gardening

Origin of "Greens"

18 hours ago

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow.  Tony Melton told us recently that the greens which were planted months ago are sitting in the field waiting for rain. Well, we’ve finally gotten that much needed heavenly precipitation, and from Tony's extensive knowledge, our South Carolina collards and kale should quickly rebound from their slow start.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is considered one of the worst invasive species that’s arrived in our country from Asia. First discovered in Pennsylvania in 2001, it’s now found in most of the US and has spread to other continents. In all cases, it’s a major pest of agriculture and difficult to control, requiring increases in pesticide use as it feeds on a wide variety of crops including fruits and vegetables.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. We’ve had ninety degree temperatures in October, but during a brief cool spell in September, one of the worst imported pests, the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, started its annual intrusion into my upstairs.  I awoke one morning to find these garden pests hanging out on my curtains and Edward had to suck them up with the vacuum, then empty the canister into a bag, seal it, and put it in the trash.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. I’ve heard stories of a farming family that almost separated as a new wife, raised in the city, put up wallpaper covered with morning glories. Ipomoea purpurea commonly known as Heavenly blue morning glory, is native to the Central Valley of Mexico and is considered an aggressive weed in agricultural crops like cotton and corn. As I drive on 601 from St.

Fall Favorites

Oct 16, 2019

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. This time of year I’m reminded of fixing flowers for the happy second marriage of a friend because I used a native and an imported flower that are flowering right now. Both of them seem to pop up overnight. The native plant was Farewell to Summer which grows in sandy, dry soils. The imported plant was red spider lily and has been a staple of Southern gardens for hundreds of years and persists unless its foliage gets mowed down too often.

Farewell to Summer

Oct 14, 2019

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. September 22 was the first day of fall. Today is October 2 and it is going to be 98 degrees at my home in Saint Matthews. On my commute to Sumter, however, I’m seeing one of my favorite plant in the whole wide world. The common name for   is Farewell to Summer, the scientific name is Polygonella americanum.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Boxwood blight is a highly contagious fungal disease that is wiping out whole plantings of this beautiful evergreen which is the backbone of many gardens. If you have a maintenance crew helping in your yard, they can introduce the infectious spores from their shoes and clothing – and if they prune through their tools. There are some boxwood species/cultivars with some tolerance.

Boxwood Fungus

Sep 27, 2019

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Boxwoods have always had several problems but overall, they’ve been reliable and invaluable landscape material. Now a contagious fungal pathogen has arrived from Europe and it is devastating to certain cultivars.  Boxwood blight came to the United States 2011 and is spreading rapidly, initially by new plants that arrive at nurseries to be sold.

Spacing Boxwoods

Sep 26, 2019

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. There’s nothing easier than having a landscape company come in and install a complete and mature-looking yard – well, you do have to pay the bill. The real work comes in keeping those plants placed way too close together  healthy as they reach their mature size. I bought two dozen two-dollar boxwood babies to put across the front of our house thirty-three years ago.

Pruning Boxwoods

Sep 25, 2019

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Although older plantings of certain boxwoods naturally acquire a billowing, undulating cloud-like shape, certain popular pruning practices can immolate that effect in some formal highly-managed settings. By removing large branches and sections of individual plants and letting others grow into those spaces, a fascinating almost sculpture-like formation can result.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Some boxwood varieties if left alone grow to their mature size developing  a cloud like appearance with natural undulations.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Trees are considered the lungs of the planet – the byproduct of photosynthesis is life sustaining oxygen. They store carbon in their tissues and cool our summer temperatures by transpiration. The Arbor Day Foundation has a healtier earth goal that relies on yor adding trees to your community – Planting 100 million trees by 2022. The Arbor Day website has a hardiness zone site that shows the difference in hardiness zones from 1990 to 2006.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. The U S D A cold hardiness map now comes in an interactive form – you have to prove you aren’t robot to use it, but it’s easy after that hurdle. Search U S D A interactive map then start clicking on your area of interest to make it larger. Almost the entirety of South Carolina is zone 8 (subdivided into a and b, b is warmer) with small outlier pockets of 7 and 9. Contrast that with some western states.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Don’t be fooled into thinking that plants of a particular genus are going to have the same needs for a healthy life. For instance, I’ve talked about Hydrangea paniculata, panicle hydrangeas, as really preferring cooler temperatures than many parts of South Carolina. But the French hydrangeas, Hydrangea macrophylla, mostly have the warmer zone five or even six as their upper limit.

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. Fall, when it finally comes, is the best time to add new plants to your yard. The tags that are hanging off the branches of plants at your garden centers, or the information about plants offered online, give you the range of cold hardiness zones that plant can live in. Sometimes I search the Monrovia nursery pages as an easy place to get the zones where specific plants should grow well.

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