Tag Archives: Shrubs

Repairing Winter Damage In Your Garden

Winter Garden Damage – What Now?

Winter can offer obstacles for our gardens.  Cold, snow, ice, freeze/thaw cycles, wind, salt from treating roads and sidewalks are a few that spring to mind. Most of those obstacles can be readily overcome, but some are more challenging.

Cold, Snow, Freeze/Thaw Cycles – In Other Words, Normal Winter For Cold Winter Climates

These issues can by and large be mitigated by choosing plants that are cold hardy for our area and that are suited to the spot in your garden where they are being planted.

What does suited to the location mean?  It means if you have a place where the wind tends to come whistling through the garden, don’t plant something that is susceptible to wind damage.  Put that plant in a spot where it is protected from wind.  If a plant doesn’t like wet feet, don’t plant it in the low, wet spot in your garden.  Putting each plant in a spot where it can thrive leads to good plant health. And healthy plants are much better able to survive adverse winter conditions than unhealthy plants

Unusually Cold Temperatures

After the Cold has Passed

Annuals – if the foliage is brown and or mushy, remove it and compost or discard it.  Plan on replacing your plants in spring.

Herbaceous Perennials –Remove brown and mushy foliage.  However, do NOT assume that the plants are dead.  Even if you are used to the plants remaining green throughput the winter, they may not be dead.  Many perennials are “root hardy” which means that although the foliage and stems are dead, the plant will regrow from the root system.   In spring, be lazy and wait a bit.  Give the “dead” plants time to regrow from the roots before replacing them with new plant material.

Shrubs – Do nothing.  This is another great time to be a lazy gardener.  Resist the temptation to help and just wait for spring. See what new growth emerges and prune after you can see the true damage to your plants.  If there are obviously broken branches, you can remove them, but other than that – hands off. Pruning now could encourage new growth too early, which can harm the plant. Branches that may appear to be dead, may not be. Once spring gets here and the shrub leafs out with new growth, you will then know for sure which parts of the shrub are dead and can be safely removed.

Ice

Ice is pretty much the cruelest thing that can happen to your garden in winter.  The sheer weight can be devastating.  You are going to want to try and rush out and help your plants.  Resist that urge.  Do NOT try to help.  Take a deep breath and procrastinate. Do not knock ice off branches; channel your grade school days and keep your hands to yourself.  Allow the ice to naturally melt.  The branches beneath the ice will be brittle, trying to remove the ice is most likely going to lead to more damage to the plant, not help.

The rest can be pruned to shape, if needed or if you want to.  This may mean sacrificing blooms on spring blooming shrubs.  If you don’t mind a somewhat bedraggled shrub in your landscape, wait until after the spring blooming shrubs flower and then prune to shape.

Trees:  Remove downed branches or trees, if you can safely do so, or hire someone with experience to take care of this task.  For broken branches and additional pruning, it is best to hire a certified arborist to assess and service the plants.  Trees are a long term investment and much harm can be done by accident.  Let the professionals handle it.

Salt Damage

You may already recognize that salt really isn’t all that great for plants.  Salt applied by road crews or on sidewalks by homeowners can end up in nearby garden beds.  There are a couple of ways to deal with this issue.

If you can reasonably assume that salt will be applied regularly, consider choosing plants that can withstand a bit of salt (yes, we have circled back around to Right Plant, Right Place).   Internet searches will yield good results for plants lists.

If salt is unlikely to be an issue, then you may prefer not to limit your plant selection.  The best way to deal with an unusual application of salt to plants is water.  Once the temps warm up and snow cover melts, lightly spray off plants to wash off any salt that might be on foliage.  Then in early spring, water the affected areas heavily to wash the salts out of the main root zone of the plants.  You want to soak at least 6 inches of soil.  This will allow the majority of roots to reside in soil where the salt has been flushed out.

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Look for signs of this scale in the next few weeks!

Az+bark+scale    crypto scale

Azalea bark scale and cryptomeria scale can be seen in our area. Apply insecticidal soap or horticultural oil to treat crawlers in late June through late July. Giordano’s has these organic treatments by Bonide in stock.

Do you have scale in your landscape?

Learn how this harmful insect can be recognized & treated using organics. Scale can be treated using insecticidal soaps or horticultural oils that we sell here at Giordano’s in Sea Cliff.

