Preemergence Herbicides for the Lawn – When, Where and How Much?

The traditional question for spring lawn management – when is the best time to put on a preemergence herbicide?  Also called “crabgrass preventer”, timing is important, but is not the only consideration.  In addition to timing, there are at least 5 others.   Target temperature – Since the weeds that are targeted with these products…

Lawn Mower Preparation

It’s been sitting in the back of the garage all winter, collecting dust, possibly rusting, probably caked with debris – the lawn mower.   In many cases, homeowners simply add gas, pull the rip cord and start mowing without much thought given to the equipment.  This is unwise, as mowers are investments with prices ranging…

National Poinsettia Day

Today, December 12th, is National Poinsettia Day in the United States.  Today we celebrate this durable and highly attractive plant for the indoor landscape.  Some quick tidbits about poinsettias:   *Contrary to popular belief, they are not poisonous.  Oh sure, if you ate a whole plant, it’s likely that it would result in a stomachache,…

American Robin

Nothing says spring like the American robin. Most years my mom and I will call each other when we see our first robin. There is something uplifting about seeing them. Maybe because they singal the end of winter and the promise of spring. American robins can be found throughout most of North America from the…

Follow-up Care for Newly Planted Trees – Watering

When a tree fails, it is sometimes difficult to determine the cause.  In many cases, it is due to a failure to spread the roots out in the planting hole or simply planting it too deeply.  Doing so leads to girdling or lack of an adequate amount of oxygen, resulting in death.  Other than the…

Planting in Fall

The Nursery Council says, “Fall is for Planting” – Trees, Shrubs, Bulbs, Lawns and Flowers.   Fall is actually one of the best times to plant.  Why?  Many reasons.   First, the soils are warm in fall.  Warm soil temps are necessary to encourage new root formation into the planting hole to help establish the tree,…

Landscape Journaling

Landscape journaling, the art and science of keeping track of plants and gardens in the landscape, may seem like a fluffy idea, but the task has merit. Are you having your ash trees treated every other year to prevent an infestation of emerald ash borer? A landscape journal can be a record of when and…

Lawn Renovation

Have the heat and bugs ravaged your lawn?  If so, lawn renovation is in order.  It’s a multi-step process and now is the time to get started.  In fact, it can be thought of as a set of “cookbook instructions”, however, the risk is that one or two steps will be overlooked.  If this happens,…

Lawn Sprinkler Gaps

“So, Rocky, what do you see in my sister?”  “Well, Pauley, it’s like this.  I got gaps, she got gaps, but together, we got no gaps.”  Unfortunately, just like two of the actors in the movie Rocky, all lawn sprinkler systems have gaps; gaps in coverage; aka uneven application patterns. If you ever doubt this,…

Tree Troubles – Nonspecific Symptoms

Fir and spruce trees are known for providing beauty and function in Nebraska.  Unfortunately, they’re also known for being hard to diagnose when troubles arise.   With most trees and shrubs, specific symptoms are present when they are ailing from insects, diseases and abiotic maladies.  That’s most trees and shrubs.  Not so much with fir…