If this spring revitalization were a cast of characters, I think we’d agree that geese and robins play the leading role. But my favorite, and perhaps one of the most undervalued supporting characters in this annual revival, is the American Woodcock.
Iowa’s native grasslands, forests, and wetlands were burned by Native Americans for thousands of years before European settlement. Fires create critical patches of bare ground that young birds like pheasants and quail feed in and can also be a tool to fight invasive weeds or trees in grass fields.
Nuts produced by trees and shrubs in short supply after killing frost last May. Birds including bluejays, ducks and wild turkeys, white-tailed deer, fox squirrels and many other creatures rely on hard mast from trees and shrubs to build up energy reserves for long winter days or fuel their migration to warmer climates.
Spring is officially here which means everyone is out and about enjoying the warmer weather. While we all love being outdoors more, we need to keep in mind some general safety guidelines when working around the farm.
As the leaves change and colors of fall become more beautiful, it is also the ideal season to complete turfgrass maintenance practices. It is the most important time to focus on cultural practices of mowing, aeration, fertilization, and seeding. The work you do now helps your lawn recover from summer stresses and prepares it for another long Iowa winter. This article will provide the necessary steps to ensure a healthy lawn through the fall months and next spring.
For those willing to plan carefully and timely, gardening can be very worthwhile experience come spring and summer. Winter is the best time to start planning your garden and get things ordered and organized. Here are certain topics to start thinking about.
Seeds germinate fast when the soil is already nice and warm, which makes late summer a good time to rejuvenate lawns and plant fall vegetable crops of spinach, lettuce, peas and kale. Or plant a new tree.
Pruning trees and shrubs is important for safety and overall appearance and health. Late winter is the optimal time to prune trees and shrubs since the plant is dormant and there is less chance for disease and pest damage. Late winter is December-mid March; it is not quite too late as long as pruning is completed as soon as possible.
To legally sell morel mushrooms in Iowa, sellers must complete a certification workshop that covers identifying morels and false morels. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach offer three hours classed for anyone interested in being certified morel mushroom certification to sell morel mushrooms legally within the state of Iowa.
Several species of fruits can be grown successfully in Iowa for home use or commercial sales. However, because of our winter temperatures and local soil conditions, not all fruits or fruit cultivars (cultivated varieties) are adapted to all areas of the state. What works well?