Urban Gardening – Greening a Small Space

_So you love plants and you appreciate greenery. But you live in an apartment building or townhome and do not have yard space for a garden. Well, a trend that has been in place for a while now is urban gardening. You don’t have to live out in the countryside to be able to nurture certain plants and foliage and Green Up your home in a wonderful way!
Many methods and structures (furnishings) exist to support urban gardening. Everything from basic window boxes to shelves that widen your window ledge, multi-leveled plant stands that go from floor to ceiling and hold several pots, vertical wall boards that greens can grow out of, and much more. When you go online you will see many pictures and ideas. (Pinterest is a great source). You can also ask us, your local gardening professional, for ideas!

Some urban gardeners hang their plants upside down in a window. This can be an effective way of growing herbs for cooking, and ornamental or decorative plants.  Vines can be trained to climb up an indoor trellis or wall. (You may have heard of or seen “living
walls”  in hotels or office buildings or even restaurants, where there are many plants and ivy-type vines covering a wall. It can be truly beautiful.)

Of course when choosing the plants to grow on your balcony or window ledge, you need to consider the amount of light that reaches that area, which you can discuss with us when you purchase your plants.  You also have to be realistic regarding how often you will water your plants. Some people are better at caring for plants than others. If you know you will sometimes forget, then you should try to purchase plants that don’t need watered as frequently and are more hardy.

By placing shelves across your window, or hanging plants from above the window and placing some on the ledge, you can actually grow quite a few different plants – you’ll fit more pots than you thought you could. You can experiment to see what grows best. If you plan to put some plants beside a window and not directly in the window—such as on a tiered shelf on the wall, or a corner stand, you can choose low-light houseplants. In the summertime, you can actually build a plant shelf on the outside of your window and enjoy a lovely variety of herbs, decorative plants or even vegetables. Of course when
the weather turns cold in the fall you will bring these plants inside. There is a very cool contraption called a rope and pulley herb garden that you raise and lower at your window.

People have gotten very clever with urban gardening and come up with creative, ingenious ways to grow plants in and around their city homes. Get your own creative juices flowing and sketch something out. Then come and talk to us. We would be happy to help you plan the best way to add greenery to your home, which is good for the air, good for your mood, good for everyone! Plants make people happy!

PS – We will talk more about urban gardening and growing things
in small spaces in a future article.

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Gardening with Lines and Shapes

Especially in winter, and even in summer, we expect our garden to be colorful. Color, of  course, is simply one part of the garden equation.

Shapes and forms can make your garden and lawn more dynamic…from very large, towering trees, to smaller and more compact broad pyramids, to slender upright clustering branches that taper toward the top with conical shapes. Varying the shape, size and form of plantings will give your courtyard, garden or lawn its own personality.

When you shop for shrubs and trees, look at their silhouette. Imagine them in a line, or running along your fence. Now think about whether you want an even or staggered line, such as 3 shrubs of same height, one taller. Then 3 short, 1 tall. You get the idea. Circles are often popular in creating a garden feel – you can encircle your groomed, gardened area in shrubs or small trees. Or picture this…you start with a tall tree and form a slanted, diagonal line by planting things beside it that get steadily shorter.

Do you like tall and thin or short and wide? Do you like trees and shrubs that are squarish, with straight lines? Rounded like a ball? Or messy and uneven? Get the pen out and do a sketch, or go online and look at pictures of other gardens, to get ideas. A plant’s silhouette makes a difference in the visual look of the area. Some are more flowing or “droopy”
while others are stiff and sturdy. It’s all in what you like. Conical blue spruces are often a favorite for their stable form.

Remember, ground cover and shrubbery that is laid out with symmetry (symmetrical) give gardens a formal look. You may want a looser, more casual feel and this you use wavy or uneven lines when planting. Boxwoods and arborvitaes are good for creating a controlled, even look. Forsythia and azaleas are great for curvy, less formal lines.

If you are having trouble deciding the shape and style of your garden – square or round, sharp and clean or loose and casual – defer to your HOUSE. Follow the style of your home to help you design your outdoor space. Pristine and serious or fun and spunky?

You can also do a lot with textures, which we’ll talk about in a future article. Remember, grasses provide a touch of color and style to gardens and can be lined up, spaced out, to create a very ordered look (for example, one straight line, each clump placed 4 feet apart) OR they can be randomly planted for a cluster here, cluster there.

