Largely unknown in Minnesota, Persian ironwood is widely used in zone 5 and above as a boulevard tree because of its handsome habit, durability in wind and snow, longevity, and tolerance of salt and pollution.Read More
The weather can be glorious in late summer but the garden can start to look tired this time of year if not properly planned and planted. But as the daylilies start to look emaciated, this humble stunner bursts on the scene. Standing just 12" tall, Aconitum cammarum "Blue Lagoon" is a potent way to reinvigorate your garden's color in time for the start of school. Those with dogs or culinarily intrepid children should we warned that this plant, like all monkshoods, is toxic if consumed. But for those who refrain from eating it can glory in its beauty for much of the fall. Grows well in sun to half shade and is deer resistant.
There are so many hostas in the marketplace, many of them only slightly different form eachother, that it's easy to lose track. "Waterslide" is unique enough to be memorable. Resembling a smaller, silver-edged Krossa Regal with stupendously wavy intense blue leaves, this is a dramatic introduction. Reaches 18" tall by 30" wide. Not widely available yet but slowly matriculating through the hosta specialty nurseries.
Sometimes the overuse of perfectly good plants starts to sour our impression of them (kind of like when great songs are used in awful TV ads). Such is beginning to be the case with variegated Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa "Aureola"). However, just as people are growing used to swaths of this great plant, a new sport is becoming available that possesses the same elegant form combined with a gold/maroon color scheme tailored for Gopher fans. "Sunflare" is an attention-grabbing offspring of "All Gold" that lends autumnal flair to the garden throughout the growing season. Multicolored foliage streaks onto the scene in spring, largely ages to gold in summer, and then reprises its spring show come fall. Like "All Gold", it is less bulky and aggressive than "Aureola" once established.
Though it does not seem like the time of year for gardening, I'd like to plant a seed in the minds of those hardy souls who are determined to not just survive but to thrive in the Minnesotan climate. And that seed is....Read More
Here is a great plant for the Seussian gardener in our cold climate. "Trost's Dwarf" cutleaf birch forms an irregularly mounding shrubby form that resembles milfoil suspended in watery animation. Hardy to zone 3, this is a safer bet than dwarf threadleaf Japanese maples if you're looking for this form/texture combination. Available for the 2018 season at Green Value Nursery.
For mid and late season elegance, few perennials provide the nuanced, restrained beauty of Calamint. Calamintha "White Cloud" provides a continuous display of effervescent bloom from late June until frost. Planted in sunny locations, this herb matures to 18" high with a two foot spread. Unlike catmint, the wiry stems rebound nicely after storms and retain their buoyancy throughout the season.
Late Summer and early Fall is the best time to seed your yard in Minnesota, generally around Labor Day or the few weeks that follow because the weather is starting to cool down and there is a nice dew present most mornings. Another big reason is because the Spring pre-emergents have had a chance to work their way out of the soil.
As a homeowner, there are a couple of important steps you’ll need to take to prep your lawn. The first is eliminating any remaining summer weeds (oxalis, spurge, purslane, quackgrass or crabgrass). The first three can usually be taken care of with a selective herbicide that contains 2-4d and crabgrass with a selective post-emergent for annual grasses. Quackgrass, however, will need to either be pulled by hand or carefully taken care of with a non-selective like Round-Up. When using any of these products, make sure they work out of the soil within 2 weeks, otherwise you run the risk of putting down seed that will never germinate.
The second step is prepping your yard to create the best seed-to-soil contact. In patchy lawns, putting down top soil with seed is a great way to fill in bare areas and in healthy yards, dethatching or aerating first will greatly decrease the thatch and increase the percentage of seed germination.
After the lawn has been dethatched or aerated, then you can put down seed. For Minnesota, Kentucky Bluegrass, fine Fescue and a perennial Ryegrass mix will suit most lawns, however if make sure to use a dense shade mix if your lawn calls for it. Red Fescue should be present in the mix for shaded lawns since it only requires a few hours of light per day. And a finally note on grass seed: pick up a quality seed that does not contain much filler. Also, stay away from the easy-seed and patching mixes because they are only meant to fill in small spaces such as pet spots.
Di-Hydrogen Monoxide. A chemical that can be dangerous in certain situations and can be found everywhere around us. This dangerous chemical is better known as H20, or water. Adding water, or a water feature to the landscape can have numerous benefits. From promoting good health and wellness, to helping with environmental conservation, here are some reasons why adding water features can be beneficial to you as a homeowner.Read More
The fence is the simplest way to divide boundaries and to create privacy in your yard. The difficulty with fences, however, is that many municipalities only allow for the construction of fences that are 6 feet in height. This limits to the amount of privacy that can be achieved with just a fence. If you would like to have anything taller, there are a few simple ways in which privacy can be achieved. The best such way being, with plants!Read More