Archive for May, 2010

Growing Blackberries and Raspberries

May 17th, 2010

Our erect or upright blackberry plants are the Apache (which is probably the
sweetest in flavor), Arapaho and Ouachita
while our erect or upright
raspberry plants are Anne, Heritage (an ever bearing) and Nova Summer Red.
The Triple Crown and Cumberland are trailing varieties.

Without knowing which plant variety has been planted, it is often difficult
to tell raspberry and blackberry plants apart until harvest time. When ripe,
raspberries come off with the core remaining on the plant. This leaves a
hole in the top of the berry making it hollow and quite perishable. This is
why raspberries are pricey at the market.

Don’t plant raspberry, blackberry or strawberry plants where potatoes,
tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, or other berry plants (including other
strawberry, raspberry or blackberry) have grown in the past 3 years. Fungus
disease and insect pests may still be in the soil in those areas.

Here is a quick link to our planting and care information for blackberry and
raspberry plants as well as links to recipes for the fruits, including wines
and jellies:

Growing Blackberry and Raspberry Plants

Be sure to visit us at Greenwood Nursery. We’re here. Just let us know if you need any help.

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Growing Lavender

May 17th, 2010

If you have never grown lavender in your garden or landscape, you are
missing out on the most fragrant plants available. My experience with
lavenders is that they are ever dedicated to making my garden a mysterious,
magical wonderland and me a better person because of it. This may sound
pretty far out there, but if you have lavender in your garden, you know what
I mean.
We have a small sitting area on the perimeter of my garden (next to the
house) where Steve and I sit looking out over our garden. I have lavender
growing along the fence (its amazing as a low hedge) and in groups on the
berm in front of the sitting area and lavender plants sprinkled throughout
the garden.
During summer and early fall evenings, we enjoy this enchanted world right
in front of us. A soft summer evening breeze brings entrancing smells of
lavender as nature comes to life. Bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds are
all attracted to the lavender buds. If a garden were an amusement park then
lavender would certainly be the roller coaster.
Greenwood has lots going on with lavender this spring. We are offering some
wonderfully new varieties. In addition to our regular English Lavenders of
Munstead and Hidcote, we are adding the Jean Davis which is has blooms so
soft pink they almost look white. The Kew Red blooms look like tiny
pineapples which is typical of the Spanish Lavenders. Grosso and Provence
are amazingly fragrant French Hybrid Lavenders.
The English Lavenders are early bloomers beginning in mid to late spring.
Once they complete their first round of blooming, they begin again. So if
you want all season blooming, plant Munstead, Hidcote and Jean Davis. The
Hidcote Lavender grows especially well in cooler climates.
Spanish Lavenders typically bloom around mid to late spring. They are also
referred to as Rabbit Ears or Butterfly Lavender because of the petals at
the top of the bloom. The blooms are not as sweet as other lavender
varieties so they will not attract swarms of fliers, yet honeybees seem to
enjoy them. This variety is note worthy, also because it performs better in
humid areas than other lavenders.
French Hybrids are cultivars of Lavandin (lavandula x intermedia) which are
cultivated mostly in France for their oils. Both Grosso and Provence are
excellent choices for strong fragrant buds and for craft projects such as
drying for bouquets and wands. Grosso is especially cold hardy.
The favorite edible varieties are Munstead, Jean Davis and Provence.
Here is a short video that I have put together with tips on growing
lavender. A little advance planning makes Lavender really easy to grow and
even easier to enjoy.
Tips on Growing Lavender Video
What better way to enjoy the fruits of your labor once your lavender begins
blooming than to toast to your plants with a glass of wine. A red table wine
would be perfect as it also carries the taste of lavender in the wine.
Mmmmm, delish!
Visit us at Greenwood Nursery. We’re here. Just let us know if you need any help.

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Growing Knockout Roses

May 17th, 2010

What can you plant in your landscape that will bloom beautifully from spring
through fall? Hands down, the longest blooming period goes to the Knockout
Roses! Here in zone 7, they start blooming around early April and
continue on to late fall. This past fall, my double reds continued with
blooms until Thanksgiving which was many weeks beyond hard frosts and
remained in leaf through early December.

