Encap®: Innovative Lawn and Garden Solutions

outlook_e43e_bannerEncap® develops innovative lawn and garden solutions for homeowners and gardeners across the United States and Canada. From lawn care products to soil amendments, and even flower kits, Encap®’s products are formulated to maximize results by engaging the soil, naturally improving soil structure and creating a better environment for seeds and roots to flourish.

Lawn Repair Made Easy
Encap® offers a complete line of lawn repair products designed to maximize your results. Whether you’re looking to repair bare spots, overseed a thin or damaged lawn, or start from scratch with a new lawn, Encap® carries the perfect product to help you create a beautiful lawn.
 
Combination products such as Encap®’s Grass Repair Kit®, Lawn Makeover™, and New Lawn Kit® contain everything you need to repair or establish your lawn. With seed, fertilizer, and mulch all in one product, there’s no need to buy and apply these products separately, cutting your workload and cost substantially – one application and done!
 
Encap®’s Dog Spot Repair Kit® is one lawn repair product that makes life a little easier for dog owners everywhere. It is an ideal blend of seed, soil conditioners, and mulch, formulated to neutralize burned spots caused by pets. This product goes to work immediately to improve the soil and begin the repair process.
 
Replenishing Soil
In addition to their line of lawn repair products, Encap® also offers a full line of easy to use soil amendments. Encap®’s Fast Acting™ Lime, for example, is the answer to acidic soils. It begins to correct acid levels immediately after application, unlocking valuable nutrients held within the soil. Enhanced nutrient uptake makes fertilizers more effective, and improves the overall soil environment. Encap®’s Fast Acting™ Lime is simple to use – virtually dust free, and can be applied year round with any spreader.
 
If it’s a quick ‘green up’ you’re looking for, Encap® offers Fast Acting™ Iron, a product that has changed the way lawn enthusiasts think about iron. Gone are the days of accidentally burning your lawn, or staining your sidewalk. This long-lasting soil amendment is a precise blend of iron and other valuable nutrients, designed to work with the soil, building a more lush, green lawn, without the excessive growth associated with most high-nitrogen fertilizers.
 
If you’re simply looking to spruce up your lawn or garden, Encap® also offers several wildflower kits, like the popular Butterfly & Hummingbird Mix. These easy to use kits are an all-in-one formula of flower seed, fertilizer, and starter mulch, formulated to grow beautiful flower gardens that attract nature’s pollinators. Just sprinkle, water, and grow!
 
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Why Encap?
Encap® products contain their patented Advanced Soil Technology™ (AST®) and Seed Watering Technology™ (SWT®). AST® goes to work immediately to help hold valuable soil and nutrients in place and improve seed establishment and germination. SWT® takes the guesswork out of watering by telling you when it’s time to water – the patented SWT® granules sparkle when you have watered enough; when the sparkle disappears, you know it’s time to water again.
 
Whether you’re starting a new lawn, repairing an old one, or wanting a beautiful flower garden, Encap® products are not only environmentally friendly, but they also make seed establishment and gardening, fool-proof, helping you to maximize results, while minimizing effort. Plus, Encap® products are made from natural ingredients, so they are safe to apply around kids and pets.
 
Encap®…Real Innovation™.
 
Order Now Using Program Number: E43E2

Arm Yourself Against Summer Ant Invasions

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TERRO® Liquid Ant Bait Provides Long-term Ant Control, Both Indoors and Outdoors 
 
Ants are masters of waiting out the cold winter season, hunkering down in clusters to maintain their body heat and huddling protectively around the queen to shelter their population’s lifeline. Now, the warmer days of spring are in full swing and legions of ants are back at work, in search of food. TERRO®, a leader in ant and pest control products, recommends controlling these hungry armies of ants with liquid ant bait, both indoors and outdoors.
 
outlook_w75_body1“For effective, long-term control of common sweet-eating ants, you need to bait the worker ants – the ants you see marching in and around your house – with TERRO® Liquid Ant Baits,” says Stew Clark, Director of Research at TERRO®. “As worker ants forage for food, they are drawn to the sweet liquid in the ant bait. While the active ingredient in the bait will ultimately kill the ants by interfering with their digestive system, it works slowly enough that the ants have time to get back and share the lethal bait with the rest of the colony, including the queen. This is the only way to kill the ants you see – and the thousands you don’t.”
 
