Plants for Wet Sites

Written by Christina Hoyt, Nebraska Statewide Arboretum With Nebraska’s weather extremes, many of us have spots in our landscapes that need to tolerate periods of wet feet as well as periods of drought… quite a challenge! The type of wet conditions also varies. A wet, poorly drained site is different than a moist site with... Continue Reading →

Boost Landscape Appeal with a Curb Strip Garden

Many urban landscapes have a forlorn narrow planting strip between the curb and sidewalk, often known as a “hell strip”. No matter what is planted here - turf, trees, shrubs or perennials - they all face many challenges affecting their health and beauty, including those below. These factors must be considered when selecting plant material and, in... Continue Reading →

Dividing Iris

Iris are one of the most popular and beautiful of garden flowers. With the wide range in plant type, size, and adaptation, there is an iris for almost any location. The standard iris, Japanese iris, Siberian, Spuria and yellow flag types are all suitable for Nebraska. By using an assortment of these types in a... Continue Reading →

Mulch and Hot Weather

Mulch is an aspect of the landscape that doesn’t provoke much thought. Wood chips or rock? Landscaping fabric or not? The reality is that the right kind of mulch, applied to the proper depth, has a BIG impact on plant health, especially during the heat of summer.   Root function stops when soil temperatures reach... Continue Reading →

After-Harvest Care of Asparagus

As a long-lived perennial, it's not uncommon for asparagus plants to live for 12-15 years or longer. So it's worth your time to take care of your plants, keeping the crowns healthy and vigorous to ensure a bountiful harvest each year. Follow these steps to ensure the health of your asparagus and next year's crop. Time to... Continue Reading →

Thinning Tree Fruits

Fruit trees in the home orchard often set abundant crops if spring pollination conditions are good and most home gardeners do not thin fruit trees enough or at all. Only 10% of peach flowers are needed for full crop set and peaches are particularly prone to branch breakage under heavy crop load. Very heavy fruit loads,... Continue Reading →

Pollination Basics –

Gardeners enjoy the beauty and fragrance of flowers, but from a plant’s standpoint flowers have one very basic and essential function – to ensure the production of seeds and thus the next generation. For a plant to produce seeds its flowers must be pollinated, either through self-pollination or cross-pollination, and most plants have evolved to... Continue Reading →

Wildflowers to Love

Who doesn’t love wildflowers? Viewing or even imagining a natural area with an abundance of wildflowers in various shapes, colors and forms is a pleasing activity for most people. But do we ever stop to think about what a wildflower actually is? In the simplest sense, a wildflower is just that—a flower that is wild,... Continue Reading →

Time to Scout for Bagworms

If your landscape has a history of bagworm problems, it’s time to start looking for them. Nebraska Extension entomologist Jonathan Larson says “Bagworms are some of the best architects in the insect world. These caterpillars take materials from the plants they live in and construct a tough bag to dwell in as they grow.” The insects and... Continue Reading →

Leave Foliage on Spring Flowering Bulbs

Spring flowering bulb foliage is important for next year's bloom.  Bulb leaves such as tulip, daffodil and hyacinth manufacture the sugars and carbohydrates that accumulate in the bulb, producing large flowers.   Removing the foliage soon after flowering lowers the quality of next year's bloom, leading to smaller or non-existent flowers.   Bulb foliage isn't particularly... Continue Reading →

Ride Safely This Summer

As I travel the state of Nebraska to teach all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and utility task vehicle (UTV) safety, I am often met with the attitude that kids and adults believe themselves to be indestructible.  When talking with those who have first-hand experience with an ATV or UTV accident, however, the attitude is much different. According... Continue Reading →

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