A Basic Review Of Evergreen Tree}

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Submitted by: Patrick Desnoyers

Evergreen trees, a hearty, charismatic tree thrives in specific landscapes, preferring climates that are bound for a long, cold winter season. Evergreens prefer the cold and snow. Its where their blooming growth gains the most strength. Hot, humid climates, on the other hand, are less conducive to growth. Just ask an evergreen. Its way too hot and sticky for this dense, stiffly needled tree.

In specific area in the United States, such as Minnesota for example, evergreens grow in an environment where half of the year the deciduous trees and shrubbery are leafless. The perennials lie dormant due to the cold climatic features present in this stretch of North America. In fact, nearly six months out of a twelve month calendar year in chilly Minnesota are snow-bound. The landscape and its tree inhabitants must evolve to greet these chilly temperatures with a smile and an understanding. The evergreen has grown thick needles with dense branching systems. Since trees cant pick up and re-locate if they get cold, the evergreen has evolved into a robust tree that prefers ice and snow in lieu of the humid beaches of tropical landscapes.

Winters hardiness is a crucial consideration for evergreens. All plants, in fact, must be given the USDA hardiness rating, which is an indicator as to how much cold a plant, such as an evergreen can handle. The evergreen is a tough cookie. Bring on frigid temperatures. Evergreens prefer it this way.

Different evergreens flourish in differing cold climates. So you must be careful, if you are planning on planting your own evergreens in your backyard. Perform a little time-honored research before determining which evergreen is best for you environment. There are, for example, winter hardy evergreens in Minneapolis that are less likely to survive in a colder zone less than 40 miles north in Minnesota. Even in this segment of North America, heading north by a mere 40 miles can alter the dynamics of an environment and the ability for habitation to survive and flourish.

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To be clear on the type of evergreen for your tempered climate, check the tag on the tree or simply as a horticultural savvy individual about the hardiness zone most conducive to particular evergreens.

Along with the visual stimulation offered by evergreens and their holiday sprite-like image, evergreens are also used to help frame a view, block a view, protect against noise, and provide shelter against environmental factors such as wind, sun, and snow for, both, people and wildlife.

To pick the best evergreen for your plot of land, be certain to consider the following: soil type, PH, drainage, amount of sunlight, root competition, and nearby obstacles that might infringe on an evergreens growth and development.

Timing, too, is a vital consideration for evergreen trees. In cold climates, its also important to remember not to plant evergreens late in the fall season. Unlike deciduous plants, they continue to lose moisture in the needles during most of the winter season.

So, their initial growth stages will be blunted. This, in turn, can lead to a quickly deteriorating evergreenone that is bound to become fertilizer and not a meaty evergreen dressed for horticultural success

So, keep all of this information at arms length, go out and search for the evergreen that interests you.

About the Author: Avid full time hobby bonsai grower. Owner of

mishobonsai.com

, a website with ressource for tree seeds and he encourages everyone to

plant a tree

once a year.

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Beat The Heat And Survive The Summer

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Submitted by: Paul Purcell

The Dog Days of summer are almost upon us and record temperatures are sweeping the country. Unfortunately we have the highest number of elderly and medically fragile people in history, and an aging infrastructure that is feeling the strain of heavy electrical use as our senior citizens struggle to stay cool.

We re here to give you tips and tricks to help you beat the heat should you be susceptible to extreme temperatures, or should your power be out. Here s a short list of suggestions:

1. Drink plenty of cool water to keep yourself hydrated and reduce your body s core temperature. (Warm water won t do this, and cold water might be a shock to sensitive systems.) Drink regularly, every hour, even if you don t feel thirsty. Avoid soft drinks and alcoholic drinks that are actually diuretic and rob your body of the water it desperately needs.

2. Eat small, light, non-spicy meals. Eating heavy meals cranks your metabolism and can raise your body temperature. Also, digestion robs you of energy. Since the heat is already robbing you of some energy, you don t need to add to this drain by taxing the digestive system. However, don t skip meals since it s food that replenishes the electrolytes you lose through sweating and increased water consumption.

3. Some sources suggest you wear light colored, loose fitting clothes. However, that s only if you re going outside. If you go outside, go with that rule and also wear a loose fitting hat or carry an umbrella for shade. Forget the fashion rules, follow the heat rules. (By the way, royal blue and/or white are the best colors to wear for their heat reflective qualities. Ever wonder why most tarps and boat awnings are blue? This is why.) For indoors though, forget all those rules and go with the bare as you dare notion. The more exposed skin you have the more efficient your cooling-by-sweating process can work. Also, be sure to tie up long hair, and if you have a beard, consider shaving in order to remove all that facial insulation.

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4. Though bare as you dare is the way to go indoors in limited AC, most of us would prefer to have good air conditioning. If yours is out, or if power sources are uncertain, go someplace that has AC like the mall or other places that don t mind people coming in and hanging around a while. Also, you can AC pool with friends just like you d car pool. Go to a friend s house who has a good AC system.

