Archive for the ‘Garden Maintenance’ Category

Prairie Dropseed (Sporobolus) – A Durable Ornamental Grass

  Prairie dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepsis) is one of the finest warm season grasses native to the Western U.S. (USDA hardiness zones 3 to 9). Initially, this clump-forming perennial grass grows at a slow to medium rate. By early summer its fine textured deep green leaves form an arching fountain habit. Prairie dropseed inhabits prairies, meadows, open […]

Blonde Ambition® Blue Grama Grass

Looking for something a little different, plant Blonde Ambition® blue grama grass (Bouteloua gracilis ‘Blonde Ambition’). It was discovered and introduced by David Salman of High Country Gardens. This prairie species is native from Manitoba Canada, south through the Rocky Mountains, Great Plains, and Midwestern states, to Mexico. It is exceptionally heat and cold hardy […]

Avoid Dreaded Tulip Fire Disease

For over a one-half century Kingwood Center in Mansfield, Ohio has been widely known for their fabulous tulip displays every spring. Over the past few years Kingwood’s garden staff had noted a decline in bloom because of a disease identified as “Tulip Fire” (Botrytis tulipae). This fungal botrytis disease tends to accumulate in the soil […]

Sun Or Shade –These Six Shrubs Don’t Care

A surprising number of flowering shrubs perform beautifully in either sun or shade, making them quite versatile where planning a landscape. All can be utilize around outdoor living areas such as decks and patios. Several good candidates are these six:   Japanese pieris, aka lily of the valley shrub (Pieris japonica) is a versatile shrub for […]

Comparing Encore™ and Bloom-A-Thon™ Azaleas

Hey gardeners, how about azaleas that bloom nearly 5 months a year. Flowering lasts for 4-6 weeks in spring and another 12-16 weeks in summer and fall. Check out Encore™ and Bloom-A-Thon™ series of azaleas (USDA hardiness zones 6-10). The main differences between these two azaleas is the Bloom-A-Thon series tend to bloom more abundantly in […]

Hard Working Perennials For Your Late Summer Garden

Add several fall-flowering perennials to your garden that will add late season color and pizzazz . These are reliable tough perennials, and beneficial pollinators love them.  Visit garden centers in August to make your purchases. However, for these great plants to return next year and subsequent years, plants need to get their root systems established. […]

Pineapple Lilies For Summer Garden

Pineapple lilies (Eucomis spp.) are native of South Africa and are easy to grow (USDA hardiness zones 7-10).  Several hybrid cultivars are winter hardy in zone 6 if provide a protective layer of mulch or loose leafy compost. Plants have basal rosette of strap-like, wavy-edged, purple-spotted, dark green leaves which spread upward and outward to […]

Distyliums Substitute For Cherry Laurels and Hollies

Distyliums (Distylium x), aka Isu tree, are being billed as “the best new plants you’ve never heard of”. Get accustomed to seeing these boxwood-like shrubs in local garden centers, e.g., if you live within USDA hardiness zones 6b-9. Distyliums are the result of selective breeding efforts to improve an evergreen shrub native to China at […]

Four Top Rated Coreopsis You Should Know About

Coreopsis (Coreopsis spp.) are flowering perennials (and annuals) native to the eastern U.S. In 2016, MT Cuba Center* in Greenville, Delaware reported on the overall garden performance of 13 species and related cultivars and hybrids in the Mid-Atlantic region. Over a period of 3 years, the MT Cuba staff evaluated habit, floral display, disease resistance, […]

Don’t Totally Dislike All Box Elder Trees

Box elder (Acer negundo) is a native fast-growing and suckering medium-sized tree (USDA hardiness zones 4b-8).  Branches are weak wooded and easily damaged in wind and ice storms. Box elder grows almost anywhere in any average soil, medium to wet, and in full sun. The species fails on a shady site. This weedy maple is […]