Monthly Archives: April 2018

  1. “Un-wintering” your roses

    Those of you lucky enough to be growing roses in the warmer regions of the country, you don’t have to be so concerned about getting your rose plant to survive the winter season.  Your plants are already actively growing, and some are already seeing flowers. 

    In areas where roses go completely dormant and need protection, those roses are just starting to wake up. 

    We have found the best way to over winter Hybrid tea, Floribunda, Grandiflora, shrub roses, and climbers is to mound up the base of the plants with at least a foot of arborist wood chips, or mulch of any kind.  This covers the bottom foot of so of the canes protecting the plants.  Climbing roses that are not hardy should be carefully laid down and those canes covered with wood chips or mulch too.

    Now that winter has finally receded from the northern areas it is time to pull that mulch away from the bottoms of the rose canes and get them pruned!  Wear some good heavy gloves to protect your hands.

    Hybrid Teas, Grandifloras, Floribundas, and many shrub roses all make flowers on NEW GROWTH.  That means that these roses you are uncovering really do need to be trimmed so the plants produce the best flowers. 

    In these colder regions, we do not trim roses in the fall.  We leave the rose branches (canes) alone until early spring just before they start to grow. 

    Older rose bushes that have been in place for many years you should take a bit of time with each plant eliminating any dead or brown and dry canes right down to the ground with a nice sharp pruning shears.  Any nice green stems that are not broken and look healthy should be reduced to about 6-8 inches in height. 

    The new growth that develops from those 6-8-inch canes will produce nice strong stems with large and healthy flowers. 

    Any of the older shrub rose types that bloom on old stems should not be pruned now.  Know what kind of rose you have before you prune.  Some of these older native roses that bloom on last years growth will flower in June and when that stem flowers you cut it down to the ground and new stems arise from the ground.  Those stems make next year’s flowers.

    Climbing roses are a bit fussier in the more northern climates for sure.   Very formally trained climbing roses that are trained over arches or trellises may need to have some professional advice based upon the variety to best know how to prune them. 

    In most cases Climbing roses will bloom on the stems from last year.  Then the newest shoots from the ground may also produce roses on the tips of those newest canes later in the summer.  When the oldest, fattest stems are done blooming after their first set of blooms, those stems can be removed as far down as the ground allowing new stems to take over that arise from the ground.  In some cases, if you are trying to maintain cover of an entire rose arbor you may decide to leave more of the older wood in place, so the plant does continue to cover the entire trellis or structure it has been trained on. 

    The key is removing older and/or diseased stems leaving clean and healthy stems each year.  Winter damage may make pruning decisions for you. 

    Clematis vines make and incredible companion plant that can be planted among climbing roses allowing the Clematis vines to mingle with the rose canes adding complementary or even contrasting colors to the rose blooms.  Both the Clematis and the Rose can co-mingle quite nicely neither overtaking the other making them perfect companions to co-exist. 

    Roses love sun.  The more sun, the more flowers you will see.  Sun makes strong canes and sturdy flowers, and initiates reblooming roses quicker.  Water the roots, do not water the leaves.  Keeping the leaves dry will lessen the chance of foliar diseases.  Mulch over the soil up to the rose canes will not only look nice, also reduces the incidence of soil born diseases.

    Treating roses for insects can be done with organic options or if not many.  Or if you are in an area that has a lot of pressure from insects you may want to consider using a systemic rose care option.  Granular systemic rose care is applied to the soil, watered in, and the plant takes up the active ingredient to prevent bugs from chewing on those plants. 

    With all the incredible options of shrub roses today, be sure to check out the many amazing colors, smaller sizes, and re-blooming and everblooming options that make shrub roses so popular for today’s color injectors to your landscape.

    If you need help deciding which roses are for you, be sure to let us help.  Don’t forget to cut a few and include them on your nightstand or at your dinner table. 

    Check out the many pages of pictures of the roses that we offer at Nature Hills Nursery by clicking here.

