Newspaper Columns

No Potting Soil Needed for Air Plants

February 19, 2017 lawanda Newspaper Columns

If you want an easy-to-care for houseplant without the mess of potting soil, one of the 650 species of air plants, called Tillandsia, are for you.          Air plants have slender, strappy leaves resembling pineapple tops, but of a finer nature.  Most have spectacular tubular or funnel-shaped flowers lasting from several days to several months.  […]


0 Houseplants

Caring For Holiday Gift Plants

December 18, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Most plants given for holiday gifts – poinsettias, Christmas cactuses, kalanchoes, cypresses, and others – originate in tropical regions and cannot tolerate our cold winter temperatures, even for a few minutes.        Special care must be taken in transporting these tender plants outdoors.  Protect them with as many layers of paper, plastic, towels or blankets […]


0 Houseplants

Deterring Deer

December 4, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

As we build homes further out into what was once countryside, we encroach on the homes of many species of wildlife, including deer.  With fewer undeveloped acres available to provide natural food, deer are forced to look at our residential landscapes for sustenance.  Many of our home landscapes and gardens are virtual deer buffets.       […]


0 Gardening techniques and toolsPests/Weeds/Invasives

Find Answers to Gardening Questions with UW-Extension Publications

November 20, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

The mission of the Winnebago County Master Gardener Association is this:  “To provide research based horticulture education, community service and environmental stewardship to our community in affiliation with the University of Wisconsin-Cooperative Extension.”          The Master Gardener program was initially conceived to assist Extension agents in answering the public’s questions on home gardening and landscaping.  […]


0 Miscellaneous

New Buckthorn Control Method

November 6, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Buckthorn is a nasty plant that is taking over woodlands, wetlands, prairies and other natural habitats.  You may have some growing in your own yard and not know it.        Buckthorn was introduced to the United States in the 1800s as a tough, hardy landscape shrub.  That toughness resulted in it becoming aggressively invasive to […]


0 Pests/Weeds/Invasives

What to do with Herbs in Winter

October 16, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Just like the plants in your flower garden, herbs can be annual or perennial plants.  Some of them will withstand a Wisconsin winter and grow again next year, while others will be killed by the lightest of frosts.       Basil is probably the herb most sensitive to cool temperatures.  Low 30s will turn the leaves […]


0 Gardening techniques and toolsHerbs

Gardening Lessons are Reinforced

October 2, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

I’ve nearly completed the first gardening season at my new home.  After 30 years of gardening, this past year taught me some new gardening skills and reinforced some basic gardening tenets that I’ve known but never had occasion to worry about.       First and foremost, vegetable gardens absolutely positively need full sun!  Full sun means […]


0 Gardening techniques and tools

The Mighty Oak

September 18, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

There are almost 100 different species of oak native to the United States. They occur naturally in all of the 48 contiguous states except, oddly, Idaho. Probably the oak most Wisconsinites can identify is the white oak, whose leaves have the classic round-lobed shape.  The bur oak, one of the white oak group, is the […]


0 Trees and Shrubs

It’s Mum Time!

September 4, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

      The entryways of plant nurseries, grocery stores, drug stores and department stores are filled with beautiful pots of chrysanthemums in an array of gorgeous fall colors.  Soon all those pots of mums will migrate to front porches, decks and sidewalks throughout the area.       Don’t be quick to buy the biggest most spectacular plants […]


0 FlowersGardening techniques and tools

Time to Clean Up!

August 7, 2016 lawanda Newspaper Columns

Every yard has one.  Maybe it’s out of sight behind your garage or on the side of the house where you never go.  Perhaps it’s in the back corner behind the kids’ yard toys.  Maybe it’s inside the vegetable garden or at the back of the flower bed.  Possibly it’s right out front for all […]


0 Gardening techniques and toolsMiscellaneous

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