How to Grow Anything: Make Your Trees and Shrubs Thrive [TTC Video]
23 February 2015, 16:10
2014 | Course No 9726 | M4V, AVC1, 640x360 | English, AAC, 2 Ch | 12x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 5.57GB
It’s easy to think of trees and shrubs as an enormous commitment and investment—one that doesn’t reap immediate rewards in the same way as container gardening. But the truth is that there are hundreds of wonderful trees and shrubs out there for you to choose from, and growing them can be a lot easier (and more rewarding) than you think.
Trees and shrubs, regardless of the specific constraints of your landscape, can provide colorful bursts of flowers, fresh fruit and wholesome nuts, height and depth to a garden design, and refreshing shade on hot summer days.
And just as important as the beauty of trees and shrubs is their practical use. When grown properly, trees and shrubs offer numerous benefits for any property owner, including:
- a clear—and natural—framework for your outdoor spaces;
- an eye-catching barrier (and getaway) from loud noises and unsightly views;
- creative ways to conserve energy and reduce pollution in and around your home; and
- green spaces that can help raise the curb appeal (and value) of your home.
But once you’ve decided to try your hand at trees and shrubs, where should the everyday gardener start? Right here with How to Grow Anything: Make Your Trees and Shrubs Thrive. In just 12 engaging lectures by horticulturalist, certified arborist, and nationally syndicated garden host Melinda Myers, you’ll discover everything you need to make trees and shrubs an integral (and manageable) investment in your outdoor spaces. Taking you through a variety of different landscapes, climates, and seasons, these lectures reveal effective—and practical—gardening techniques and strategies for shopping, planting, and caring for trees and shrubs just like the experts.
Develop a Greener Green Thumb
Tapping into her skills as a master horticulturalist and public educator, Ms. Myers takes you step by step through the process of adding trees and shrubs to your landscape.
- Designing: Knowing where to fit particular trees and shrubs in your landscape is a key skill of the everyday gardener. When you start to look at your space as a living framework, you’ll have a much stronger sense of what trees and shrubs are right for your specific landscape needs.
- Shopping: Once you know what trees and shrubs you need, it’s time to purchase them. Ms. Myers gives you savvy shopping methods for deciding where to shop, how to pick out healthy plantings, methods for transporting them back to your landscape, and more.
- Planting: There’s more to planting trees and shrubs than just digging a hole and dropping them in the ground. Discover the same tried and true planting methods the experts use to ensure that their plantings, whether in a container or in a vast acreage, take root and thrive.
- Managing: How much should specific plantings be watered? When and where should you prune and trim? What are the signs that your trees have succumbed to disease—and how can you nurse them back to health? These lectures have all the management tips you need.
Along the way, you’ll learn about some of the many trees and shrubs that make great fits for landscapes with different climates, levels of soil heartiness, and size constraints, including:
- Redbud, a good four-season tree with scaly bark that blooms sweet (and edible) flowers in the spring and provides heart-shaped leaves for summer shade;
- William Baffin rose, a hardy shrub rose that needs no winter protection, grows large, and is often trained to climb along fences; and
- Ironwood, a slow-growing tree that’s perfect for small, shady spaces and whose ornamental fruit and peeling bark give it plenty of winter interest.
Master Tips from a Master Gardener
Throughout Make Your Trees and Shrubs Thrive, Ms. Myers shares a generous offering of insider tips and techniques for growing and maintaining your trees and shrubs, whether you’re looking to strengthen your gardening skills or save money in the long-run.
- How much to water trees: Trees need about 10 gallons of water per inch of trunk diameter. In general, it takes about five minutes to provide 10 gallons of water. Also, avoid watering from overhead (which can promote disease by keeping leaves unnecessarily wet).
- The best time to prune: One of the least risky times to prune is late winter. It’s easier to see the planting’s overall structure and make better cuts, there are fewer insects active in the garden, and the wounds from pruning will heal quickly as growth begins in spring.
- It’s OK to call the experts: Smart everyday gardeners know when to call a professional. For example, before you plant, call your area utility locating service to avoid hitting underground lines. It’s a free service that can save you from a potentially expensive (and deadly) accident.
Filmed in beautiful natural spaces and garden centers, and with demonstrations in our specially designed in-studio garden, Ms. Myers’ lectures take learning to new levels of engagement. And she brings to every lecture the same knowledge and insight she does to her nationally syndicated “Melinda’s Garden Moment” segments. Learning from Ms. Myers, you’ll discover why she’s won so many accolades, including the American Horticultural Society’s prestigious B.Y. Morrison Communication Award.
