so that the sun goes into feeding the plants rather than evaporating the water.

Umbrella Palm Water Plant

King Tut Papyrus, Umbrella Palms and Water Cat Tails are great submerge-able plants that you can either place into the soil at the bottom of the pond or sink into a pot directly on top of the pond liner.
Remember to install the proper pond pump to move and aerate the water. Even though these are considered water plants, they still need air around the roots.

Check out our Stare Note on Creating and Maintaining a Beautiful Pond for more tips!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring Talk with Dr. Angela O'Callaghan

Tucked away behind The Ranch at the beautiful Floyd Lamb park, Dr. Angela O'Callaghan of the University of Nevada's Cooperative Extension gave a talk on spring and summer vegetable gardening this past Saturday at the Master Gardener's Community Garden.
If you've never heard Dr. O'Callaghan talk about veggies then you're missing out on a comically entertaining, as well as deeply informative, good time.
Whether you've been pondering the relationship between mycorrhizal fungi activity and root systems, or if you simply want to know how much real estate your artichokes will take up, you need to make it to one of her talks.

This was definitely a time for some good note taking.
Here are some of the highlights and answers to the great questions that she received:
  • Fertilizer - Don't confuse your plants by sending mixed signals with improper fertilizing. In short, know your NPK. 
  • N=Nitrogen=green leaves. P=Phosphorus=flowers and fruit. K=Potassium=roots.
  • Potassium - This nutrient is essential for the movement of water from the roots to the stems and leaves so be sure not to overlook this nutrient.
  • Pesticides- Go easy on them. Remember that chemicals do not have a brain and will not be discerning when killing things. You will be killing the good bugs with the bad ones. Use pesticides as a last resort and always read the label for proper applications. The label is the law.
  • Aphids - Inspect your plants early and often to make sure you get a handle on these sucking pests. Not only will they damage your plants, but they can carry viruses that will be transmitted to your hard earned crop. Just like people, plants can't take anything to cure a virus. They either pull out of it or they die. Use a high pressure spray of water to remove the aphids or dilute a small amount of dish soap into a quart of water and spray the plant to assist in pulling them away from the stems and leaves. If you have an overwhelming infestation then you should pull the plant and make sure it goes into the trash, not the compost bin.

Severe aphid infestation on flowering kale plant.
  • Squash bugs - (Everyone groans) Plant them late as a prevention. Think Fathers Day. Again, inspect your plants early and often. If you see one or two then you can easily pick them off and kill them. If you see the small golden eggs on the underside of the leaves make sure to destroy those too. If you missed the early boat and have more bugs then you can pick off, pull out the plant and throw it in the trash. Sometimes it's not worth the endless battle.

Angela also gave a run down of often overlooked summer veggies that are really easy to grow:
Sweet Potatoes
Asparagus (be patient and harvest the third year)
and of course the most popular:

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

This Saturday, April 11th!

Join us this Saturday, April 11th at all Star Nursery Locations for Kids Garden Club! 
In honor of Earth Day (April 22nd), we'll be creating a worm farm with a recycled container.
Bring your own milk jug, or large water bottle to create a recycled habitat for your worms to live in.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Help Us Support Nevada Public Radio!

Star Nursery is proud to support Nevada Public Radio. 
We planted our roots in Nevada back in 1983 and have been serving the valley since. Today, we’ve branched out into thirteen different stores that not only cover the Southern Nevada area, but also parts of Southern Utah and Arizona, and we couldn’t have done it without the support of our community. Because we know how important community support is in helping a business or organization thrive, we knew we had to lend our green thumb to help grow the valleys only NPR affiliate. Become a sustaining member now and we’ll match every dollar of your pledge. 

Friday, April 3, 2015

Happy First Friday!

Join us tonight at First Friday, downtown Las Vegas.
You'll find us in the Kids Zone off Casino Center and California from 5-9pm.
We'll be planting flowers in every color in the spectrum!
Hope to see you there!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Easter Flowers


The tradition of giving cut bulb flowers for Easter dates back to the 1600s! 
It's no accident that the flowers most associated with Easter are also the earliest signs of spring in the garden. Daffodils, lilies, and tulips are all bulbs, and they all emerge from the ground at the slightest rise in temperatures. Usually the first green thing you'll see in the spring are the green leaves poking out of the soil, but as things heat up, they are in full bloom right in time for the spring holiday.

Kaffir Lily

The bright and showy flowers atop long stems and broad leaves lend to easy cutting and beautiful arrangements to decorate the family dinner table. 
Careful placement in the garden can insure that the blooms will still be in tact right in time for cutting.
Bulbs do best in our climate when they are given morning sun, and when planted under or near a deciduous tree. You want the bulbs to get the sun before the tree sends out leaves. By the time the bulbs bloom, the tree has put on just the right amount of foliage to protect the blooms and extend their color and shape.

Asiatic Lily

Cutting the blooms is actually the healthiest thing you can do for your bulbs once they have bloomed.
Once the plant has used the energy to create the flower, it will continue to send energy that direction.
To create a healthier bulb and fabulous blooms for next year, cut the blooms and let all of that energy get redirected back into the bulb.

Calla Lily

The best time to plant dormant bulbs for spring flowers is in the fall, but don't think that you've missed out if you didn't get to it last September or October!
You can purchase and plant fully grown and flowering bulbs and still take advantage of their underground multiplying power.
If you're looking for the perfect Easter gift these will be sure to please. After all, you're not just giving a beautiful flower, but the means to generate many more flowers year after year.