Since this is a bait product, you’re going to see more ants at first – lots more. As ants find the liquid bait, they consume it and drop what is called a “trail pheromone” back to the nest that lets all the other worker ants know where a food supply has been found.
 
So, why bait with liquid? The worker ants you encounter are all adult ants and their anatomy is such that they have no “chewing” mouth parts. The easiest way for them to carry food back to the colony is to drink, drink, drink! And once they have returned to the nest, they can immediately share the liquid with the other ants. If the bait is in a paste or gel form, it would need to go through further processing before it could be shared and take effect.

Since most indoor ant infestations are linked to a colony outside, Clark also recommends setting up an outdoor home barrier. “Treating the perimeter of your house with a TERRO® ant bait product provides an added line of defense against unwanted insects entering your home,” explains Clark.
 
outlook_w75_body2TERRO® Outdoor Liquid Ant Baits Stakes work just like their indoor counterparts, attracting worker ants with the sweet liquid inside. The sweet liquid they will eventually share with the rest of the colony.
 
When searching for ants outside the home, look for “ant highways” or foraging trails. These trails are simply a line of marching ants that leads from their home to yours. Often, these trails are most active during the morning or evening. Walk around the perimeter of your house and carefully check for ant trails. Pull back the garden mulch, turn over rocks and look under pieces of wood to locate activity. Inspect potential entry points including windows, doors, exhaust vents, faucets and sliding glass doors. Also check for ants trailing up the sides of your home and along gutters.
 
“The key to successfully using any TERRO® ant bait product is to make sure the ants find the bait, eat it, and take it back to the nest to feed to the rest of the colony,” says Clark. “Be sure to eliminate all other food sources in the area. This will ensure the ants aren’t tempted to eat anything but the bait.”
 
Smaller ant infestations can usually be controlled within 24-48 hours. However, where there are very large or multiple colonies in the problem area, it can take up to 10 days to achieve complete control.
 
Order Now Using Program Number: W75E2

Perky Pet: Make Your Yard Hummingbird Central

outlook_w75b_headerAmong all the birds that reside in the U.S., hummingbirds are perhaps the most. In fact, they’re absolutely adorable and always welcome guests to any yard.

In the 1950s, the first commercially available hummingbird feeder was introduced by Perky-Pet® and from there on, America’s love affair with feeding the tiny helicopter-like birds blossomed as the company unveiled more and more feeders over the years.
 
Basics of Hummingbirds
 
The most striking feature of any of the 300-plus hummingbird species is how they fly. Whenever a hummingbird is near, you would swear there’s a swarm of bees about to attack! The thrumming noise is, in fact, the sound of their wings flapping upwards of 70 times per second.
 
Hummingbirds power all those wingbeats with a steady diet of flower nectar, or in the case of hummingbird feeders, a mix of sugar water. While nearly any natural sugar works for man-made hummingbird nectar, sucrose based nectar is the best for energy conversion.
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Also high on the list of favorite hummingbird qualities are their beautiful feathers. Most have an iridescent shine, which is a visual effect much like the way a soap bubble glimmers with colors.
 
These tiny birds often build their nests with spider webs, dandelion thistle and other material. Their nests are just as small as they are, since a newly-hatched hummingbird baby can be as small as a dime!
 
Hummingbird Migration
 
Most hummingbirds that visit North America don’t permanently reside in the U.S. Instead, they migrate to Central and South America during the winter where they feed on rainforest flowers along with the occasional small insect.
 
This migration is especially treacherous for the small-bodied bird. The Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, for example, must travel non-stop over the Gulf of Mexico on whatever energy reserves it had before setting out.
 
Many hummingbird enthusiasts even log sightings of the birds into the Hummingbird Migration Map, which helps them know when to put out feeders for when the hummers return to their area.
 
outlook_w75b_body2Feeders
 
A wide range of hummingbird feeders are available: Some are highly decorative and match the good looks of the hummingbirds they feed. Some can feed an entire swarm of hummers at once. Others bring them right up to your window.
 
The variety is wonderful, and it’s important to keep them clean and keep the nectar fresh. Dirty feeders can develop a fungus that’s bad for a hummingbird’s health. Likewise, hummers will stop returning to a feeder that’s filled with spoiled nectar.
 
