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Archives for May 30, 2014

Rock Solid Landscapes Offers Incomparable & Attributive Landscape Water …

Longmont, CO — (SBWIRE) — 05/30/2014 — Rock Solid Landscapes offers incomparable and attributive landscape water features at an affordable range. Everyone needs to relax after a hectic day and needs a place to calm down. Their professionals have the ability to create a water feature that can enhance any landscape. In addition, they also offer water feature maintenance services to make sure that one gains peace with no worries. Cities like Longmont, Lafayette and the surrounding areas are in their work area for which they provide exceptional backyard landscaping ideas and designs.

A spokesperson from Rock Solid Landscapes mentioned, “Every landscape has some form of hardscape incorporated into it. Whether it be as simple as rock, pathways, dry riverbeds or boulders, to more complex items such as decorative stone patios, retaining walls, seat walls and outdoor lighting – from concept to installation, we can exceed your expectations by the use of some form of hardscape.”

Their team of professionals can help create one’s dream outdoor living area with the most attractive options. Whether it is about building a BBQ, pergola, fireplace, fire pit or even a pizza oven; they can provide many great opportunities to families for their relaxation and entertainment. Their expert hands have created the most appealing and amazing outdoor living spaces for cities like Fort Collins and Boulder, CO.

Beyond expectations, Rock Solid Landscape’s maintenance division has been providing services to commercial and residential properties for a long time. Their professional staff is highly-proficient in all the aspects of landscape maintenance. Some of the services they offer to customers are snow removal, mowing, fertilization, irrigation maintenance, irrigation winterizations and turn-ons, and aeration.

About Rock Solid Landscapes
Rock Solid Landscapes Inc. is dedicated to fulfilling the landscape dreams of their clients by adhering to the highest level of standards and detail. They are an experienced and professionally managed landscaping company having the manpower and resources to create distinctive and attractive designs for the yard. Their skilled and experienced staff has an eye for every detail, knows which design would go best in a yard, and aim to give the landscape an exceptionally beautiful look. They provide custom designs that fit the lawn, environmental conditions, and personal preferences of the client perfectly. For more information, please visit-

Contact Details:
3686 Stagecoach North, Unit A.
Longmont, CO 80504
Phone: 303-772-4736

For more information on this press release visit:

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Brainstorming at younger alternative to Mackinac Policy Conference yields plan …

HAYES TOWNSHIP, MI – There was a hydroponic demonstration bus, a mobile water park and a plan to crash a weekly neighborhood blues party, but the winning proposal was strategy already tried and tested.

About 50 people gathered on a farm at the northern shore of Lake Charlevoix this week in a younger, smaller, less expensive answer to the Mackinac Policy Conference, only they wanted to be sure to return to Detroit with imminent action as a product of their discussions.

As a result, Recovery Park — an urban farming initiative looking to provide training and employment to recovering addicts, ex-convicts and other people facing barriers to success — will hire youth and senior ambassadors in the coming weeks to help with outreach in the east-side neighborhood the group serves.

In addition to its farming and employment efforts, the organization is part of a major, federally supported stormwater retention initiative that will have bulldozers doing some peculiar green infrastructure work that may confuse some neighbors.

“The last thing you want to see is them digging up your street and don’t know why,” said Gary Wozniak, head of Recovery Park. “(Neighbors) really need to be part of how that happens.”

The group presented its outreach problem to the Assemble@Mackinac(ish) conference and asked for a solution.

(Related: Detroiters seek solutions to old-new, black-white divide in frank talks at alternative policy conference)

The crowd split into six teams and competed to develop the best idea with the help of young advertising professionals with experience facilitating brainstorming sessions.

“These people had a few hours to not only have ideas, but to package them and present them. They were stunning,” said Stephanie Pool, 28, who designed the ideas challenge with the hope that competitive spirit coupled with a commitment from Recovery Park to implement the winning plan would breed top-notch brainstorming.

“People really embraced the challenge.”

Dean Hay, 46, a landscaping architect from Dearborn who works for the Greening of Detroit, steered his team toward a strategy that his organization has used for three years to reach residents.

Forming a youth fellowship program and hiring senior neighborhood figures would best help the group spread the word on what it’s trying to do, Hay proposed.

“The message is very clear, and it travels, that this is an organization that deserves to be in the community,” he said.

The idea wasn’t as colorful as some of the others, but it was the most immediately doable, said Wozniak.

