Archive for May, 2010

Hardy Rosemary

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) ‘Arp’ is winter hardy in southern Appalachian (USDA hardiness zones 6-b and 7-a) gardens for two decades , including some very cold winters. Other rosemary cultivars which have succeeded include ‘Athens Blue Spires’, ‘Hardy Hill’, and ‘Salem’. Locate a site with a “micro-climate” advantage such as next to a driveway or along […]

Dreaded Rose Rosette Disease

No rose is resistant to this deadly virus disease. Symptoms of rose rosette disease (photo) vary greatly from the species or cultivar planted. Leaves may be small, distorted, and exhibit a conspicuous red pigmentation. Diseased canes may also be noticeably thicker than others around them, and/or may grow in a spiral pattern. Multi-flora roses, a […]

Lovely Lavender

photo: ‘Munstead’ lavender Lavender is a hardy shrub that thrives in dry alkaline soil. Lavender is commonly used as a food seasoning, a culinary substitute for rosemary. Dried flowers are crafted into table arrangements and lavender fragrance is captured in sachets and potpourris. Lavender is used to store clothes as a moth repellent. Some people […]

FireBlight on Apples and Pears

Fireblight is a serious bacterial disease that afflicts apple and pear trees. Fireblight may appear in two distinct forms. From April to early May flowers and fruit clusters may blacken (die). From May to mid-June a more serious symptom (photo) is sudden dieback, almost overnight, of branch tips . Leaves appear as if someone had […]

No-Spray Shrub Roses

Photo: Carefree Sunshine Rose at UT Gardens in Knoxville, TNOver the past decade the Knockout®, Carefree® and Home Run® series of shrub roses have altered the appearance of residential and commercial properties. From 2006 -08, no-spray rose trial was conducted at two University of Tennessee Research and Education Centers in Jackson and Crossville, TN and […]

Best of the Climbing Roses So Far– ‘White Dawn’

Since its introduction in the rose world over 60 years ago, ‘White Dawn’ has proven to be a top garden performer among climbing roses. The dark green, glossy foliage is very blackspot disease resistant. This very vigorous climber (hardiness zone 5 – 9) grows to 12 to 20 feet. Pure white double flowers are medium-sized […]

Growing Tomatoes in Containers

Apartment renters and townhouse and condominium owners till the soil in containers on their patio and deck. For containers the shorter growing determinate type tomatoes are a better choice. Spread out the harvest interval, by not planting all your tomatoes at one time. Start your last tomatoes from seed for June planting and harvest beginning […]

Alternatives to Italian Cypress

  Those of us who live north of Atlanta, GA (USDA zone 7-b) can not enjoy Italian cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), which are not hardy in most of the Southern Appalachian region (zone 6-a to 7-a). If you are designing a Mediterranean look in your garden, choose among select cultivars of these columnar evergreen shrubs: Japanese […]

Growing Blueberries

Both the highbush and rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium spp.) are hardy in the Southern Appalachian region (zone 6-b to 7-a). A hot summer is a nemesis for highbush and an extremely cold winter limits where you can grow rabbiteye within zone 6-b. Blueberry bushes grow 8-15-feet tall, requiring annual pruning. Its dark green foliage turns brilliant […]

Hybrid Decidous Azaleas Brighten The May Garden

The bright reds, oranges and yellows of the hybrid deciduous azaleas (Rhododendron spp.) are lovely among tall shade trees which protect them from the harsh afternoon sunlight of summer. Because their bloodline is from our native piedmont azalea species in the Eastern U.S., hybrid deciduous cultivars possess exceptional disease and insect resistance rarely seen in […]