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Flowers, Fruits, and Frass

Local and statewide information on a variety of current topics for home gardeners and market growers.
bird cover crops

Cover crops provide bed and breakfast layover for migrating birds by Cassandra Wilcoxen

After harvesting a corn or soybean crop, farmers may plant a cover crop for a variety of reasons—to reduce soil erosion and nutrient runoff, increase organic matter in the soil, and improve water quality. Now there's another reason. University of Illinois research shows that migratory birds prefer to rest and refuel in fields with cover crops. "Here in the Midwest, we're in one of the m...

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Start the Holiday season off with Nature inspired crafts in Eureka

Universityof Illinois Extension and Heartline and Heart House are teaming up to celebrate the holiday season by offering a free make and take Holiday Nature Ornament Program. Not only are these type of ornaments trending this holiday season but also they can be very affordable, easy to make and a fun family affair. These small ornaments can adorn any tree small or large to fulfill that great...

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Ntive pr sundrops1
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Putting the Pollinator Garden to bed by Karl Hedding

Regardless if you have a pollinator garden or not, that is, for any type of garden, waiting until the spring to cut back plants and cleanup dead plant material provides a hotel for insects to overwinter in and can be a source of seeds for the birds. However, always remove diseased plant material in the fall. Don't compost the diseased material. For example, Bee Balm may have powdery mildew by t...

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Nature  final holes in the tree
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Fall Nature Scavenger Hunt for Kids

We read in the news all the time that we are a generation of phones and internet. Any question is answered with a quick tapping of fingertips, amounting to instant gratification. I personally am grateful that I can look up anything anytime because my job requires me to answer a barrage of gardening questions that has been backed up by research. However, my childhood was spent in the pin...

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