Articles

Harlequin Bug on Cleome

The harlequin bug (Murgantia histrionica) (a.k.a. calico bug, fire bug or harlequin cabbage bug) is a black stink bug with either yellow-orange or red markings on both its back and stomach. Additionally, there are some white markings around the edge of its abdomen.  As with all true stink bugs, it belongs to the family Pentatomidae.

 

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Authors
Curtis E. Young

Annual of the Week - Sunflower 'Birds & Bees'

 

 

Sunflower Helianthus annuus ‘Birds & Bees’

 

While at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Garden in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, there was a sunflower in their vegetable garden that caught my attention. ‘Birds & Bees’ is a 6 – 8’ tall sunflower that has golden-yellow petals and chocolate discs.

 

While flowering, sunflowers offer a pollen and nectar source for foraging honey bees, native bees and many other garden pollinators. At maturity, these black seeded sunflowers of ‘Birds & Bees’ provide oil-rich kernels. The shells...

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Authors
Amy Stone

Perennial of the Week: There is More to a Plant Than Just the Name - Joe Pye Weed

When a plant has “weed” as part of its name, it could cause a little bit of confusion. As a gardener, would you feel as you could really brag and be proud of a plant in the landscape that is called a weed? Well of course the answer is yes, especially if it is Joe pye weed (Eutrochium purpureum).  Brag away!  

 

While Joe pye weed (Eutrochium purpureum) can be observed growing along roadsides, some have never taken in to consideration its outstanding ornamental characteristics. It is a large plant which needs space, but when planted in mass it can provide...

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Authors
Amy Stone
Guignardia Leaf Blotch Running Rampant boggs.47 Tue, 07/25/2017 - 10:38
Our continual wet weather over much of Ohio this season has been a two-edged sword. On one hand, we haven't had to drag hoses to water our landscapes. On the other hand, a number of fungal plant pathogens that require wet conditions to infect and produce their associated diseases are running rampant. Such is obviously the case for Guignardia aesculi; the fungus responsible for Guignardia Leaf Blotch of Aesculus.
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Authors
Joe Boggs

Plants of the Beehive State

This past week I was in the Beehive State, Utah, first speaking at a conference and then for a bit of vacation. My wife and I visited both the red rock and desert areas in southern Utah and then in the north, the more verdant areas of the Uinta and Wasatch mountain ranges. Utah, which became the 45th state in 1896, was named the Beehive State for the hard-working, industrious inhabitants.
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Authors
Jim Chatfield
Annual Flaming of Black Locust Trees boggs.47 Fri, 07/21/2017 - 20:10
Jim Chatfield called me from the road this morning to report seeing "flamed" black locusts along a highway in northeast Ohio. The captivating reddish-brown leaf coloration caused by the native Locust Leafminer Beetle is often a familiar sight to travelers motoring on Ohio's interstate highways. Indeed, when beetle populations are high during "outbreak years," black locust trees are able to be identified at highway speeds because of their blow-torched appearance.
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Authors
Joe Boggs
Jim Chatfield
Monarchs vs. Aphids boggs.47 Fri, 07/21/2017 - 15:42
What are those hordes of yellow aphids sucking juices from common milkweed "reserved" for monarch butterfly caterpillars? They are Oleander Aphids and their appearance on milkweeds reminds us that nature makes no food reservations. This non-native aphid may be found sucking juices from over 50 hosts belonging to 16 plant families.
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Authors
Joe Boggs
Return Engagement of Boogie-Woogie Aphids boggs.47 Thu, 07/20/2017 - 16:10
David Gressley (Director of Horticulture, Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum) sent me a video yesterday morning of a chorus line of Beech Blight Aphids (Grylloprociphilus imbricator) shaking their woolly derrieres in a synchronous samba. Frankly, I believe no other insect upstages this aphid in entertainment value.
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Authors
Joe Boggs