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Got questions about labeling or organizing your plants? We’re here to help. Enjoy our blog “Metal to the Petal” to find ideas, images and answers as you keep your garden organized. We invite you to comment and share!   

Gardening Tips That Help You Endure the Last Weeks of Winter

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Get a Head Start on Spring With Winter Gardening Tips

gardening tipsAs a gardener, you know that it doesn’t matter all that much whether Phil sees his shadow or not; there are still a few weeks until you’ll be able to dig in your garden. That doesn’t mean you’re forced to sit on your hands until April. There are plenty of gardening tips that can be utilized in late winter to get your spring garden prepped and care for indoor plants:

Create a little spring inside. If you’re a bit tired of winter’s blustery days and long to see some color, forcing the bloom on some branches might help you endure to the end. Take some clippers out to your yard and take a few forsythia, dogwood, cherry or magnolia branches for display in your home. Watch the branches bud and bloom into color in a warm room and you’ll enjoy the reminder that spring is just around the corner.

Get your seeds started indoors. You may have ordered your seeds in January, and it’s finally time to begin planting a few. You’ll need to check the germination time and compare that to when your last frost hits each spring. Onions, leeks, chives and pansies are among the longest for germination, so you will want to begin with these first.

Prune branches damaged over the past year. This is a good time to head outside and examine branches on ornamental and fruit trees and shrubs. Prune damaged branches to avoid affecting any new buds that might grow in spring. This is a good time to prune, because you can easily see any damage and cut away the affected branches. Also, spring growth allows the tree or shrub to heal easily after a late-winter pruning.

Take care of indoor plants. Your indoor plants may also need pruning, and this is the perfect time for fertilizing indoor plants that may have gone into dormancy over the winter. Every two weeks, add fertilizer to the soil to give them an extra boost as they head into their most active growing season. With daylight hours increasing, your indoor plants will also be waking up in a less dramatic fashion.

Check over stored bulbs. If you’ve been storing some bulbs indoors, now is a good time to get them out and check for any mold or damage. After they’ve been checked, you can put them back away for a few more weeks. When it’s time for the bustle of planting, you’ll be glad you took this important step ahead of time.

Get organized with high-quality garden tools. One of the best gardening tips for late winter is to invest in something that will make your garden more enjoyable. Purchase a set of plant markers for a more organized flower bed, or invest in a shovel or trowel that will last for decades.

Go ahead and treat yourself. Sometimes the last few weeks of winter are the hardest. If you are weary of cold weather and need a little pick-me-up, visit your local florist and choose a flowering indoor plant or a few branches of pussy willow. Even a bouquet of tulips from the grocery store will brighten up a room and help you endure the weather for a few more weeks.

Purchasing Kincaid Plant Markers in late winter helps ensure that your garden is organized and ready for planting in the spring. Take a look at our full selection of plant markers, then tour our site for gardening tips and other resources.

Plant Markers and Other Perfect Valentine’s Gifts for Gardeners

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Plant Markers Are the Ideal Winter Gift Idea

plant markersValentine’s Day is the perfect time for flowers, candy and jewelry. Unless you’re a gardener, and then your idea of romance may be a nice wood-handled trowel or a set of high-quality plant markers. If your special someone longs for the spring and the feel of dirt in their hands, your perfect Valentine’s Day gift may be among the ideas listed below:

Quality gardening tools: Many gardeners already own gardening tools, but purchasing one of superior quality may speak romance to the heart of your loved one. A spade with an ergonomically-designed handle or a special antique tool that has a wooden handle worn to a velvety finish may be what makes a memorable gift.

Gardening books: Gardeners are often happy working alone in their garden, and curling up with a good book when the winter weather keeps them inside may be a close second. Many gardeners start dreaming about their spring plans long before the ground thaws, and a good book may help them refine their plans or learn new techniques.

Look for a book that speaks to a specific interest that your special gardener has. Maybe they love the natural flow of an English woodland garden, or perhaps they have a new fascination with rock gardens. Choose a book that either expands or enhances what they already enjoy.

