University of Illinois Extension

Volume 8 Issue 4

Articles in this issue...

From Garden To Vase

One of the pleasures of gardening is to produce a colorful border of flowers to enjoy while you are walking around the garden or sitting on the patio or porch, said Greg Stack, Extension horticulturist.

What a Rush!

Ornamental grasses are quite popular for their color, texture, form and winter interest, said Greg Stack, Extension horticulturist. "Yet there is another plant that gets overlooked, one that can be equally as interesting in the garden," said Stack. "They are the rushes. Rushes are not true grasses, but they look grassy.

Summer Lawn Weeds

Given our early spring weather, many homeowners are finding out that even though a crabgrass preventer was put down, they are seeing more crabgrass and other annual grass weeds than they ever expected, said Richard Hentschel, a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator.

New USDA Plant Hardiness Zones

A tool long used by gardeners, landscapers and anyone in the green industry is the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map (PHZM). Using this map helps determine what plants should survive local winter temperatures, said a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator.

Raised Beds

Expanding your garden? Whether growing flowers, vegetables or shrubs, consider planting in a raised bed, said Nancy Pollard, U of I Extension horticulturist. "It will offer improved productivity, often healthier plants, and easier maintenance than an in ground bed," said Pollard. "Raised beds allow the soil to warm up earlier in the spring. The soil stays loose as long as you do not walk on it. The soil drains better. There is better air movement, so there are fewer pests.