Hort Shorts

Wall of Wisteria

As I was driving along the other day, it was raining and I was watching the road and the plants around me of course, when suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a flash of purple.  Intrigued, I just had to investigate and find out what the heck was going on with the purple flash!
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Authors
Erik Draper

Spruce Problem On Commercial Property

  Recently OSU Extensioneers Tim Malinich and Jim Chatfield met with horticulturists at a property in northern Ohio to look at a number of declining spruce trees. Most of the spruces on the property appeared healthy but a number had needle browning and and branch dieback, ranging from minor to severe.

  Some of the needle discoloration ascended the tree in somewhat of a spiral pattern, sometimes it was more complete, with some trees if not dead or dying, at the least becoming aesthetic liabilities. There was no evidence on the spruces at this property of any significant infectious...

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Authors
Jim Chatfield

Strobili Are Striking

In Northeast Ohio, the strobili, especially the female ones on the Picea abies or Norway Spruce, are spectacular.  These strobili or cones are located out on the very tips of main branches and because they are small right now, they’re sticking straight up.  The color of these immature female strobili ranges from a soft rose-pink to a deep, translucent burgundy. 
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Authors
Erik Draper

Peaches Are From China

  The Latin binomial for peaches is Prunus persica, which is a bit misleading. The genus name is fine – Prunus, a genus in the rose family (Rosaceae) that includes peaches and nectarines, plums, cherries, almonds, and apricots. This reference to Persia (present day Iraq) is a misnomer, since peaches originate from China, which today by far out produces all other countries in edible peach production.  Peaches eventually made it to Persia, then to Europe, then from Spanish explorers to the New World, where they were planted into orchards in Georgia, the Peach State by the...

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Authors
Jim Chatfield

A Nostoc Tour de Force

Our warm, wet spring has provided ideal conditions for the rise of a strange looking organism with a scientific name that sounds like a '70s California happening: Nostoc commune. This bizarre organism may look as if an agglomeration of rubbery yellowish-green to bluish-black material is "bubbling-up" in the open spaces in Ohio landscapes as well as gravel driveways.
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Authors
Joe Boggs
Flower Celebration chatfield.1 Tue, 05/02/2017 - 17:11

  A lovely tradition of celebrating diversity (Oslava Květin) was started by Norbert Čapek, a Czech Unitarian, in 1923, with flowers as symbols of the universality of nature and ecumenical love. Start your own flower celebration in your home, for every business meeting, with your customers, sharing the beauty of flowers – especially this time of year: this “lusty month of May” (from Camelot). Everyone bring a flower! Here are a few floral fineries from my home and neighbors.

  The cover image for this bygl-...

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Authors
Jim Chatfield
Badaling, Badaling: The Great Wall of China chatfield.1 Sat, 04/29/2017 - 11:23

A trip to China often includes a visit to The Great Wall of China, to some part of the 5500 to 13,000 mile collection of fortifications (depending on whether various branches are included).   So, I set out for the Great Wall with my guide Nina during my trip to the Beijing Botanic Gardens for their Crabapple Conference. Nina gassed up a Hyundai and we headed 50 miles northwest and over a half mile in elevation to Badaling (八达岭), the most visited section of the Wall and the first opened to tourists in 1957. From Nixon to Obama, to Nina and me.  

 

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Authors
Jim Chatfield
Is it Time to Plant Tomatoes? Check the Soil Temperature! crook.46 Fri, 04/28/2017 - 11:55
This time of year everyone is anxious to get out and begin planting their vegetable garden. You may have spent the last few months browsing the seed catalogs and dreaming about fresh tomatoes from your garden. Also you may have recently noticed vegetable transplants at your local retailers however this does not necessarily mean it is time to start planting.
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Authors
Julie Crook
Glenwood Gardens: A "Volcano" Mulch-Free Zone boggs.47 Thu, 04/27/2017 - 19:12
Most of my images are of bad things in landscapes. I use these teaching images to illustrate plant threats; sometimes those threats are from people. So-called "volcano mulch" or "mulch mounds" is a good example. That's why I was so thrilled yesterday when I found example after example of absolutely perfect tree mulching at Glenwood Gardens!
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Authors
Joe Boggs
Springtime in Ohio chatfield.1 Thu, 04/27/2017 - 08:56

  Woke up, got out of bed, dragged a comb across my head…Well, no, that is truly Fake News. Yet, upon returning from China to Springtime busting out all over in Ohio, I was mesmerized by the buzzing bees and budding birches; the blending of sweet birch catkins and flowering dogwood bracts above. Welcome to the Show! And right here in the Wayne County ChatScape.

 

  Up first, with a nod to China, is a golden-leaved ‘Ogon’ cultivar of dawnredwood, Metasequoia glyptostroboides.

 

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Authors
Jim Chatfield