A garden membership: Many gardeners relish the experience of touring another garden. Many cities have botanical gardens, and membership often comes with a reciprocity agreement with other cities’ botanical gardens. Whether they’re at home or on the road, they’ll have the opportunity to see lovely gardens for free or at a reduced price. Enthusiastic gardeners will love comparing the techniques used at different gardens and get ideas for their own plots.

Plants: What gardener doesn’t swoon a little to receive a lovely little house plant? Whether it’s a hardy succulent container garden or a sweet little violet, even beginning gardeners will enjoy having an indoor plant. Choose a planter that’s decorated with hearts or is painted pink or red to give it a Valentine’s theme.

Plant markers: Gardeners are often fastidious in their garden organization and design, so a gift of high-quality plant markers can be a thoughtful gift for Valentine’s Day. Choose plant markers that don’t rust and are designed to add organization without detracting from the beauty of the plants.

Kincaid Plant Markers may not be the first gift you think of when planning your Valentine’s Day, but buy them for your favorite gardener this February and watch them melt! When you purchase Kincaid Plant Markers, you’re buying a gift designed for a lifetime of gardening.

Gardening Trends to Incorporate in 2018

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A Wide Array of Gardening Trends Gives Everyone Something New to Try

gardening trendsWinter isn’t over yet, but that’s no reason to put off dreaming about your garden plans for spring. There are many new gardening trends that take a little planning, so it’s a perfect time to begin taking steps for new features in your yard. Choose one or more of these exciting new ways to enjoy the outdoors:

Celebrating the small space: Look for gardening trends that embrace new ways of using small spaces. Gardeners will create multi-use features, like borders for planting that also function as seating around a fire pit, for instance, or a water-thirsty planting selection that is positioned under a rain downspout. Container gardens will continue to be popular, but gardeners will become more adventurous in combining colors and textures for a more interesting display.

Alfresco dining gets its own space: Traditionally, areas for eating outside have been attached to the house, utilizing a deck or patio. New designs are allowing guests to become more immersed in the garden area, with a path leading to an alfresco dining area away from the house. The effect is a dining experience that captures more of the ambiance of being outside and allows guests to enjoy the garden more.

Craftsmanship comes back: Homeowners are beginning to prefer a unique look designed by a skilled craftsman over mass-produced garden elements. Look for stone structures, unique arbors and handcrafted fire pits to replace those purchased off the shelf at a home improvement store. If you don’t have the budget to hire an artist to design your garden structures, there are plenty of ways to tackle a project like this yourself.

Prioritizing wildlife: One of the popular gardening trends for 2018 benefits both homeowners and the wildlife in the area. Gardeners are incorporating the natural habitats of birds, bees and butterflies, but also keeping in mind the needs of turtles and frogs. If you aren’t sure how to make critters welcome in your garden, talk with your local nursery.  They can provide advice about the types of plant combinations that will invite wildlife to make your garden their home. A good start is planting both seed-producing and berry-producing plants, and limit or eliminate the use of insecticides in your garden.

Houseplants as design elements: If you’re more of a living room gardener, don’t limit yourself to the obligatory Ficus. Think of your houseplants as complementing your decorating, and consider ways to enhance your home. For instance, you may want to place some houseplants near your front door to provide a visual transition from the outdoors to your home. Likewise, place a few plants around a large window to draw the outdoor beauty into your room.

No matter which of these gardening trends you decide to try, they’ll be improved by the addition of Kincaid Plant Markers. Made for a lifetime of gardening, our plant markers help you keep your garden organized from one trend to another. Contact us for more information.

Gardening Tips for Planning Your Spring Planting

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Winter Month Gardening Tips to Prepare for a Bountiful Garden

gardening tipsIt may be the height of winter cold, but many gardeners are beginning to feel their hands itch for a gardening spade or long for the feeling of dirt in their hands. If you’re already thinking of your spring garden, you’re not alone. Here are gardening tips you can use now to prepare for spring planting:

Get started on indoor seed plantings. Starting your seeds indoors is cheaper than buying starter plants, and it gives you some fun in the late winter, before the ground is ready for planting. Be sure to treat your indoor starters like the babies they are, spritzing them instead of watering, and giving them nutrients as needed.

