Thursday, January 28, 2010

In my garden there is a large place for sentiment.
My garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams.
The thoughts grow as freely as the flowers, and the dreams are as beautiful.
~Abram L. Urban

Critters Nibbling on your Greens?

Keep those critters from
dining on your delicious trees
and precious plants.

Woodbridge Greenhouses recommends
100% natural Plantskydd®.

Plantskydd's odor repels animals
BEFORE they even taste your plants.
Spray now for winter-long protection.

Call us today at (401) 647-0630 for our off-season hours.

A favor to ask you...

I'd like to ask you to do me a favor. Will you please help us to prepare for the 2010 season by taking a moment to complete a brief survey? Just click on the link below.

If you wish, add your name and email address at the end of the survey and we'll enter your name in a drawing for a chance to win a $25 Gift Card.

This survey will help us serve you better in the future.

Click Here To Take Survey

Warm Regards,
You can bury a lot of troubles
digging in the dirt.
~Author Unknown

Thinking ahead to Valentine's Day?

Give the gift of Gardening:
A perfect gift for your love who loves to garden.

Woodbridge Greenhouses Gift Cards

Simply CLICK to buy on-line OR CALL 401-647-0630
Gardening is about
enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil,
getting dirty without feeling guilty,
generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity.
~Lindley Karstens

January's Feathered Friend: The Amazing American Goldfinch

The Amazing American Goldfinch??

During the summer months many backyards and fields are frequented by American Goldfinch. Perhaps you can even recognize their lovely canary-like call.

If you have never identified them, the lemon-colored males have orange beaks, distinctive black wings with white racing stripes and a black cap and tail. As with most birds, the female plumage is less conspicuous. American goldfinch measure less than five inches long. Their wing span measures less than 9 inches.

Amazingly, the most interesting fact about them is what makes people think they aren't around this time of year.

Do you have a birdfeeder in your yard? Have you seen any Goldfinches lately? No, they haven't migrated. They are still here, they've just put on their winter coats. Actually, the male molts right after his chicks leave the nest. His bright orange beak fades, too. During the winter months, he closely resembles a female.

Distinguishing males from females in winter requires careful observation of their wing and tail feathers. The male sports jet black in these areas with a yellow shoulder patch, while the female are dark brown.

Some time around April, the male will molt a second time to regain his bright lemon coloring from the pigment rich spring diet...just in time for mating season. Many birds molt only once, in the fall.

To Attract American goldfinch:
~ Provide them with wild flowers in open forests, low-growth areas and your yard.

~Incorporate their favorite plants in your garden. They prefer the small seeds of Thistle, nyjer, aster, zinnias, cosmos, bee balm, teasel, dandelions, ragweed, mullein, sunflower, and alder. Also known to enjoy occasional insects, tree buds, maple sap and berries.

~During the winter, stock your feeder with nyjer seed, and keep fresh water available for them.

More Facts about American Goldfinch

~ They breed later than most other birds, in the middle of July, so their breeding coincides with thistle seeds, their major food source.
~ A female builds her nest in roughly six days, working in shifts from ten to forty minutes.
~ Although her mate accompanies her to gather bark, weeds, vines, grass, spiderwebs, and caterpillar silk (milkweed, thistle and/or cattail down are used to line the nest). It is the female alone who constructs the nest.
~ She weaves her nest so tightly that, in a rainstorm if it is not covered properly by the parents, its inhabitants can drown.
~ Her brood averages 5 bluish-white oval eggs less than half an inch in diameter.
~ Brown-headed Cowbirds may lay an egg in a Goldfinch nest, but the hatchling will usually die because the seed-based diet that the parents provide cannot support it.
~ Although American goldfinches are an abundant species, in recent decades, they are losing habitat to development.

Article compiled by: Renee C. Brannigan