“Theirs seemed the most implementable,” he said. “They’ve got the track record of piloting and testing the process. And it’s going to create jobs in the community immediately.”

He expects to hire the first senior ambassador and youth fellow in June.

Some of the other ideas presented may also eventually be put to use, he said.

“I personally like the slip-and-slide,” Wozniak said about a plan to tour the neighborhood with a mobile water park and a diorama demonstrating the group’s upcoming work. “The kids will bring in their families.”

The competition was held in between discussions reacting to live-streamed policy talks taking place on Mackinac Island.

The group of young activists camped for four days on a farm owned by Detroit real estate developer Matt Lester.

“I want to be a change agent like them,” Lester said. “I think that this generation has changed the paradigm on how to do that.”

Follow MLive Detroit reporter Khalil AlHajal on Twitter @DetroitKhalil or on Facebook at Detroit Khalil. He can be reached at or 313-643-0527.

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Graceful landscaping adds a classic touch to the Green Music Center.

The graceful “Winged Figure Ascending,” by the late, internationally recognized sculptor Stephen De Staebler, greets visitors as they approach the Green Music Center at Sonoma State University.

Inside the courtyard at the entrance to Weill Hall is a grander sculptural display: 12 16-foot-tall pieces wrought by Mother Nature over the course of 118 years.

A building as striking as the finely-tuned music box designed by renowned architect William Rawn deserves an approach that conveys venerability. That was achieved with these ancient Sevillano olive trees — six on each side of the courtyard — with their gnarled trunks of multiple branches braided together over more than a century.

The olives trees, harvested from a doomed orchard in Corning, trucked in and then carefully placed in trenches beneath the limestone pavers of the courtyard, are among the most significant features within the outdoor spaces surrounding the hall.

With its barn-style door in a concert hall that opens to terraced grass seating, the center is truly designed to offer music without walls on a fine summer day. So the grounds needed to offer the same serenely simple beauty found inside the hall itself.

Observant homeowners and gardeners can glean ideas from public spaces like the Green Music Center, taking note of anything from natural architecture like trees and plantings to pathways, lighting and courtyards such as the entry to Weill Hall.

The grounds are the work of both Bill Mastick of Quadriga Landscape Architecture and Planning of Santa Rosa and the husband and wife team, Larry Reed and Cinda Gilliland, of SWA, an international landscape architecture firm with local offices in Sausalito and San Francisco.

Quadriga came up with the overall site plan for the 52-acre Green Music Center, including the parking lot, the front of the center and the 12- to 14-foot acoustic berms that provide a sound buffer from nearby road noise.

A total of $8.55 million of the $145 million music center project went into the grounds, from the courtyard and colonnade to the west and south lawns, site grading, structural fill, berms, signage, pathways, trees, landscape plants, lighting and outdoor sound equipment.

The long delay had an unexpected upside. The first part of the project to go in back in 2000 was the parking lot, dotted with London Plane trees. By the time the center opened two years ago, they had grown into the mature shade trees Mastick had envisioned.

In fact, time has softened and cooled the whole front of the center. A long line of Chinese elm trees and blue oat grass also are maturing and helping to conceal the plain walls of the classroom wing of the center.

One of the last areas to be developed was the courtyard, made possible by the $12 million infusion from the Weills that finished off the hall and landscaping.

Old olive trees were not part of the original design for the courtyard. But Reed, whose company was brought in to finish the grounds work, said Sandy and Joan Weill pressed for these ancient trees that project an image of both old California and new Wine Country.

They and Reed hand-picked the trees from an orchard near Chico owned by Troy Heathcote of Heritage Olive Trees.

“The olive industry is really going downhill. They’re tearing out these old trees and starting to plant walnuts,” said Heathcote, who buys up old orchards before the trees are bulldozed and tries to sell as many as possible. But he figures he is only able to find homes for about 7 percent of them. Price is a big factor, with each tree costing up to $3,000 or more. Removal, shipping and planting easily double that cost.

The Semillanos are actually good for landscaping because their fruit is larger — more for stuffed olives and martinis — and thus not as prolific and messy.

The other dominant trees in the Green Music Center landscape are redwoods. The giant evergreens, purchased in 15- to 84-gallon boxes, will provide screening around the periphery of the lawns. The trees also needed to be tall, said Reed, to be in proportion to the stately Weill and Schroeder halls.

The understory plantings are natural and typical of the North Coast — anemones, pennisetum or bunnytails, rock roses.

Reed said the economic downturn also took its toll on the landscape business.