Get your tools ready for hard spring and summer work. You can sharpen your tools in late winter to prep them for getting started planting in spring. By sharpening them, you’ll have them ready for spring, but you’ll also extend their life by taking good care of them.

Think about doing some beginning gardening strategies. If you have young kids in the house or you would like to pass your love of gardening on to another family member or friend, you might want to plan a simple beginner technique. A container garden, or even a bag garden, can be a great way to demonstrate the ease with which you can get started gardening.

Begin to prep your soil. Even the most enthusiastic gardener may dread tilling and testing soil, but it’s a task you can get out of the way while you wait to do the more fun tasks. Buy a simple kit to test your pH level and get started tilling. You’ll be glad it’s finished when it’s time to plant.

Work on your compost. Compost offers nutrients to your plants, and it’s easy to get started on a composting system. Even better, your community may offer free composting for local gardeners. After you’ve cleared your soil and removed weeds, add a four-inch layer of compost before planting.

Prune your trees and shrubs. Winter is a great time to prune without negatively impacting spring growth. Be careful to check into proper pruning techniques for each type of tree or shrub, but this can be a beneficial winter activity that gets you in the gardening mood.

Plan your garden layout. Research which plants work best in your climate, keeping watering and sun needs in mind for your backyard setting. Then think about the types of plants you enjoy, whether it’s vegetables or ornamental plants, and begin to sketch out a grid for your spring garden.

Get organized. One of the best gardening tips appeals to the organizational skills that seem to go along with a green thumb. Using plant markers to keep your garden organized and allow you to provide individualized care to each plant is a great investment for your garden.

For more gardening tips and to see the full selection of plant markers made for a lifetime of gardening, look no further than Kincaid Plant Markers. We offer high-quality plant markers that will get even the novice gardener excited about getting started this spring. Contact us to learn more.

What Are Customers Saying About Kincaid Plant Markers?

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Before You Purchase Plant Markers, Hear From Some Past Kincaid Customers

Every gardener loves a little organization: the neat rows, vegetables planted by type and color and the orderly ways in which gardening tasks fall throughout the gardening season. So it’s easy to understand why Kincaid Plant Markers are an exciting investment for every gardener, from the novice to the commercial gardener.

While it’s one thing to tell you that Kincaid Plant Markers are built for a lifetime of gardening, and that they’ll help you provide the right care to each individual plant in your yard, it might be even better if you heard from some satisfied customers. Here’s what customers say after purchasing Kincaid Plant Markers:

“The only plant marker I use in my garden. The closest thing to permanent I’ve found!”

                                                                                    Josh S.

                                                                                     Independence, Iowa

 

“These heavy duty, beautiful, resilient markers are truly the best I have ever used. Our garden now sports over 6,000 of these in different heights, and I cannot conceive of ever using a different kind. They are hands-down the greatest marker. My response is uber-positive. Thank you, Kincaid, for making a better marker. Even in our harsh Canadian winters, with heavy snows, we very rarely need to straighten a marker in spring.”

                                                                                    Floralandhardy

                                                                                    Moorefield, Canada

 

“Kincaid’s Stainless Steel garden labels are the “gold standard” of garden labels. I’ve purchased around 1,000 over the last 10 years and never been disappointed. The owner provides personalized service on special orders, so call if you need something that isn’t specifically described in their item list. Shipment has always been prompt, with boxes arriving in perfect condition every time. If you’re interested in buying the last labels you’ll ever need, these are the ones!”

