Q: I occasionally come across vines that I try to identify to avoid poison ivy. On a recent encounter in Paoli, Indiana, in early October, I thought I was prepared knowing that poison ivy has three leaves and Virginia creeper has five leaves, according to numerous sources. When I inspected the vine in question, to… Continue reading.
By B. Rosie Lerner If you’ve ever had to work on a tree leaf collection, no doubt you included a leaf from Indiana’s state tree. Also known as tulip poplar and yellow poplar, the tuliptree is actually not a poplar at all. It is a member of the magnolia family known botanically as Liriodendron tulipifera…. Continue reading.
By B. Rosie Lerner Most gardeners would agree that tomatoes are the most popular crop for home growing. But what gardeners can’t agree on is what tomato is considered “the best,” since taste is such a personal matter. The diversity of cultivars available makes it easy for anyone to grow tomatoes — even if all… Continue reading.
By B. Rosie Lerner To admire a peony in full bloom is a fitting way to celebrate our full arrival into spring. Although it is native to Asia, the peony has become a staple of Midwestern flower gardens — so much so that the Indiana Legislature in 1957 adopted the peony as the state flower…. Continue reading.
by B. Rosie Lerner There’s no better way to celebrate Arbor Day than to add beauty and value to your home landscape with a new tree. Trees can also provide shade and wind protection for many years to come if given the proper start. The last Friday in April is both the national and the… Continue reading.
By B. Rosie Lerner The Perennial Plant Association selected its 2018 Perennial Plant of the Year: Allium “Millenium” (yes, that’s Millenium with just one “n”). This announcement continues to show the focus on pollinator habitat these days — Allium Millenium is appropriately referred to as a butterfly and bee magnet! Millenium is a hybrid Allium… Continue reading.
by B. Rosie Lerner Nothing conveys your warm Valentine’s Day feelings like cut flowers, particularly roses. But their elegant beauty fades fast. So if you’re looking for something that will last a little longer — like your love — there are several potted plants that fit the bill. Cyclamen is made for the occasion with… Continue reading.
In the dead of winter, we often find wasps on the carpet in our basement, but not always. Sometimes a dead wasp is on the windowsill, other times in a light fixture. We might see dying wasps crawling around lethargically or even attempting to fly. Like a lot of social insects, paper wasps survive subfreezing… Continue reading.
by B. Rosie Lerner Amaryllis is a popular holiday gift plant, but it may have the lucky recipient wondering about its proper care. Amaryllis is a tender bulb that won’t survive outdoors even in the mildest of Indiana winters. But it can be grown indoors to provide a dramatic show of color during dreary winter… Continue reading.
by B. Rosie Lerner Will you be eating sweet potatoes or yams at your Thanksgiving dinner? While many folks use the terms interchangeably, they are distinct. Botanically speaking, the sweet potato is known as Ipomoea batatas and belongs to the morning glory family (Convolvulaceae). True yams belong to one of several species of Dioscoreain (Dioscoreace),… Continue reading.
by B. Rosie Lerner Many houseplants thrive during the long, bright summer days, especially when properly moved outdoors. But these plants may have some trouble adjusting back to indoor conditions when colder weather strikes. Common indoor plants often are native to the tropical or subtropical climates and cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Houseplants should be brought… Continue reading.
Many houseplants thrive during the long, bright summer days, especially when properly moved outdoors. But these plants may have some trouble adjusting back to indoor conditions when colder weather strikes. Common indoor plants often are native to the tropical or subtropical climates and cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Houseplants should be brought back inside before the… Continue reading.
By B. Rosie Lerner Fall is an excellent time to grow many vegetable crops in Indiana. The gardener can take advantage of cooler temperatures and more plentiful moisture, and fall gardening allows you to harvest produce after earlier crops have faded. Many vegetable crops are well adapted to planting in late summer for a fall… Continue reading.