“With the economy going south, growers had to start chipping plant material because they couldn’t sell it,” he said. “These are the last of the trees of a good size that we were able to get.”

You can reach Staff Writer Meg McConahey at or 521-5204.

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Soggy spring is brief: For garden longevity, plant a Xeriscape

Garden envy. We all have it, looking at yards that seem more glorious than ours.

If you spend your days tilling, toiling, weeding and watering, while those other gardeners have time for hobbies, entertaining and — let’s face it, a life — it’s no wonder you entertain wild thoughts of covering your yard in stone.

Don’t give up. You’re not an unworthy gardener. You just haven’t yet caught on to the secret of having a beautiful, low-maintenance Colorado garden: Xeriscape.

LAKEWOOD, CO - SEPTEMBER 26: The xeriscaped gardens at Kendrick Lake Park and Gardens in Lakewood on Thursday, September 26, 2013. (Photo By Cyrus

That term, coined by Denver Water, doesn’t mean a barren patch of rock. But it does mean recognizing that astonishingly moisture-rich springs like 2014 are rare events on the Front Range.

The low-water landscape is also low-effort. So once you’ve tried it, you’d better have a plan for using your extra time.

“My life is complicated with kids and a job. It made sense that my landscape was little work; that other type of landscaping was W-O-R-K, what with mulching and watering a lot,” said Pat Hayward, executive director for Plant Select, a program that helps develop and market water-wise plants for the intermountain West. She lives in the foothills of Masonville, just northwest of Loveland.

“When we don’t have to use as much water or work as hard,” she said, “why wouldn’t you want to do this?”

Perhaps it’s the allure of the lush, dense landscapes that national magazines flaunt in their pages. Gazing at the cool greens and tropical blossoms, it’s hard not to lust after that same look in our harsh, arid land.

“My experience is that we need to permanently shift how we think about water,” said Alison Peck, owner of Matrix Garden Design in Boulder.

In Kendrick Lake Park and Gardens, a wide range of xeric plants includeng yucca and ornamental grasses.

“Culturally, it’s the way we should go — we’re not making any more water. I understand some feel we’re being deprived” when cities restrict watering days. Instead, Peck said, “Think about Xeriscape as a way to celebrate the natural beauty of this place.”

Peck has spent the past 29 years melding her passion for conservation with a love of beauty.

“We’ve created formal Victorian, modern and native types of landscapes that are really beautiful and xeric. Lawns are pretty boring. They look the same; they don’t smell or sound good. You should get a sensual delight from the landscape, like grasses to run your hands through, flowers that are fragrant. More life, like butterflies.”

Hayward likes an aesthetic matched to its situation. Soil, sun, water and rocks all come into play in the Colorado landscape, so Hayward suggests that gardeners work with those elements.

“My 1-acre property has rocky soil, primarily sand and gravel — traditional perennials didn’t thrive. I didn’t water enough because I’m too lazy to water and I didn’t add organic matter. Rather than adapting the beds to the plants, I started finding plants that would do well in them.”

Finding what works is as easy as heading to a garden center that carries the right plants for your community. Local, often independent, stores can also help with good advice, since they know the conditions you’re gardening in.

Lead designer Chris Holthouser of Outdoor Craftsmen in Erie is seeing an increase in people wanting Xeriscape as a way to have a gorgeous landscape, but spend less time spent caring for it.

“The demand is huge,” he said. Last year, his business saw a 30 percent increase in calls requesting Xeriscaped outdoor living spaces. “There’s a design for every lifestyle someone has. You can design it to be in keeping with any style of house.”

A low-water landscape doesn’t have to be, and shouldn’t be, a monochrome of grays and sage greens.

Instead, Hayward urges going crazy with bright colors fearlessly, knowing that they have a bright Colorado sun to compete with.

“In high summer, we have peaks of color. From Mother’s Day to Father’s Day are times of peak pastels in yellows, blues and pinks. July and August are intense reds, purples, blues, oranges and yellows. This is when these gardens come alive with hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies.”

Then, during late September and early October as the weather cools, “the early summer plants have another heavy flush of blooms, and then you have the grasses.” These colors are echoed throughout the prairies and mountains, in the same rhythm of the seasons.

And the big secret no one talks about here?

We’re actually the envy of the East.

“We are so lucky to be able to grow these things,” says Hayward. With a low-water garden, “you can still do garden therapy, but it doesn’t take up your life.

“And with not as much work, you can sit back and enjoy it.”

