Posts Tagged ‘Horticulture’

Learn How to Pick the Right Tree for Your Yard

November 17th, 2013

Picking the right tree for your yard can be daunting. Garden plants will come and go in your yard, but trees are there to stay. Follow these tips for picking the right tree for your yard and you will be the new plant expert for your neighborhood.

  1. Where will the tree be planted? Near the house, garage, garden, etc? Unlike shrubs that have narrower root growth, the root system for trees expands often as far as the canopy of what the mature size of the tree will be. If you want a maple tree near your house, you’d have to remember that maple trees mature in the 50 to 70 foot height range, which can develop a canopy of approximately a half to the same in width. You would need plant that tree no closer than at minimum 50 feet from any foundation due to potential damage in the long term. On the other hand, a Thuja Green Giant Arborvitae can mature in the 50 to 70 height range, too, but it’s mature spread is only as wide as 10 to 15 feet, which means that it can be planted closer to a foundation than it’s height. So…plant a tree as far away from a building/house/etc as it spread in width allowing for expansion of the root system.
  2. What is the purpose of the tree? Is this to be a shade tree, seasonal flowering, fall foliage, privacy, wildlife, or a specimen tree?
  3. What limitations are there to inhibit the tree’s growth? Is the area sunny or shady? Are there power lines in the planned site area? Septic field lines or other underground utilities? Many local utility companies have guidelines on planting around those areas. Many recommend not planting any trees within 50 to 70 feet of underground utilities. When planting near or under power or phone lines, most utilities require plants not grow over 12 feet in height.
  4. What type of growth rate do you want for this tree? A fast growing tree generally means a short lifespan, while a slow, stead growth rate, means a long-lived tree to be enjoyed by you and future generations.
  5. Maintenance? How much time do you want to spend in seasonal care for the tree? If you’re looking for maintenance free trees, then you will want to make sure that your tree choice doesn’t fruit, drop large seeds or require lots of shaping.

Once you can answer these questions, you will be able to quickly narrow down your search for the perfect tree for your yard. Visit Greenwood Nursery where you can easily and quickly search for your tree by height, light, growth rate, and more.

 

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California Privet Evergreen Shrubs

October 30th, 2013

California Privet (Ligustrum ovalifolium) is an evergreen flowering shrub that is commonly used for shrub borders and privacy hedges. The oval shaped dark green leaves of the fast growing shrub California Privet provide a great backdrop for the small white flowers that appear in late spring to early summer. These blooms give way to tiny black fruit that is enjoyed by birds.

 

This fast growing evergreen shrub creates a beautiful privacy hedge growing 10 to 15 feet tall. Deer, rabbit and drought resistant.

 

The fragrance emitted by the flowers of the California Privet is considered to be somewhat unpleasant. Pruning at this time will prevent this situation. All parts of this plant is poisonous to humans.

 


Ligustrum ovalifolium

Ligustrum ovalifolium (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Ornamental Grasses Are Low Maintenance Plants!

August 1st, 2013

Ornamental Grasses are the perfect low maintenance plant for any landscape!
Our favorite ways to use Ornamental Grasses:
  • For privacy hedges
  • To define property lines
  • As lawn substitutes
  • Soften corners
  • Create interest within a landscape
  • Small grasses make good border plants
  • Great backdrop plantings
  • Create informal hedges
Ornamental Grasses
Ornamental Grasses
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Which Strawberry Plants to Plant in Your Garden

March 30th, 2013

Strawberry plants are one of the most ideal fruit bearing plants to have located within one’s garden.  Not only do they require only a limited amount of care and space, but these plants will provide a significant amount of fruit each blossoming season.  Additionally, they provide a beautiful accent to any garden, with their vivid red fruits and their lush green vines and vegetation.  It is important to know, though, that there are differences in the different kinds of strawberries plants available for planting, as mentioned below.

A strawberry Français : une fraise Galego: un ...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

All Star Strawberry Plants appear to be one of the most well liked strawberry plants by customers throughout the nation.  Not only do these plants provide a large strawberry fruit, but they are extremely weather resistant, even in comparison to the general weather resistant strawberry plants.  While planting strawberries, it is also important to note the times in which the plants are expected to produce the largest amount of fruit.  With this plant, that would be in the month of June, while there can also be slight variations in the timing of arrival.

The Sweet Charlie Strawberry Plants are well liked by customers that are seeking a strawberry plant that produced a strawberry that is sweeter, in taste, than most others.  These strawberries are doted as tasting synonymous with a strawberry that has been sprinkled with sugar.  Additionally, The Sweet Charlie Strawberry Plant is among the many strawberry plants that are considered extremely disease resistant.

