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Dormant Pruning in the Home Landscape

Punxsutawney Phil recently announced another six weeks of winter. That is going to be plenty of time for any late winter or very early spring dormant pruning of our shrubs in the home landscape. Keep in mind, dormant pruning needs to be happen before any spring growth resumes. There are several good reasons for dormant pruning. Without the leaves present, we can see the entire plant, looking f...

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Taking care of winter pantry pests

Back in December, this column talked about doing our best to prevent an outbreak of any one of several kinds of pantry pests in the home. Some of what was shared included sealing bulk amounts of dry pet foods, including the birdseed used all winter for outdoor feathered friends, and limiting, whenever possible, the amount of flour for baking during the holidays. Even with the best attempts, oc...

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Bugs are making themselves known

Warmer temperatures this past week have brought out a variety of insects that would have otherwise stayed hidden. Visits to our Extension offices, photos sent by email, and phone calls have been constant. At the top of the list are stink bugs, also known as squash bugs if you are a gardener. There are several dozen versions around the area, nearly all of them sap feeding. Nearly all are native...

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Seed saving

Garden Seeds- saving, swapping, sowing

At some point, every gardener has had leftover seeds after sowing the vegetable garden or flowerbed. In addition, saving vegetable and flower seeds is one way to save some money each year (or use that money to feed your gardening habit in other areas). Saving "store bought" seed is the easiest thing to do. Gardeners typically fold the seed packet over, paperclip or rubber band the seed packets...

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The ABCs of a Garden Catalog

Garden catalogs begin to show up in early January and will continue for the next few weeks. Each picture looks better than the next and promises to be bigger or better than last year. Those photos and headlines are exciting, but as you pour over the pages, it is helpful to know how to decipher the information provided so you can make a more educated decision. Vegetable descriptions will often...

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Down the Garden Path

Q and A: Cold Weather, Holiday Plants and Firewood

Welcome to another year of gardening! You would think January would be a time for gardeners and homeowners to sit back a bit, yet questions keep rolling in to Master Gardeners and Extension Educators. Let's check out a few of them: Q: With bitter cold weather, is there anything I should be doing or watching for outside in the garden beds? A: Along with...

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What to do with the Christmas tree

Taking care of a fresh holiday tree once it is up and decorated really means making sure there is plenty of water in the reservoir. However, it also means paying attention to when it needs to come down. If you made a family event out of tree hunting at any one our local Christmas Tree Farms, your tree is much fresher and will easily last until New Year's, even if you put it up the first of the...

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