The ideal feeder should be one that allows you to monitor nectar levels and has an ant moat and bee guards. Since these insects also love sugary nectar, they also gravitate to hummingbird feeders. An ant moat creates a water barrier between the ants and the nectar. Bee guards are small protective cages around the feeder ports – the hummingbird’s long bill can reach the nectar but bees and wasps can’t.
 
How many feeders should you buy? Start out with one and add more as your hummingbird flock expands. If you see a hummingbird waiting for its turn at the feeder, then you definitely need more!
 
Feeder Location
 
Hummingbirds gravitate to feeders set a short distance from cover, they seem to prefer having a wide view of the area around them so they can watch for predators.
It’s also important to place the feeder out of direct sun and wind. Intense and prolonged heat can cause nectar to spoil faster. Heavy winds can cause some hummingbird feeders to tip and ooze nectar.
 
Birdscaping
 
In addition to setting out feeders, you can add some outdoor features and make your yard more hummingbird friendly.
 
Try planting trumpet-shaped flowers, including morning glory, columbine, honeysuckle, desert willows, fuchsia and sage.
 
Even though they drink liquid nectar, hummingbirds also need plenty of water. A trickling fountain is the best way to offer water for hummingbirds as birdbaths are often too deep for their little bodies.
 
Finally, consider planting small trees and bushes that hummingbirds can roost in and even build their nests in during breeding season.
 
Follow these simple steps and make your backyard hummingbird central!
 
Order Now Using Program Number: W75E4

Ten Ways Retailers Can Improve Pollinator Education And Sell More Bee-Related Products

outlook_ggaab_bannerMembers of Today’s Garden Center’s 2015 Revolutionary 100 offer tips on how to connect with local beekeepers, sell bee-related products, and educate your customers about the importance of pollinators.

1. Start With A Simple Phone Call
“We have lots of friends with the local beekeeping chapter, the Colonial Beekeepers Association. When we kicked off our spring season, they brought an observation hive and discussed how our customers can get started raising bees in their own backyards. I simply called and they were happy to help. Many of our guests were raising bees and we never knew it. We hope to offer local honey in the near future.”
 
2. Don’t Forget About Butterflies
“We do butterfly gardening and have a native Michigan butterfly house. A tour guide in the butterfly house educates the public on what the host and nectar plants are for certain species of butterflies, and why it is important to have these plants. We have about eight species of butterflies in the butterfly house in all their stages. We also have pop-up circles that tell fun facts about butterflies.”
 
3. Spread Your Message To The Masses
“We had the president of the area bee club on our radio show with us on March 28th, and he spent two hours taking phone calls. The show also streams online on iHeartRadio and will be podcast. After the broadcast, he joined us at one of our stores for a seminar. We provide our meeting room free of charge for their bee club to meet on the first Wednesday evening of every month (80 to 100 attendees per meeting).”
 
outlook_ggaab_body14. Sell Locally Produced Honey
“We are very fortunate to have maintained a relationship with a local beekeeper for years. We are also fortunate that our partnership allows the bees to be maintained by the beekeeper as well. Since our honey is produced right on the farm and packaged by the beekeeper, we have agreed to purchase the honey from our beekeeper. In turn, we are able to offer that as locally-produced product to our customers. Selling our own, locally-produced honey is a huge value, especially for those consumers who understand the importance of locally-produced honey. Its health and wellness benefits, as well as its homeopathic allergy-relieving properties, make it very desirable product.”
 
5. Target Your Young Visitors
“We have a local honey producer we work with. I went to one of our many farmers’ markets and found him in person. We struck up a conversation and in no time I had an ample supply of local honey on my shelves. Now I meet him at the market about once a month for a new case of honey. I also have a beekeeper who does classes here periodically. He walked into the garden center one day and the rest was history. His classes have been the largest in attendance by far. I have another beekeeper coming this summer to talk to our summer camp kids. We met him at a summer camp expo at which we set up a booth at a local mall. Pollinators will be a topic of discussion during one of our summer camps, so he was a logical guest to bring in.”
 
