5 Tips On Growing Tomatoes Successfully

Tomato is one of the most popular vegetable plants for indoor vegetable gardening. Just look around the home gardens in your area; you will learn that it is not surprising to see the tomato plant in just about every home garden. Growing tomatoes is rather straightforward as it merely requires minimum attention from the gardener during the time of growth. In order for tomatoes to grow well, it simply requires ample water, sufficient sunlight, love and a little patience. It is no wonder almost 90 percent of the vegetable gardeners have tomatoes in their garden.

Tomatoes love heat and do not usually grow as well outdoors during winter. If you like to have tomatoes all year round, you can contemplate growing tomatoes indoors. Elimination of weeding is one of the biggest advantages of growing tomatoes indoor. However, as tomatoes require lots of sunshine, some gardeners might find the lighting in their homes insufficient. In such cases, fluorescent lights would come in handy to increase the brightness indoors.

Regardless of the type of tomatoes that you wish to grow, here are a few tips that would be helpful to you.

1. Temperature
Tomatoes grow better in warm temperatures. To create the environment for your tomatoes to grow strong and healthy, you should maintain the indoor temperature at 70 degrees Fahrenheit always.

2. Soil Requirement
Soil is plays an important role in growing any plants. To give your tomato plant a good headstart in growth, the soil must be well prepared. Mix the soil well with compost and rotten manure if you are using sandy soil. Alternatively, you can also mix the soil with sphagnum, vermiculite or peat moss. Doing so will provide your tomato plant with the nutrients that it requires.

3. Proper Drainage
Just like any indoor container plants, drainage is key to the survival of the tomato plant. Avoid having stagnant water in the pot to prevent the roots from rotting. There should be drainage holes at the bottom of the pot to ensure good drainage.

4. Transplanting
A robust root system is required to support the rapid growth of tomatoes if you want to produce big, juicy tomatoes. Once the seedlings reach about 3 inches height, you should transplant them into a bigger and deeper container or pot to allow the roots to grow. While transplanting the seedlings over, do take extra care to ensure the roots are not damaged.

5. Fertilizers
Fertilizers are akin to booster for growth in tomato plants. As soon as you have transplanted your tomato plant into the new container, you can begin to add some fertilizers to improve the health of your plant. Do not neglect watering your plant. The soil should always be moist but not soggy.

Growing tomatoes can be fun and rewarding. It does not require a lot of your time and it can also help us to strike a work-life balance. Besides, you can also make it a family activity to bond over growing tomatoes. This can be especially fun and enriching if you have little ones at home.

Remember that tomatoes grow well almost anywhere. As long as you practice the above tomato growing tips, you should be on your way to expecting a good harvest. Perhaps, you should start thinking about how you want to savor your juicy homegrown tomatoes.

Home Business Blog Of A Mad Housewife – Is Making A Ristra On Wednesday Morning Good For Business?

I think the real question here is whether taking time out for fun during “normal business hours” is good for your home business. I, um, kind of did that today. You see I have this new home business, which is why I also have this new home business blog (because my sponsor told me I needed one), and so I am still mastering the art of doing justice to the business while honoring what I like to tell myself are my needs for personal fulfillment and satisfaction.

Personal fulfillment and satisfaction are the reasons I got into this home based business in the first place, so if I can’t honor them then what good am I?

Let’s put it like this. I was going crazy in my other, former life. Never getting ahead, bowing and scraping, feeling no sense of accomplishment whatsoever. Then I met my sponsor and totally fell in love with her and everything she stood for and was doing. And knew that if she could do it, I could too. So I dove off into my new network marketing home based business with her. And started this silly home business blog, as per her instructions.

But I’m getting off track here. What does all this have to do with making a ristra on Wednesday morning? What IS a ristra anyway, one might ask. Well, to get that question out of the way, a ristra is a string of red chile peppers like one might see in ads for fancy hotels or spas in the Southwest. So anyway, back to the original question.