5. Failing to find another source of AC, and considering that the power might be out, here are a couple more tips. First, stand-alone floor unit air conditioners aren t that expensive and can run off regular household current without the need for the special 220 volt outlets. This means that they can be operated using the smaller gas-powered electric generators. Can t afford a generator? You can probably afford a power inverter which can sometimes be found for under twenty dollars. They plug into your car s cigarette lighter and, using an extension cord, can power an appliance like your stand-alone AC, or at least some fans. Speaking of your car, if nothing else, if your car has AC you can ride around during the hottest hours of the day, providing you can afford today s gas prices. If absolutely nothing else, go to your nearest dollar store and see if they have any of those little battery-powered fans.

6. Can t afford a stand-alone AC but you have a generator? Your generator or power inverter can also power your fridge and/or freezer where you should have two-liter plastic bottles full of water filling up every empty space in both the fridge and freezer parts. Having cold water is a great thing. You drink cool water and use cold water to soak towels to wrap around your neck, wrists, and ankles where the veins and arteries are closest to the surface. This is one of the best ways to reduce your body temperature. Also, setting up a few of the frozen two-liter bottles in front of a fan can blow a nice cool breeze your way. (Write us at info@disasterprep101.com and we ll email you instructions for a homemade AC unit that uses these two-liter plastic bottles.)

7. Now that we ve talked about keeping you cool in the heat, let s backtrack a bit and talk about reducing the heat you might experience. Naturally, the first rule is block the sun. Do what you can to reduce the sunlight that hits your house or comes in through the windows. Keep the shades drawn, and you might even consider hanging a white sheet or blue tarp as an outside awning on the side(s) of the house that catch the most sun. These tarps are also effective if placed on the roof as they ll reflect the sun s rays.

8. Next in cooling the house come ventilation and insulation. If you have an attic, and the power is on, you should have a vent fan that keeps air flowing through the attic. Along with that, we suggest you have roof vent turbines, or a ridge vent (your home supply store can tell you all about these). In extremely hot weather, you might set a garden sprinkler on your roof and let it run for the hottest couple of hours of the day provided your area is not on water restriction. As for insulation one way to insulate parts of the house is to close off seldom-used rooms (especially those on the sunny side of the house), and close off their AC vents if any. This blocks heat and also reduces the area that your limited AC has to cool.

While we re here, we d be remiss in our duties if we failed to give you the symptoms of sunstroke and heat exhaustion, both of which require medical attention:

Heat Exhaustion: Symptoms include heavy sweating, and skin may be pale, cool, or flushed. The victim will also exhibit a weak pulse, with fainting, dizziness, nausea, or vomiting.

Sun Stroke (sometimes called heat stroke): Symptoms are high body temperature, hot, dry, red, skin (usually with no sweating), rapid shallow breathing, and a weak pulse. Sun stroke is the more dangerous of the two.

The most immediate first aid for either of these is to get the victim into a cool spot, and reduce their body temperature with ice-cold wet towels around the neck, wrist, and ankles. You can also put them in a bathtub of cool water. Don t use cold water in the tub as that will shock the system. Regardless of your first aid measures, you should seek immediate medical assistance.

Remember, hot weather is nothing to ignore, even if you re not among the elderly or medically fragile. Heat can affect everyone. Play it safe, stay cool, avoid exertion, and stay healthy. Also, when considering heat safety, don t forget your pets.

About the Author: Paul Purcell is an Atlanta-based security analyst and preparedness consultant and is the author of Disaster Prep 101 (

disasterprep101.com

.) Copyright 2006 Paul Purcell. Permission is granted to reprint this article provided all portions stay intact.

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6 Easy Tips For Perfect Laundry}

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6 Easy Tips for Perfect Laundry

by

Rick Young

You may think you’re doing laundry correctly but are you really getting the perfect load every time?

There is more to doing laundry than just separating the lights from the darks. For instance, did you know that you could save a considerable amount of energy if you wash your clothes in cold water?

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According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 80 percent to 85 percent of the energy used for laundry is for heating the water. The department also says that by simply changing your temperature setting from hot to warm, you can cut the machine’s energy use by 50 percent. According to the Consumer Energy Center, using cold water reduces your washer’s energy use by 75 percent.

The makers of Purex laundry detergent offer these tips for doing laundry correctly and efficiently.

* Sort your clothes by color, wash temperature and fabric type. Always follow the care instructions on the label. Separate lightly soiled clothing from heavily soiled garments. Also, separate fabrics that may shed lint or delicates such as lingerie and pantyhose from the rest of your wash.

* Check the pockets for money, tissues, pens, lipstick and other loose items and remove them.

* Set your washer to the appropriate water level for the size of the load. To conserve energy, wash full loads. However, be careful not to overload your washing machine. Leaving space for your clothing and detergent to move freely in the machine ensures that stains and soil will be removed from your garments.

* Allow the washer to fill with water before adding detergent and any laundry additives. Add your clothes last.

* If you are washing your clothing in cold water, use the appropriate type of detergent. Some detergents do not work as well in cold water as they do in warm. To compensate for less heat, use a detergent formulated to work well in cold water, such as Purex detergent.

* Remove clothes from the washing machine and dry them as soon as the wash cycle has completed. Read the label on each garment carefully and follow recommended drying procedures.

For more laundry tips and information on cold-water detergent, visit www.purex.com. -NU

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6 Easy Tips for Perfect Laundry

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