6. Be Ready To Answer Questions
“The first thing to do is connect with local beekeeping associations. Let them know that if they have any events to please contact you about handing out resources for plant information (your business ad disguised as an info guide). Also, find out if there are any stores that specialize in beekeeping, if so, connect with them and be their go-to for plant referrals. I would recommend only selling beekeeping equipment if you have someone on staff that is readily available to answer questions, because there will be A LOT of questions.”
 
outlook_ggaab_body27. Have An Expert On Staff
“We are lucky enough to have a bee keeper on staff as an employee. He also happens to be one of our orchard experts and rose experts as well. He is also a bee keeper at his home and is very active in associations for bee keepers. Many of our customers love the cooking demonstrations he gives on using honey in baking/cooking instead of sugar. For other garden centers looking to partner or get in touch with local bee keepers, I would suggest getting in touch with your state Bee Keepers Association and looking for someone local through that group.”
 
8. Educate About Pesticide Awareness
“We have partnered with a couple of local beekeepers. Last year we had them come in for two different events. One event was a Native Plant Festival. They did a seminar on beekeeping but also on planting the correct plants, as well as pesticide awareness. They also came to a Healthy Living Expo we did to really be there for bee awareness. They certainly understand our struggles with the press, but wanted to work with us in letting the public know that it’s not all a pesticide related problem. It’s been a good relationship.”
 
9. Use Your Local Connections
“We run a workshop every year with a local honey producer and bee supply owner. It’s an hour-long workshop where he brings a hive to show the attendees, and talks about beekeeping and beekeeping tasks through the year. Then I go over a large selection of different perennials we offer that are good for bees. In our area, many municipalities are now allowing residential bee hives, so interest is growing quite fast. My partner and I are also beekeepers. Urban honey is so delicious.”
 
10. Use Your Newsletter To Keep Customers Informed
“We have had hives on our property supplied by a local beekeeper for several years now. We take pictures of them when they are here cleaning and inspecting, and then do a simple story in our newsletter to keep people informed on what is going on.”
 
(Article provided by Today’s Garden Center)

DeWitt Company: 40 Years of Innovation

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DeWitt Company celebrated 40 Years of Innovation in 2014. In 1974, Larry DeWitt was in his senior year of college and working as a landscape contractor.

What he didn’t know at the time, was how he would pioneer the use of landscape fabric and change the future of the industry forever. After graduating with a degree in horticulture, he launched DeWitt Landscaping, a landscape design and contracting firm. In 1975, DeWitt expanded the operation and opened DeWitt Landscaping & Garden Center, a full service garden center from design to build. As business grew he also started a re-wholesale division. In 1977, DeWitt was searching for a material to stop weeds and increase plant growth without the use of harmful chemicals. At the time, black plastic was a landscaper’s only option. From hands-on experience, he knew that while plastic stops weeds, it also blocks out moisture and air. The result: disease, fungus and rot.
 
 “I was using black plastic for weed control in rock gardens and I saw the effects of the suffocated soil,” said Larry DeWitt. “I turned this problem into an opportunity by producing the first-ever permeable landscaped fabric that allowed air and water through. Hence, the birth of the DeWitt Company.”
 
Pros quickly realized what an outstanding product it was for stopping weeds and also for promoting tremendous growth. They couldn’t get enough. DeWitt landscaping products and plant fabrics are the number one choice of professionals in the lawn and garden industry.
 
“My life and passion became my career with a mission to always strive for a better tomorrow,” said DeWitt.
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Since 1974, DeWitt Company has made a serious commitment to the lawn and garden industry by introducing new products, improving existing products, and developing innovative merchandising solutions. Celebrating 40 years in business, DeWitt Company believes that the future of the industry is not only bright, but also beaming with opportunities to grow, learn and evolve.
 
In July of 2014, DeWitt Company acquired Polytuf Brands, a premier tarp and accessories supplier out of Cuyahoga Falls, OH. The Polytuf Brands Company had many similarities to DeWitt, including the fact that they were both family-owned companies that have a passion to offer the best quality product at competitive prices. With the addition of Polytuf, the DeWitt product offering is expanded to include a strong category of products that has not historically been available to lawn and garden dealers.
 
For years, customers have been able to consolidate more and more vendors due to the ever expanding product line available through DeWitt. If the past is any indication, that product line will continue to grow over the next 40 plus years!
 
