Newspaper Columns

The Doctrine of Signatures

November 18, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Before modern medicine, before paper was made and books were written, before the internet, before any form of written communication, the only way people had to learn the uses of plants was by trial and error and by passing information along orally.  Long ago, cultures all over the world independently came to believe that plants […]

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0 Miscellaneous

Aphids are a Common Garden Pest

November 4, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Almost every gardener discovers aphids on their plants at one time or another.  Before I get into what they are and how to control them, here is the most interesting thing about them:  female aphids are born already pregnant.  In fact inside the newly born aphid girls are embryos that have more embryos inside them.  […]

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0 Pests/Weeds/Invasives

Healthy Soils Make for Healthy Plants

October 21, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

UW-Extension Master Gardeners must acquire ten hours of continuing education each year to retain Master Gardener certification.  Most months, an hour of education is offered prior to our monthly business meetings.  In September, our speaker was Patrick Lake from the Oshkosh office of the National Resources Conservation Service.  He was an enthusiastic and entertaining speaker.  […]

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0 Gardening techniques and toolsMiscellaneous

Math in the Garden

October 7, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Do you realize how often math is involved in gardening?  Here is the answer to the oft-asked question, “When will I ever need math in real life?”       Say you want to fence your garden.  You measure two sides, add those measurements together and multiply by two to find out how much fencing to buy […]

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0 Gardening techniques and toolsMiscellaneous

There’s More Gardening to Do

September 16, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Some people greet the end of the growing season with sadness while others feel a sense of relief – will those zucchinis never quit???  Here are a few tips to help you make the transition to the off-season whatever your feelings about the imminent change in weather.       Continue harvesting vegetables and deadheading annual flowers […]

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0 Gardening techniques and tools

A Trio of Perennials for Months of Bloom

September 2, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Perennial plants, those that live for more than one growing season, typically have short bloom periods.  They may last a week or two, perhaps up to a month.  The trick is to have a variety of plants in the perennial flower bed so that something is blooming all season long. Here are three plants native […]

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0 Native PlantsPerennials

No Bare Soil!

August 19, 2018 lawanda Newspaper ColumnsUncategorized

Over the 18 years I’ve been writing this column, I’ve mentioned the benefits of using mulch in the garden many times.  In case you missed it, here it is once more, plus  a few new and even more important reasons to keep soil covered. Mulch is a layer of material spread on the surface of […]

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0 Gardening techniques and toolsMiscellaneous

Buttonbush is an Eye-Catcher

August 5, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

A few weeks ago my husband and I were taking our usual morning walk alongside Lake Butte des Morts.  While his gaze turns upward toward waterfowl and songbirds, my eyes are drawn to the sides of the trail and the plants that grow there.  This particular morning I was stopped in my tracks by the […]

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0 Native PlantsTrees and Shrubs

Bee Balm Finds a Home in any Mid-Summer Landscape

July 1, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Bee balm is a pretty perennial lavender-colored flower native to Wisconsin prairies.  It goes by a few other names including monarda, wild bergamot and Oswego tea.  The Latin name is Monarda fistulosa.  Another native bee balm, Monarda didyma boasts bright scarlet flowers. Lavender bee balm flowers are about three inches across while the scarlet ones […]

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0 FlowersNative PlantsPerennials

Jumping Worms

June 17, 2018 lawanda Newspaper Columns

  Most gardeners know that earthworms in a garden are an indicator of healthy soil.  In fact, worm castings (a/k/a poop) are one of the best fertilizers for a garden.  You can buy bags of the stuff and it isn’t disgusting or smelly.  It looks like coffee grounds.        But there’s a new worm in […]

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0 Pests/Weeds/Invasives

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