Spring Garden Tips
Winter Care for Unplanted Trees, Shrubs and Perennials

Fall plant sales and all those tempting new varieties have many of us buying more plants than we have time or space to plant. Protect them over the winter and reduce your workload by heeling them in until you have time to find a permanent spot in your garden.

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mgm audio 112513 winter care unplantedLook for vacant spaces and sheltered areas in your landscape. An annual flower or vegetable garden, newly established planting bed or one earmarked for renovation work great.

Dig a trench deep enough to cover the whole pot. Set the plants pot to pot inside the trench. Cover with soil and water thoroughly to remove air pockets and moisten the roots. Water as needed throughout the winter.

Add an extra layer of insulation with mulch. Cover the soil surface with several inches of woodchips or shredded bark. This helps conserve moisture and protects the plants from our often fluctuating winter temperatures.

A bit more information: No vacant space in the garden? Group plants together in a sheltered location. Cover the pots with woodchips or other material to insulate the roots and conserve moisture. Those in colder climates can move plants into an unheated garage for winter. Be sure to water thoroughly whenever the soil is dry.

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Beautiful reddish purple buds line the branches and trunks of the picturesque redbud tree. As the temperatures warm the buds burst into rosy pink or magenta blooms. And this is just the beginning of this tree’s beauty.

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Reduce Stress - Visit a Conservatory

The holidays are a wonderful time for family, friends and neighbors to gather, feast and exchange gifts. It can also be a stressful time overfilled with festivities. So take a break and visit a nearby conservatory this winter.

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mgm audio 122414 conservatoryResearch has shown, and gardeners know, that plants and gardening are good for the mind, body and spirit. Just being surrounded by greenery can lower your blood pressure and elevate your mood.

Conservatories are glass buildings that were constructed in colder climates to overwinter citrus and other tender or rare plants. You often can find birds and occasionally small animals along with plants in these heated glass buildings.

But conservatories are not just glass houses filled with pretty plants. They serve as a space for relaxation, a site to conserve endangered species and educate the public about the environment.

A bit more information: Conservatories originated in the 16th century, but experienced great growth and increased popularity during the late 19th century. If there isn't a conservatory in your neighborhood, plan a visit to your local florist or garden center.

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Reduce Your Risk of Skin Cancer When Gardening

Cover up before going out. Protect your skin from Ultraviolet radiation as you get out and garden.

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Renovating Overgrown Shrubs

Quickly tame overgrown shrubs with renovation pruning in late winter or early spring.

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Reparing Winter Damage

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Reviving a Flower Garden

Don’t panic if your spring garden lacks the vim and vigor the past. You can improve the health and beauty of your garden without starting over.

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Root Pruning for Transplanting Success

Increase your success when transplanting trees and shrubs with root pruning.

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Rose of Sharon (Althea Bush)

Add some summer and fall color to your shrub borders and mixed gardens with a traditional favorite the Rose of Sharon shrub.

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Shrubs Made for the Shade

Add structure and a year round framework to your shady landscape with shrubs.

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Shrubs That Attract Birds

Birds can add color and motion to your landscape year round. Planting shrubs that provide food and shelter is an easy and affordable way to bring birds into your backyard.

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Sifting Through Garden Catalogs

Your mailbox and dining room table are overflowing with catalogs filled with pictures of beautiful flowers and scrumptious vegetables. With so many choices it can be a bit overwhelming – I can help.

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Snowberry

What a great time of year to talk about an old time favorite shrub, the snowberry. You may recognize this plant by its white snowball like fruit.

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Space Saving Vegetable Gardening Tips

Don’t panic if your garden plans are bigger than the available planting space. I have some space saving techniques that can help you get the most out of your landscape.

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Speed Up Your Tomato Harvest

Be the first in your neighborhood to harvest a red ripe tomato from your garden this summer.

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Spring Container Gardens

Add a bit of color and fragrance to your entryway with a spring container garden.

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Spring Flowering Trees and Shrubs Blooming in Fall

Don't worry if your forsythia, lilacs or azaleas are sprouting a few flowers in fall. You can blame it on the weather not your green thumb.

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Stating Trees and Shrubs from Hardwood Cuttings

It's all in the timing – when trying to start trees and shrubs from a cutting.

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Sterilizing Soil

Save money and your plants from disease by growing in pathogen-free potting mix.

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Stop Topping Trees

Topping trees is bad for the look and health of your trees and landscape. Plus, it increases maintenance and the risk of tree failure.

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Storing and Cleaning Pots

Fall is about clean up and preparation for the season ahead. Don't overlook your containers when packing away summer garden supplies.

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Storing Spring Flowering Bulbs Over Winter

Don't panic if the bulb planting season has passed and you still have some or all your bulbs in need of planting.

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Strategies for a Low Maintenance Perennial Garden

Look for ways to reduce maintenance and still have a beautiful perennial garden.