You see, around the same time I started my home based business and home business blog, I also started a Wednesday morning Spanish class. I mean, alllll morning, speaking only Spanish. Fortunately this class is held in a neighbor’s home, and she is a good teacher, so in spite of the fact that it fries your brain by about the second hour, it is on the whole a really great experience. And I think I am enhancing my Spanish-speaking skills infintessimally each week. Maybe.

I’m still not getting to the point. Sorry. You see, some weeks our class time includes doing something practical, like gardening, or, this week, making a ristra! Because it is fall and the chile peppers are red, and that’s what people around here do this time of year (new to me, I just moved here . . .). Well, it was really fun! I mean like majorly! So of course now there is the question of how guilty to feel for having fun during business hours doing something totally unrelated to one’s business, instead of just studying Spanish, which one might feel guilty enough about on its own. So to resolve the dilemma I decided the issue simply must end up in my home business blog. Perhaps there I will find some solace, or someone will commend me for studying a foreign language, or will tell me that we all need appropriately spaced breaks from work, no matter when they occur or what our work may be. Stuff like that.

I’m not really sure where I’m going with all this. I think I’ve written myself into a corner here in this home business blog. So I think I will just here and now unilaterally decide and state openly that making a ristra on Wednesday morning is very good for business because it nourishes the soul. How’s that.

I haven’t checked with my sponsor yet, but I think I will now recommend to my soon-to-become-huge downline that they do the same. I mean, maybe not build ristras on Wednesday mornings, but do some equivalently frivolous act off-schedule. After all, we’re in this for personal fulfillment and satisfaction. Stay tuned . . . mattie mcnutt

(Check out my home business blog tool below. I’m getting it figured out and it’s looking pretty cool, and it is, much to my amazement, working!)

What Is A Marketing Funnel And How Can I Use It In My Business?

So you’ve heard the term, but what is a marketing funnel? Exposure is the first step in any business marketing. In order to explain this system, let’s use a familiar illustration that most people would not expect: A lady that’s famous for her tips and techniques for cooking, gardening and decorating. I think you can guess who this is.

First, she has a TV show (free, valuable content). She probably mentions her website at least 3 times during the show and makes a compelling offer in order to get you there. This compelling offer usually doesn’t cost her any moneyhow about a free recipe book or a free report on the newest gardening tools, or a discount on a decorative sparkly paint for your bathroom walls? Most of the time it’s going to be MORE free information that her target market will like. All of this offered just to get you to the website.

Once you’re there, the first thing they want is to get you to put your name and email address into the info capture form on her website. This is the start of what they call the “marketing funnel”.

Catching the potential client’s interest is the first part. The “involve” comes from getting them to opt into the autoresponder list with a compelling offer.

In our decoration diva’s case, you are offered free decorating or cooking ideas, etc. It’s always as close to free as possible. This shows “results in advance” and it proves that you can trust her to sell you things you want and it will bring real value to your life. It helps that she tells you about her family and shows you that she’s just a regular lady, just like her audience.You must make it in THEIR interest to get involved.

This is a business, so “involvement” often means (GASP!) talking on the phone. Keep your focus on finding out what the prospect is looking for. Ask them, “What exactly were you looking for when you found my website? What big challenge are you looking to solve?”

Then based on their answers, show them how your product could be a solution to their problem. When they see that, the light bulb hits and they say “You know what? I’m going to upgrade. This is the solution I’m looking for. I’m ready to get started.”

Next comes the part every marketer loves. It’s also the part where our Queen of “a good thing” gets paid. After she gets them to opt in…This is when they upgrade. Another way of saying it: they spend money. Here’s how she does it:

She sends you a new email every 4 to 5 days full of great recipes and décor ideas that you just HAVE to try, but (mysteriously!) each of the ideas requires a utensil or ingredient or decorating material that almost no one has. But the good ol’ patron saint of gardening saves the day by providing a link (her affiliate link, of course…) to a website that sells exactly what you’re looking for and since you have to buy it anyway, why should she (let’s call her Martha) NOT get a percentage?