The scale insects are small insects of the order Hemiptera, suborder Sternorrhyncha. They comprise the superfamily Coccoidea, previously placed in the now obsolete group called “Homoptera”. There are about 8,000 described species of scale insects.
Armored scale insects:(A) Lepidosaphes gloverii, adult females. (B) Parlatoria oleae, adult females (circular, with dark spot) and immatures (oblong). (C) Diaspidiotus juglansregiae, adult female walnut scale with waxy scale cover removed.
Oystershell scale (Ceroplastes sp.), a waxy scale on young blueberry

Contents

1 Description
2 Ecology
3 Economic significance
4 Systematics
5 See also
6 References
7 Further references
8 External links

Description

Scale insects vary dramatically in appearance; some are very small organisms (1–2 mm) that grow beneath wax covers (some shaped like oyster shells, others like mussel shells), to shiny pearl-like objects (about 5 mm), to creatures covered with mealy wax. Adult female scales are almost always immobile (aside from mealybugs) and permanently attached to the plant they have parasitized. They secrete a waxy coating for defense; this coating causes them to resemble reptilian scales or fish scales, hence their common name.

The group shows high degrees of sexual dimorphism; female scale insects, unusually for Hemiptera, retain the immature external morphology even when sexually mature, a condition known as neoteny. Adult males usually have wings (depending on their species) but never feed, and die within a day or two.

Species in which males do have wings generally possess only one pair of fully functional wings, and in particular, the fore-wings. This is unusual among insects; it most closely resembles the situation in the true flies, the Diptera. However, the Diptera and Hemiptera are not at all closely related and do not closely resemble each other in morphology; for example, the tail filaments of the Coccoidea do not resemble anything in the morphology of flies. The hind (metathoracic) wings of scale insects are reduced, commonly to the point that they generally are overlooked. In some species the hind wings have hamuli, hooklets, that couple the hind wings to the main wings, a condition usually associated with the Hymenoptera. The vestigial wings often are reduced to the point where they are referred to as halteres or pseudohalteres, but again, their resemblance to the halteres of flies is analogous, not homologous.[3] It is not at present clear to what extent the pseudohalteres have any substantial control function to match the true halteres of the flies.

The first instars of most species of scale insects emerge from the egg with functional legs and are informally called “crawlers”. They immediately crawl around in search of a favourable spot to settle down and feed. In some species they delay settling down either until they are starving, or until they have been blown away by wind onto what presumably is another plant, where they may establish a colony separate from the parent. There are many variations on such themes, such as scale insects that are associated with species of ants that act as herders and carry the young ones to favourable protected sites to feed. In either case, many such species of crawlers, when they change their skins, lose the use of their legs if they are female, and stay put for life. Only the males retain their legs and use them in seeking females for mating.[4]

The specifics of their reproductive systems vary considerably within the group, including three forms hermaphroditism[5] and at least seven forms of parthenogenesis.

Pruning Hydrangea

One of the questions that I’m most often asked is, “When is the proper time to prune hydrangea?” So I figured, why not write about it and get all my tips up on the website? So… Here goes! Hydrangea, while not native to North America are perhaps one of our favorite shrubs to cultivate. You will find them from coast to coast in the US and in a stunning variety of colors, leaf shapes and shrub types. As you might imagine, due to the endless variety, choosing the right time to prune your Hydrangea actually depends on the type of hydrangea you have…
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PLANTS FOR WET SOIL SITES

Is your lawn prone to flooding? Or do you have a water feature and want to decorate it with flowers, shrubs and/or trees? Careful when selecting for your wet soil sites, plants that are not specifically adapted to wet soil conditions eventually fall victim to root rot and rarely survive, let alone thrive. Feel free to stop by Giordano’s with any questions or for additional recommendations. Enjoy this quick read and the beautiful photos!

PLANTS FOR WET SOIL SITES

The above PDF details many beautiful trees, shrubs & perennials that LOVE moist soil conditions. The Liatris pictured below is a prime example of a fragrant and visually pleasing flower that thrives in wet soils!

Liatris

Wet Soil Plants

Calla Lily

Sparaxis

We have an extensive inventory of plants for wet soil conditions at Giordano’s Gift & Garden (Click For Directions).

Click On The Images In This Gallery For Larger Photos

Trees:

Tree_sweetgum
Tree_SummerRedMaple
Tree_Red mulberry
Tree_chionanthus_retusus

 


Shrubs:

Shrub_Swamp azalea
Shrub_redchokeberry
Shrub_Dwarf Fothergilla
shrub_blueberry-bleuet

 


Flowers:

Flower_Cardinal
Flower_bee-balm-crimson
Flower_aste_nova
Flower_Pink Coreopsis

Soil pH for Landscape Plants

LandscapepH

Come in and get a pH test kits or contact Cornell Cooperative Extension-Nassau  horticulture to determine your soil’s pH, then refer to this pH Chart to find the optimum pH for your plantings. A pH of 7 is neutral. To lower your pH (acid), add aluminum sulfate or to raise your pH (alkaline or basic), add lime.

We Carry Organic and Alternative Fertilizers and care products

Not only are they safer for you and your family, but organic fertilizers are also pet friendly and naturally increase the resilience of your garden/lawn/trees/shrubs

naturesharvest

 

Click Here For Dr. Earth Products and More!

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