Bark Bummers

Bark Bummers   This time of year is good and challenging for Midwesterners.  The challenging?  The weather.  Nuff said.  The good?  It’s a great time to notice potential problems in trees and shrubs in the landscape.   At this point in the season, there aren’t any leaves, fruit or flowers (except for a couple species) to…

Is This Plant Dead?

You hear these terms – “the dead of winter” and “dead to the world”, but what do they really mean?  In most cases, they’re exaggerations or synonyms for other situations; in this case, really cold weather with no end in sight and really, really tired. In the plant world, the question of “is this plant…

Winter Water

The weather the past few days in the Omaha Metro area has been fantastic!  If you had a chance to get out this past weekend I am sure you saw people taking full advantage of the weather.  Many of us went for a walk or took down Christmas decorations on the house.  But how many…

Put That Gift Card to Good Use

*Take an inventory of what you have in the garden tool and supplies room.  Chances are that you have some fertilizer leftover, but just how much? And what kind?  How about essentials such as hand pruners, hoses and fertilizer spreaders? Take a close look – are they in good shape or are there missing/broken parts….

Evergreen Shrub Protection in Winter

This is winter in Nebraska.  Winter in Nebraska is by definition “variable”.  Long term residents seemingly are always telling newcomers that it’s colder this year or wetter this year or dryer this year or more up and down this year.  To sum, this is winter in Nebraska…variable.   As a result of variable conditions, especially…

USDA Hardiness Zones

As a gardener it is a good chance that you know what hardiness zone you live in.  You know that you need to choose perennials, trees & shrubs that are hardy to your zone or a zone colder.  You also know that plants that are in a warmer zone will not overwinter where you are….

Protecting Young Trees in Winter

Many homeowners plant trees in the fall, after all, fall is for planting.  As the focus shifts from planting to raking leaves to getting ready to scoop snow off driveways, there’s a common tendency to forget about the new trees that were planted this fall or even in the past few years.  At least 3…

Autumn Leaf Colors

This season’s autumn colors have been exceptional. Shortened day lengths, sunny and warm days, cool nights, and adequate soil moisture provide the perfect conditions to showcase autumn’s greens, golds, reds, oranges and coppers in our trees and shrubs. Fall leaf color is a dynamic process, influenced by the decline and production of pigments within leaves….

Yellow Needles on Pines

Holy cow!  Look at my pine tree – it has lots of yellow needles on it!  Is that a problem?  What’s wrong?  These are common questions/comments that we get at this time of year.  In terms of the question of “is that a problem?”, it depends on where the needles are and which type of…

The Benefits of Fallen Leaves

It’s too bad autumn’s fallen leaves are seen as a nuisance, something to be gotten rid of as soon as possible. In truth, they are a boon to landscapes, serving as mulches, benefiting soils, and boosting our compost piles. Not only are leaf piles fun to jump in and make for great leaf fights, by…