Fertilizing your lawn – why wait?


Fri. May. 3, 2019

Fertilizing your lawn – why wait?

This is a yearly ponderable by the lawn faithful.  According to research, Spring is NOT the best time to fertilize your lawn.  I know, I can hear many of you gasping, but the BEST times to fertilize your lawn are Late summer and fall.  

This is contrary to the traditional springtime application. Early spring applications of nitrogen cause a surge of top growth in the plants, which makes the lawn look nice in the spring but depletes the plants’ energy reserves. Consequently, when  … [Continue reading]

Some zucchini love


Thu. May. 2, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Some zucchini love

Years ago, while out tending to my garden, I came across a 2 foot monster!  It was long, thick and green… it was an enormous zucchini squash.  I had so many, I was begging people to take them.

So then I just quit planting that prolific producer.  The issue being their sprawl!

But, this winter in particular, I kept yearning for my chinese 5-spice zucchini bread, alas, I could find NO zucchini in my local  … [Continue reading]

Palmer Amaranth


Wed. May. 1, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Palmer Amaranth

All above and below ground parts of the plant must be destroyed. Additionally, no transportation, propagation, or sale of these plants is allowed. Failure to comply may result in enforcement action by the county or local municipality.  YIKES!  They are not kidding around!

The dreaded Palmer amaranth, a runaway weed threatening ecological systems has found a new pathway. In September of 2016, Palmer amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri) was initially discovered and confirmed in Minnesota.

First  … [Continue reading]

Save the bats? YES!


Tue. Apr. 30, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Save the bats?  YES!

Should we save the bats?  Yes! There are a few reasons why.  One that tops my list is the amount of mosquitoes they eat, along with leafhoppers, moths, flies, June bugs and cutworms!  Scientists have estimated that they are worth $3.7 billion in reduced crop damage and pesticide use!

The University of Minnesota Extension recommends some plants to keep the bats around and liven up your evening garden. Interestingly, they suggest a plant called  … [Continue reading]

Fairy rings and fungi


Mon. Apr. 29, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Fairy rings and fungi

Now that the snow is gone, the grass is greening up, the fairies are coming out too!    

No… not this kind.  It’s still a little too cold out here!  There’s a fairy ring in my lawn…

My husband didn’t believe me when I told him what I thought the ring was. He thought it was from a few years ago when a lawn company fertilized.  No, honey, that doesn’t last that long. Then I  … [Continue reading]

Looking for EAB


Fri. Apr. 26, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Looking for EAB

While this ridiculously cold Winter seems like it should have killed some bad bugs, I’ve heard from bug specialists, that’s not the case.  Bummer.

University of MN Ext. Entomologist, Jeffrey Hahn, DOES say, that now is a great time to examine your ash trees for evidence of emerald ash borer (EAB).

It may seem early, that maybe you need the leaves on the trees to check the canopy, but Hahn says that’s not a  … [Continue reading]

Dividing perennials


Thu. Apr. 25, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Dividing perennials

With our “new normal” frost date on the horizon, as I talked about on Monday, we’re looking at warmer temperatures.  Although you could argue about that after experiencing January and February of 2019!

The point being, soon you will be able to start dividing your overgrown perennials.  GENERALLY speaking, perennials can be divided every 3 years.  Hostas are one of these plants!

Divide perennials when they are peaking up about 3 to 6 inches or so.   … [Continue reading]

The perennial argument over the annual Dandelion


Wed. Apr. 24, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  The perennial argument over the annual Dandelion

After this Winter, I’ll bet SOME of you are happy to see the cheery yellow flowers of the Dandelions.  I had some sweet siberian squill starting and then freezing their little blue buds off last week.  Ahh, but they survived and there are further signs of Spring, including my latest addition from last year, a Spirea called ‘Candy Corn’.  It has an array of colors from Spring (red) and Fall (candy  … [Continue reading]

Seed starting mixes


Tue. Apr. 23, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Seed starting mixes

About a month back, I started some seeds for kicks using a wooden dowel and newspaper.  For the starter mix, I used a product I’d not used before but it was from Burpee and said Organic seed starting mix and it had coir in it, a renewable source coming from coconut husks.

I had posted the picture here and on Facebook.  A Master Gardener friend of mine alerted me to an issue that many MGs  … [Continue reading]

Unofficial new frost date on the horizon


Mon. Apr. 22, 2019

Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show:  Unofficial new frost date on the horizon

According to Dr. Mark Seeley, University of Minnesota professor emeritus and meteorologist, we can expect new normals in the last spring frost date for Minnesota and the Upper Midwest.  

Hmmm, I’m not feelin’ it, but, Seeley, a smart guy who I happen to know, says in the last 20 years the last frost date has been April 20th.  

Since 1999, we have only had two last spring frosts in May, the  … [Continue reading]