 

                                                                                    Charles A. Harper

                                                                                    Bowling Green, Ohio

 

“These markers are by far the best that I have used! I have re-ordered several times, because these stainless steel plant markers have not shown ANY wear! I have been using a chisel-tip sharpie to create calligraphy on the markers, including common name and scientific names. The plant markers can be erased with acetone, or, less effectively, paint thinner.
The only inconvenience, the sharpie may fade after about a year. You can purchase plant label makers, but I haven’t tried them. Great product …worth the price!!”

 

                                                                                    A1Science

                                                                                    Halifax, Massachusetts

 

“These are very heavy duty stainless plant markers. They are the best of their kind in this category.”

 

                                                                                    Trilogy

                                                                                    Indianapolis, Indiana

 

As you can see, our customers are excited to share their appreciation of Kincaid Plant Markers. When you invest in a plant marker, it should last year after year and provide a way for you to increase your enjoyment of your garden.

Take a look at the full selection of Kincaid Plant Markers. We know you’ll find a model that fits your needs, and we hope to see your name on our list of satisfied customers!

Identifying Herbs for Your First Herb Garden

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Start Your New Garden by Identifying Herbs to Plant From Your Favorite Recipes

identifying herbsIf you’re new to gardening and want to give it a try, an herb garden is one of the most rewarding ways to start out. Identifying herbs for your new venture is as easy as simply consulting your taste buds. Decide which herbs you typically like to use in your cooking and they’ll make a great combination in your first herb garden.

Starting with herbs is ideal because you will have an immediate use for them in your kitchen, and they tend to grow rather quickly. In addition, while they require good soil and drainage, they tend to be easier to grow than other vegetables or flowers. Here are a few considerations for your first herb garden:

Keep it close to your kitchen: When deciding where to put your herb garden, choose a location that’s not more than 20 paces from where you do your cooking. You’ll want to be able to freely snip as you cook and make it as convenient as possible to use fresh herbs in your recipes. Find a spot that is in full sun at least half the day to achieve the best possible growing conditions.

Identifying herbs for easy snipping: When you’re in the middle of a recipe, you won’t want to spend time trying to distinguish cilantro from parsley. Invest in some garden markers so that you can tell, at a quick glance, which herb you need for your recipe.

Consider visual appeal: Herbs tend to be mostly green, so you may wonder if you’re stuck with a little visual boredom until you expand to flowering plants or a colorful vegetable garden filled with tomatoes and peppers. Your herb garden can enjoy a little color variation with thyme, sage and mint, which all come in variegated versions. There are some varieties of basil that have deep purple leaves. While green may dominate your color scheme, there are ways to change things up a bit and keep them from getting too monochromatic.

Choose a few fast-growing herbs: In order to see the fruits of your labor more quickly, it can be fun to include some fast-growing herbs. Dill, cilantro and basil are all choices that you can grow from seed rather quickly and enjoy them in your kitchen in just a few weeks. Many other herbs are perennials that will return each year, so the effort you put in with your first planting will pay off for years to come.

Identifying herbs for your first garden is a fun activity, so let your tastes be your guide! Once you’ve made your choices, invest in a set of Kincaid Plant Markers to make it easy to choose your favorite additions to your best family recipes.

Gardening Tips for Reaching Your Gardening Goals in 2018

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Use These Gardening Tips to Shape Your Planning For Spring

gardening tipsIt’s that time of year when the holidays are over, but spring seems far away. While it’s still wintry conditions, it’s a perfect time to begin dreaming of your garden and making plans for an enjoyable yard. When you start planning in January, you have time to really think through your goals for your garden and research gardening tips for reaching those goals.

If you’re not sure what your gardening goals are for 2018, you have plenty of time to consider a few options. Here are some common reasons for having a garden, along with some gardening tips for each goal:

Access to the freshest possible produce: Homegrown tomatoes are one of the most common reasons to start a backyard vegetable garden, but there are other motivations that keep gardeners at it, year after year:

  • A supply of herbs and hard-to-find ingredients
  • Food security for your household
  • Knowing where your produce comes from, and what was used to grow it
  • Canned or frozen produce in the winter months
  • Of course, those heirloom tomatoes

Start now: You don’t have to wait for March or April to begin planning your garden. Begin researching the best varieties for your region and start diagramming where you’ll place each of your vegetables in your garden. You can also take time to refine your plans for fertilizing your vegetable plants.

