NDSU Extension - Ramsey County


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November 4, 2013 Horticulture Column

Gardening in your yard!!

What a beautiful Saturday, over the weekend.  Many of you worked very hard on cleaning your outside landscape.  I know I have neighbors wishing and probably not happy that I don’t take care of my leaves but I still refuse to do any clean up until the leaves have fallen off of the trees to include my neighbor leaves.  I could not but help notice that those that did clean their yards have even more today, especially after the big wind on Sunday.  I do plan on digging the last of my carrots this week to get my garden ready for tilling.  I do plan on incorporating some cow manure compost, some tree leaves and also some peat moss.  I was quite frustrated on how hard my garden got this past growing season especially after all of the years of grass clippings and tree leaves.  I soon realized a couple of things that I should have done along with the above mentioned things.  I should have applied some fertilizer as that starts the microorganism degrading of any compost that is added to the garden and also will help keep the soil more pliable.  One last note of interest in my yard is how some trees react to the fall season.  I planted a peach tree this midsummer and have been quite surprised how the tree does not look like it have been affected by frost.  The tree looks like it did 2 months ago.  It will interesting to see how it winters.  Lastly, I cannot believe how poorly our spruce trees look after the growing season.  What should we do to help those trees if anything.  This past growing season was absolutely terrible for any growing tree as moisture conditions during bud break was not what the doctor ordered.  Canker made a big play on spruce trees this year along with natural death along with the winter injury from the last winter season.  I need to remind people, if you are planning on planting some sort of non-deciduous tree please don’t add to the already stressed Colorado blue spruce population, plant a different cultivar like black hill spruce or Meyer spruce or even pine trees. 

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