This marketing funnel system will work for just about any kind of product or service. In fact I’m going to say that there is NO business that cannot benefit from a system like this. Think about some other examplesfood industry, music, banking, film and other types of entertainment, travel, etc. It’s up to you how you implement it in YOUR business.

6 Things To Remember When Caring For House Plants

Many people worry when it comes to caring for plants. Especially houseplants. In fact they worry so much, they talk themselves out of getting any houseplants, which is a shame. Because having plants inside your home makes your space healthier and lovelier.

When caring for houseplants you needn’t worry or feel intimidated. Here are 6 things to remember when caring for houseplants:

1. Watering

This is the biggie. How much do I water my plants and how often? Do I need one of those watering cans or can I just use what I have around the house?

Knowing how and when to water your plants is really very simple. I’ll show you a handy little finger test that will completely take the mystery out of watering your plants. Ready? Insert your index finger up to the first joint into the soil. If you feel the soil is damp, don’t water it.

If you feel the soil is not damp, do.

2. Feeding

Foliage plants and flowering plants need different things when it comes to feeding. Foliage plants require a high amount of nitrogen. Whereas flowering plants need more K20, or potassium oxide.

A good thing to have on hand are fertilizers that are the slow-release kind. This will make sure your house plants have the vital nutrients they require. And make sure to feed plants on the height of their active growth.

3. Lighting

House plants like Sanseveria and Aspidistra require no shade. So they can be placed near windows that get a fair amount of direct sunlight.

Spider plants need semi-shade. You can place these near windows that do NOT get direct sunlight.

Most house plants come with all the information you need as far as how much light they require. And as always, you can ask the usually very helpful and friendly people at your local nursery.

4. Temperature

Generally speaking, most houseplants can survive in temperatures a little bit higher than 55 – 75 F. Drastic fluctuations, however, are not good for them. And if you live in an older home with older windows, be sure to insulate during winter months.

5. Humidity

The right balance of humidity in your home is very important to your house plants. Especially during winter months. Here’s a tip to maximize humidity: Put the flower pot inside a larger flower pot and fill in the gaps with stones or compost to keep in the moisture.

Another absolutely amazing thing about plants – if grouped together, they are capable of creating their own climate that is perfectly suitable for them.

6. Re-potting

Here’s another fact about plants that is often overlooked or misunderstood. Not all plants need to be re-potted.

One way to check and see if your houseplant needs to be rep-potted is to turn it upside down. Tap on the bottom of the pot to loosen the plant and gently slide it out. Now check its roots. If roots are all you see, then repot.

An ideal situation is a good ratio of roots to soil. If you are only seeing roots and not much soil, this plant has outgrown its home and needs to be re-potted ASAP so it has room to stretch itself out.

Taking care of plants can seem overwhelming at first. I mean, they just seem so easy to kill and no one wants to do that. But you simply need to learn some basics first. Like most things in life, you learn a little here, learn a little there, and before long you are more than comfortable doing something, in this case helping gorgeous plants thrive and grow.

In doing so you not only have a garden inside your home that adds beauty, you also learn how to respect and nurture life in its varied forms.

What a joy!

5 Tips On Growing Tomatoes Successfully

Tomato is one of the most popular vegetable plants for indoor vegetable gardening. Just look around the home gardens in your area; you will learn that it is not surprising to see the tomato plant in just about every home garden. Growing tomatoes is rather straightforward as it merely requires minimum attention from the gardener during the time of growth. In order for tomatoes to grow well, it simply requires ample water, sufficient sunlight, love and a little patience. It is no wonder almost 90 percent of the vegetable gardeners have tomatoes in their garden.

Tomatoes love heat and do not usually grow as well outdoors during winter. If you like to have tomatoes all year round, you can contemplate growing tomatoes indoors. Elimination of weeding is one of the biggest advantages of growing tomatoes indoor. However, as tomatoes require lots of sunshine, some gardeners might find the lighting in their homes insufficient. In such cases, fluorescent lights would come in handy to increase the brightness indoors.

Regardless of the type of tomatoes that you wish to grow, here are a few tips that would be helpful to you.

