You Have Blooms And No Squash, What Gives?

This time of year the squash is blooming away, but what if that's all you get? What if all you see on the plant are blooms? The plant is perfectly healthy with no signs of any issues but still isn't setting fruit. If you have blooms but no squash the answer may be as simple as the flowers on the plant! Why Might Your Squash Plants Not Have Female Flowers Yet? Squash blossoms are either male or female. Often what blooms first are the male flowers. The female flowers typically form later. The female flowers have oval like shapes beneath the flower on the stem. These shapes are the ovaries and what eventually turns into the squash. It makes sense when you think about it. The male flowers produce first to make sure pollen is available then the female flowers form. Sometimes though you can get a ton of male…

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Aster Yellows Disease in Coneflower (Echinacea)

Coneflowers are one of my favorite perennials. Environmentally there are few things to worry about with them. They are drought tolerant, bloom prolifically, and help to create a beautiful landscape. Unfortunately there is one major issue that can destroy whole gardens of these perennials: Aster Yellows. Recently I filmed a short video on a coneflower in my garden that has Aster Yellows disease. It's easy to spot. Check out the video below for more information on Aster Yellows disease: For more gardening videos please subscribe on my Youtube Channel: Growing The Home Garden.   Cause of Aster Yellows Disease Phyoplasma causes the deformities Leaf hoppers and juice sucking inspects transfer it from plant to plant. Prevention of Aster Yellows Disease Remove infected plants Plan your garden plantings with some space between members of the aster family.  

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Potting Bench Review: Merry Garden Potting Bench

Recently my brother and I purchased a gift for my mom for her birthday. Her old potting bench was rusting out at the feet and in several other locations and it was time for a new one. As so many of us do these days I went to Amazon and searched through the potting benches that were available. I found one that I thought looked sturdy, functional, and attractive: The Merry Garden Potting Bench (Amazon Aff). The Merry Garden Potting Bench was made from cedar and has a shelf under the main potting area as well as a small shelf on top of the bench. The main surface area of the potting bench has a grate area where you pot the plants and a spot to put a container for catching the excess soil underneath. There's a little room for storage under the right side of the main potting area.…

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Crossing Daylilies

Daylilies are one of the easiest plants to learn how to hybridize. The large flowers with easy to get to pollen make it a simple matter to transfer pollen from one flower to another.  There are a couple simple things you need to know before you start hybridizing daylilies. The first is where the pollen is and the second is where to place it!Important Daylily Parts for HybridizingThe two parts of the daylily flower you need to pay attention to are the stigma and the stamen. The stamens are 6 stalk like parts that emerge from the flower. On the end of each stamen is the anther which is where you can find the pollen. It's easy to see if you are doing this in the morning. In the afternoon I have noticed they tend to close and make the pollen harder to get to so the morning is the…

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Pawpaws (Asimina triloba)

Recently while out exploring I noticed a butterfly floating about. It was a zebra swallowtail butterfly which is the Tennessee state butterfly. I've seen them before and so I knew a little about them including one fact in particular, their favorite host plant is the pawpaw tree (Asimina triloba). I've never grown a pawpaw tree but I've heard all kinds of raving comments about pawpaws. Knowing that a zebra swallowtail was present I thought I should continue my exploration and see if I could locate a pawpaw tree. Pawpaws enjoy shady locations in woodland areas that offer good moisture so I went exploring through the woods. Before the leaves had fully emerged this spring I cut a pathway through the woods with my mower. As this was a path of least resistance I journeyed into the woods to see what I could find. I pulled up leaf images of the…

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Elderberry Bush – Transplanting and Propagating

Over the years the side garden area of our yard has gradually grown into a small forest area. My kids call the area "the thicket." They play in the pathways I've cut through. Over time the sassafras trees have grown tall changing the hillside from just a grassy field to a small forest. Among the plants naturally growing in "the thicket" is a stand of elderberry bushes (Sambucus canadensis). I love the look of elderberries in the fall when they are loaded with berries and in the springtime when they bloom. Elderberries are easy plants to grow if put in the right place. Growing Elderberry Elderberry bushes like to grow in a full sun to part shade location. In our yard the elderberries function as an understory plant and are doing quite well on the edges of taller trees in forest areas. They like soil that gets moist but is…

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Images of the Spring Garden – March 2018

Spring and Fall are my favorite seasons in the garden. Fall because I love the changing leaves, the cool crisp air, and the feeling of closure that comes with shutting down the garden. Spring is my other favorite because of the rebirth. All the spring flowers and foliage are emerging and everything is brand new again. It's a really fun time to be out in the spring garden. When I walk from garden to garden I rediscover plants I had forgotten about. I see hostas emerging, buds swelling with the promise of blooms to come, birds darting to and fro as they begin making their nests, and so much more! Weeds emerge too but that doesn't bother me so much. Weeds have their place and often provide nutrition for number of mysterious denizens of the garden.     Spring is the best of times in the garden. The garden is…

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A Garden in 30 Minutes

Today was beautiful. The sun was out and the temperature was in the low to mid 60's. That's what I call perfect garden weather! I didn't have much time to garden but needed to do a little something and was able to spend about 30 minutes on a small project. Back in the fall I used my black tarp technique to cover an existing bed and the results were great! The black tarp technique helps to kill off vegetation underneath it. It triggers seed germination, growth, then kills the plants off leaving a nearly weed free environment. I learned this technique after reading The Market Gardener (Amazon Aff Link) and it really works. It took me less than 30 minutes today to move the tarp to a new location in the garden, rake the dead weeds out, level the soil, and sow new seeds! It's really very simple. I didn't…

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2018 Nashville Lawn and Garden Show

Nashville Lawn and Garden Show Welcomes Brie Arthur as Featured Speaker Author of The Foodscape Revolution Will Speak on March 3 & 4 Nashville, TN – The 2018 Nashville Lawn and Garden Show welcomes nationally recognized author, PBS correspondent and gardening expert Brie Arthur as its featured speaker. This year’s Show is March 1-4 at The Fairgrounds Nashville. Arthur will present “Perennial Combinations in the Foodscape Revolution” on Saturday, March 3, at 1:00 p.m. and “Foodscape Revolution Simplified” on Sunday, March 4, at 12:30 p.m. Originally from southeastern Michigan, Brie Arthur studied Landscape Design and Horticulture at Purdue University.  She was a professional plant propagator at Plant Delights Nursery and Camellia Forest Nursery before transitioning her focus to Green Industry communications through writing, public speaking, film production and consulting. As a correspondent on the PBS television show Growing A Greener World, Arthur shares practical advice from her one-acre suburban foodscape encouraging…

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