Perhaps no tree better symbolizes the spirit of the Great Plains than the bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa). Its thick, corky bark enabled it to withstand wildfire, making it one of the most prominent and long-lived species of the Midwest prairie region. Bur oak has a wide geographic range growing from Texas to North Dakota... Continue Reading →
The appearance of dead foliage clusters scattered throughout the canopy of oak trees is very noticeable right now. Some of these twig-and-foliage shoots, called “flags”, are breaking away, littering the ground below. This is symptomatic of the oak twig girdler, Oncideres cingulata. Oaks are the most common trees to be afflicted with the oak twig... Continue Reading →
In the late summer it is hard to find things that are blooming, most of our plants are starting to succumb to the heat of the summer and are not looking great. For pollinator gardens, we need to make sure that we have something blooming all through the spring, summer, and fall. One great plant... Continue Reading →
It seems like many landowners are jumping on the turf type tall fescue bandwagon, switching from perennial ryegrass and Kentucky bluegrass. It’s understandable - the number of problems that these species have caused many homeowners to look for other options.
If having control of your landscape is a thing you want (or have—is that possible?), this article probably isn’t for you. But if, like many of us, you’ve given up on control and simply enjoy whatever blossoms come your way, here’s a few plants that offer serendipity through the seasons. There are many woodland “ephemerals”... Continue Reading →
The popularity of home vegetable gardening has certainly been strong this year, continuing a trend that started 10-15 years ago. But this year's shelter-at-home practices encouraged an even larger group of new gardeners to try their hand at home food production. Similarly, there is a growing interest in home fruit production. Aside from strawberries, there... Continue Reading →
It’s difficult to imagine, as we sweat our way through early August, but in just 8 weeks we’ll be talking about early frosts. Fall is a great time to get many landscape tasks accomplished, so here’s a quick rundown of some common landscape projects listed in order of attack. Lawn Seeding August 15th to September 15th is... Continue Reading →
In mid-summer, it’s easy to forget about the needs of patio planters and houseplants moved outside for the summer. There are 5 areas to focus on to keep them thriving.
Midsummer is the season of solitary wasps. These wasps are called solitary because they do not build large colonies like paper wasps or yellow jackets. They are predators and prey on spiders, crickets, cicadas and other insects. Solitary wasps paralyze their prey and drag it to a burrow. They lay an egg on the paralyzed... Continue Reading →
Most weeds love bare ground, and new plantings offer this in bounty. Here are some tips to help you prevent undesirable plants from getting a foothold in years one and two. Start a routine. The growing season gets busy, and it can be tempting to leave weeds for “next week.” However, if “next week” turns... Continue Reading →
Note - Oscillating sprinklers, as in the image above, are one of the least efficient ways to water a landscape, due to the amount of water lost to evaporation. It feels like August's "dog days of summer" are already here, as we and our landscapes suffer through a continuation of July's hot and dry conditions.... Continue Reading →
Japanese beetle season is here! The first beetles of the season are beginning to feed and soon defoliated plants – in some cases entire trees - will appear. So, what’s the best strategy for managing them? Below are some tips to help minimize damage in your landscape. But first - realize that when Japanese beetles... Continue Reading →