“I hope you’ll feel more comfortable adding trees and shrubs to your landscape,” Ms. Myers says of her exciting course. “With proper selection, planting, and care, you can increase beauty, decrease your workload, and increase your success. So go out and green your landscape!”
- A Framework for Your Landscape
- Form and Function in the Landscape
- Trees and Shrubs for Challenging Conditions
- Shopping for the Best Trees and Shrubs
- Planting Your Trees and Shrubs
- Spring and Summer Care of Trees and Shrubs
- Fall and Winter Care of Trees and Shrubs
- Pruning Old and Young Trees
- Pruning Shrubs
- When Trees and Shrubs Fail to Thrive
- Restoring a Landscape to Health
- Expanding Your Landscapes Framework
Money Management Skills [TTC Video]
08 February 2015, 17:22
2015 | Course No 5231 | M4V, AVC, 2000 kbps, 640x360 | English, AAC, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 12x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 5.7GB
Money management can be intimidating, but the good news is that the newest research into the human brain can help us understand why we make mistakes and how we can create an effective plan to meet our financial goals. Learning to navigate complex financial markets and create good financial habits is essential to the all-important goal of gaining control over our financial future.
Money management requires knowledge of financial products, investment and risk theory, and essential tax rules. But it also requires an understanding of how we as fallible humans make mistakes. These lectures will go beyond the advice of a traditional money management course and delve into the emerging science of financial decision-making. With this course, you’ll learn how to overcome your brain’s programming and avoid following your emotions down the wrong financial path.
The goal of money management is to maximize our happiness at every stage of our lives. Whether you are a novice investor or a seasoned pro, a young person getting started in life or a Baby Boomer contemplating retirement, Money Management Skills is an excellent primer for creating financial security. Taught by financial expert and Texas Tech University professor Michael Finke, these 12 practical lectures will boost your confidence around money management. This is not a course for big investors looking for the next hot stock. Rather, these lectures are for regular people who want to make sound financial decisions without obsessing over the daily changes in the market.
For most of us, a few basic principles of money management can help us get our financial houses in order, answering such questions as:
- What are the optimal uses of credit and debt?
- Is home ownership actually a good investment?
- How much insurance do I really need?
- Where should I invest my money?
- What should I do to prepare for retirement?
Money Management Skills takes you on a tour of some of the most widely available financial products, from mutual funds to life insurance to college savings accounts. Professor Finke offers evidence-based guidance for building a financial strategy using these products. When you complete the course, you will have all the important information you need to manage your finances—as well as being aware of psychological pitfalls to avoid.
Manage Money for Every Stage of Your Life
After reviewing the psychology of decision-making—and how our instincts often steer us wrong when it comes to loss aversion, risk tolerance, and information overload—Professor Finke explains the “life cycle theory” of financial planning. This eye-opening theory offers a framework for making financial decisions based on the different stages of your life, and it will give you an entirely new perspective on money management.
The goal is simple: to get the most out of your money across time. There is a time in all of our lives where we should be borrowing more and saving less, and a time when we should be saving more and borrowing less. As he teases out the implications of this framework, Professor Finke introduces you to the range of financial products and tools at your disposal, including:
- liquid assets,
- stocks and bonds,
- mutual funds,
- insurance, and
- estate planning.
You’ll receive a comprehensive overview of these options, as well as general guidance about the principles of taxation, building a credit history, analyzing your tolerance for risk, choosing a retirement age, and much more. Professor Finke ties it all together with the most up-to-date financial data and trends.
Create Your Long-Term Financial Plan
The tricky thing about financial management is that our instincts are often unreliable. Scientific evidence suggests that humans are hard-wired to make emotional decisions that prevent us from making good decisions under stress. For instance, we might be tempted to sell stock when the market falls, or we might overestimate certain risks while ignoring greater threats. The key to sound money management is to develop patience and discipline for the long haul.
Money Management Skills gives you a rational blueprint for setting financial goals, managing debt responsibly, setting aside money for retirement, taking advantage of tax benefits, navigating end-of-life issues, and much more. You’ll discover a host of basic rules of thumb, such as:
- Education is one of the most valuable investments you can make for yourself or your children.
- Choose passive, low-expense mutual or index funds for long-term investing, and be sure to diversify your portfolio.
- Term life insurance is a great value, but depending on your tolerance for risk, comprehensive auto insurance might not be such a good deal.
- Retiring just a few years later can leave you with significantly more money to spend annually during your retirement.
While everyone’s life is different, the information and sound advice in this course will empower you to create your own financial plan to reach your goals. Professor Finke provides a worry-free approach to handling all aspects of money management.