Plant these gorgeous specimens in well drained, fertile soil in full sun.
With little attention, they will put on a spectacular show for months on
end. The Knockout Roses are smaller shrub plants maturing around 4 feet tall
with about a 3 foot width. They are easily maintained as an even smaller
size with regular shearing. Space the roses 3 to 4 feet apart for a dramatic
hedge. To keep maintenance to a minimum, prune them back anywhere from 6 to
12 inches above ground in late winter or early spring while dormant making
certain to prune out any broken or damaged branches. Mulch with organic
matter such as aged compost or aged manure mix. Spread the mulch at least 3
inches deep around the plant leaving a welled area at the immediate base of
the plant of around 3 to 4 inches wide so the mulch doesn’t touch the bark
of the plant. Apply an organic fertilizer designed for roses as directed on
the label.

As with other roses and plants with thorns, deer are not really drawn to the
Knockout Roses, so they do make dazzling color in areas where deer may be a
problem. The Knockout Rose Family has shown great resistance to the most
common problems of other roses such as black spot, mildew and rust.

Visit us for more plant selections: Greenwood Nursery We’re here. Just let us know if you need any help.

Check out our YouTube channel. You will learn the basics of planting
container grown plants and tips for planting lavender and other herbs.
Greenwood Nursery Youtube Videos
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Bringing Balance to Your Garden

May 17th, 2010

Bringing the four elements to the garden can open up many avenues into
oneself. Just as Feng shui corrects the positive and negative influences of
interior placement, incorporating the elements of Fire, Water, Air and Earth
can bring balance and peace to the garden.

The first element of Fire, representing the South, opens the flow of chi to
the head, neck, shoulder and arms. Its color is commonly red and can be
found in the fire from a fire pit or candles, Knockout Double Red Roses,
Japanese Red Maple, Weigela Wine and Roses, Echinacea Tomato Soup,
Gaillardia Burgundy, Monarda Fire Ball, Pineapple Sage, Arctic Fire Dogwood,
Nishiki Willow and the Cotoneaster Coral Beauty. Presence of Fire in the
garden can increase Productivity.

The second element of Water, representing the West, opens the flow of chi to
the abdomen and human emotion. Its color is commonly blue which can be
applied to a water fountain, bird bath, blue reflection ball, Russian Sage,
Nikko Blue Hydrangea, English Country Aster, Veronica Royal Candles,
Hibiscus Blue Satin and Hibiscus Blue Chiffon. The presence of Water brings

The third element of Air, representing the East, opens the flow of chi to
the chest and lungs. Although yellow is the color commonly used, air can
also be found through the use of whirligigs, wind chimes, windsocks and
fragrant plants such as Lavender, Lemon Thyme, Rosemary Arp, and Mock
Orange. Yellow can be found in the plants Lilium Painted Pixie, Yarrow
Moonshine, Forsythia, Sungold Cypress, Knockout Sunny Roses, Angelina Sedum,
Echinacea Mac-n-Cheese, and Black-Eyed Susans. The presence of Air in the
garden brings Happiness.

The fourth element of Earth, representing the North, opens the flow of chi
to the feet, legs and lower abdomen. Earth is green; the color of nature,
but can also be found in objects taken from Earth such as rocks/stone for a
path or wood from a fallen tree might be used to build a bench. Green can be
found in plants such as Heuchera Lime Ricky, Ornamental Grasses, Hostas,
Ferns, Spartan Juniper, Emerald Green Arborvitae and Boxwood Wintergreen.
Build Confidence with Earth in the garden.

The fifth element, and most forgotten, is Akasha. This element will open the
flow of chi to the human aura and the brain. Akasha, the center of the
universe, is the only element that we can’t see, feel, smell or touch. It is
energy or inner spirit. The colors of white and/or purple are the associated
colors for Akasha. Center your garden with Mock Orange, Hibiscus Violet
Satin, Hydrangea Incrediball, Anemone, Shasta Daisy, Echinacea White Swan,
Black Knight Buddleia, Old Fashion Lilac, Persian Lilac, Hibiscus Diana,
Hibiscus Morning Star, White Profusion Buddleia, Viburnum Japanese Snowball
and Lavender. Akasha in the garden creates harmony with the mind, body and

Yes, I do have Russian sage in the Western area of my garden, Moonshine
Yarrow in the East, ornamental grasses in the North, Japanese Red Maple in
the South along with Mock Orange for Akasha and those are just the
beginning. Maybe that is why Steve and I feel so centered when we retreat to
our garden.

