Monthly Archives: November 2017

  1. Brighten Winter With Bloom Pads

    Bloom Pads from Nature Hills will make spring arrive early inside your home.  Brighten the bleak winter days with bursts of colorful flowers and super fragrance!

    Bloom Pads are spring flowering bulbs that are placed between two pieces of biodegradable paper.

    Here is how to best handle them:

    Your Bloom Pads were just delivered!  Simply put the bulbs in the vegetable drawer of your fridge.  Keep them in the pads they came in, and don’t store them with apples or fruit.  Chill them in the fridge for 12-16 weeks.  Bring them out of the fridge, planting the entire pad just under the soil surface.  Be sure

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  2. Indoor Winter Citrus Care

    This is the time of the year when all citrus grown in cold climates is brought indoors for winter protection. There are a few critical considerations that will allow your citrus plant to adapt to being indoors and stay healthy until it is put back outside in the spring.

    The optimal place to over winter a citrus is in a greenhouse that is climate controlled. This is rarely available to the average homeowner. The process of bringing plants indoors should begin about 3 weeks before expected night-time temperatures reach 35 degrees or less. Citrus plants should be brought to a protected location that is well lit but not necessarily full sun. A location up against the house is ideal. A covered patio works well or just a wall that has good radiant heat coming from the house. The idea is to get the plant

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  3. To Cut or Not To Cut

    Generally, ornamental and native grasses are grown for their extreme fall and winter interest, so do not cut your grasses down in the fall. 

    Leave your grasses standing to create movement and interest during the fall and winter months in your landscape.  Hold off cutting your grasses until spring just before they start to grow. 

    What about your perennials and mixed borders?

    A good rule of thumb is that if any of your annuals or perennials had some diseased foliage this year, then cut and remove all infected debris (including the leaves) and dispose of them at your local yard waste site to prevent disease from overwintering on last year’s foliage.

    Plants in your border that were not diseased can be allowed to stand in the landscape, so the birds can eat the seeds, and it allows beneficial insects plac

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  4. Protect Trunks of Young, Newly Planted Trees

    Newly planted young trees, fruit trees, ornamental cherries and pear trees, and those more expensive grafted weeping ornamental specimen plants are easily damaged from rodents and rabbits during the winter months.  If the bark is chewed off all around the base of the plant the tree will die every time.

    The simple most efficient way to prevent damage to young trunks of these plants is to wrap them tightly (right up against the trunks) with metal screening, hardware cloth, or even doubled up chicken wire. 

    Wrap from the bottom up two or three feet or to the first branches.  The metal screening prevents vermin from chewing off that tasty, young, outer bark that is so important to protect.  It also protects from deer rubbing the bark off with their antlers.

    The screening allows the tree trunks to dry quickly following the

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  5. Don’t Prune Lilacs During Fall or Early Spring

    Check out the big, fat, juicy buds already showing on this Lilac bush in early November.  That big bud will produce the flower next spring so do not do any cutting on them or you will be removing the flowers that are already in place. 

    Just leave your pruning shears hanging in the garage when it comes to Lilacs.

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  6. Protect Trees From Deer Damage

    This nice young, newly planted tree is now going to die. This is an example of deer damage from a buck rubbing his antlers on the young trunk of this tree and happens in the fall of the year at mating season when they compete with each other for the win.

    Using our simple method of trunk protection will eliminate buck rubs, but let’s not forget in some areas where there is snow cover, the rabbits and rodents love tender, young bark of young trees too.

    It is very important to protect the young bark. If the bark is damaged around the entire trunk, the tree will die. If the bark was damaged only part way around the tree can recover. But why take a chance? Keep your young trees healthy and growing by taking a few minutes to apply trunk protection on the trunks. We like hardware cloth, metal screening or even doubled over c

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  7. Rose Hips

    Rose hips are the fruits that form on many kinds of rose bushes.  The hips are the fleshy fruits where the seeds are produced.  Rose hips are super high in vitamin C and are used in many kinds of supplements and I am sure you have hear of Rose Hip Tea, jelly or marmelade.

    These rose hips were produced on the Rugosa Rose.  When the flowers finish the petals fall off and the fleshy fruit forms and ripens and color ranges from orange, red to deep purple.  As you can see the plants are starting to go dormant and the leaves are turning color and the hips have colored up beautifully.  Some of the rose hips from wild roses are much smaller and less fleshy but very show still.

    Rose hips will remain showy all winter long.  Many times rose hips are cut and used in holiday decorations mixed with evergreen branches and  branches from red twigged dogwod

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  8. Powdery Mildew on your Peony Plants?

    We have been seeing powdery mildew on the leaves of Peony plants in some areas.  Weather conditions vary greatly in areas across the country and that will change the severity of infection on some of the Peony varieties. 

    Some selections just do not have any problem with mildew and others have been greatly affected this year.

    This time of the year it is very evident if your Peony plants have powdery mildew as it looks as if the plant was dusted with powdered sugar.

    As your plants go dormant on those infected plants, cut off all infected leaves and stems all the way down to the soil line and remove all of the infected debris from the yard. By removing all of the infected plant parts, you can prevent overwintering the pathogen and your plants have a better chance of remaining clean next year. 

    Any of your ot

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  9. Keep Your Hosta Collection Healthy

    If you are like us, you like collecting different Hosta plants for your yard.  The diversity of size and color is endless and the new cultivars continue to be introduced every year. 

    Keep your Hosta collection healthy and happy.  Wait until jack frost comes along and kills back your Hosta plants and let them turn brown BEFORE cutting your plants back at the end of the season. 

    Allowing your Hosta leaves to turn brown and dry before cutting the leaves off will prevent the spread of viruses between plants. 

    Have a little patience, and wait until mother nature puts your Hosta to sleep before pruning.

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  10. Keep on Shredding Leaves

    The leaves continue to fall onto your lawn.  Don’t get out your rake…but get out your lawn mower!

    As you see those leaves fall, one of the best things you can do is to just run your power mower over the tops of the leaves as they fall.  Even if your grass areas are not growing as vigorously, the quality of your turf will be improved by keeping the sunlight available to your grass. 

    Shaded bluegrass is happy to have the leaves fall so the sunlight can reach some of those weaker more shaded areas of grass.  Keeping the leaves shredded will also allow more sunlight to reach your grass.

    As you continue to shred those leaves, should they get too thick to allow them to remain on the grass lightly rake up a few and add them to your garden or compost bin as shredded leaves bread down so very quickly. 

    Remember too that

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