Birds have five basic needs: food,water,shelter from hot or cold weather,nesting sites, and protection from predators. Supply these and you will have many more birds around your home to entertain you and control pests.Be sure feeders and bird houses are located where they cannot be reached by cats.
Lobelia is a great annual for hanging baskets or container gardens with stems that trail about 8 inches. The Cascade variety is especially bright in colors of pink,white,lilac,maroon,violet and blue. Most flowers have a white eye.
Pinch back annuals when 4 -6 inches high to promote bushy growth. Some that require pinching are zinnias,petunias,and salvia.
Plant ground cover under shade trees that don't allow enough sunlight to sustain grass. Perwinkle and English ivy are two ground cover plants that grow well in shade.
It's frog season. The practical reason for preserving frog and toad habitat is that the animals eat lots of insects and mosquitoes. At night, toads are out there devouring those nasty slugs that are eating your plants. Frogs and toads need clean water and cover. Install a pond or even a little water garden, and you'll be amazed how quickly frogs will find it. Along the edges of your yard, keep some native grasses. Set the mower at a higher level, and don't spray for dandelions every couple weeks