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  2. Southern Magnolia Trees Drop Leaves in Spring

    If you are a new owner of an elegant, white flowered Southern Magnolia, you should know this …

    Glossy, dark green, leathery leaves on the Magnolia are incredible, but when spring rolls around, those beautiful leaves turn yellow and spotted and fall off the tree. This is perfectly normal and is expected each year.

    Even though Southern Magnolias are evergreens, in spring, new leaves push off the old leaves - but not all at once.  Most deciduous trees lose their leaves in the fall, but Southern Magnolias will drop the older leaves in the spring - every spring.

    Fresh new foliage replaces the older, discolored leaves, giving your plant a fresh new look each spring!  Enjoy.

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  3. Plants or Fence? You Decide

    Arborvitae make an excellent backdrop for your perennial or shrub border and at the same time eliminate the neighbor next to you. Natural, unpruned plants are maintenance-free and offer cover for wildlife year-round. Much better than a fence, don’t you think? NO painting, no maintenance, and a friendly way to eliminate a neighbor’s camper or messy yard that you can both enjoy (maybe even split the cost??). Watch them get better each year. Arborvitae available today can be found by clicking here.

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  4. Why Buy From Nature Hills?

    Nature Hills Nursery’s main office is in Nebraska, but did you know that we have contracted with over 16 of the best growers across the country?  Most other online plant stores ship from one location, and all the plants get shipped to that location.

    As Nature Hills has expanded each year, we have added classic lines of plants from growing regions that do that plant palate well.  When it comes time for you to receive that plant, it arrives directly from our grower who knows best how to grow that plant.  Not everyone can grow everything in one location under one set of growing conditions.  This is the reason we reach out to other areas across the country.

    Nature Hills saw a need to put some of the challenges of growing these different crops of plants in the hands of the growers that know best how to produce them.

    Rather than having the many kinds of plants shipped across the country to one big shipping yard like the other online e-commerce nursery companies do, we let our professional growers who are growing, trimming, fertilizing and watering the plant ship their product to your door.

    Why do we ship from different locations?  Simple – it lets us offer the widest variety of plants to the greatest area, without sacrificing our quality.  Imagine trying to hold southern plants and northern plants in the same location as other online e-commerce companies do.  No wonder there is disappointment with the finished product shipped from our competition.  We follow strict guidelines regarding quality and only work with growers who meet and exceed our standards.  When we say “from the fields to your door”, we mean it … literally!

    As Nature Hills continues to expand, we are broadening our offering with the new series of plants, new dwarf selections, new fruit and berry selections, new re-blooming shrubs, and longer blooming shrubs.  We are always bringing on the newest perennials, newest roses and new trees too.  We continue to grow the plants that are tried and true and the ones that receive the most positive feedback.  Our growers keep us updated on the newest plant material available so that in turn we can offer them to you!

    This is what sets us apart from other online nurseries - premier growers who are bringing new plants to market, growing and caring for them, and shipping them directly to your home.

    Our team has also engineered the best method of boxing plants to prevent them from becoming damaged during the short time they ship to you.

    Nature Hills is able to offer various sized plants, many that are nice sized landscape quality sure to please.  The days of the old “mail order” companies shipping many very small plants in the same box (the size of a shoebox) are long gone.  E-commerce purchases from Nature Hills brings a new level of quality and size to our customers who prefer shopping from the comfort of their own homes 24 hours a day.  

    Working with leading growers keeps us current with the nursery industry trends, keeps us compliant with invasives and other plant issues that arise across the country.  We have three top horticulturists on staff to assist us and you with everything from tropical plants, annuals, perennials, vines, evergreens, fruit trees and small fruits, citrus trees, and shade and ornamental trees that work in 48 states.  Our full-time, on staff compliance officer insures that we are on the front end of doing things right.

    We are constantly tweaking our plant offerings, making sure our plant descriptions and pictures are accurate.  Care and growing tips are detailed and user friendly.

    We are America’s largest online plant nursery.

     

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