Read Carol O’Meara on her blog

Xeric garden: 7 don’t-forget steps to water-wise beauty

Tips for going low-water

If you’re considering converting to Xeriscape, remember these priorities from Alison Peck and Chris Holthouser, both Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado members:

Pay attention to planning and design. Keep in mind how much time you want to spend on the garden. Do you want beautiful, sculptural plants or a cool seating area for entertaining?

Get a soil analysis. Understand the media on which the garden will be planted. Next to the irrigation system, soil is a crucial. “There are a wide variety of soils in the Front Range and Foothills. We can have the best plants in the best spot with the best irrigation, but if the soil is a problem or water pools, it can all fall apart,” says Holthouser.

Plant selection. You need the right plant for the right spot, so they don’t become too overgrown or suffer from wet feet. “Perennials are gorgeous but higher maintenance; most people don’t have the time. Mixed shrub beds are inexpensive, easy-care, virtually zero maintenance,” Peck says. “But it takes seven years to fill in” — grower-speak for shrubs growing up and out to become a finished landscape. Her solution: “Use a mix of colorful, quick-to-fill-in perennials near decks. Then, as you move outward in the landscape, use the low or tall shrubs that take longer.”

Plan for turfgrass. Holthouser stresses that you can have a lawn, just one of appropriate size. It cools the landscape, controls erosion, and provides a soft spot for play. But it must be in the right location; not on a slope and not 90 percent of the property.

Efficient irrigation. Proper design is crucial so you don’t end up with a problematic system that delivers too much water. Once installed, monitor your system for efficient delivery; don’t just turn it on and ignore it. Supplement it with redirected downspouts to take advantage of our infrequent rains.

Mulch. Use large-size mulches for trees and shrubs and smaller mulch in perennial gardens. Many xeric plants thrive in three-eighths-inch pea gravel.

Maintenance. “This is critical,” says Holthouser. If you want a lifestyle that includes interaction with the garden, it can be fun. But “if you don’t have the time, you should find the resources to help you,” he added.

Carol O’Meara

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West York’s Garden Girls plant seeds of success

She’s saving up for her first dump truck.

“I want to have pink dump trucks all over York County,” said Valerie Mace, owner of Garden Girls of PA in West York.

She will use the trucks to haul soil, mulch and more to a growing number of landscaping jobs throughout the region.

In its third year, the company employs about 20 women, who range in age from 21 to 36. Three of them handle most of day-to-day operations, and the other 17 assist or volunteer with landscaping work, Mace said.

The women build retaining walls, mulch, garden and do other landscaping work during the warmer months, and in the winter they plow snow.

Mace said she’s still not making much, but the company has made progress.

“I started the business with $1,500 from my income tax return and bought a beat-up F-150. It broke down every week, but we made it work,” she said.

But it was a turning point for the 31-year-old mother of three boys.

“I worked in the bar industry and got tired of being pushed around by men and looked down on by women. I was in a place in my life I just didn’t like,” Mace said.

Her passion: She thought about what she loved to do and went back to her roots — literally.

Planting gardens and being outside are a passion for the young woman who grew up on a 101-acre farm in Hanover.

“I started mowing on the side, and the business grew from there,” Mace said.

Garden Girls has often been hired by older women in the area who are no longer physically able to plant their gardens and pull weeds, she said.

Mace dreams of being able to earn enough money to help those women and other seniors in the area.

She also wants to open a Garden Girls daycare.

“My girls and I are all moms, and we’ve all had trouble finding sitters or have had trouble paying them. We know what that’s like. It would be nice to have a facility where kids could go and plant their own garden and make lunches from that garden,” Mace said.

For the kids: She came a step closer to that dream when she and her co-workers purchased a van, which is used for taking the kids on field trips.

“That’s what I want — to make sure the kids are having a good life, even if I have to work through most of it,” Mace said.

She and her team work 10-hour days, five days a week, and she also works as a bartender at a local golf course.

“It’s amazing. It’s hard. I would love for Garden Girls to be my primary job, my only job. As of now, I’m working all weekend, every weekend. You do what you have to do to grow a business,” she said.

For more information, call Garden Girls at 717-846-6966 or search for Garden Girls of PA on Facebook.

—Reach Candy Woodall at

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BR landscape architect gardens where he works

Landscape architect Jon Emerson’s office garden is such an important part of his workspace that he put the front door there.

“It’s like Savannah and Charleston,” Emerson says. “In Savannah and Charleston, you walk into the gardens first.”