1. Temperature
Tomatoes grow better in warm temperatures. To create the environment for your tomatoes to grow strong and healthy, you should maintain the indoor temperature at 70 degrees Fahrenheit always.

2. Soil Requirement
Soil is plays an important role in growing any plants. To give your tomato plant a good headstart in growth, the soil must be well prepared. Mix the soil well with compost and rotten manure if you are using sandy soil. Alternatively, you can also mix the soil with sphagnum, vermiculite or peat moss. Doing so will provide your tomato plant with the nutrients that it requires.

3. Proper Drainage
Just like any indoor container plants, drainage is key to the survival of the tomato plant. Avoid having stagnant water in the pot to prevent the roots from rotting. There should be drainage holes at the bottom of the pot to ensure good drainage.

4. Transplanting
A robust root system is required to support the rapid growth of tomatoes if you want to produce big, juicy tomatoes. Once the seedlings reach about 3 inches height, you should transplant them into a bigger and deeper container or pot to allow the roots to grow. While transplanting the seedlings over, do take extra care to ensure the roots are not damaged.

5. Fertilizers
Fertilizers are akin to booster for growth in tomato plants. As soon as you have transplanted your tomato plant into the new container, you can begin to add some fertilizers to improve the health of your plant. Do not neglect watering your plant. The soil should always be moist but not soggy.

Growing tomatoes can be fun and rewarding. It does not require a lot of your time and it can also help us to strike a work-life balance. Besides, you can also make it a family activity to bond over growing tomatoes. This can be especially fun and enriching if you have little ones at home.

Remember that tomatoes grow well almost anywhere. As long as you practice the above tomato growing tips, you should be on your way to expecting a good harvest. Perhaps, you should start thinking about how you want to savor your juicy homegrown tomatoes.

Home Business Blog Of A Mad Housewife – Is Making A Ristra On Wednesday Morning Good For Business?

I think the real question here is whether taking time out for fun during “normal business hours” is good for your home business. I, um, kind of did that today. You see I have this new home business, which is why I also have this new home business blog (because my sponsor told me I needed one), and so I am still mastering the art of doing justice to the business while honoring what I like to tell myself are my needs for personal fulfillment and satisfaction.

Personal fulfillment and satisfaction are the reasons I got into this home based business in the first place, so if I can’t honor them then what good am I?

Let’s put it like this. I was going crazy in my other, former life. Never getting ahead, bowing and scraping, feeling no sense of accomplishment whatsoever. Then I met my sponsor and totally fell in love with her and everything she stood for and was doing. And knew that if she could do it, I could too. So I dove off into my new network marketing home based business with her. And started this silly home business blog, as per her instructions.

But I’m getting off track here. What does all this have to do with making a ristra on Wednesday morning? What IS a ristra anyway, one might ask. Well, to get that question out of the way, a ristra is a string of red chile peppers like one might see in ads for fancy hotels or spas in the Southwest. So anyway, back to the original question.

You see, around the same time I started my home based business and home business blog, I also started a Wednesday morning Spanish class. I mean, alllll morning, speaking only Spanish. Fortunately this class is held in a neighbor’s home, and she is a good teacher, so in spite of the fact that it fries your brain by about the second hour, it is on the whole a really great experience. And I think I am enhancing my Spanish-speaking skills infintessimally each week. Maybe.

I’m still not getting to the point. Sorry. You see, some weeks our class time includes doing something practical, like gardening, or, this week, making a ristra! Because it is fall and the chile peppers are red, and that’s what people around here do this time of year (new to me, I just moved here . . .). Well, it was really fun! I mean like majorly! So of course now there is the question of how guilty to feel for having fun during business hours doing something totally unrelated to one’s business, instead of just studying Spanish, which one might feel guilty enough about on its own. So to resolve the dilemma I decided the issue simply must end up in my home business blog. Perhaps there I will find some solace, or someone will commend me for studying a foreign language, or will tell me that we all need appropriately spaced breaks from work, no matter when they occur or what our work may be. Stuff like that.