Remember, it is perfectly OK to have both a groomed, orderly, more formal look in one area of your lawn or garden, and a “messier”, more creative and natural looking space elsewhere. Let your own (and your home’s) personality shine!  Ask your lawn and garden professional for advice when picking out new plantings, and enjoy the garden. April is not all that far away, you can start planning in February to change the look of your lawn this Spring!

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Adding Color to the Winter Landscape

During the winter months, the landscape can get pretty bleak. Your yard and your neighbors’ yards don’t look as colorful. But it is interesting to consider the various plants that do stay green all winter long. Planting this spring or summer will give you splashes of color around your home when the snows come this November.

So let’s talk about some of this greenery. It can provide an appealing visual element when everything looks pale and gray. Even in very cold weather climates, there are some shrubs that do well. Cedar and Juniper both can handle the coldest winter weather. There are also shrub forms of Holly – ask your landscaping and gardening professional about those. If you have not heard of it, Inkberry is nice to look at with dense foliage and glossy leaves. Mountain Laurel stays green all winter as well. The nice thing about planting the shrubs is that you are providing protective habitat for small creatures and birds. So they will appreciate your efforts.

Everybody of course thinks of the evergreen tree when theyimagine what would stay green  year-round. And certainly you can plant different varieties of these trees if you want some greenery during the winter months. Spruce, Fir, Hemlock, and Douglas Fir will all do very well in our state. It is a matter of selecting the shade of green that you like because these different evergreen trees have different colors to them.  Holly trees can be a nice option but they take a little TLC so again, consult with a professional like us.

There are also some smaller plants and ground cover that stay green through the winter and look very pretty. English Ivy and Oregon Grape Holly are two good choices. Certain ferns hold up in the snow as does Creeping Mehonia. Remember, when planting trees, shrubs and ground cover, follow all planting and care instructions. If you are unsure of something, ask. You don’t want to waste your money planting something at the wrong time, or in the wrong soil, or giving it improper care, and having it die. It pays to get all the
info for successful planting and care.

There are also some creative ways to add splashes of color to your porch, lawn and garden during winter months. Place a bright red or green wheelbarrow on its side or tipped forward on the lawn or beside the walkway, and place potted year-round greens in it.  Tie up a bundle of Indian corn and hang it from the mailbox post, garden gate or on the garage door. Tie a brightly colored scarf around a pale, drab garden statue, or wrap a wide colored ribbon around columns or gate posts/fenceposts. Grab a bright red bushel basket or any
colorful basket or crate, and fill it with pinecones. Place it out front in a good spot.

If you decide to plant some permanent greens, plan now for a more colorful lawn when fall 2014 rolls around.

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Winter Gardening

The art of winter gardening dates back to the 17th and 18th centuries when European nobility would construct large conservatories to house tropical and subtropical plants.  The conservatory would act as an extension of their living space. Many would be attached to the main homes (usually palaces). Early versions would have been constructed of masonry with large windows and a glass roof, usually in the Classical or Gothic styles. An online search will  reveal some lovely and inspiring pictures of winter gardens.

In the 19th century, a trend to build conservatories out of iron and curvilinear glass developed. Winter gardens were not just restricted to private residences though.  Many were built for the greater public.  The first large public winter garden was built in 1842-46 in Regent’s Park in London and was used for evening occasions, large flower shows and social gatherings. Other winter gardens, such as The Crystal Palace by Sir Joseph Paxton (completed in 1851), were soon built and used for a variety of purposes. Back then, these large enclosed spaces full of flowers and greenery would have been something to behold!

Today, “a winter garden” is usually a reference to any garden planted to either bloom and flourish during the winter months in an enclosed space, or to remain visibly planted and slowly to develop, throughout the winter…tended to during colder months… to blossom in
the spring. Winter gardens typically contain plants that will serve as living decoration all winter. Today’s winter garden might be in a greenhouse type of room or enclosure, or outdoors, exposed to the elements.

One basic premise in colder regions is that the plants may indeed become dormant when snow covers the ground, but will grow each time the sun heats at least part of the plant to
above freezing (snow or not), especially in regions where snow cover and below-freezing temperatures are not constant for months at a time. Amazingly, growth is happening even when the cold winds blow and the snow falls, and skies are grey.