Finally, The Cardinal Strawberry Plants are considered to be a pleasant medium between the two aforementioned plants.  They are generally rather sweet in flavor, provide a dark colored berry that is pleasing to look at with a glossy skin, but they also beginning growing the most in the months synonymous with All Star Strawberry Plants.  This means that the berried generally begin to grow around mid-season, or in the calendar month of June.  It is possible that slight variation will occur within the growing date, but this is the general time that such behavior takes place.

Growing strawberry plants in one’s garden is not only an ideal plant to grow for the most professional of gardeners, but it is also an ideal plant to utilize when beginning to plant a garden for the first time.  Not only will you need limited area to do so, but these plants will grow in some of the most harsh of conditions, allowing you to learn their behaviors as they blossom.

For these and other strawberry plants, visit us!

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Greenwood’s 8 Favorite Flowering Shrubs

April 6th, 2012

Greenwood’s Favorite 8 Flowering Shrubs:     

Hydrangea macrophylla - Hortensia hydrangea, p...

Hydrangea macrophylla - Hortensia hydrangea, picture from Longwood Gardens (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  1. The Fairy Rose
  2. Pink Velour Crape Myrtle
  3. Bloomerang Reblooming Lilac
  4. Knockout Double Pink Rose
  5. Nishiki Dappled Willow
  6. Nikko Blue Hydrangea
  7. Spilled Wine Weigela
  8. Pinky Winky Hydrangea

These flowering plants were chosen for their blooming length as well as the other special qualities that they bring to the garden. Check out our other flowering plants.

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Spring Garden Maintenance to Start Your Garden Growing

December 31st, 2011

A garden bed before spring cleanup

Image via Wikipedia

Follow these easy spring garden maintenance tips and you will be enjoying your yard. Even after one weekend of spring garden cleaning you can have leaves raked, trees and shrubs pruned and ground ready for planting new plants. A little spring garden maintenance means less yard work in summer.

Arm yourself with a rake, weed eater or heavy shears, a tool belt, apron with pockets, basket, or pail, filled with clippers, gardening scissors, gardening gloves, old cloths, trash bags and, if available, a small garden saw. Start on one side of your property or garden and work across the yard and then clockwise around your house and other out buildings beginning with the front/main entrance. The point is to be able to go over all areas of your landscape so that you don’t miss plants.

Always begin an area by tackling the larger growing plants, whether trees or shrubs. First cut or saw out all branches that are dead, broken, touching or crossing. Then, if necessary, trim for shape. From the larger trees and shrubs, move onto smaller growing plants, such as ornamental grasses (which you will be cutting to the ground with either the weed eater or heavy shears), roses, evergreen herbs, perennials, ground covers, etc. Remember, if you haven’t pulled out the annuals that were planted last year, it is time to remove them now.

Once all plants have been pruned, shaped and otherwise cleaned up in an area, rake the clippings into the trash bag and move onto the next. By cleaning up an area completely, if you have to stop that day before finishing, you can begin with a new area the next time and you don’t have to back track. I find it easier to make sandwiches the night before to lunch on so I don’t have to completely stop my gardening. This way I am only taking a break and don’t lose focus on what I’m doing.

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Tips for Strawberries and Strawberry Plants

November 6th, 2011

Just the thought of strawberries brings to mind summer, shortcake, jelly and chocolate. Bite into a strawberry and it explodes in your mouth making your tongue tingle with delight. With the red heart shape of the strawberry, no wonder it’s the symbol for Venus, the goddess of love. Maybe that’s why strawberries go so perfectly with chocolate and champagne.

A member of the rose family, it is documented that strawberries have been enjoyed as a domesticated fruit as early as the 1400’s. Now, we know the nutritional value of strawberries. They contain amino acids and beta-carotene as well as A, C, E, K, B-complex vitamins.  An excellent source of calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, copper and zinc, strawberries are high in sugar so should be eaten in moderation.

Some of my favorite ways to enjoy the fruits of strawberry plants are serving on waffles (Yummy!), in a spinach salad with walnuts, in a cucumber & strawberry salad, or served with only a splash of balsamic vinegar. Harvest strawberries in early summer and freeze to preserve them for future use.

Tips for strawberries:

  • Do not wash berries until ready to eat
  • Remove caps after washing
  • Store in colander (or vented container) in refrigerator for air circulation
  • Remove from refrigerator 1 hour before serving
  • To whiten teeth – mash one strawberry and mix with baking soda, brush on teeth and leave on for 5 minutes then rinse
Links:

Greenwood Nursery will begin shipping strawberry plants in mid November. Recommended zones are lower 6, 7, 8 and 9. Mid zone 6 and north will schedule to ship in spring.

