Getting Your Lawn Ready for Summer – Aeration 

Many Nebraska soils have high clay and silt content making them prone to compaction. Foot traffic from both human and pets, equipment and vehicles are all common causes of soil compaction. Look for the following as signs of potential soil compaction in your landscape.  Areas where water puddles after rain Tracks or pathways where grass growth is sparse  Hard packed soil at garden gates, edges of driveways... Continue Reading →

Little Bluestem the 2022 Perennial Plant of the Year 

The Perennial Plant Association (PPA) is a professional horticulture trade organization dedicated to improving the perennial plant industry by providing education to enhance the production, promotion and utilization of perennial plants.    The 2022 perennial of the year is little bluestem, Schizachyrium scoparium, and its’ ornamental cultivars.    For those who enjoy the subtle beauty of Nebraska’s native grasses,... Continue Reading →

Pruning Fruit Trees vs. Shade Trees 

If you haven’t pruned the trees in your landscape yet, now is a good time to get it done. Today, let’s look at the differences between pruning fruit trees and shade trees. Our end goals and pruning strategies are very different between these two tree types.   Apple trees in an orchard demonstrating standard central... Continue Reading →

Make Your Landscape Bee-friendly

Honey bees and other bee species, such as bumblebees, orchard mason bees, and leafcutter bees are very important pollinators of flower and crops.  In the home garden and orchard, gardeners are aware how important bees are for fruit and vegetable production.  But in recent years many gardeners have noticed declining bee numbers in their gardens... Continue Reading →

Lilac Selection & Pruning

Lilacs are one of the most recognized and best loved shrubs found in Nebraska landscapes. It’s also one example of a plant that performs wonderfully in northern gardens, hardiness zones 3-7 for most species, but lacks vigor and does not flower reliably in southern gardens (Zone 8 and higher). Lilacs are easy to grow and... Continue Reading →

Add Beauty to the Winter Landscape

Looking out your window in January, the predominant colors you’ll see are shades of brown, gray and, if we have snow, white.  Evergreen trees and shrubs provide some relief, but the view is still pretty neutral.  An excellent way to brighten the dead of winter is to plant trees and shrubs that possess colorful fruit or bark,... Continue Reading →

Don’t Overthink Outdoor Play

It’s finally summer, time to enjoy the great outdoors, but how do we get kids outdoors when there are so many distractions? As adults we recognize the therapeutic quality of unstructured time spent in nature but that’s not a convincing argument to a kid on summer break who would rather be playing video games. This... Continue Reading →

2019 All-America Selection Flower Winners

All-America Selections (AAS) celebrates 86 years of testing and introducing improved flowers and vegetables. Founded in 1932 to foster the development, production and distribution of new and improved horticultural and agricultural varieties of flowers, bedding plants and vegetables in North America, the organization evaluates plants at a network of almost 200 display gardens across the United... Continue Reading →

2019- The Year of Dahlia

Each year the National Garden Bureau designates one bulb or bulb-like plant to highlight and this year’s featured plant is Dahlia. The Dahlia genus was named by the Madrid Botanical Garden for Andreas Dahl, a Swedish botanist and student of Carl Linnaeus. Mexico and Guatemala is the original homeland of dahlia species used to develop today’s garden cultivars. Spanish explorers of Central... Continue Reading →

Simplify Your Landscape

During the busy summer season, our best spring intentions can fall by the wayside.  Weeds creep into carefully planted flower beds, trees and shrubs go un-pruned, and fruit trees don’t get sprayed- all for lack of time.  Does a beautiful landscape always require hours of intensive care to achieve and maintain?  Of course, some maintenance... Continue Reading →

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