Rose Insects


Thu. Jul. 3, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Rose insects

The roses are really lovely now but there’s an enemy out there…

This guy has made Minnesota home and your roses are a tasty treat, among other things!

Japanese Beetle life cycle

This is a long article from the Dept. of Agriculture about the Japanese beetle.  Read down further for a comprehensive look at how to control the Japanese beetle without a lot of chemicals.

Aphids and mites will suck out the juice in your rose leaves.   … [Continue reading]

UGH! bugs


Wed. Jul. 2, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  UGH! bugs

I was over at my sister’s house and found her variegated Dogwood with lots of white sticky goo and a little bug I had a hard time identifying.

I googled and found nothing on this guy.  I didn’t think it was an aphid or a spittle bug because the substance wasn’t foamy, it was sticky.  Aphids are one color while spittle bugs can be 2.  This guy has a creamy yellow head with brown body and is soft. … [Continue reading]

July care for annuals and perennials


Tue. Jul. 1, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  July care for annuals and perennials

Summer’s here and the livin’s easy!!

lounge chair

The temps are great for growing unless we get brutally warm! If you haven’t mulched yet, now is a good time. Mulch truly is a garden’s superhero.

front porch garden 2

It will keep weeds out, moisture in and soil temperatures stabilized. This is important for some of our more tender plants, annuals. Applying a thin layer, about an inch, right now will keep the soil temp a bit cooler and moisture  … [Continue reading]

Dividing Iris


Mon. Jun. 30, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Dividing Iris

Overcrowded iris?  If you saw less flower production and the rhizomes are coming completely up out of the ground, then you might want to divide them!

Overcrowded iris

Iris should be divided every 3 to 4 years.  First cut the foliage fans back to about 3 to 6 inches.  Remove any yellow or dead leaves.  Gently dig out the rhizomes.  Cut them with a sharp knife leaving them each about 3 to 4 inches long.  Remove any mushy  … [Continue reading]

Vines for shade


Fri. Jun. 27, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Vines for shade

Someone recently asked me what they could do with a wooded area.  They’d like some vines in the trees.  Something easy and obviously shade tolerant.   All of these vines need some sun to flower.  Full shade will never do!

After doing a little research, I found some pretty great suggestions.  For fast growth and pretty, fragrant white flowers that last summer into Fall, there’s a vine called polygonum aubertii  or more commonly, Silver Lace.  I found it  … [Continue reading]

Adding more garden to your lawn


Thu. Jun. 26, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Adding more garden to your lawn

I just can’t help myself!  After moving into my new home (July 2012), I have continued to change the landscape.  I do this on a budget because that’s how I roll!  As you can see, overgrown irises, burning bush WAY too close to the house and the sidewalk, overgrown spirea and more…

Siberian Iris and Burning Bush at front of house

siberian iris GONE

front porch 2012

When a garden hasn’t been tended for a while, which is what happened when I bought my home, it can very quickly  … [Continue reading]

Where are the berries?


Wed. Jun. 25, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Where are the berries?

I just noticed some of the berry farms opening up over the weekend but they’re late and in some cases aren’t open yet for strawberry picking. According to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, the strawberries are a couple of weeks behind.  Normally wrapping up the season around the 4th of July in southern Minnesota, the MDA is reporting that that will likely be their peak this year.  Northern Minnesota is usually a week or two behind. … [Continue reading]

What’s wrong with my plant?


Tue. Jun. 24, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  What’s wrong with my plant?

We’ve officially crossed into summer and temps are finally feeling like it!  Wahoo for that.  Of course, that means bugs (be it insect or disease) and weeds are coming in with abandon.  I think the toughest part of gardening is trying to figure out why a plant isn’t thriving!  Is it an insect, is it a disease, are my plants getting the nutrients they need?  Enough water, too much water?  Maybe this particular plant doesn’t  … [Continue reading]

Flooding and your lawn and garden


Mon. Jun. 23, 2014

Click below to hear my Garden Bite radio show:  Flooding and your lawn and garden

SOMEBODY TURN OFF THE SPIGOT!  We are fortunate to have had some days with little rain but there are still fields with standing water and saturated ground.

Throughout the state we’ve had some torrential downpours which can amount to flooding out our lawns and gardens.  Your lawn can literally drown if the water is standing for more than a few days.

water at transformer

It’s difficult to tell from this photo but that is the Cannon River and  … [Continue reading]

Summer Solstice


Fri. Jun. 20, 2014

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Summer Solstice

Wahoo!  Put on your dancin’ shoes or barefoot!

Happy Summer Solstice (tomorrow)!  I think those of us in the north enjoy this day more than most!  After this never ending winter, summer never looked better!  Even with the humidity, rain and mosquitoes!

Sun comic

The Celts and Slavs celebrated the first day of summer with dancing, so cut loose and do the Happy Dance!

We’re beginning to enjoy some harvests from our vegetable gardens and taking advantage of Farmers Markets  … [Continue reading]