The office, in an early 20th- century house in Beauregard Town, features a side garden divided into three main parts — a grove of citrus trees, a vegetable garden and an area for “trying out” new plants. A section at the back of the property contains a large circular fountain, filled with exotic fish, as well as a secluded area behind a studio and storage space.

Emerson, who retired after teaching 31 years in the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture, originally owned his current office and the turn-of-the-century house next door. Beginning in the 1980s, he established the garden between the two buildings. Several years ago, he sold the older house but kept the garden.

To create a more private area, Emerson surrounded the garden with a wooden fence and planted a screen of Alphonse Karr, a special variety of bamboo that does not spread.

At least half of the side garden is filled with 14 varieties of citrus — Meyer lemons, blood oranges, Mandarin oranges, limes and kumquats — all loaded with budding fruit. Each citrus tree is planted in its own raised bed with a soaker hose and timer.

“With the raised beds, you don’t have to bend down so far to weed,” explains Emerson, who is very careful to remove all branches that shoot up in the graft area of the trees.

“The fine varieties are grafted onto very hardy stock for endurance, but the fruit on the hardy trees is not good, and the branches have very big thorns,” Emerson says. “These branches in the graft must be removed.”

Between the raised citrus beds, paths are laid with Grasscrete, a material which contains open spaces where grass can grow.

“I use it because I want to be sure the trees get enough oxygen and water from the rain,” he says.

Some time ago, Emerson made a large dirt mound as a playground for the champion Scottish Terriers he raises.

“They made such a mess on it that I turned it into my vegetable garden,” he says.

Tomatoes and green beans are planted around the edges with herbs, white eggplants and peppers in the center.

Emerson arranged pavers over the mound so he can easily access the plants at the center.

“It’s almost like a labyrinth,” he says.

A tall fence where each spring sweet peas bloom in abundance separates the citrus grove from a narrow area Emerson uses to experiment with different kinds of plants. A good part of this area is dedicated to several varieties of liguleria, one of his favorites. He is trying a black-leaf crape myrtle with dark red flowers, a yellow magnolia and several unusual irises.

“I just love plants. I love to experiment with plants,” he says. “Some make it, and some don’t.”

Emerson grew up in California, graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and earned a graduate degree in landscape architecture from Harvard, where he taught for one year.

He is a man of many interests. He paints, does life sculpture and raises his champion Scotties. In 1998, one of his dogs won Best in Breed at the Westminster Kennel Club dog show.

He is an award-winning landscape architect with many outstanding projects to his credit. One of his most recent is the landscaping design for the new Main Library. The project also includes his design of two rooftop gardens and the stained-glass window in the children’s section.

From the work area in his office, Emerson has a clear view of the garden.

“I come here every day,” he says. “It’s a place I love to be. I have my music and my dogs here. I design here.”

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Rose growing tips from a National Trust gardening expert

Rose growing tips from a National Trust gardening expert

Rose growing tips from a National Trust gardening expert

Strolling around an English country garden with roses in full bloom is one of the pleasures of summer.

The National Trust has top tips on where to find some of the best gardens and also how to get the best out of your own roses.

At Winston Churchill’s old house Chartwell, near Westerham, the rose garden is filled with a mixture of Floribundas and Hybrid Teas. It was Lady Churchill’s favourite part of the garden.  The heavily scented Ice cream and Royal William varieties are some of the most popular, alongside the dramatic climbing roses around the walled garden

Emmetts Garden, near Ide Hill, has a small formal rose garden that is planted in a classic style. It is home a pink rose collection with complementing pink herbaceous borders and bulbs, which matches the original colour designs of its creator Frederic Lubbock.

Rose tips

For rose enthusiasts who are keen to create their own rose garden, Troy Scott Smith, head gardener at Sissinghurst Castle in Kent, names his favourite species and top tips on how to look after them:

1. Top roses

All roses are lovely – we grow nearly 300 different species at Sissinghurst Castle. But for me I love the wayward nature and the romance associated with the ramblers, try Mme Alfred Carriere, Paul’s Himalayan Musk or for a more modest size go for the early flowering and wonderful scented Claire Jacquier. They are easy to grow in all soil types, flower for long periods and all have a wonderful scent

2. All roses need food!

We use a good amount of compost or cow muck in late winter and early spring, in addition to a good feed of rose fertiliser. I would also recommend additional liquid feeds during spring on a fortnightly basis and another application of rose fertiliser after flowering. Depending on which varieties you’ve chosen to grown, don’t forget that regular spraying for rust and blackspot is essential

3. Don’t miss the roses in bloom

My final tip would be to make sure you’re not on holiday when the roses perform.