Teaching children to garden: Maybe you’d never go to the trouble to garden if it weren’t for your kids. Here are a few of the most common kid-related motivations for a summer vegetable garden:

  • They’ll learn about the growing cycle of a plant.
  • Plucking vegetables right out of the garden for dinner may increase their appeal for picky palettes.
  • Kids love to get their hands into dirt and help with watering, an activity that gets them away from screens and helps them connect with nature.

Again, you can start planning your kid-friendly vegetable garden in January. Think about the vegetables your kids enjoy eating, and then mix in a few additional plants that you’d like for them to try, or that are fun to grow. Including fast-growing varieties like loose-leaf lettuce can help kids get a relatively fast reward for their efforts.

Love for the environment: Some gardeners not only love harvesting fresh vegetables, but also feel a responsibility to plant a garden. Here are some of the reasons why you may be environmentally motivated to begin planting this spring:

  • You know the value of reducing the amount of turf in your yard that needs maintaining.
  • You’ll create a habitat for butterflies, bees and hummingbirds, depending on what you grow.
  • Your vegetables will be transported by foot to your kitchen, rather than by truck to your grocery store.

An environmentally-friendly garden will require some research before spring arrives. You’ll need to determine which plants, like milkweed, will encourage butterflies to visit your plot, or what type of fertilization methods are the most environmentally-friendly, such as composting.

One of the best gardening tips is to organize your plants with attractive labeling materials from Kincaid Plant Markers. Built to last for a lifetime of gardening, our plant markers will help you create a beautiful yard, no matter what your motivation is for gardening.

Compare Kincaid Plant Markers With Other Brands

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Kincaid Plant Markers: Built For a Lifetime of Gardening

plant markersWhether you’re a novice home gardener or you’re harvesting for commercial sales, Kincaid Plant Markers offers the organization and neat presentation every gardener wants. Even better, you’ll never need to replace Kincaid Plant Markers because they’re made to last, with a finish that never rusts and construction that holds up to the rigors of garden life.

Did you know that Dave’s Garden, one of the most popular gardening blogs on the web, trusts Kincaid Plant Markers? In addition, these products are featured by

Garden Watchdog as one of the Top 5 Plant Tags and Markers. While these are exciting credentials for the company, you only need to look at Kincaid’s quality to determine that these plant markers are the right choice for your garden:

100 percent stainless steel: Because each of the components of Kincaid’s Signature Series and Collector Series markers is constructed of stainless steel, they won’t corrode or rust. You can count on your markers for garden organization year after year, no matter which model of markers you purchase. Even the Garden Series is made with a galvanized steel post, which will last a lifetime. Competitors’ posts are made of zinc and aluminum, which won’t hold up over time in various weather conditions.

Heavy duty posts: The posts for Kincaid Plant Markers are made to withstand any abuse your garden receives due to hoeing, foot traffic or even the occasional wayward tricycle. The Signature Series is constructed with a .135 diameter post, and the Collector Series and Garden Series each feature a .091 diameter post.

Designed for your convenience and enjoyment: Kincaid Plant Markers are constructed for ease of use and attractive presentation in your garden. The angles of each plate are designed for viewing and rounded corners add to their appeal. You’ll also find adjustable heights in the Signature and Collector Series.

Best yet, each of Kincaid’s plant marker varieties are ready to ship in one business day, so you never have to wait to have the beautifully organized garden you want. Whether you purchase a set of Kincaid Plant Markers as a gift or for your own garden, you’ll appreciate the quality and care we put into the construction of our products.

Identifying Plants for Christmas Decorations

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Get Beyond the Christmas Tree When Identifying Plants for the Holidays

identifying plantsIf you have plans to buy a cut Christmas tree, you know how a tree can set the stage for a beautiful holiday. A real tree may be a bit more trouble than an artificial tree, but fans of real trees say that artificial trees just can’t cut it. Even if you’re featuring an artificial tree, identifying plants to decorate your home for Christmas can help you achieve some of that same real tree appeal.

