William Manchenton - Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage



Posted by William Manchenton on 4/23/2019

Poinsettias are plants most often associated with Christmas, but you can display them indoors during any season. They are beautiful and can add color to your home. Poinsettia flowers come in pink, white, cream and red (which is the most popular). These flowers grow up to 18 inches tall, but to keep them looking stunning requires a substantial amount of attention.

Poinsettias initially are from Mexico and South America and were grown strictly for making a red dye and for medical use. The plant became famous and synonymous with Christmas in the 16th century. These holiday plants can be grown outdoors in your yard if your home is in a frost-free environment. 

Poinsettias require a temperature of about 65 to 80F during the day and nothing below 60-degrees F at night to keep them healthy. The holiday flower does better in the sun, but if exposed to cold weather, the foliage will drop.

How To Care For Poinsettias

  • Light and Temperature: Poinsettia plants like very bright but indirect light with ample moisture; these plants survive longer in a semi-cool and humid environment. Light is vital for growth and color retention.
  • Water: It’s advisable to water the plants thoroughly every time the soil feels dry to touch. The plant doesn’t like water accumulation at its bottom. To avoid this, slit the bottom of the pot, if it’s in a basket, drain all water that might have collected.
  • Fertilizer: The plant requires a well-balanced fertilizer like Peter's 20-20-20 until the plant attains its full color. Reduce application of fertilizer to ˝ strength once whenever you water your plant.
  • Temperature: Poinsettias like a warm room that ranges between 65-80-degree F in the day time and 60-65-degrees F at night. Avoid excess heat or cold, temperature generating appliances and fireplaces.

How To Maintain Your Poinsettia After Christmas

The holiday period is over; you want to have this beautiful flower in your garden. First, remember the plant likes a sunny environment with lots of water.

To transport from your pot into your backyard soil, remove all the branches and cut to about six inches of the pot rim. Use the same dirt from the pot container when you are transporting your plant to your backyard.

During the coming months, especially between September and November, light plays a vital role in poinsettia plant growth. It requires sufficient energy to produce flower and needs long periods of darkness at night to bloom out fully.

For the most success with your Poinsettias and any other flowers in your garden, have a reliable landscape specialist take a look at your home garden and recommend best practices.




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Posted by William Manchenton on 9/14/2017

It doesn’t matter if your back yard is long, winding and spacious, covering acres of wide, open land, or small and square shaped. With creativity, fun and a few accessories, you can turn your back yard into an oasis of natural, calming beauty. Before you start implementing back yard designs, fertilize and water your grass, ensuring that it is a healthy green. It's recommended that you fertilize in the spring or fall. Fill any holes in your yard and consider placing a table or other covering over areas that the sun has browned due to too over exposure. Also, make sure that you have enough top soil, between four and eight inches. Bushes and shrubs – Create designs when planting bushes and shrubs. But, only plant a number of bushes and shrubs that you know you can easily maintain and keep trimmed. Intersperse colorful flowers and plants at the front edges of bushes and shrubs. The greenery also works wonderfully as a back yard sidewalk or stair border. Plant as fences – Grow tall plants and bushes around the outer circumference of your back yard and allow the greenery to work as a fence. Place motion detector lights in the area to keep people and large animals from approaching your home unnoticed. Outdoor entertainment space – Place benches in your back yard along the sides of a barbecue grill. Leave enough room for grillers to move unhindered while they're cooking and to prevent smoke and grill heat from fanning guests. You can also use a wood table as a centerpiece for your outdoor entertainment area. Create a brick, cement, gravel or asphalt flooring area for your barbecue grill to protect your lawn. By adding decorative pillows to benches, you can add more color and design to your yard. Brick designs – Both red and brown brick can accentuate the colors in the trees and plants in your back yard. Border a four or five foot brick wall that’s eight to ten feet wide with wild flowers, vines and greenery. At both ends of the wall, consider lowering the height of the brick to no more than two feet, allowing the brick to form the beginnings of a walkway enclosure. A set of steps and a short sidewalk could lead, one way, further into your backyard, and at the other end, into the back of your home. Screens - Install your own back porch screen or hire a professional to do it for you. Look at clear plexi-glass window panes, colored screens or sliding patio doors. Regarding screened in areas, if you love plants, you could also add a greenhouse in your back yard. Wood fence – Opt for a wood fence that you can plant tall sunflowers against, rather than a wire or metal fence. Enclose your back yard seating area with an open wood structure. Choose a structure with a closed ceiling if you plan on relaxing outdoors during light rains.




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Posted by William Manchenton on 6/23/2015

With warmer weather comes greater lawn-care responsibilies. If you want your yard looking top-notch this spring, then adequate hydration is key to keeping your lawn green, healthy, and growing. During warmer months, your lawn should be soaking up about an inch of rain a week to ensure adequate root hydration. Unfortunately, New England doesn't always provide rain like clockwork. When this happens, it's up to us to guarantee our lawns the proper amount of water. A good sprinkler system will keep your lawn hydrated and happy. But before you run out and buy a few old-fashioned sprinklers, take a moment to consider other options, like a time-controlled sprinkler system. While they are more expensive, they take a lot of the guesswork out of your watering. Below, I'll list the various types of sprinklers and sprinkler systems, and the types of yards they are most effective in. Fixed Sprinklers - Ideal for small lawns, shrubbery, or ground cover, these sprinklers spray a fan of water in all directions at once. This type of sprinkler is also very useful in areas that are hard to reach with conventional watering methods. Impact Sprinklers - These sprinklers spray a jet of water that gets slightly interrupted every few seconds, causing water to cover more ground, and effectively mimicking natural rainfall. These are the types of sprinkers that make the "clicking" sound that we are used to hearing. While not as widely used as they once were, they are still in use in many lawns that are too cumbersome and large to be taken care of by a fixed sprinkler. Another great advantage of the impact sprinkler is its resistance to clogging, which makes it the ideal candidate for homes that use well water. Drip Hoses - These are ideal for long strips of lawn, raised vegetable or flower beds, and irregularly-shaped lawns, with the added bonus of being environmentally friendly. Because of evaporation and runoff, most sprinkler systems use more water than they need to. Drip hoses release water directly into the ground, putting water where its needed most; the roots. The drip hose is generally laid out in a pattern, and waters your lawn and garden through small holes spaced throughout the hose. The water pressure generated is also very low, which adds a bonus to people who live in areas where water use may be restriced in the drier months. In-Ground Sprinklers - While this option will cost more to install, the aesthetic benefits of an easily-concealable irrigation system cannot be denied. In-ground systems can vary from simple layouts with fixed times, to sophisticated systems that utilize many different types of sprinklers, and operate on a need-for-water basis. If you were to decide to install the system yourself, you'll first need to obtain the layout of the pipes and lines in your property before digging your ditches. Doing the installation yourself will generally save you about 60% in total costs, but will require a fair amount of work on your part. For more information on how to self-install an in-ground sprinkler system, as well as pricing, please visit the following link. http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/how-to/intro/0,,641780,00.html