Garden Fun Facts!

While researching information about gardens, flowers, shrubs and trees, we've created "Garden Fun Facts". Will this information help you in your garden? Not necessarily, but it will make for some interesting reading when taking a break from working in the garden! Lets get started!

Ants and Woodpeckers:

Ants are a delicacy for woodpeckers! While watching a woodpecker sometime, watch and see if it picks up ants with beak! They'll do this and then crush the ants on their feathers. The purpose for this strange behavior is to protect themselves from parasites! During the crushing process, tannic acid is released and kills any parasites. Flowers and Bees:

Bees love flowers that close at night. This is the reason why bees are only buzzing around during the daytime. Bees are also attracted to the flowers that are bright in color and have a strong fragrance. Because bees help pollinate flowers and plants, they are responsible for the existence of many flowers. Without bees, over 100,000 plant species would cease to exist!

When bees feel the rise in humidity, they will return to their hives to avoid the coming rain.

Worms, slugs, and bugs!!

Earth worms have the power to move stones that weigh 50 times their own weight. They love coffee grounds. They ingest soil and organic matter equal to the amount of their body weight each day. They also help with your compost pile; when you turn your compost pile and find a lot of earth worms, you know that your compost pile is working and that you will have great top soil for your plants!

Slugs are hermaphrodites. Each slug has male and female reproductive systems and can mate with themselves!!! They stretch up to 20 times their normal length, allowing them to squeeze through very small openings to get to available food.

Cinch bugs survive the winter by producing a chemical that acts like an antifreeze to protect them from freezing.

Various record breakers and such...

The largest rose in the world resides in Tombstone, Arizona. The rose was planted in 1855 at the Rose Tree Inn. It now covers over 8,000 square feet on a very large trellis. It blooms in April. If you are ever in Tombstone, Arizona this is a must see!

The most expensive flowers: - a hyacinth bulb from a variety called "King of Great Britain". It sold in 1774 for L100. This equals 200,000 U.S. dollars.
- Also, a Semper Augustus (which is a scarlet and white-tipped tulip) sold for 5,500 florins; this would be equal to 70,000 U.S. dollars today!

The oldest living tree is in the Wheeler Peak area of Nevada; it is the bristlecone pine (pinus aristata). The oldest one found is believed to be 4,900 years old. What an amazing specimen to have survived through so many centuries.

The fastest growing tree in the world is the Acacia. Certain varieties can grow as much as 2-1/2 feet a month, which translates into a little over an inch a day! Fast and furious, the Acacia does not live much longer than 30 years.


Hummingbirds...not only are they fun to watch but they also help to keep mosquitos from your garden area. They help to pollinate your flowers. Following are some of their favorite flowers: Butterfly bushes, butterfly weed, cardinal flower, cleome, columbine, coral bells, creeping trumpet vine, daylilies, foxglove, hollyhock, jewelweed, impatiens, Indian paintbrush, lupines, petunias, red salvia, verbena, and zinnias just to name a few. The same flowers that attract Hummingbirds also attract butterflies.

Giant Bamboo:

The giant bamboo originating from Asia can reach heights of 50 feet! It is a true grass. Over the years, it has been used for many things such as fishing poles, canes, landscape backdrop, and even hardwood floors.


- Sap from milkweed was used by pioneers as a cure for warts.
- The dried-out, empty seed pods were used to decorate Christmas trees by the early pioneers.
- The American Indians used the fluffy parachute of the seed to insulate moccasins, helping them to keep their feet warm.
- During World War II, school children from Wisconsin collected 283,000 bags of milkweed fluff for use in military life jackets.
- Monarch butterflies use milkweed as a self defense for survival. As caterpillars grow they eat milkweed leaves. These leaves contain toxins and poisonous chemicals. The toxins do not harm the caterpillar, however they do make the caterpillar poisonous to most predators. Because it eats milkweed leaves as a caterpillar, the monarch butterfly is also poisonous.
- It is used as an indicator of ground-level ozone air pollution.


The Ginkgo tree dates back to the Mesozoic era. Today, the same tree is much like its' predecesor, and is also called the "maidenhair" tree. The Ginkgo, probably one of the very first fruit trees, produces an edible fruit that is similar to a persimmon.

The cork used in wine bottles comes from the cork oak. These trees are one of the few that can withstand "bark harvesting" because they have two layers of bark.


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Before you finish your coffee and go back to work in the garden take a moment to read these pages

Butterfly Garden
Create a garden
Flowers and their meanings
Koi ponds
Japanese gardens
Landscaping ideas

Dutch Gardens, Inc. Gardener's Supply Company

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