In lieu of summer’s blazing color, many gardeners brace themselves for a winter of gray
and brown, if not flat-out white, but that’s not necessary. You can brighten your landscape with color in winter, by building covered window boxes or even a small greenhouse alongside the house. Now, keeping the right temperature in your greenhouse can be tricky. Ask your friendly landscaping and gardening professional about the Do’s and Don’ts of having a greenhouse (just maybe that will appear as a future article).

You can actually have colorful pots that look nice all winter, to place near the house
in somewhat protected areas like the porch. Pots can be filled with heucheras, autumn fern, and sedums, for example. Place them close to a window where you can easily enjoy them from indoors.

The heuchera plants, also called coral bells or alum root, are especially hardy. They are a
semi-evergreen herbaceous perennial plant native to the United States.  Cultivate the plants for their colorful foliage and attractive flowers. (FYI, they work well as borders or in
flowerbeds, as well as in group plantings, as edges or as foundation plants.)

Building a green house may or may not be up your alley, but there are kits available that
make it fairly easy. And imagine having bursts of green and other colors on your winter landscape. You may find that you have a real knack for “Winter Gardening”. Feel free to ask us about what plants are best for getting you started. We’ll help you figure out how cold your plants and pots will get, and which plantings will give you what you desire.

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Gardening for a dry summer – Drought Resistant choices

Worried about getting low amounts of rain this summer? Maybe you despise dragging out the garden hose. Well, we can give you some tips for having a garden that can handle the heat – and dry soil. Let’s start by suggesting what you should plant.

Try some Sedum = a flowering plant coming in many varieties. They actually have leaves that store water, and five-petal flowers. They are very attractive, and known for their hardiness. Some are more heat-tolerant than others, so ask your landscaping professional.

Belonging to the family of flowering plants known as Euphorbiaceae, there are an amazing
2008 species of Euphorbia. This is a very large and diverse group of plants found in tropical regions but also found in temperate zones worldwide. These can bring a lot of beauty to your summer garden but of course when the weather cools, they will wither and die. They are quite succulent and hold water well.

Now if you want hardy and pretty and no muss no fuss, plant some Feather Reedgrass.
This tall plant (reaching as much as 5 feet high) will produce teeny flowers in early summer and then you’ll see the seed heads turn brownish-gold in the middle of summer. Too late for this year but keep this easy-maintenance plant in mind for next year. Even in winter, the tall and wide cluster of grass looks ornamental, almost architectural. It’s very straight and the clusters of tall grass remain attractive to look at on into the early autumn.

People like reedgrass for a border effect, even privacy. They can handle plenty of
sun. There are other grasses that need little water and look nice on the lawn –
do some browsing.

Have you heard of California lilacs? These are shrub-like but very beautiful. They
bloom in late winter or early spring. They grow best in dry soil. You must put
them in a well-drained area, and ideally, they need protection from high wind.
They are colorful and a great addition to a draught-resistant garden.

When it’s hot, your plants do need more water than when it’s not. If temperatures
are climbing above 85 degrees, you need to check and water your plants a bit more frequently. Make it easy for yourself – keep watering cans and hoses ready to use, easy to get to.

You can always try water globes and experiment with how much watering your plants
need. Certain pots and soils hold water better than others – your landscaping professional / garden center professional knows best. Many plants can survive
for a couple weeks or even a month without water. So if you know yourself and
you know that watering regularly isn’t your strong suit, consult with a pro and
buy the right plants. You can stay green and colorful even if you’re dry!

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SEASONAL VS. ANNUAL FLOWERS – beautifying your garden

Now that the summer sun has arrived and you may be doing some planting in your lawn and garden, it is very important to know the difference between the types of flowers that you are looking to buy.

This article shares suggestions for annual flowers and perennial flowers and gives you some tips about each!

First off, what is a perennial flower?

A perennial is a type of flower that will grow for three years or more. Popular types of flowers in this category are daisies, columbine, and black-eyed Susan. These kind of flowers often have a shorter bloom period, but will come back year after year with proper care during their growth period.

So, what is an annual flower?

An annual flower is a type of plant that will complete its lifecycle in one blooming season. These types of flowers are most popular in the north and other colder states, because they will grow and bloom, making your garden bright and beautiful for the summer and into early fall, but then dying when the frosts come.

Popular types of annual flowers include marigolds, snapdragons, sunflowers, and pansies. Even though it may sound more difficult to keep re-planting every year, annual flowers are known for their bright colors and eye-catching blooms. Perennials tend to be less colorful, less exciting to look at.

