Most leaves have dropped off to the ground and plant life is getting ready to hunker down for the next several months. But before those leaves fell, they provided us with several weeks of "eye candy" as Pennsylvania’s hillsides and mountains were dressed in the vibrant shades of fall. Now is the time to start planning for next year's fall color display in your own landscape.
Each time I go along my driveway, I pass a stately large Fraser Fir that is a reminder of the first Christmas spent in our new home. The tree was only 4 ½ feet high when planted, but throughout the years has become a featured specimen in our landscape. If this is something you think you would enjoy, a little planning ahead will help ensure success and is well worth the effort.
I won’t lie. I am a plant addict. I want every plant. On my small patch of land there are many native plants, but also a plethora of plants from around the world. What I do is make sure that the balance leans towards the North American trees, shrubs and perennials. It is the only way to be responsible and help the “wild kingdom” that was here long before I came along.
You may be longing for the seasonal rest a gardener deserves when the garden is put to bed for its long winter’s nap. However, there are a few things you can do to help those long, dark days of winter pass by. A walk through the garden adorned with bows, evergreens, berries, pine cones, and unusual bark, whether real or artificial, reveals some of its more subtle beauty.
It is fall in Adams County, Pennsylvania. Our weather has been beautiful and most of our planting is done. We are harvesting the last tomatoes, peppers and beans in our vegetable gardens. But wait; there’s still planting to do. I just planted my turnips in the Trial Garden Plot. Then there are the flowering bulbs, garlic, and rhubarb to get in the ground before it freezes.
Autumn is just about upon us, and you know the other word for the season -- Fall. Why? Because the leaves will soon be falling all around us. Many people think of falling leaves as something that must be raked up and thrown away, but leaves are intended by nature to be a natural fertilizer and protective cover for the earth.
Natural Resources scientists at Cornell University are expressing concern about the effects of the common earthworm on the health of forests in the Northeast. The question they are asking is "What are the effects of the invasive worms on local forest ecosystems and native plants?"
With all the excitement, celebration, passion, and enthusiasm of the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War and Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, I thought that it would be fun to learn about gardening during the Civil War. Gardening was a means of sustenance and survival during that era.
Solidago is a huge hit in the European garden for its late yellow/gold color. It is sad that we do not appreciate our native goldenrod as a plant of interest. The entire species would need a whole book to cover the different types of flowers. Today, cultivars have “improved” on nature to satisfy our need for order, and Solidaga ‘Fireworks’ comes to mind as a real show stoppe r in the autumn garden.
The lily leaf beetle was recently identified by Penn State ornamental extension entomologist Greg Hoover, and confirmed by state and federal regulatory agencies as a new ornamental insect pest in Pennsylvania.
Most desirable plants have a difficult time growing in compacted soil, which is why gardeners are typically encouraged to plant flowers and vegetables in well-tilled soil with plenty of organic matter.
Garden centers are currently stocking hardy bulbs, tantalizing gardeners with the prospect of spring color and fragrance. However, with a little advance planning and some knowledge of indoor forcing, it is possible to enjoy a patch of spring beauty even when midwinter is at its bleakest.
It is said that “An optimistic gardener is one who believes that whatever goes down must come up…” unless you are a gardener planting spring-blooming bulbs in “critter country.” Various critters, especially voles, squirrels, and chipmunks, find many of the bulbs we take the time to plant just too appetizing to pass up for an easy snack.
The butterflies and moths that we see each day in summer are practically all native insects. That means that they have evolved, along with the plants that feed them, over centuries. You can help butterflies and moths by providing a suitable habitat of native plants in your yard that will allow them to grow and thrive.