Whether you get your compass out and place the elements to their
corresponding colors and directions or just include these colors within your
garden or landscape, you can still reap the benefits of their presence. To
keep the positive/negative balance, place at least one corresponding plant
in each of the corresponding elements direction. This will allow the
elements to work together in unity.

Other ways to make your garden magical is to bring in plants that provide
fragrance and plants whose leaves or blooms will reflect the moonlight.
Fragrant plants will include: Lavender, Rosemary, Lemon Thyme, Oregano,
Spice Bush, Roses, Mock Orange, Old Fashion Lilac, Persian Lilac and
Sweetbay Magnolia. Plants whose leaves or blooms will reflect moonlight will
include: Variegated Solomon’s Seal, Burgundy Lace Fern, Limelight Hydrangea,
Incrediball Hydrangea, Russian Sage, Pink Muhly Ornamental Grass, Pee Gee
Hydrangea, Heuchera Mystic Angel, Fire & Ice Hosta, Patriot Hosta, and the
Nishiki Willow.

Check out our full line of trees, shrubs, perennials, ornamental grasses, herbs and groundcovers: Greenwood Nursery. We’re here. Just let us know if you need any help.

Visit us on YouTube. You will learn the basics of planting
container grown plants and tips for planting lavender and other herbs.
Greenwood Nursery Videos

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Gardening with Allergies

May 17th, 2010

Gardening with allergies can be a wonderful experience with some planning.
The low allergy garden is full of beautiful plants that have one thing in
common. They are insect pollinated plants which eliminates wind blown
pollen. There are many, many trees, shrubs and perennials that are
pollinated by insects that the low allergy garden is well rounded.

All herbs, including
rosemary, lavender, thyme, oregano, sage, mint and
, are welcome here as well as vegetable and fruiting plants.

Ground covers are used most effectively here. Covering the soil with
creeping plants reduces the dust in the garden and landscape. Wise choices
are creeping thymes, Corsican mint, ajuga, pachysandra, phlox and vinca.

Eliminate damp areas and reduce the use of natural mulch (wood chips,
shredded bark, compost, manure mix, etc.) which produce wind borne mold
spores. Instead use creeping ground covers or gravel. Xeriscape gardening
is a great alternative.

Choose perennials and shrubs that produce brightly colored blooms used to
attract hummingbirds, butterflies, bees and other insects. Selections
include yarrow, dianthus, Echinacea, hypericum, Russian sage, daylilies,
tiarella, heuchera, veronica, salvia, hosta, monarda, roses, sambucus,
weigela, viburnum, hibiscus (rose of Sharon), and hydrangea.

Low allergy trees include apple, plum, magnolia, dogwood, crape myrtles, cistena plum and

Mow the lawn area frequently keeping it shorter than normally required.
Grass that is mowed to 2 inches is less likely to produce seed. It is
generally too short to catch wind blown pollen.

Walk your garden or landscape regularly to pull or spray out weeds. Weeds
are often the cause of more allergy issues than garden plants.

Hedges can pose a problem for allergy suffers as they collect dust, mold and
pollen. Keep them pruned and thinned out to reduce such as build up.

Some plants that will wreck havoc with allergy suffers are ornamental
grasses, most lawn grasses (mow frequently), conifers, aspen, oaks, ash,
elm, birch, walnut, and willow, evergreen varieties and broad leaf
evergreens. One exception to this is boxwood. As long as boxwoods are pruned
hard so that they don’t flower, they can be added as low allergy plants.

Visible pollen isn’t irritating as it comes from insect pollinating plants
and is too heavy to be carried by the wind. The lightweight, invisible
airborne pollen is the pollen that causes allergies.

When in doubt about selecting plants for low allergy gardening, go with
plants that produce brightly colored blooms so that they attract birds and
insects. When plants are noted as being female, choose it. Male sexed plants
produce airborne pollen.

Here is a link to the University of Vermont Extension site with an article
on Gardening with Allergies. It may be short, but this article is full of
useful information for the allergy suffer who wants to garden.

Gardening with Allergies

Visit us at Greenwood Nursery or our videos at the Greenwood Nursery YouTube Channel.

We’re here. Just let us know if you need any help.

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