I’m not really sure where I’m going with all this. I think I’ve written myself into a corner here in this home business blog. So I think I will just here and now unilaterally decide and state openly that making a ristra on Wednesday morning is very good for business because it nourishes the soul. How’s that.

I haven’t checked with my sponsor yet, but I think I will now recommend to my soon-to-become-huge downline that they do the same. I mean, maybe not build ristras on Wednesday mornings, but do some equivalently frivolous act off-schedule. After all, we’re in this for personal fulfillment and satisfaction. Stay tuned . . . mattie mcnutt

(Check out my home business blog tool below. I’m getting it figured out and it’s looking pretty cool, and it is, much to my amazement, working!)

A Website, Then You Need To Be Blogging Too!

If you conduct any business online or maintain a website to compliment your offline business, then blogging is quickly becoming a mandatory part of your future. And if you are not currently blogging, chances are after realizing the potential of these traffic-enhancing goldmines, you soon will be!

Blogs, derived from the words “web log” were originally thought of as simply online diaries a place for people to record their thoughts and inspirations. At first, no one took blogging very seriously and these collections of online thoughts were simply passed off by many as hobbies or creative outlets and nothing more.

But then Google came along and started to recognize the unique and original content that these trite little sites presented and the rules of the game suddenly changed. After all, unique content is what makes the Google world go round, and what better way to command the attention of Google than by creating a dynamic environment with content that is solely your own.

At this stage, a whole new SEO world emerged and in the process, brought with it traffic opportunities like never before. People began blogging on more than what they had for dinner last night. They started to blog about new products, exciting travel adventures and all things related to online commerce.

The evolution quickly continued and today, with RSS feeds, sites like pingoat and many other content clearinghouses, blogging is big business and not to be overlooked by hungry entrepreneurs looking to establish a web presence.

What currently makes blogging so attractive is the sheer speed with which blogs and blog posts are able to get indexed in the search engines. It is a simple matter of static versus dynamic and the search engines love the dynamic.

Let’s take two different scenarios to see how traditional websites and blogs differ in their index-ability:

Scenario One:

One person creates a website to advertise gardening products and services. Each page of the site contains the traditional information about the company; it’s founders, the services they offer and the products they sell. Maybe, at best, the site has articles and content that is updated with some small frequency that are relevant to the avid gardener. When visitors arrive at the site, they have the option of signing up for the company newsletter and receiving valuable tips and new offerings.

In this scenario, the Webmaster or business owner will need to tend to many SEO related tasks in order to get and maintain high search engine ranking for a tight list of selected keywords related to the gardening niche. Not only will this activity require great skill, it will also involve many hours to achieve the intended results.

Scenario Two:

The same business owner as above also creates a blog to supplement their company website. Now, instead of focusing on simply one set of tightly selected keywords, the blog itself remains a broad overview of the gardening niche, while each individual post reflects a drilled down topic within that same niche.

So when the business owner writes a blog post about the benefits of “organic vegetable gardening in backyard containers,” this individual post becomes a keyword rich, targeted wonder and when indexed by the search engines has a far greater opportunity to bringing highly targeted traffic to the blog based upon that single post.

Through time, the blog expands with many similar posts that are targeted to sub niches within the broader gardening niche and can even be categorized from inside the blog structure itself. What has now been created in Google’s eyes is an extremely dynamic, naturally evolving site that is content rich and niche specific.

When properly constructed and promoted, each time the business owner posts to the blog, that individual post can get indexed in anywhere from two to twenty four hours on average. this opportunity is far greater than any options available at the static website.

Additionally, when the business owner endeavors to have a visitor signup for a newsletter, further segmenting can occur and subscriber lists can be refined and targeted. And because the blog is the front-end showcase to the original website, each blog post has the opportunity to link back to specific and relevant products at the main site.

When properly structured, blogs are the biggest SEO asset to a website that currently exists. The wise business owner will recognize these benefits and when implemented, will enjoy many opportunities that do not currently exist with traditional websites alone.