If you are a beginning gardener, you may want to know which are the lower maintenance plants that would still add color to your home. Annual flowers of this type include impatiens and cosmos.

Care for impatiens includes keeping them partial sun or full sun as long as there is adequate watering. Partial sun means less watering to do. They can also be put in any container or hanging pot easily, but it is recommended to place a multitude of them close together! (They tend to grow larger this way.)

Care for cosmos includes placing them in full sun, and they are best in container gardens. The extreme benefit of this annual flower, however is that it attracts butterflies! Perennial flowers that are low maintenance are the liatris and the peony.

Peonies must be planted in autumn in a full sun area. They also need soil that is moisture-retentive. Soil also must be covered with mulch during the winter to avoid damage to this perennial.

As for the liatris, this flower is great, because it will attract hummingbirds to your garden! It is recommended that this flower be grown in the back of the garden however, because it grows pretty tall! This plant really grows anywhere, and grows easily. Note that in order to
avoid choking it is recommended to move and separate this plant after 3 or 4 years.

In landscaping, it really is a matter of visual preference. Over time as you get more knowledgeable, you will learn what flowers are your favorite, and which need the most care. Just know that if you ever have any questions we are happy to help! Happy planting, and get your garden looking beautiful by mixing perennials and annuals! Feel free to ask our landscaping and gardening experts for recommendations.

 

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Improving the look and feel of your home – Curb appeal

NJ Landscape Designer

NJ Landscape Designer

Maybe you are planning to sell your home. Or maybe you are just tired of the same look when you pull in the driveway. You can give your home a fresh look – a “facelift” if you will, without spending a lot of money. Improve what realtors call “curb appeal” with these tips we share below. And remember, when your home looks better – you are happier. (So is a potential buyer.)

The Porch-Does your porch need painted? Strip it, stain it, paint it – give the kids a project, enlist the family’s help. When a group of people tackles painting or staining a porch or deck, it’s not a daunting task. It will go faster and everyone can enjoy the effort. Play music, whistle while you work, and reward the gang with a pizza party or some other treats when the job is done! Don’t have kids to help you? Spread the word around your neighborhood or among friends and find a college student or two that could use some cash. They will accept much less pay than a specialized company to do the same job. And you’re contributing to their education! You may also find that someone in your circles is out of work, and would love to help with home improvements for a low price.

Another way to spruce up the front porch – hang a windowbox or two! Your landscape and garden expert can suggest the best plants/flowers for the boxes, to have nice looking windows all year. In wintertime, you can add greenery, pine cones, battery candles, fake fruit or vegetables and other decorative items that keep the boxes festive and colorful when the flowers can’t bloom.

An Arbor
Find a spot in the front yard, side yard, or near the front porch or entrance to place a trellis or arbor. These can be purchased from your home and garden supplier. Your landscaper can plant the right viney plants to take hold and spread over the trellis or arbor – possibly a blooming vine if that’s what you prefer. These look lovely and add instant appeal to a “blah” or barren area of the yard.

Line the Driveway
What’s along your driveway? Dirt? Pebbles? Nothing? Have your landscaper place some nice edging along the drive that you pick out. Or if you are a do-it-yourselfer, purchase it and have at it! You can also place mulch or some type of rock or pebble along the edging, making a ‘row’ as wide as you like, then place edging on the other side.

Want to add some color?  Every 5 or 10 feet, add a large potted plant or shrub. This method of lining the driveway makes it look very nice as you approach your home and pull in. Pavers, bricks, and uncommon types of mulch or ground cover can also be used. Need ideas? Not sure what to put down? Ask your landscaper.

In an upcoming article, we’ll share even more ideas for improving curb appeal AND creating an inviting back or side yard area. Until then, happy planning, painting and planting!

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Sun or Shade – which plants to use: Part Two

In Part 1 of this series, we talked about the best plantings for shady areas. If you have a sunny yard, congratulations! Gardening in sunny spots is easier because of the huge variety of plants that grow well under sunny conditions. In the previous article, we went over some of the factors to consider when selecting plants, and you can always ask your landscaping professional for suggestions.

Once you’ve considered the general surroundings in which you live, it is time to think about the actual spot where you garden. Each and every garden will consist of plenty of different microclimates. A microclimate is an area within your garden or yard that is different from the general overall conditions in your region.

