Gardening Questions

  1. How To Grow Blueberries In Containers

    Blueberries In Containers

    Did you know that growing blueberries in containers is one of the easiest ways to expand your edible garden without using valuable backyard real estate? That’s right! With a little preparation and patience, you can be enjoying delicious, farm-fresh, berries straight from the bush, no matter how much space you have!

    Blueberries are notorious for their vitamin C and E packed fruit and have become a widely popular addition to backyards everywhere! However, you absolutely must make sure you’re setting yourself up for success and picking bushes that are best for your area.

    The wrong kind of blueberry bush can leave you wondering why you aren’t getting much fruit, or why it doesn’t fare as well in the colder months.

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  2. Top Flowering Plants To Help Pollinators

    It’s Pollinator Week everybody! And that means it’s an impeccable time to cover the importance of pollination and name off a few favorite plants that prove to be excellent pollinators.

    Looking to make a full-blown Butterfly Garden for local bee and butterfly populations? Or just want to add native plants that are great at attracting beneficial insects for your vegetable garden? Read on.

    First, Why Make Pollinator Friendly Gardens for a Variety of Pollinators?

    About 13 years ago, the U.S. Senate made the step to designate a solid week in June each year to raise more awareness about the declining pollinator populations. It has now grown to be an international celebration!

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  3. Pie, Tart, Sour or Sweet Cherry? What’s the difference?

    Hand picking cherries off of a cherry tree

    It’s the age-old question, what’s the difference between all these cherry tree varieties? Ok, so maybe it’s not considered an age-old question, but it’s certainly one many ask and for good reason.

    Cherry trees are beloved across the world. Partly because of their beautiful blossoms and partly their scrumptious fruit. Picking a few off of the backyard tree makes the perfect snack for warm summer days lounging on the patio.

    However, you’ll want to make sure you’ve picked the best cherry tree for the job at hand. Will you be snacking right off the tree or are you hoping to bake a county fair award-winning pie? The answer will determine which variety you want.

    I Want a Pie Cherry Tree for my Cherry Pie Filling

    Ok, great! Pies are superb and cherries are certainly a key ingre

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  4. Will Tree Roots Damage My Water Pipes, Foundation, Sidewalks or Driveways?

    Tree roots

    Here at Nature Hills, we get asked a lot of questions about planting trees. People want to know if tree roots will grow into and damage pipes, water and sewer lines.  

    Sure, it’s true that some plants have aggressive roots and some trees are very surface-rooted. Certain soil conditions may cause a tree to adapt their typical style.  

    And of course, everyone's pipes are different. An old, cracked Orangeburg or clay pipe certainly tells a different story than new PVC pipe and steel pipes. 

    Tree Root Growth 101

    All roots are there to find food, oxygen, and water, and to anchor the plant in the soil

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  5. Are Elderberries Safe to Eat, Or Are They Poisonous?

    Are Elderberries Safe to Eat, Or Are They Poisonous?

    People are on the hunt for native plants that produce healthy berries. Today’s homeowner wants to take advantage of plants that provide edible – and ornamental – benefits.

    Elderberry is also commonly known as “Sambucus” and you can find extracts and a dried version in pill form at any health food store. Historically, cooked Elderberry Syrup has been used as chest remedies to treat colds and flu.

    Even though it’s touted for both immune support and to reduce the severity of colds, you may have heard that Elderberries are poisonous.

    Here’s why. The leaves, stems and roots of the plants as well as the seeds in the berries have chemicals which metabolize into cyanide. Eating the raw seeds can cause a build-up of cyanide in the body and make you ill.

    Many edible plants

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  6. Which Trees Grow the Fastest?

    Lovely River Birch graces a home with shade and beauty

    Today’s homeowners are looking for trees with speedy growth rates to provide privacy and shade as soon as possible. But the Nature Hills horticultural team thinks you should consider a few more qualities when making your decision….

    Need for Speed? Think Color, Too

    “So, which trees grow the fastest?”

    When you think of a fast growing tree, you will probably think of the usual cast of characters like cottonwood trees or willows that really grow fast in your area. However, you should know that there are other considerations to think about.

    Instead of focusing only on growth rate, let’s ask instead, “Which fast growing shade trees will give me addition

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  7. What are the Top 10 U.S. Colleges to Attend for Botany Degrees?

    graduation-995042_1280  

    Admit it. You love plants. You wouldn't have found your way to Nature Hills Nursery if you didn't. Of course, there are different levels of love. There is the "I want my yard to look nice" level. Or the "I want to know all of the plants native to my area" level. There is even the"I'd" like to learn the Latin names of all my neighbor's weeds level. But if you are at the "I" want to work with plants every day for the rest of my life and change the world while I do it level, then there is only one path for you. You need a degree in botany.The study of plant science is integral to keeping the plants we have in top form and in introducing new p

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  8. Are Holly Berries Poisonous to Humans & Animals?

    Holly Close Up

    Fruit on a Female Holly Shrub

    Wreath Made of Holly

    Wreath Made of Holly

    Remember there are two different types of

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  9. Russian Sage, Salvia, and Veronica: How to Tell Them Apart

      Sage_Veronica_Salvia

    Little Spire Russian Sage Little Spire Russian Sage

    Russian sage, veronica, and salvia can appear to be very similar at first glance, but there are so many nuanced differences that will make one better for your space compared to the others. Flowers can be a key indicator in this situation. Salvia and Veronica have similar coloring, which can range from dark purple to rose pink to white. Russian Sage,

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  10. The Difference Between Rhododendrons and Azaleas

    At first glance, rhododendrons and azaleas seem to be nearly the same plant. Classified into the same genus, Rhododendron, and with very similar flowering and growing habits, it's easy to say that it was some sort of confusion between common name and scientific name when discussing the same plant. Azalea Leaves (left) Rhododendron Leaves (right)

    In reality though, they are completely different species. Rhododendrons (common name)

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