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Growing Trees & Bushes

Learn how to grow various species of trees & bushes

  • Broadleaf Evergreens are All the Rage…

    Boxwoods Boxwoods

     

    Boxwood is such an interesting plant because their shiny green leaves stay on the plant year-round even in areas that have snow and cold. There are different forms both spreading and upright. Boxwood in the colder climates may need some protection from the drying winter winds (on the west and north exposures) in some areas. Some of these newer selections are outstanding for areas into hardiness zones 5 and some even into zone 4. They are wildly popular especially into the colder climates to introduce some winter interest into the landscape. They make incredible sheared and formal hedges and the upright forms make perfect pyramidal specimens. Boxwood can also be used less formally and look great without shearing, but allowed to grow more naturally.

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  • 5 of the Biggest Trees You Can Plant at Home

    “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb

    Every tree is different.  Some are little more than bushes at their tallest, while others are meant to grow gigantic and form canopies in the sky.  If you’re looking for a tree that will tower over your yard for decades to come, check out these varieties:

    Northern Red Oak 2

    1. Northern Red Oak: avg. 90 ft, exceptional specimens taller than 140 ft

     

    Sometimes called the champion oak, the northern red oak (Quercus rubra) is native to North America and can be found growing wild almost anywhere east of the Rocky Mountains. In the forest, they grow over 100 ft tall. Grown in an open yard, they are likely to be more stout, but with heights still averaging about 70 ft tall.  In spring and autumn, the red oak earns its name with bright red foliage.  This tree puts down deep roots quickly, and is not easy to relocate once it’s been planted.  However, a healthy Northern Red Oak may have a lifespan of 500 years, according to the USDA.

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  • The Advantages of Planting Bare Root Plants

    Have you ever been shocked to find that the tree or shrub you ordered showed up to your door completely naked?  Don’t be!  This is what we call a bare root plant, and they come with a number of advantages over their potted and balled-and-bur-lapped (B&B) counterparts.

    Autumn Blaze Maple TT1.5

     

    The most obvious advantage?  Bare root plants cost less!  They are cost saving to the merchants, who pass these savings on to you.  Because their packaging is lightweight and stackable, shipping them is a breeze.  Potted and B&B plants must be handled carefully, because their heavy, soil-laden roots can make messes or even cause damage.  Bare root plants don’t have this problem.  Furthermore, the lighter packaging means less fuel is needed to transport bare root plants.  That’s not only cost-saving, but eco-friendly, too!

     

    Speaking of eco-friendliness, bare root plants have other environmental advantages.  When plants are shipped with soil, microbes can hitchhike along.  These can include insect eggs and other pests that can cause shock damage to your yard.  The mix of microbes in the plant’s soil might not integrate well into the mix in your yard’s soil, which could delay your new plant’s integration into the landscape.  

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  • Dwarf Citrus Tree: A Perfect Accent for Your Baby’s Room

    Indoor Citrus Tree

    Gearing up the nursery involves a lot of tough choices. After all, you and your baby will be spending a lot of time in there. You want it to be as healthy as possible for your little one, but also comfortable and decorative. There’s no better way to achieve all of that than houseplants. Houseplants are nice decorative accents, and are well known for improving air quality, as they produce clean oxygen from their leaves.
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  • Fruit Tree Fertilization

    fertile_soil Fertile soil

    You want the best fruit your fruit tree can give, right? Good fruit comes from fertile soil, so the key is to  maintain soil health.  Sometimes, this means adding fertilizer, but know how to prevent over-fertilizing. Fertilizer in excess can be more damaging than no fertilizer at all.

    The most practical way of checking soil fertility is by investigating the annual growth of the tree.  If you inspect the branches and follow the branch from the tip to the previous year’s growth, you can measure how much the fruiting tree grew in a season. New growth is flexible and green, while last year's growth is darker (often brown) and more rigid.  A mature, fruit-producing tree should have 6-8 inches of vegetative growth each year.  Immature fruit trees grow more quickly, but don’t produce fruit.   Continue reading

  • The Top 6 Best Trees For Wildlife

    6 Terrific Trees for Wildlife

     

    Deer in the forest
    1. Quaking Aspen

    2. American Holly

    3. Eastern Red Cedar

    4. Hackberry

    5. Shumard Oak

    6. American Persimmon

    If you’re anything like me, watching a graceful deer stroll across my yard brings a special sense of awe and tranquility to my home. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of welcoming some of nature’s most spectacular creatures to share a part of my life, and having the right trees can be essential to issuing that invitation directly to them.

    One of my favorite choices for wildlife-friendly trees is the Quaking Aspen. Not only is this tree lovely (with its white bark and gently dancing leaves), but it’s also a versatile gift for wildlife. Deer, Elk and Moose enjoy its shade, and love to nibble its leaves and twigs for the nutritional boost it gives them throughout the year. Many animals venture into the Aspen’s stately presence to enjoy its protective shade, and Ruffed Grouse particularly enjoy it for the nesting opportunities it presents. Continue reading

  • Growing Honeysuckle

    Red Honeysuckle FlowerGrowing honeysuckle is a fun and easy activity for any gardener. Honeysuckle is relatively easy to care for, if the proper conditions are given. Most honeysuckle plants require full sun, yet some will tolerate partial shade. Honeysuckle plants also need a good amount of moisture in the soil to thrive, but standing water may cause rot. The best thing to do when growing honeysuckle is to mulch heavily near the base of the plant. This will allow the soil to maintain moisture and also provide shade for the root system. Continue reading

  • Growing Hibiscus

    SONY DSCGrowing hibiscus is not an arduous task. The occasional gardener can grow hardy hibiscus with good success by following a few simple suggestions. The first task for growing hibiscus is to select an appropriate site. The plant site should have adequate sunlight. The sunlight should be fully available for at least 6 to 8 hours a day.

    The second growing condition that needs to be addressed is the soil. Hibiscuses are quite adaptable to soil types. Providing a location with highly organic soil will greatly enhance growth and flower production. To increase organic matter, it may be advisable to mix sphagnum peat moss into the planting soil. After planting, the soil needs to be kept moist constantly for the first year or two. When they are fully established, they can accommodate some drought or excessive moisture. Continue reading

  • Growing Ferns

    Fern in the winterGrowing ferns differs from growing other types of plants in many ways. First of all, many plants need partial to full sun to be able to survive in a garden.  Growing ferns in partial to full sun, on the other hand, will be extremely detrimental to the health of the plants. The natural habitat of many ferns is the rainforest, and they have become accustomed to being shaded and having lots of moisture. Continue reading

  • Dwarf Apple Trees

    Assorted_Red_and_Green_Apples_2120pxDwarf apple trees have many advantages to standard sized apple trees. First of all, dwarf apple trees are smaller. This means that they take up less room in a garden. The reduced size of a dwarf apple tree makes it easier to prune, spray and harvest fruit. Additionally, dwarf apple trees will produce fruit earlier than standard apple trees, often only three years after being planted, as opposed to as many as ten years.

    There are generally two ways to create a dwarf apple tree. One way is to specially breed them smaller. This is very hard to do and may take hundreds of years. A faster, and much more common way is to graft the tree onto a rootstock that has been selected for its dwarfing characteristics.There are several different types of rootstock, and each works best with specific trees. Continue reading

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9910 N. 48th Street, Suite 200 Omaha, NE 68152

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