February has brought unusually warm temperatures across Iowa, with record highs topping the 70-degree mark. However, it won’t last forever. Winter temperatures will return, but that could confuse trees, shrubs and plants which flower earlier than normal. Will this cause problems?
Pruning is the selective removal of specific plant parts for the benefit of the whole plant. Pruning shows both the art and science of horticulture. Knowing exactly when to prune is essential when taking care of shrubs to ensure a successful growth.
Azaleas and rhododendrons are spectacular flowering shrubs that can brighten any yard or garden. Even though there are many species of azaleas and rhododendrons, only a small number can successfully be grown in Iowa. Here are some tips from horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach showing what steps to take to ensure successfully grown azaleas and rhododendrons.
Creating a beautiful, functional landscape depends on putting the right plant in the right place. Horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach discuss considerations when selecting trees and shrubs for shaded, wet and dry areas of the lawn and garden.
An excellent way to brighten the winter landscape is to plant trees and shrubs that possess ornamental characteristics, such as colorful fruit or exfoliating bark. Horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach describe shrubs and trees that add color to the winter landscape.
One sure sign that spring has truly arrived is the bright yellow flowers of the forsythia. This week Iowa State University Extension garden experts have answers to questions about this deciduous shrub native to China, Korea and Europe.
The proper time to prune deciduous and evergreen shrubs is determined by the plant’s growth habit, bloom time and health or condition.
All evergreens, and particularly broad leaf evergreens such as boxwood and rhododendron, are susceptible to winter desiccation. Winter desiccation also is referred to as winter burn or winter browning. Desiccation occurs when the evergreen's foliage loses moisture due to the bright winter sun and harsh winter winds. In winter the plants are not able to absorb enough additional moisture from the soil to replace the water that evaporates from the foliage and stems. In addition to making sure the plants are well watered before the onset of winter there are a few other measures homeowners can take to protect the plants.
Although my forsythia shrubs are vigorous and healthy, they don’t bloom well. Why?
Should I fertilize my June-bearing strawberries in spring?
When is the best time to divide hostas?