September Weather Patterns Predict Early Freeze, Deepening Drought

The National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center has some startling news for September 12 through the 15th—a cold front moving through the central Great Plains region will bring falling temperatures, with a moderate risk of these temperatures being below freezing. How far temperatures fall is dependent on just how cold the cold front is and…

The Oak Twig Girdler

Flagging branches on oak trees can indicate the presence of the oak twig girdler.

Don’t Plant This at Home

The common phrase – “Don’t try this at home” refers to all sorts of actions from pro wrestling to theatre and even television shows such as America’s Got Talent.  The common thread to all of these is an element of danger, or at least something more exciting than common sense and safety.   Don’t try…

Leaf Scorch

The hot, dry days of July are more than a discomfort to many shade trees.  Leaf scorch, which is a non-infectious disease is evident throughout the Midwest.   Leaf scorch is first noticed as a yellowing or bronzing of the tissue between the veins or along the margins of leaves.  Trees are more susceptible if…

Freeze Damage to Spruce

Many spruce trees in the area are looking rough. Beyond the usual injury from spruce spider mites and Rhizosphaera needle cast, spruce trees have serious dieback, not only individual branches but in some cases, the top has died. Drooping clusters of brown needles and streaks of white sap on branches and trunk indicate freeze injury….

Surface Roots Under Trees

Trees are great – they produce shade, create framing for a house or building, provide shelter for songbirds, slow down the wind and snow and so many other benefits…but they can create a few problems, one of which is surface roots.   Surface roots are not to be taken lightly – they create a tripping…

Bagworms On the Loose

Bagworms have hatched in Douglas County! Know what to look for and how to safely and effectively treat your trees so they can remain evergreen not turn ever-brown.

Tree Galls

Galls are structures made up of plant tissue, forming in response to the saliva of mites or small insects as they feed. The number and variety of galls found on trees in our landscapes are closely associated with the weather and how conducive it is to gall-producing arthropod populations. Galls happen every year, it’s just…

Plant Groundcovers Under Shade Trees

Is the vegetation under your shade tree thin and lifeless?  If so, you may wish to consider planting a groundcover instead of turfgrass.  Periwinkle, English ivy, lamium, pachysandra, some cultivars of coral bells, ajuga, plumbago, euonymous, Virginia creeper and Hall’s honeysuckle are good options to consider.  The bottom line is Right Plant, Right Place, and…

The Northern Pecan Tree

April 14 is National Pecan Day. What better way to celebrate the day than planting your very own northern pecan tree, Carya illinoinensis. Native to southern Wisconsin and the northern parts of Illinois and Iowa and extending south to Texas, the northern pecan can handle winter temperatures as low as -35 degrees F. It has…