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End of May, beginning of June gardening tips

Posted: Thursday, May 29, 2014 2:35 pm

End of May, beginning of June gardening tips

Lance Ellis
University of Idaho Extension Educator

Teton Valley News


With our warmer weather people are getting outside more and having outdoor barbecues, family gatherings and sunburns. They are also having heat stressed lawns. This time of year is notorious for lawns to be drought stressed and turning brown or dull green. Homeowners many times don’t notice the impact of the weather becoming warmer, fewer spring rains as we approach summer, and they forget to increase the amount of water being applied during the week to their lawns. When altering your watering schedule keep in mind that you want to water deeply and infrequently. This reduces water loss through evaporation, helps plants grow deeper root systems and strengthens a plant’s overall health and resistance to drought.

Its also not too late to plant your garden. Normally we should be safe from major frost damage after Memorial Day, but it’s still a good idea to keep an eye on the weather forecast as an unexpected cold snap could jeopardize your seedlings. If you haven’t planted yet, then don’t let much more time pass, and make it a priority to get the seeds or transplants into the ground. Our growing season is not very long compared to most places, and between our dry environment and chance of early frosts, we can have a challenging growing environment. Protect new transplants from wind damage during this time of year, as new plants are tender, easily damaged and many times spindly.

With our temperatures increasing, the window for applying broadleaf weed control chemicals has closed. When temperatures get warmer, above 70 degrees, the chance for these herbicides to volatize increases dramatically. Volatizing means that they become gaseous, and start to move out of the grass and up into the air and can cause damage to surrounding plants if they are in sufficient quantities. Most broadleaf weeds, such as dandelions, are best controlled in early spring or late fall as the plants actively absorb the chemical more readily. The directions for what temperatures that these chemicals can be applied is written on the label, so always read your label thoroughly before use. If you have questions about understanding what chemical label directions mean, please feel free to call the extension office at 624-3102.

At this point in the season it is a good idea to fertilize your containerized plants with a slow-release fertilizer. Slow-release fertilizers will feed plants for between three to four months, and without continued feeding most flowering plants in a container will use up the available nutrients and become weak or yellow colored.

Avoid aerating at this point of the season as it can stress the grass rather than helping it develop a healthy stand. Aerating should be done in the fall when it has started to cool down, and its water needs are less. Power raking should be avoided if possible as it damages the grass crowns and shoots. If your thatch levels are really thick, then power raking may be warranted, but otherwise try to avoid doing this. We are drawing close to the end of the time frame when grub control should be applied, and if you are going to apply something, it should be done sooner than later. If applied too late in the season, the lawn grubs will have already done their damage, and the brown spots that show up in July and August will not be prevented. Lastly, the late spring/early summer application of lawn fertilizer should be done around this time and before it starts to get hot outside. Remember to apply adequate water so recently fertilized turfgrass will not burn.

For questions contact Lance at 624-3102.

© 2014 Teton Valley News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Thursday, May 29, 2014 2:35 pm.

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Larry Moore Gardening Tips: Tomato cages and fertilizer

Larry Moore hopes that your garden is off to a prolific start.  

In his first phase of gardening tips, he discussed vegetables that can be grown outside in early April.

Click here to revisit those tips.  

Now Larry is focusing on his first love in the art of gardening: tomatoes. 

He recommends soybean meal to fertilize and bulky tomato cages to corral a healthy plant. 

Larry Moore took a recent shopping trip at the Farrand Farms to find the best types of fertilizer, baby tomatoes and cages.  

Click here to watch the full video.  


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Midday Fix: Perennial Garden Planting Tips

Tips from Jennifer Davit, Director, The Lurie Garden

  • Replace annuals with perennials, especially those native to prairies, which require little water and no fertilizer.
  • Beyond color, choose textures, movement and fragrances that appeal to you.
  • Many perennials attract wildlife, because they provide nectar and pollen.
  • Plant perennials 15 to 20 inches apart with the crown at the ground level – don’t plant too deep.
  • Depending on the plant needs, you may not need much fertilizer.
  • Water when signs of stress become evident. Avoid using hardwood mulch around perennials; use leaf mulch or the plants clippings as natural mulch instead.
  • Avoid insecticides.


Lurie Garden Spring Festival Plant Sale Saturday, June 7, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Lurie Garden in Millennium Park


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