American hornbeam, Carpinus caroliniana, is an often overlooked tree that would greatly enhance anyone’s home garden. Its relatively small stature (20-30 feet tall) means it can fit into most small landscapes with no problem. It is hardy to Zones 3 to 9. Continue reading
At the end of the gardening season, it’s so easy to just walk away from your garden and “deal with it” in the spring. And when it comes to tools, as long as they are back in the shed, well, you’ve done great and can find them again when you need them. However, even your gardening tools need a little TLC to keep them fresh (and disease free) for next year. So over the winter, spending some time caring for your tools will help them last longer and keep your garden healthier for the next season. Continue reading
Adding a citrus tree to your home may seem a bit daunting, but they are actually quite easy to care for. When purchasing your citrus it’s important to keep in mind that it may take some time before they bear fruit,. This all can depend on the age of the tree and when it was grafted. Lemons and limes can take 5 to 7 years, while grapefruit, mandarins, and oranges can take up to 9 plus years. Depending on what size you are looking for, and how much you are willing to pay, you can find some that will bloom within the first year. Speaking of size, they are often sold in a manageable 3 gallon pot as a dwarf bush type or you can buy them in an actual tree form. Continue reading
As we start to think about gardening and lawn care this year, one question may pop up: Can I garden on my septic system? Well, there are a couple of questions to consider:
- Can a garden be contaminated by bacterial and viral hazards which may be found in septic drainfields? A properly operating septic system will not contaminate the soil with disease organisms, but it can be difficult to tell if the system is working at optimum efficiency. Also, the soil type can make a difference. Clay like soil will eliminate any organism within a few inches of the system, while a sandy soil could allow for movement of bacteria several feet.
One of the toughest places to garden is wet soil. Soils that hold too much water can be hard to prepare in the spring; there is low oxygen in the soil so slow root growth; increase in humidity which plays into the hands of plant disease.
Causes and solutions: Can you correct the problem? Continue reading
Fall is a time to give some care to woody plants. Most shrubs and trees do not need to be fertilized, if the lawn is fertilized. Also, if leaf litter (fallen leaves) is allowed to remain on the ground below the canopy, then there is a good chance that is a source of nutrients. But if soil testing reveals a need for supplemental nutrients, then fall of the year is good for fertilizer application. Continue reading
Cold weather has hit but are you done with your mower. Learn what you need to do to have it ready for next season. taking care of a few things now will save you time, money, and frustration in the spring. Continue reading
Winter is knocking on the door across Kentucky. For many gardeners this is a welcome time to sit back and relax. As the brilliant colors of summer gardens and fall foliage fade don’t despair; all is not lost in the winter landscape. With proper planning and planting you can enjoy points of color, texture and contrast in your winter garden. Think of vertical plantings with interesting bark and branch structures as opposed to ground covers. It would be a shame to bury the landscape should we ever get another 23 inch snow fall. If you enjoy watching the birds, don’t forget plants that provide a food source during the winter. Here are several plants to consider as you plan your winter landscape. Continue reading
Did you know that the average American eat 68 quarts of popcorn a year! Not only is popcorn a delicious snack, but is also nutritious since it is considered a whole grain. Of course if you slather butter on it, the nutritional benefits may be negated. Continue reading
Fall color from shrubs catches the attention of leaf-peepers, too. Red is one color to stand out from the many golden leaves. Fall color is remarkable in western Kentucky from many native deciduous shrubs, particularly that of Itea. Continue reading