Real tree enthusiasts know the draw of incorporating plants, and if you’re a gardener, you may embrace the idea of even more plants included in your holiday decorating. Identifying plants for Christmas decorating often comes down to just a few key varieties:

Christmas cactus: While these may be difficult to coax into bloom at exactly the right time, they can lend a colorful display to your home in the winter. The Christmas cactus is an air plant, living on dust, debris and rain and usually flower based on intermittent periods of cooler temperatures.

Poinsettia: This Central American plant is a common sight at Christmastime, and the variation in colors makes it fun for decorating your home. You can get poinsettias in white, pink or red and you’ll even spot them drenched in glitter in grocery stores. While often treated as a seasonal plant, you can nurture your poinsettia to live all year.

Hyacinth: Evergreens often dominate the Christmas scent scene, but hyacinths can help you mix up the aromas in your home. These flowering plants have a strong scent and their small flowers add a delicate touch to any holiday display.

Amaryllis: These showy plants produce large blooms in white or red, but their planting should be timed right for a Christmas appearance. Plant your amaryllis about 10 weeks before your desired bloom time to get the desired results. Amaryllis also makes a nice gift for those that get the winter blues, because just about the time that everyone is getting anxious for spring to appear, an amaryllis received for Christmas will bloom.

Identifying plants for Christmas decorating is fun, but you can give each of these plants as gifts, too. Include a set of Kincaid Plant Markers and you’ve got a complete and themed gift idea. Take a look at our full selection to purchase a gift for your favorite gardener.

Delightful, Semi-Homemade Holiday Gifts From Your Garden

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Give From Your Garden, Then Help Them Start Theirs

gifts from your gardenGardeners rarely need much encouragement to show off the bounty of their efforts, and the holidays come with many opportunities to showcase your garden’s pleasures. Take a look at a few of the best ideas for creating beautiful gifts from your garden:

Herb-infused jellies and jams: Create a gift from your garden that will have your loved ones looking for any excuse to eat a muffin or piece of toast. Keep in mind that when you give herb-infused jellies and jams, there’s no reason to commit to an entirely homemade product. Buy your favorite brand of local jam and infuse it with your herbs. Your friends will love it.

Decorated candles: Press dried flowers, ferns or leaves from your garden into a holiday-scented candle by softening the wax just a bit. Candle making can be a messy, expensive project, but you can start with store-bought candles and let your plants offer the special touches.

Herb-infused olive oil: A flavored olive oil is a real treat for cooks, and even more so if the herbs come from the garden of a friend or family member. The effects only last about two months, so encourage the recipient not to save it for a special occasion, but instead, use it to warm up their best recipes in the winter months.

Potpourri and sachets: The smell of dried flowers is a welcome change in the chilly winter season. Add different combinations of flowers to a netted bag for a drawer or place in a keepsake bowl to be displayed on a table. Even young girls love to receive a beautiful sachet to keep in a drawer, so make one for all the ladies in your life, both young and old.

Plant cutting party favors: When it’s your turn to host, place plant cuttings in mini pots and then decorate the pots with the names of your guests. Your party favors will be the talk of the event; a plant cutting is such an unexpected gift during the holidays. Use potpourri, evergreen trimmings or pinecones from your garden to add a centerpiece to your garden-themed table.

Help them get started: Choose a creative gift to help a friend or family member get their own garden planned for spring. High-quality plant markers are a great idea, because while seeds or gardening tools may be expected, plant markers lend a bit of pride to gardening success.

Get started with your holiday shopping at Kincaid Plant Markers. Choose a set to give to a friend with their plant cutting gift, or choose your own for a little holiday treat for yourself. Our plant markers are made for a lifetime of gardening, because they’ll never rust or become corroded. Take a look at our selection and choose the perfect gift!

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