Into the Garden II

by on February 9, 2011

Stylish Bird Houses Will Jazz up Your Garden

Even if you don’t have the funds to upgrade your own pad this year, you might want to do it for your favorite feathered friends.

All the fashion-conscious birds in your yard will love these enviro-mod bird houses from Loll Designs.

Cube

Cube

For an extreme makeover, check out the cube house, an unbelievably sturdy, UV-resistant, fade-resistant, easy-to-mount nest box that also gives the yard a sort of Bauhaus feel.

Pitched-roofPitched-roof

For a more traditional look, there’s the pitched-roof bird house. It’s made from the same recycled plastic (mainly plastic milk jugs) and comes in the same eight colors. You don’t have to stain or paint these boxes—just clean out the old nest once a year to make way for the new renters.

You’ll Love This Award-Winning
Blanket Flower

Mesa Yellow gaillardiaGardening is competitive, whether we like to admit it or not. Who doesn’t want to be that house on the block with the newest and coolest plants?

For an easy-case perennial that will turn your neighbors’ heads, check out Mesa Yellow, a new blanket flower cultivar in 2010 and an All-America Selections winner.

Mesa Yellow boasts brilliant all-yellow flowers that appear from spring to fall. Its tidy, mounded habit makes it a great choice for containers and cut flowers. Bees and butterflies like it, too.

Common name: Mesa Yellow gaillardia, Mesa Yellow blanket flower
Botanical name: Gaillardia x grandiflora ‘Mesa’ Mesa Yellow
Plant type: Perennial
Zones: 5 to 9
Height: 16 to 22 inches
Family: Asteraceae

Growing conditions
— Sun: Full sun
— Soil: Average, well-drained
— Moisture: Average to dry

Speaking of Birds…

A Cleaner Way to Feed Them

EcoCleanWe love to watch birds fluttering around and eating the seed we put out for them, but we’re not so crazy about the dirty job of cleaning the feeder.

That’s why we love the idea of a feeder that stays cleaner longer. EcoClean feeders come in nine styles, including various sizes of tube feeders, a finch tube feeder (with smaller feeding holes), and a dinner bell feeder. Each one is embedded with a special nontoxic, antimicrobial material that helps prevent mold and bacteria.

We’ll still clean our EcoClean feeder with soap and water once in a while, but we won’t have to use bleach anymore. And anything that shaves off a chore here and there gets a big thumbs up.


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