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Stretch Out Before Digging In

Don’t let gardening become a painful experience. Warm up your muscles before you dig into gardening.

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Stretch Your Plant Budget

Stretch your planting budget with each plant you buy.

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Take a Pass on the Tree Trunk Wrap

Skip the tree trunk wrap when planting and caring for your trees.

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Take Cuttings Now to Overwinter Annuals

It’s never too early to start preparing for winter. Start taking cuttings from annuals and herbs you want to overwinter indoors. Your garden plants are healthier and will root faster now than they will later in the season.

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Tax Relief Through Garden Therapy

Just say the date - April 15th and most U.S. citizens cringe, unless of course you are one of the lucky ones getting a refund. Soften the blow with a bit of horticulture therapy.

Once the taxes are mailed, take a walk through your yard, neighborhood or nearby botanical garden. Walking and working in nature helps lower our blood pressure and improve our mood.

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The Edible and Ornamental Chokeberry (Aronia)

Though chokeberry is not an appetizing name, this four season beauty is making a big impact in edible and ornamental gardens.

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The First Day of Winter

Celebrate the first day of winter with a walk around the neighborhood or nearby botanical garden. It’s a great way to walk off a few of those holiday calories and plan for added winter interest in your landscape.

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Think Twice Before Staking Newly Planted Trees

Break out the shovel and get busy planting. Fall is a great time to plant trees. The soil is warm and the air is cool, reducing transplant shock.

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Time to Evaluate and Plan for Changes in the Garden

Stop and take a few minutes to evaluate the success, challenges and failures of the past growing season. Investing time now can save you additional time, money and frustration in next season's garden.

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Tips for Proper Tree Planting

Fall is a great time to plant trees. Follow these important planting tips to insure the health and longevity of your plants.

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Transplanting Shrubs

Moving trees and shrubs can be tricky and heavy work. Make the move in spring before growth begins or in fall as the plants go dormant for greatest success.

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Tree and Shrub Growth Rates

Now is a great time to plan for additions to your landscape. And as you scour the catalogs and read plant tags you will often see trees rated as fast, medium or slow growers.

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Tree Problems

Cracks in tree trunks, stunted leaf growth and thin canopies are all signs your tree is struggling. Diagnosing the cause of the symptoms is the first step in improving your tree’s health.

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Trees and Shrubs for the Winter Landscape

Walk off some of those holiday calories and gather ideas for your garden. Look for trees and shrubs that provide interesting form, bark and texture in the winter.

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Trimming Overwintering Leggy Annuals

Some of your impatiens, geraniums and other annuals overwintering indoors may be looking a bit unkempt. Break out the pruners and get busy with a little grooming.

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Unshearing Sheared Evergreens

Tired of constant pruning or need a change from those green gumdrops, hockey pucks and meatballs? With a bit of time and patience you can convert these back to their natural beauty.

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Vacation Care for Plants

You’ve got the car packed, the pets at the kennel and your kids are ready to go. But what are you going to do about all those beautiful containers?

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Value of Trees

Plant a tree and improve your mood, save money and improve the environment.

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Verticillium Wilt

Sudden wilting and death of individual branches of maples, redbuds and other susceptible trees may mean verticillium wilt has infected the plant.

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Vines and Groundcovers for Fall Interest

Add a bit of color and fragrance to your fall garden with groundcovers and vines.

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Walk Off Calories and Plan Your Winter Landscape

Walk off some of those holiday calories and gather ideas for next year's garden with a hike through your neighborhood, botanical garden or arboretum.

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Walnut, Birth Tree for October 24 - November 11

If you were born between October 24th and November 11 your birth tree is the walnut. It represents intellect, passion and confidence.

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Watch for and Prevent Borers on Trees and Shrubs

Extreme heat and cold, droughts and floods can leave our plants stressed and more susceptible to damaging borers.

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Water Trees for their Health and Longevity

Save energy, care for new trees, and conserve water in one easy step.

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Watering Tips for New Trees

Save time, energy, and conserve water while caring for your new trees.

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What's New: 2011 All-America Selections Winners (AAS)

Get your garden off to a winning start by including a few All-America Selections winners in this year’s garden.

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What's On My Plate Day: Grow Nutritional Vegetables

Celebrate “What’s on my Plate Day” and surprise your family with a plate full of nutritious vegetables. Serve ‘em cooked up as ratatouille, chopped and mixed in a stir-fry or tossed in a tasty salad.

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Winter Container Gardens and Outdoor Arrangements

Add a bit of greenery to your front steps, window box or patio with a winter container.

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Winter Protection for Evergreens

Make this the fall you protect your evergreens before winter winds and snowloads cause your arborvitae to split and rhododendrons to wither.

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Winter Rose Protection

Help your roses through the winter and be rewarded with beautiful blooms next season.

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Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

Brighten your winter gardens and containers with winterberry. This deciduous holly produces an abundance of red berries you and the birds will enjoy.

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