Do you have a bed along your home that stays warmer than surrounding areas? Do you live near the ocean and have areas that are sometimes sprayed with saltwater? Do you have a spot that tends to stay wet or cooler than anywhere else? Do you have an area that is sheltered from the wind? There’s a myriad of factors that contribute to microclimates. Being attentive and learning what your microclimates are will help you identify the plants that will do best for each spot in your home garden. It can also help you find a spot where a plant that you didn’t think you could grow will prosper.

The primary thing that you have to worry about in a sunny garden is that your plants are getting enough water. Here are some of the top plants to use in heavy sun areas:

*  Roses: Almost all roses need at least six hours of sun a day to bloom their best, so roses are ideal for all your sunny spots. Most people think that roses are hard to grow, but they don’t have to be. An easy way to give your roses a boost is to plant your empty banana peels around the bushes. Bananas have potassium, which is as nutritious for roses as it is for people. Roses that are well-nourished will produce more, larger blooms with stronger perfume, which is always crowd pleaser.

*  Butterfly Bush: A perfect choice for lawns and gardens, butterfly bushes are very tolerant of heat and humidity. They flourish in difficult conditions like very sunny spots and have tons of beautiful blooms, which can vary in color from blue to lavender, pink to red, and even white. As you’ve guessed from their name, they also invite butterflies and bees to your garden, which is fun for both children and adults.

*  Daisies: There are few flowers as cheery as daisies. A mass planting of daisies in bloom is certain to bring a smile to anybody’s face, and they are ideal additions to any sunny garden. For the flowers to bloom more than once a season, just cut off the bloom once it has faded, a practice commonly known as deadheading. You can also just cut the flowers when they are in bloom and enjoy them inside the house.

*  Lilies: Another great bloomer for your sunny garden area is the lily. There are numerous varieties of lilies available today, from the typical tiger lilies to deep purple Black Jacks, yellow Flamboyants, pink lilies called Spanish Flame, and even delicate lilies that look like orchids. Lilies are planted from bulbs, which makes them very easy to care for. Plant one time and you will have blooms for a long time to come.

*  Lavender: A great choice for a sunny walkway is the lavender plant. Lavender looks great in bunches and rows, such as along a sidewalk. You might consider placing the plants so that people run into them as they walk to your house; this will release the fragrance of the flowers. Lavender is drought-tolerant and the flowers are great for drying, using in crafts, and cooking. They add a useful touch as well as beauty to any sunny garden.

There are many other plants that to choose from that would fit in well in your sunny garden, but these five superstars are a great way to begin your adventures in gardening in the sun. If you have partial shade, it can affect your planting choices as well, and we’ll cover that in a future article.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Right Plants for Sun or Shade: Part 1 –Shade-Happy Plantings

You can make your gardening life a lot simpler by choosing the right plants for certain areas in your garden or lawn.

In this two-part article we’ll cover the basics on how to choose the right plants for your garden based on sunny or shady areas and also list some of the top plants for those areas.

The idea behind selecting the right plant for the right place is that when you pick plants that are well-suited to the location where they are planted, they will perform well with limited additional work. Plants that are ideal for their site will establish themselves quickly, and have strong roots.  Healthy plants growing in ideal conditions will be less likely to become diseased. The same way we are less likely to catch a chill if we are well-rested and healthy. They are also less likely to be adversely affected by insects. If a few insects chew on healthy plants, the plants are likely to shrug off the injury and keep on growing and flowering. If unhealthy plants are chewed by insects, the plants have less energy to deal with the invading pest and will be more likely to die.

So how do you pick the right plant for the right place? It’s simple; first you assess your local conditions, not for your garden, but the general surroundings. Do you have long, hot, humid summers? Are they hot, but dry? Do you have chilly nights, even when the days are hot? Do your conditions tend to be wet, dry or somewhere in between? Also think about what plants grow in your area naturally. It makes sense to think about native plants, but you needn’t limit yourself to them.

Below is a list of plants that thrive in shady areas. Low-Light Plants include:

*Impatiens

Ideally, impatiens receive partial to full shade. This allows the plant to produce gorgeous flowers in a medley of heights and intense colors, including white, red, dark pink, light pink and orange. Impatiens are beloved because they’re not only pretty, but also easy to care for. Glossy leaves make it attractive even when it’s no longer in bloom. Water impatiens regularly, but make sure soil is just moist — not too wet. Use rich soil and apply a general-purpose fertilizer once a month. Impatiens are susceptible to frost, so bring potted ones indoors or cover the ones planted in your garden when temperatures drop too low for their liking.