- Understanding Your Financial Brain
- Managing Money with Life Cycle Theory
- Basic Investing: Keep It Simple
- The Key Financial Instruments
- How to Use Credit Optimally
- Investing in Education
- The Economics of Home Ownership
- Managing Risk with Insurance
- Essential Tax Principles
- Saving for Retirement
- Fundamentals of Estate Planning
- Putting Your Financial Plan Together
Other 1492: Ferdinand, Isabella, and the Making of an Empire [TTC Video]
07 February 2015, 07:10
Course No 899 | MP4, AVC, 624x484 | AAC, 55 kbps, 2 Ch | 12x30 mins | 4.93GB
In 1492, there was no country called Spain and no language called Spanish. The biggest event of the year, in the region that would become Spain, was the surrender of the last Muslim stronghold, Granada. The Edict of Expulsion gave Jews three months to either convert to Christianity or leave the Kingdom of Castile and the Crown of Aragon.
In other words, there is a different 1492, than the one most of us know, one that is more complete and more complex.
This 12-lecture course uses 1492 as a focal point to follow events that enabled Spain to become a country and then an empire. It examines centuries of developments that led up to that pivotal date in Spanish history, and analyzes the consequences of the events that took place in 1492 for both Spain and the New World.
A Year that Symbolizes Spanish History
Presented by Professor Teofilo F. Ruiz, a foremost authority on Spanish history and an award-winning teacher and author, this course paints a portrait of 1492 as the centerpiece of the transformation of Spanish society by tying together several key themes:
- The rise of Castile as the strongest of the Spanish realms, and the reforms of Ferdinand and Isabella. Catholic monarchs built a popular and stable monarchy in Castile—through such measures as new taxes, control of the military, and reform of the church—that enabled Spain to emerge as the most powerful nation in Europe.
- The end of pluralism. For centuries, the Iberian Peninsula had been a multicultural mix of Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Beginning with the Christian victory over Muslim forces at Las Navas de Tolosa in 1212, and continuing with developments such as the conquest of Granada and the Edict of Expulsion, both in 1492, Muslims and Jews were either forced to convert to Christianity or sent into exile.
- The world of Christopher Columbus. Developments such as the recovery of classical knowledge of geography and astronomy, and new knowledge of maps and the use of the compass and astrolabe, enabled Columbus to set sail confidently across the Ocean Sea (Atlantic). Columbus's discoveries gave Spain a foothold in the Caribbean that it used to test colonial institutions, and to explore and conquer Mexico and Central America.
The Experience of Muslims, Jews, and Native Americans: 1492 from "Below"
Today, we associate 1492 with a sense of wonder and discovery. But a major theme of this course is to look at history not only from "above"—the perspective of a victorious Castilian and Christian society—but from below, from the view of the defeated, the outsiders, those seen as "other." For many people of the time, 1492 inspired only despair and terror.
Professor Ruiz conveys a palpable sense of the experiences of Muslims and Jews as they faced the choice of renouncing their religious beliefs or leaving lands that they had called home for centuries. This discussion touches on topics such as the Muslim sense that their civilization was ultimately doomed after the defeat by Christian forces at Toledo in 1085, and the confusion felt by Conversos—Jewish converts to Christianity—who tried to mix elements of Judaism with their new religion and became prime targets of the Inquisition.
You will see how Castilian attitudes toward others were exported to the New World. Spanish accounts of native peoples were ambivalent. They praised natives' simplicity and seeming closeness to God, but labeled them with the same stereotypes that had been applied to Muslims and Jews, and questioned whether they were truly human.
Throughout, these lectures are an opportunity to understand the events of 1492 as they were perceived by people of the time, and to correct misconceptions that linger today. For example, you will learn why Columbus's voyages were not seen as the greatest of his time, that he and his fellow Europeans did not believe the Earth was flat, and that his first voyage did not produce doubts and fear among those who sailed with him.
This 1492, the "other" 1492, will greatly expand and often revise your understanding of one of history's most crucial dates.
- Europe and the New World in 1492
- Reconquest, Pilgrimage, Crusade, Repopulation
- The Transformation of Values
- An Age of Crisis
- Isabella and Ferdinand—An Age of Reform
- Iberian Culture in the Fifteenth Century
- The Conquest of Granada—Muslim Life in Iberia
- The Edict of Expulsion—Jewish Life in Iberia
- Jews, Conversos, and the Inquisition
- The World of Christopher Columbus
- The Shock of the New
- Spain and Its Empire—The Aftermath of 1492