Order Now Using Program Number: D28E2

Simple Watering Tips for a Healthy Lawn and Garden with the Gilmour EZ Hose

outlook_g58_headerUsing a hose for daily irrigation seems simple, but without the proper watering set up, your efforts could be futile.

 
Below tips from the watering experts at Gilmour can increase efficiency and bring you one step closer to creating a yard with envious curb appeal. Give your greens a thorough soaking once in a while to produce extended and robust roots.
 
1. Use Gilmour EZ Hose to water in the morning, when the air is cool and moist. The warmth of the sun and the rising temperature gently dry the grass and the leaves on the plants. Since morning air is damp, you don’t waste water through evaporation. Additionally, EZ Hose is ideal for watering in hard to reach places, such as between shrubs or overhead flower baskets. It is 40% lighter than traditional garden hoses, which helps to avoid hand fatigue.
 
2. Follow a regular watering schedule to discourage bugs by providing them with an inhospitable environment. Insects, with the possible exception of the water bug, aren’t terribly fond of water. The Gilmour EZ Hose works with sprinklers, water timers, nozzles or alone to fill your watering can. This hose won’t recoil when water pressure drops.
 
3. To be certain your lawn is hydrated adequately when it has failed to rain, the standard rule of thumb is to sprinkle one inch of water per week. Using EZ Hose makes this task easy. While most lightweight hoses deliver 4 – 6 gallons of water per minute, the Gilmour EZ Hose provides 12 – 14 gallons.
 
About Gilmour EZ Hose
Gilmour EZ Hose offers a reliable solution to consumers’ demand for a lightweight garden hose that is convenient, durable, and versatile. EZ hose is 40% lighter than an average garden hose, making watering and cleaning tasks a breeze. It is constructed from a durable UV-resistant PVC liner, which allows consumers to use the hose during hot summer days. The outer cover is a heavy-duty fabric that resists daily scuffs. EZ hose works with or without a watering tool attachment.
 
Let the Gilmour EZ Hose drive sales for your retail location. In 2013 the lightweight hose business was estimated to be worth $300M. Don’t let other retailers enjoy all the profits. Get in the game and win with Gilmour EZ hose.
 
Order Now Using Program Number: G58E2

Marchioro: Your Source For Color & Style

outlook_m78c_bannerMarchioro USA, Inc. is an Italian manufacturer of Garden and Pet products. The company is a family-owned private company. The garden side of Marchioro’s portfolio consists of injection-molded and rotation-molded pottery. Marchioro is also known for its tomato/vegetable growing systems. All of Marchioro’s products are manufactured in Italy at their 5 company-owned production facilities.

Marchioro is committed to bringing the industry what the garden customers are asking for!
outlook_m78c_bodyListening to the garden community and responding to the demands are important for any successful business. One of the current, fast-growing trends is the introduction of pastel and bright colors into the families of successful pottery lines. In the past, color preference has been associated with geographic and demographic locations. Certain areas of the U.S.A. and Canada would only do well with traditional terra cotta, green, and off-white tones, while other parts of the same area would be very successful with bright vibrant customers. What Marchioro is hearing and seeing is that the U.S.A. is rapidly turning into a huge melting pot of preferences from coast to coast. This is why Marchioro has expanded its color selections by up to 400% on some of its tried and true performing products. By introducing bright trendy colors, light pastels, and even dark black and slate colors across both injection-molded and rotation-molded products, Marchioro is proving to be the source for color and style for today’s garden center.
 
Another area of growth Marchoiro is seeing is in backyard and patio garden products. Every year, more and more people are starting to grow some of their own fruits and vegetables. Whether it’s one tomato plant on the back porch or a container system in back yard, more people are enjoying gardening. Marchioro has responded to this by creating new, high-end raised container gardening systems, large economical injection-molded systems, and modified small single pot systems. Marchioro has created new products with self-watering features as well as maintained the lines of traditional watering pottery. Marchioro has even incorporated the new color pallet choices into the container growing lines to answer the demand for selection.

Whether you are looking for new trendy colors, container gardening solutions, or traditional indoor/outdoor plastic pottery, Marchioro has what you need. Marchioro stands firm on offering high-quality products at marketable price points.

Order Now Using Program Number: M78D1