Posts Tagged ‘Landscaping’

Leaf Galls

by admin

The unsightly bumps you may find on your tree(s) are nothing more than Leaf Gall. Galls develop from plant tissues that have been irritated by a parasitic organism. And, while this may sound like a big problem, galls are more unattractive than they are harmful. In fact, horticultural scholars suggest that galls rarely, if ever, affect the health of a plant.

The problem is purely aesthetic.

The most common found Gall-producing insects are: aphids, midges, wasps and mites. By the time a Gall is noticed on a tree, the insect is already protected from any chemical application. It is nearly impossible to treat large established trees.

Come September many of us hate our gardens: plants in the wrong place that didn’t perform as expected, plants that are overgrown and straggly, faded brown mildewed and chewed up plants. The problem is that we still have two months or more to go.

Don’t worry, autumn could bring out the best in your garden. There’s a lot more to choose from than chrysanthemums. There are two types of kelp to choose from: edible and ornamental. The ornamental hale is strictly bred for appearance, and is much more showy in the garden and/or container. Pansies have come a long way in the last 10 years. The sub-zero, or icicle, pansies go in the ground in September and blooms again in the spring (weather permitting). When most annuals are past their prime, the Osteospermum starts to shine. With a wide variety of colors now available, this is a great choice for fall containers.

Perennial choices for fall color include blue salvias, asters and mums. Blue salivas are becoming one of the hottest perennials on the market. They bloom all summer and peak during autumn months. Asters and mums are also popular fall plantings. When purchasing mums, be careful to choose only the perennial types if you want them to come back next year. Some mums and asters you see at the store that are inexpensive, and in small containers, will not rewinter (what?).

Winter Pruning

by admin

Although the weather is usually cold and unpleasant, winter pruning of certain trees and shrubs is very beneficial. Since most summer-blooming trees and shrubs bud during the spring, pruning beforehand (during the winter) allows for more budding and more flowering. The result of a well winter-pruned tree or shrub is a beautiful summer display that only nature can produce.

There are three common methods of pruning.

Rejuvenation: All stems of the plant are cut to the ground or very close to the ground.

Renewal: Plants are thinned of approximately ¼ of their stems at the ground.

Heading Back: This method is best for single stem shrubs, deciduous trees, and evergreens. Heading back involves pruning back to a leaf, bud, scar, side brand, or main branch of the tree.

Be careful not to “butcher” plants when pruning them. Although the plants should recover, they may become more susceptible to disease, scorch, drought, and other unfavorable conditions that may ultimately destroy them.

Winter pruning, when done correctly, will make your plants and trees healthy and beautiful during the spring and summer seasons.