*Begonia

Fitting for flower beds, hanging baskets, pots or even indoors, begonia is an incredibly adaptable plant. You can find this flowering plant in red, white, yellow or pink, depending on the variety. All types of begonia grow dense foliage and reach between 6 inches and 9 inches in height. Waxy green or chocolate-brown leaves give this plant appeal even when it’s not in bloom. Begonia hates frost and love shade. Unlike some other plants on this list, it does best with a little care and attention. Remove dead leaves, stems and flowers. Water generously, but allow its soil to dry before watering again. Ensure that soil stays loose, and add fertilizer once a month.

*Wild Violet

Don’t mistake this plant for the common African violet that’s a popular indoor/outdoor plant. Truly wild violets always live outdoors. This hardy perennial does well in intensely shaded areas and can pop up in the most unexpected spots, such as the dark crevices of a forest floor, among prairie grasses and even in wetlands. Wild violet is sweet-smelling, and it tastes sweet, too! Use the well-washed blooms in salads, or crystallize them with sugar to decorate desserts.

The coloring of this plant can range from the palest purple to the deepest blue, and the spectrum also includes oranges, pinks, whites and other brilliant colors. Wild violet emerges in early spring, and it prefers well-drained soil abundant with decayed manure and organic matter.

* Hosta Lily

The hosta lily is more alluring for its broad, showy leaves than for its small white or lavender flowers that bloom on long stalks shooting up from the plant. Green, blue, golden and variegated leaves bring interesting textures and colors to shady areas of the yard. Once established, the hosta lily doesn’t need much pruning. It prefers partial to full shade and grows between 18 inches and 30 inches tall and 2 feet to 4 feet wide. The hosta lily should have nutrient-intense soil that’s constantly moist. After the first frost, cut back the plant down to ground level. Either cover the plant crown with a 3-inch bed of organic mulch to prepare it for the following season, or let the plant naturally die back. If this is your preferred method, cut back dead growth the following spring before new shoots come up.

As you think about each of these plants make a few notes on each of them, this will help you plan what plants should go in each place. If it’s bushes and shrubs you want to plant in shade, ask our landscaping professionals to make suggestions for you! In our next article, we’ll go over some of the top plants for sunny areas that love to soak up the rays!

 

 

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What Causes Snow?

Every winter, we watch our once green grass wither and turn brown and all the leaves fall off our shrubs. When we look out our window at our lawn, it does not look very pretty. That is—until the first snowfall.  Along comes some winter snow and blankets our lawn, bushes and trees in white. So what causes snow?

Snow forms within clouds so it won’t snow on a cloudless day. And snow needs a temperature below freezing. Snow clouds are full of moisture— saturated air that has condensed into a liquid much like the condensation you see on the outside of a cold glass of water. The warm air reaches the glass, becomes cold and saturated, and turns to liquid—the water beads on your glass. So within the cloud you have this condensed liquid and when the temperature falls below freezing, it turns into ice. It is interesting to note that the design of a water molecule leads it to develop into six-sided crystals. A snowflake is a bunch of crystals all stuck together. Picture these ice crystals joining until the snowflake is big enough—heavy enough—then it falls down toward the  ground. Gravity takes over and the heavier snowflakes begin to fall. Even in midair the snowflake will join with more crystals that it bumps into as it is falling.  When the temperature is right at freezing, snowflakes will be bigger because there are a little bit melty—a little bit wet and ‘sticky’ so the crystals they encounter will stick to them more easily. When it is extremely cold—far below freezing—snowflakes will be smaller and the snow is kind of dry. If you’ve ever tried to make a snowball or snowman and you can’t get the snow to mass together, this is why.

The snow clouds form when warm air flows up and over cold air.  And water vapor that is in the warm air mass, along with the movement of the air as it rises, makes clouds form. The more water vapor that is in and around the cloud and the stronger the updrafts that make the water vapor condense, the greater the chance of snow forming inside the cloud. This is why, in mountain areas, you’ll have snow and precipitation on one side of the mountain but the other side receives minimal amounts of snow. This is because as the air is forced to rise on the ascension side of the mountain, the water vapor forms and comes down as snow or rain.  By the time the clouds cross the mountain to the other side, there is hardly any moisture left in them.

One last interesting point about snow—it actually helps your lawn. It contains atmospheric nitrogen, which melts down into the ground as the snow melts, and this nitrogen improves your spring grass. Nature is pretty cool, isn’t it?

 

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