Choose from our All Star StrawberriesCardinal StrawberriesOzark Beauty Strawberries and Sweet Charlie Strawberries.

A strawberry

Image via Wikipedia

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Planting Window Boxes for Year Around Beauty

September 24th, 2011

Window boxes and other plant containers can be enjoyable year round.

Just because it might not be summer any longer does not mean those pots have lost their use until next year. Create some texture and color for winter box use. Below are a few ideas on what I mean. Remember: You are only limited by your imagination. I like the idea of finishing a window box off with moss for a more professional look, but is not necessary. Most all of these items can be picked up at your local market, greenhouse, garden center, or ordered from Greenwood Nursery.

Keep it simple and use what is available. For point of reference in my examples, I am planting a 30 inch window box liner.

In spring, swap out the box liner with another liner filled with spring/summer blooming annuals or perennials. Your winter collection can be kept as is for several years. After a year some of the larger growing plant varieties may need to be relocated to your landscape so their root systems can expand.

Example 1: 2 rosemary trees in gallon containers (one on each end), 2 blue rug junipers in center, and sprays of evergreens, boxwood and bittersweet from walking in the woods.

Example 2: 3 heuchera plum puddings centered in gallon containers, and 4 sedum Angelina on the ends to provide wonderful contrast. These colors would look gorgeous against a house with white or other lighter color siding.

Ornamental grasses are so versatile to work with. The smaller sizes are just perfect for containers.

Example 3: 2 hameln grasses in gallon containers in the center, one blue glow fescue grass in a gallon container on each end, with 4 pachysandra green sheen plants planted between the grasses.

Sweet and simple is this look. On each end plant one gallon size emerald green arborvitae, in the center plant two of the one gallon size acorus ogon grass adding 3 wooly thymes draping over the front.

Although the growth on most plants will have slowed during winter, without any regular rainfall, you may need to water every few weeks to keep all of the plants from drying out. Make certain that your planting container has several drainage holes. A few rocks, piece of tile or foam peanuts are good for placing over the drainage holes to keep them from getting blocked. Top the container off with moss or excelsior for a wonderful finished look.

Below is a listing of a few plants that in their young state, gallon containers and smaller, that work perfectly in window boxes and other containers. Don’t limit yourself to just these varieties. Use what is available in your area.

Junipers – Ornamental Cabbage – Rosemary – Arborvitae – Creeping Thyme and other herb plants

Pines – BoxwoodsPachysandra – Holly – Cool Season Ornamental Grasses

Small mum’s – Evergreen Ferns – Heucheras – Ivy – Miniature Roses

Hens & Chicks – Winter Heather

Remember to have fun with gardening projects and be creative. Bring out some of those old decorations from the attic or basement and put them into use again outside in the containers, such as a tiny artificial tree or those wooden spirally trees. They would look very festive and give them a new purpose.

Visit the Greenwood Nursery Online Garden Center for a great selection of plants for window box and container planting.

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Tips for Saving Money in Your Landscape

June 4th, 2011

Mulch made from shredded yard waste in a munic...

Image via Wikipedia

Ways to save $$$ in your landscape:

  • Plant quick growing shade trees for future summers (poplar hybrids, willow hybrids & lombardy poplar for examples)
  • Choose younger bare root shrubs and trees (saves money and water)
  • Mulch with shredded bark mulch or aged compost/manure mix (keeps the ground cool over the roots reducing water needs)
  • Select perennials over annuals (plant once and grow for years – also perennials require less water than annuals)
  • Plant spreading perennials and ground covers in bare areas (their shade limits weed growth)
  • Watering lawns every 4 to 5 days saves water and allows the roots of the grass to grow deeper
  • Incorporate herbs into your landscape for cooking
  • Raise the setting on your lawn mower
  • Use drip hoses for most gardens and landscaped areas
  • Select the proper plants for difficult areas such as full sun or full shade
  • Remove dead plants immediately
  • Deadheading many shrubs and perennials encourages new blooms

 

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Color in The Summer Landscape

May 26th, 2011

Spread color throughout the growing season with the right perennials. So many of the shrubs and trees that we use as foundation plants and the rest of our landscaping are limiting in providing the spectacular colors we crave during the growing season. But…you can spice it up with summer blooming perennials. With a little planning, your landscape can provide continual punches of color all the way up to frost.

 

The plants that provide the ‘best bang for the buck’ are those that begin blooming in late spring or early summer and continue on to fall or frost. You will find this in plants such as:

 

Colorful long period summer bloomers are:

 

Perennials that put on their color show only during late summer to frost are found in such plants as:

 

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