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Why are there holes in my roses? Roseslugs. Roseslug larva feeding on the leaf of a rose.

Why are there holes in my roses? Roseslugs

Roses are grown in many gardens for their large, showy, often fragrant flowers. If you grow roses, you may have noticed something eating the leaves of your plants, causing them to become unsightly. While Japanese beetles often get much of the blame during the summer months, they aren’t the only...
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Identifying danger: toxic plants that look like carrots image of yellow blooms of wild parsnip

Identifying danger: toxic plants that look like carrots

The other day, I had the opportunity to chaperone a school group at a local state park. While on the field trip, a volunteer-led the students on a nature hike through the woodlands. At one point during the hike, the group leader grabbed a handful of two plants to share with the students but in...
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Periodical cicadas are here...now what? Adult periodical cicadas resting on a hazelnut bush

Periodical cicadas are here…now what?

The long wait is finally over! After spending 13 (or 17, depending on where you’re at) years underground feeding from roots, periodical cicadas have started to emerge (at least in central and southern Illinois). Soon, many places will be awash in cicadas. While this mass emergence may seem...
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Mental health benefits found among the trees woman with hat sitting on rock outcrop looking over

Mental health benefits found among the trees

As May flowers begin to bloom and we celebrate the arrival of spring, we also turn our attention to Mental Health Awareness Month, a crucial period dedicated to breaking the stigma surrounding mental health and promoting well-being. During this time, we acknowledge the highs and lows that life can...
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a shadowy woodland under story with a "Beware of Ticks" sign

A bad year for ticks? Take steps to protect yourself

Ticks! I can’t stand these parasitic arachnids. I have had far too many run-ins with ticks throughout my life. They seem to find me every year. So far this spring I have found one lone star tick (Amblyomma americanum) attached to me and I have caught several other ticks headed my way...
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No Mow May. It’s almost May; is it time to stop mowing? Lawn mower in a yard with blooming dandelions

It’s almost May; is it time to stop mowing?

Did you notice people’s lawns getting a little long last May? No Mow May has become a popular way to help pollinators. No Mow May began in the United Kingdom in 2019 as a way to help struggling pollinator populations. The idea is that if people don’t mow their lawns during May, it will allow ‘...
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Chromatic cohesion: the power of analogous colors steps on walkway framed by flowers of red and pink

Chromatic cohesion: the power of analogous colors

A few weeks ago, we began a discussion about color. We started with complementary colors, those that are opposite of each other on the color wheel. This week we explore analogous colors. Throughout this color exploration, we might be tempted to think only of floral color but many plants offer...
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Callery pear: Ornamental favorite or invasive menace? A row of callery pear trees full of white blossoms

Callery pear: Ornamental favorite or invasive menace?

Callery pear (Pyrus calleryana), better known as ‘Bradford’ pear, has been blooming across Illinois. Over the years, it has been a popular tree to plant, especially in residential areas. Trees will reach 30 to 40 feet in height and produce numerous white flowers in the spring. Trees also...
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