Autumnal Equinox is Time for Fall Cleanup

Thursday, September 22 is the autumnal equinox, astronomically the day when the sun crosses the celestial equator heading south. From this point until the first day of winter, days will get shorter. The time of the year usually ushers in cooler weather, which is a good reminder to start cleaning up the garden. Referred to …

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Protect Pollinators from Neonics

Did you know you can unwittingly expose pollinators to harmful pesticides?  Some plant growers still use strong insecticides when growing their garden plants.  Neonicotinoids, commonly referred to as “neonics,” are very toxic to pollinators, beneficial insects, and aquatic invertebrates, and are the most widely used class of insecticides in the world. The active ingredients in …

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It’s Smart Irrigation Month

July is Smart Irrigation Month, an initiative kickstarted by the Irrigation Association to educate people about the benefits of smart irrigation technologies, products, and services.  The campaign is focused on saving water, saving money on utility bills, nurturing green spaces, and protecting a community’s water supply. Why is this important? Because across the nation more …

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Do you Really Need that Fertilizer?

Your garden is growing like crazy as we head into summer. Is it time to feed the lawn, the tomatoes and veggies, roses, and other flowers? Before you haul out bags, boxes, or bottles of plant food and sprinkle, spread, or pour them on, consider whether you really need to.  Are the products beneficial to …

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Traps are the Most Reliable Way to Manage Gophers

Grrrrr – while merrily tending my roses, I’ve come across another victim of the dreaded beast – the gopher.  If this is not one of the gardening challenges you face, you can stop reading now.  Since I live in gopher heaven, each season I have to deal with the damage from this voracious pest.  And …

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It’s not just Aphids

One of the unwanted visitors to the spring garden arrives just about now.  That pulsating mass of tiny pests that cloak the new growth on your roses, viburnums, or peach trees are at best an unsightly nuisance and at worst, creatures that can damage tender new growth on plants and spread disease.  Welcome to the …

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Could it be Fire Blight?

Noticed any branches of your pear or apple trees that look like they’ve been torched or scorched? Might be a case of fire blight, a nasty bacterial disease. It most frequently affects pome fruit trees (apples and pears) and related plants – crabapple, ornamental pear, pyracantha, and quince.  Infections may appear scattered throughout the crown …

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Prevent getting Worms in your Apples

If your last crop of apples featured a worm inside that big, juicy fruit, it likely was the larvae of the codling moth, a serious pest of apples that also attacks pears, large-fruited hawthorns, and walnuts. This insect pest can be a bane in the home orchard.  The moth larvae tunnel into the fruit and …

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