Garanimals Blog

Archive for the ‘spring’ tag

March 27th, 2014 at 5:41 pm

Spring Gardening Preparation



If you like to garden, or want to start one, now’s the time to get ready for planting! (Did we mention that April is National Gardening Month?) As the ground thaws, soil needs to be prepared in order to create the best growing medium for your plants. Different types of plants require different kinds of care, including the timing of their planting, exposure to sunlight, supplemented nutrition, watering, spacing, and harvesting. Get your kids involved and let them help you however they can. Here are some basic guidelines for starting your spring planting.

  1. Determine your frost date. If you live in an area where you get a true winter, it’s important that you know your area’s frost date to avoid planting too soon. There are quite a few online resources to help you figure it out. Try Dave’s Garden…you just put in your zip code and it tells you your frost risks and timing.
  2. Choose your plants. Gather your bulbs and seeds and determine which ones need to be planted first. Some plants can survive colder temperatures.
  3. Section your garden. Plants should be grouped by type and care. Vegetables, fruits, herbs, flowers, etc. should have their own sections. Keep their “requirements” in mind when you create your sections…some need lots of direct sunlight, while others thrive in shady spots.
  4. Test your soil. You should first make sure the soil is ready to be prepared. Heavy soil that is still wet from snow and rain will not let your plants breathe. You can tell it’s ready when you pick it up, squeeze it into a ball with your hands, and then drop it, or poke it. If it crumbles into small particles, it is dry enough to be worked. If it breaks into large clumps or stays in form, it is still too moist. Not all soil is equal, so learning a bit about your native soil will help you understand when it’s ready.
  5. Prepare your soil. There are a lot of things you can do to improve the medium your plants grow in. Without going into too much detail, consider looking into the various soil-improvement methods, including pH testing, composting, fertilizing, tilling, mulching, etc. Hint: Used coffee grounds and egg shells make great fertilizers!
  6. Plant! When your soil is ready, plant your seeds and bulbs, take care of them and watch them grow! Garden maintenance can be tedious, but rewarding. Make sure you water and fertilize as needed, and don’t forget to pick those pesky weeds!

Do you have a garden and have tips to share? Post them and/or pictures of your garden on our Facebook page!


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June 7th, 2013 at 3:02 pm

Allergies and Kids

Some of us see spring and early summer as a magical time as the flowers bloom and leaves suddenly appear on the trees. Others wish the season was over before it even begins. As beautiful and magical as the early growing season is, it can be a real pain for kids who deal with seasonal allergies. Those of you with seasonal allergies or parents of kids who have them, know the signs – watery eyes, constant sneezing, and even asthma symptoms with trouble breathing. It can be so miserable for kids, but here are some ways to keep them happy.

Stay Inside  - It’s a bummer, but the best way to avoid all the allergens in the air. You will need to turn the air conditioner on in your home and car, plus keep the windows shut.

Drink Lots of Water – You should always stay hydrated but when constant sneezing and nose blowing is occuring extra water helps to keep the body working right!

Add Humidity – A little humidity helps easier breathing.

Take care of Sinus Pressure – None of us like sinus pressure, but it can be relieved by rinsing your sinuses with saltwater, sitting in steam from a warm shower or bath, gargling with saltwater, and applying warm compresses.

Be sure to buy the best tissues for those little noses. The ones with aloe or lotion help to soothe the redness from constant rubbing. Also, think about things you may bring inside. If you dry your laundry on a line, when you bring it inside it can often bring the in the allergens you are trying to avoid!

Last, but not least, snuggle your little one. A hug and snuggle is one of the best ways to make them feel a little better!

Remember if allergies ever get bad enough to effect how your child is breathing you should make sure to consult a physician.

Kim Ross also writes at  A Little Bit of This and That ~ The Adventures of a Stay at Home Mom.

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May 15th, 2013 at 1:09 pm

DIY Flowers & Crafts


It’s the perfect time to get out your craft supplies and create some beautiful flower masterpieces! One of the nicest things about flower crafts is that there are so many great materials you can use….fresh flowers, fake flowers, felt, tissue paper, etc. the possibilities are endless! It’s also a great way to bring pops of bright color to your home. Flowers make great home décor, and instead of buying or cutting fresh flowers that will die in a matter of days, using other lasting materials will ensure you can enjoy your floral décor for years to come. We even found these adorable DIY flower invitations (see picture below), which are perfect for any type of spring or summer party. While you’re working on your creations, we also included a few ideas for kids to do alongside you. Let the crafting begin!



For the kids:


Speaking of flowers, what’s your favorite?


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March 21st, 2013 at 5:00 am

Spring Crafts


With winter officially over, it’s time to take down the hand-crafted snowmen, snowflakes and penguins and make flowers, butterflies and bunnies!  Celebrate new life with these fun and easy springtime crafts:

  • Sunshine Flower Pot – A pretty homemade flower pot for the aspiring gardener!  I love how bright and festive this looks on the windowsill.  You can fill the pot with either homemade Fingerprint Flowers or potting soil and seeds to grow real and beautiful flowers!
  • Caterpillar Craft – This colorful craft is very easy to make and I bet you won’t be able to stop at just one!  Make an entire family of caterpillars to decorate your home.
  • Pine Cone Bird Feeder – The birds are out and about again, and they’re probably pretty hungry after a long winter!  You can help feed them by taking a pine cone and covering it in seeds and other foods our flying friends love.
  • Easter Egg Napkin Rings – Easter is just 10 days away, and these napkin rings will really brighten up your table when family comes over!  For more patterns, cut different shapes from the foam like squiggly lines.
  • Cotton Bunny – Who could resist trying to make this precious bunny?  He’s cute enough to leave out long after Easter Sunday!  Depending on how much cotton you have, make him as large or as small as you want!  Or, make a mother and baby!

What are some of your favorite spring crafts?

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