Trees in our cities and towns beautify our urban landscapes, but they are more than just a pretty face. Their functional values are becoming increasingly more important in the midst of climate change and disappearing urban forests and woodlots.
The 2019 season provided challenges that were unexpected to the Green Industry, which included an abundance of rainfall followed by drought-like conditions, new invasive pests, concerns about glyphosate use, and many others. The Purdue Landscape Report focuses on timely articles that help Green Industry professionals make decisions for their business and keep abreast of looming issues. As we begin the 2020 season, we can take a look back at some of the top stories from 2019. Hopefully this season will be a little less challenging, but be sure we’ll be there with relevant, timely information in 2020. Thanks for following along! Boxwood Blight Found in Indiana https://www.purduelandscapereport.org/article/boxwood-blight-found-in-indiana/ Sudden Oak Death Found in Indiana https://www.purduelandscapereport.org/article/special-alert-sudden-oak-death/ Be on the Lookout for Defoliated Viburnums and Viburnum Leaf Beetle https://www.purduelandscapereport.org/article/be-on-the-lookout-for-defoliated-viburnums-and-viburnum-leaf-beetle/ Terrestrial invasive species rule signed by Indiana Governor https://www.purduelandscapereport.org/article/terrestrial-invasive-species-rule-signed-by-indiana-governor/ What nurseries need to know about the invasive species regulation[Read More…]
The urban environment is tough for growing trees and our changing climate is going to make it even tougher. Planting trees is part of the solution, but not the answer. We can’t just keep planting trees; we have to start growing and sustaining existing trees.
Tree work can seem expensive just to have a tree pruned or remove, however the expertise and costs involved in these seemingly simple tasks are much more complex than most people would think.
How to collect or dispose of firewood and brush without compromising forest health.
Deicing salts can save your neck this winter, but they can spell disaster for landscape plants. Whether the salt is sprayed on the plants from passing traffic near the road or is shoveled onto plants near the sidewalk, the salt can cause damage. Salts can adversely affect plants in several ways. Salts deposited on the surface of twigs, branches and evergreen leaves can cause excessive drying of foliage and roots. They can be taken up by plants and accumulate to toxic levels. Sodium salts in particular can also cause a nutritional imbalance by changing the chemistry of the soil and harm soil structure. The most apparent damage is death of buds and twig tips as a result of salt spray. As the tips of the plants die, the plant responds by growing an excessive number of side branches. However, accumulation damage is more slowly manifested and may not be noticeable[Read More…]
Prepare trees for winter now with some easy tips and tricks in the fall to get your trees off to a good start in the spring.
Hunting for mushrooms is a fun past-time, even if you are not looking for edible fungi to “spice” up your cooking. However, when you see a fungal invader popping up in your lawn or landscape, they tend to be unwelcome inhabitants because they are launching sticky spore masses onto your siding, producing foul odors (Figure 1), could be eaten by your kids and/or dog, or its simply marring the aesthetic. Fungi are heterotrophs, meaning they cannot produce their own food, which is why when you find them popping up, you should be asking what are they eating? If you see a fungal structure (conk or mushroom) developing near or on a shrub or tree, it is important to evaluate why it is there. Getting it identified can help you determine if it is a potential pathogen or just a happy little mushroom growing in your lawn. If it is growing[Read More…]
Just as sure as you try to predict the weather, it is likely to change. But going out on a limb, I predict that we will have a bit of a dud for fall color display this year. Not a very risky prediction, considering that many plants already are starting to turn color and/or drop leaves in some areas of the state. So why would the colors be early and/or a bit duller than usual? Certainly, some of the reason why plants display fall colors has to do with the genetic makeup of the plant. That doesn’t change from year to year. But the timing and intensity of fall colors do vary, depending on factors such as availability of soil moisture and plant nutrients, as well as environmental signals such as temperature, sunlight, length of day, and cool nighttime temperatures. The droughty conditions experienced during much of the second half[Read More…]
If you’re looking to add native shrubs to your home landscape, fall is an excellent time to look for those with good fall color. While many factors affect the display of fall color, there are a number of native shrub species that perform reliably in our area. Here’s a short list to consider including their mature height as well as flowers and fall color. Most can adapt to either full sun or partial shade, especially morning sun with afternoon shade with the exception of Dirca which prefers shade. You can look up more details for each of these species at the Purdue Arboretum Explorer website, including location of these shrubs on the West Lafayette campus. Photo Credits: Purdue Arboretum https://mlp.arboretum.purdue.edu/ecmweb/findPlant.php Selected Native Shrubs for Fall Color