In the Zone Lifestyle Blog by Rachelle-Nones
Apr 24, 2021 | 844 views | 0 0 comments | 50 50 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

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Trendy Dogs Wear Rose Quartz
by Rachelle-Nones
May 20, 2021 | 3953 views | 0 0 comments | 197 197 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

 

Dogs are sporting dashing rose quartz charms on their collars. Some are sleeping in a comfy dog bed with a black agate crystal zipped into the bed cushion to ease muscular and skeletal problems. Although crystal healing reemerged as a strong trend in the 1980’s, it is not an 80’s New Age discovery. Crystals have been used by the ancient Egyptians, Australian Aborigines, and Ancient Sumerians who believed that crystals had magical qualities.

There’s no denying that crystals, rose quartz, and gemstones are beautiful and look enchanting on dog collars and leashes. But, are crystals, quartz, and gemstones merely cute accessories or are they something more?

Will Crystals Benefit Your Doggo?

Dogs are sensitive to electromagnetic fields. Attempting to align themselves with the Earth’s magnetic field is why dogs face north or south when they’re ready to urinate during a stroll. The energy in crystals is reported to be felt by dogs and non-invasively attracts particular qualities to a dog, depending on what type of crystal is used. For example, Rose Quartz is a common crystal choice to use on abused or anxious rescue dogs because it is reported to have a soothing, loving energy that is healing for any dog who has been hurt physically or emotionally.

Purchasing crystals for your dog requires a little research and preparation. If you simply can't resist buying a crystal adorned collar for your pupper, be aware that some crystals and gemstones are toxic to dogs so you never want to place a crystal where your dog could chew on or swallow it. A holistic vet is the best source to consult if you are considering using crystals for healing.

Photo Credit: Anna-Shvets

Rachelle Nones is a freelance writer.

Visit Rachelle’s editorial portfolio site here: https://rachellenones1.journoportfolio.com/

 

                                 

 

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You’ve Purchased a Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula) Here’s What You’ve Got To Do
by Rachelle-Nones
May 18, 2021 | 2564 views | 0 0 comments | 204 204 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
 

Your home might be lovely and inviting but it’s probably vastly different from the Venus flytrap’s subtropical wetland setting. The Venus flytrap is native to the sun-drenched regions of North Carolina and South Carolina, where it grows and thrives in moist loam soil. Unless your home is a humid hothouse crawling with insects providing the Venus Flytrap with the nutrients it cannot obtain strictly from the sun, your new buddy will require tender nurturing care upon entry into its strange, new setting.

Venus Flytrap Survival Tips

         Venus flytraps are sun-worshipping houseplants. Avoid placing your Venus flytrap on a bookshelf, corner table, or on top of the refrigerator (yikes!) if you want it to thrive.  Unless you wish to murder your Venus flytrap, do not place it on a north-facing window sill. Contrary to popular belief, Venus Flytraps do not thrive in terrariums.

         Don’t drench it! Keep the growing medium moderately moist—not soggy or completely dry. Incorrect watering or overwatering is the most common reason that the majority of houseplants struggle or die.

         Venus flytraps are fusspot divas when it comes to quenching their thirst. It is essential to provide your flytrap with either distilled water, rainwater, or reverse osmosis water when it’s thirsty. Tap water or spring water is verboten.

         It’s not necessary to fertilize a Venus flytrap.

Wheeling Out the Welcome Wagon

When you receive your Venus flytrap, it is in shock and feeling overwhelmed. It has been plucked from an ideal growing setting and requires time to gain footing in its new  home. During the first week, provide three to four hours of gentle, indirect sunlight, avoiding the harsh midday sun. Slowly and steadily increase the hours of sunlight that it receives. After a week or two, provide a minimum of four hours of direct sunlight per day. If you’ve purchased your plant during the growing season, provide a minimum of 12 hours of sunlight for optimum growth.

Venus flytraps are in plant heaven when they spend  most of their day bathing in the sun, with the exception of brutally hot climates. Be sure to place your Venus flytrap in the sunniest spot inside or outside of your residence once it is established.

Repotting

When it’s time to repot, it’s essential to use the right pot and the right soil. You can choose from a wide range of mediums, with the exception of mineral-rich mediums such as Miracle Gro or vermiculite because the minerals in those mediums will kill it.  Steer clear of unglazed clay pots. Plastic pots that are about four inches in depth provide the most favorable environment  for your Venus flytrap.

To avoid root rot, be sure that the pot has a drainage hole. Fill the pot with a 50:50 mix of peat moss and perlite or peat moss and horticultural grade silica sand. 

When Your Venus Flytrap Is Thirsty

Your Venus flytrap won’t be happy if you let it go thirsty. When it’s feeling parched and in need of a drink, don’t poison it with tap water, spring water, or any other mineral-rich water. Quench its thirst with water with a  TDS (total dissolved solids) measurement of 50 ppm (parts per million) or less. Be sure to keep a supply of  fresh rainwater or distilled water on hand because Venus flytraps need damp soil and must never be allowed to go bone dry.

Rule of thumb: Your Venus flytrap plant needs Goldilocks “just right” conditions. The soil must not be dry or too wet. When a Venus flytrap’s soil has dried out so it is only  very slightly damp, water thoroughly. Allow your plant to dry out again so that it is ever so slightly damp before watering again.  Bottom watering is the best way to water a Venus flytrap. Simply set it in a tray of water for up to 45 minutes to allow its roots to drink  up!

Here Comes the Sun

Venus flytraps thrive when they can bathe in the sun all day long. They’d love a south-facing window or sunny garden setting, but you can place them close to any window except for a northern-facing window. 

