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The Plant Man Article Archive

Here is an archive of "The Plant Man" columns, written by LandSteward's Steve Jones, published weekly in more than 78 newspapers across America.

SHOPPING INFORMATION: You will find "hot links" imbedded in these columns that will take you to the appropriate page at the website of Greenwood Nursery, the sponsor and underwriter of Land Steward. Click on the links to find descriptions and buying information about the plants and products that interest you.

You can also click on the Greenwood Nursery logo at the top right hand corner of this page to go to Greenwood's homepage. Be sure to join our free Land Steward club and take advantage of a 10% new members discount, too! Click on "Become a member of Land Steward"

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Questions and Answers
It's time to catch up with some questions I've received via e-mail from readers over the past few weeks.

Time to get tools ready for winter
There's a subconscious belief- more of a superstition, really- that if we don't winterize our landscaping tools then Old Man Winter will somehow be prevented from invading our piece of the planet. It's like hanging up garlic to keep away the vampire

Make use of your trees' "free gifts" this fall!
"Nature's first green is gold, her hardest hue to hold." You might think of those words by Robert Frost while you're raking leaves this weekend. No doubt you'll agree with Mr. Frost that trees seem to find it difficult to...

Trees bring major benefits to urban areas
Sometimes you hear people say, "You can't see the forest for the trees." But in many towns and cities the real problem is that you can hardly see the trees at all. The reason is simple:

Some "fertile" thoughts on fertilizer
You might remember a nursery rhyme from your childhood that began, "Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?"

Planting with future Fall colors in mind
Autumn is one of the most colorful times of the year in the world of Nature, and one of the most enjoyable times for those of us who love tending to our landscape.

Crisp Fall days: Perfect for planting... and planning
When Autumn comes around we see our trees and plants getting ready for their "long winter's nap" and it's only natural to think that we can begin to take it easy too. However, with a little deeper thought, we can see...

It's Fall... And your landscape needs some TLC
It seems only a few days since we were in the middle of Summer. And yet here I am to talk about getting your land ready for the onset of winter. We might want to hang on as long as possible to the memory of those long, lazy days, but it's time to...

From crab apple to grape vines: readers need help!
So many great questions in my e-mail this week. Let's see if I can help... QUESTION: "I hope you can maybe help me with a situation that we are having. I've been getting the run around from every- one else I've asked. We moved to...

Trees and kids: Together, they can grow!
In a previous column, I came up with some ideas that you might find helpful when it comes to involving children in the world of plants. You might remember that I suggested planting a "butterfly bush" (Buddlea) and placing a butterfly house nearby.

Help kids "dig in" to the wonderful world of plant
This morning, I waited in line behind a school bus in a rural area and watched as the kids climbed on board, toting their backpacks and lunch sacks. Suddenly I wondered how many of those children could name even one of the many trees and plants that

Black Walnut trees: planting and caring
In my last column I talked about the Black Walnut tree and the value of its wood to manufacturers of high quality furniture, paneling, flooring, architectural features, and so on. I suggested that you might want to consider planting some...

Black Walnut: A Beautiful Investment
Certain types of Black Walnut are often described as being among the most sought-after native hardwood trees in America. In my opinion, "higher quality" Black Walnut will remain sought-after for a very long time to come, and is becoming...

What's wrong with that English Walnut?
I have a question regarding an English Walnut tree. The tree is mature (several years old) has produced several yields of good walnuts.

Dogwoods dying? Here's what you should do
Dogwoods are dying. It's a sad fact but a lot of Dogwood trees in America are getting sick and in many cases dying from Dogwood Anthracnose, a disease that mainly infects...

Help your lawn breathe during the dog days.
It's time to catch up on answering some of the questions you've been e-mailing to me recently. But first... the hot, dry weather that many of us are "enjoying" right now can be a tough time for our lawns. So here are a few brief reminders of how to..

Summertime... But the livin' ISN'T easy for your..
It's August. It's Summer and it's HOT. From Minnesota to Mississippi, the summer sun is beating down on us and our plants. Some horticulturists tell us we should talk to our plants. At this time of year...

Planting your own mini-forest can be very...
Almost every summer, trees are the subject of the evening news on television and on the front page of the newspaper. Unfortunately, the trees we see are usually being consumed by a forest fire, and sadly the fire...

Put some "butterfly magnets" in your garden!
I looked at my calendar the other day and noted that it was time to start "deadheading" my butterfly bushes. As you probably know, deadheading simply means cutting off the spent blooms, and...

Trees need care too!
I am frequently asked questions that relate to caring for shrubs, plants, hedges and lawns. But it's not often that I get asked about caring for trees... until it's obvious the poor old tree is in some kind of serious – and probably...

Solving Problems With Bradford Pears, Flowering...
One of the first things I do each morning when I arrive at the nursery is to check my e-mail. And every day I find questions from readers of this column. Sometimes readers have a problem they hope I can help them solve, and sometimes they...

Young trees need protection... from just about...
For most people, the only time we think about trees being in danger is when we read newspaper headlines or see television news coverage of forest fires. But as a nurseryman, protecting trees is something I think about a great deal!

Pick the right trees now and you'll have it ‘made
There's something about those two words... "Shade Trees" ... that summon up visions of lazy summer afternoons, hammocks and ice clinking in a tall, frosty glass.

"Ain't No Ticks On Me?" You Hope!
Ticks are parasitic vertebrates that infest every class of terrestrial vertebrate, including mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. A tick is not an insect. They are members of the class Arachnida, which includes spiders, scorpions, and mites.

Noisy or nosey? Either way, screening can help!
Creating some form of screening on your land can be a fun project and a very practical one, too. You can choose some form of fencing or trellis, or you can plant some fast-growing shrubs or a hedge.

Finding natural solutions to garden and landscape
From time to time I hear from people who are interested in finding alternatives to chemical-based products to use as fertilizers or for weed control.

The Plant Man answers more of your questions
My e-mail in-box is filling up quickly with your questions, so it seems a good idea to devote this week's column to answering some of them.

There's money rotting under your pine trees!
If you were to think about how to make money from your trees, you would probably think first about selling the fruit (if they're that kind of trees)

Time for a "sting" operation on those pesky wasps!
I don't know anybody who actually enjoys the company of wasps while working or relaxing outdoors. Should we be bracing ourselves for a nationwide plague of wasps? Is the terrifying scenario from the movie, "The Killer Bees" about to become a reality?

Celebrate Earth Day - plant some trees!
There is one very important event we all need to remember: Earth Day, celebrated on April 22 every year.

Groundcover is more than just a lawn-alternative.
Take a look out of your window and survey your land. Probably a large percentage of what you see consists of grass in some form or other. What would be a good alternative to all that sod?

How To Keep The Gobi Desert Away From YOUR Land
So what's the connection between the Gobi Desert and your piece of the Good Earth? The answer: Soil, and the vegetation that keeps it stable.

Keeping deer away from your plants
So what can you do if you want to make your property "deerproof"?

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