The Hunger Games

Your Venus flytrap is a carnivore and fussy foodie—but don’t feed it meat! Satisfy its hunger by feeding it flies or other insects by placing them within a trap. Once inside a trap, you will need to move the “victim” to trigger the trap to close. Traps can only close less than six times before they stop responding so don’t overwhelm one by continually trying to feed it insects.

 A Venus flytrap is not a typical houseplant. If you are in doubt about any aspect of its care, be sure to reach out and ask an expert. With proper care, your Venus flytrap will become a vital and valued member of your plant collection. You’re in for a fascinating plant journey—enjoy it!

 

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Displaying Houseplants
by Rachelle-Nones
Apr 08, 2021 | 2530 views | 0 0 comments | 98 98 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

You’ve just brought home some gorgeous houseplants. Where should you place them? How will you display them? No worries. Below are six houseplant display suggestions that are distinctive and gentle on the budget.

A Crafty Air Plant Display

I’d been gifted with a craft beer flight glass set that I never use. So I dusted it off and used it to house my gorgeous air plants. I place one individual air plant in each glass and vary the sizes. The air plants are happy and healthy and it looks incredible.

A Boho Minimalist Vibe

It’s 2020—past time to relegate Woodstock era macramé plant hangers to a musty steamer trunk in the attic. Replace them with one of my favorite plant hangers—the Hangee Leather Plant Hanger. The hanger’s clean, spare lines doesn’t obstruct the full view of a plant and the cotton ropes are durable, adjustable, and strong. Each order arrives with two hanging planters—a 4.5 x 4.5-inch hanger and a larger 8 x 8-inch planter, two 100% cotton ropes with a gold-plated ring, and a hook.

Eye-Catching Sweet Displays

Unique cake stands in eye-popping colors or unique styles are a wonderful way to elevate plants and make them stand out.  A bright yellow Cakewalk stand contrasts beautifully against leafy green plants and can be used as a centerpiece on a table. 

Paint It Beautiful

A small stepladder painted cobalt blue, housing rows of terra cotta pots containing African violets, herbs, or small green plants looks cool and inviting. Place it close to a sunlit window or sliding glass patio door.

Surrender Your Footstool

An eye-catching footstool makes a wonderful display for a larger statement plant. Place it in a corner or by a sunny window.

Baskets High and  Low

Purchase an inexpensive basket such as a nylon weave storage bin basket, fill with plants and place it on a countertop or circular shelf. Or hang the basket on a wall by itself or under or above another basket.

Recycling old baskets or vintage vases and other items for use as plant displays is a great way to add flair to your home without spending a fortune. For additional ideas, check out YouTube houseplant channels such as Planterina.

 

Photo Credit: Daria Shevtsova

Rachelle Nones is a freelance writer. Visit Rachelle’s editorial portfolio site here: https://rachellenones1.journoportfolio.com/

 

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Are you curious about clouds?
by Rachelle-Nones
Apr 08, 2021 | 2996 views | 0 0 comments | 180 180 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

Below is an excerpt from my interview with the Indie Children’s Authors Connection Blog. (published with permission). 

 1) What is your favorite memory from reading as a child?

Rachelle Nones: As a child, I read poetry, science fiction, animal and adventure stories, and mystery and detective novels like The Mystery of the Stuttering Parrot by Robert Arthur Jr. I loved to visit the local library and wore out my library card from using it so much!

 2) Do you have a writing routine? Share what works for you.

Rachelle Nones: As a freelance writer, I typically work on contract writing projects. I work remotely and get to set my own routine, which varies according to the project. I prefer to start working early in the morning because that’s when my energy level is high.

 3) What is writing to you in one sentence?

Rachelle Nones: Writing is like wrestling a tornado.

 

In The Sky is available on Amazon. This is a Kindle Unlimited title. It is also available as a premium color paperback edition.

 For more information on Rachelle Nones, please visit her website at her Amazon Author Page.

 

 

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Writing Myths and Superstitions by Rachelle Nones
by Rachelle-Nones
Apr 08, 2021 | 451 views | 0 0 comments | 49 49 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink



There are a lot of myths about writing and about writers in general. Early on in my writing career, I expressed my desire to become a published writer to Cec, a New York City artist who designed the most magnificent cuff bracelets. Cec looked at me with great concern and said, “Be careful. Writers drink.” I once telephoned a woman who had advertised an apartment for rent. I told her that I would be a great tenant because I spent most days quietly writing on my computer. “Do you smoke?” she asked, “In most of the movies I’ve seen, the writers are always smoking.”

      What about the actual process of writing? Because writing is so challenging and uncertain, many writers cling to rituals and superstition to stoke the fires of inspiration. It has been reported that Truman Capote and Mark Twain only wrote while reclining horizontally. Then, there are those superstitious writers who will only write at certain hours or while they are wearing a particular piece of clothing or jewelry.

      One of the most interesting superstitions I have stumbled across is the legend regarding an obscure saint with the uncanny ability to unblock writers. Saint Expedite is a mysterious saint who is reputed to expedite the flow of communication. Unblocked writers are expected to thank the saint by obtaining pound cake and feeding it to the birds when their prayers have been answered.

       There is actual scientific proof that superstition might give you an edge in reducing writer’s block. The Psychological Science journal article “Keep Your Fingers Crossed! How Superstition Improves Performance” reported that when research study participants activated a luck-related superstition, it boosted their confidence and improved their performance.

      Regardless of what you believe, it's important to keep moving forward when you are stuck in the "free fall" writing zone situated between the starting line and final draft. Keep writing—one sentence at a time. 

Rachelle Nones is a freelance writer and the author of In the Sky, available at Amazon.com.

 

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