GARDENING IN IOWA

Gardening in Iowa

Are you considering gardening as a hobby for the first time? The Gazette has you covered with tips from The Iowa Gardener, and Iowa State Extension Master Gardeners. Gardening in Iowa is sometimes a bit tricky due to our temperature-change prone spring and hot summers.

The Iowa Gardener and Master Gardeners have the experience to help you get started strong, so you can enjoy the fruits of your labor.

From vegetable gardening in Iowa to interesting flowers and landscape enhancers, we're sharing the best ideas from around Iowa.

We encourage your comments and questions. Let us know what you think!

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Forget about that early snow. It's not winter, at least not yet. And your yard needs you go get out there and clean it up. ...

After deciding what trees and shrubs you want to replace, consider pollinator plants for those 'suddenly sunny' spots. ...

A towering hydrangea nearly a dozen years old stands tall at the corner of Janis and Rip Russell's front porch; lime green spring blooms turned a warm, rosy mauve late in summer. ...

The day after the Aug. 10 derecho, Gina Reynolds, manager of Fleming Nursery in Cedar Rapids, began fielding calls about leaning and broken trees. For the first couple of weeks, people asked her about saving their damaged trees. ...

This time of year, while most plants in my garden are starting to look tired and ragged, one is a stand out: angel's trumpet. It's big, sprawling and lush without a trace of disease or wilt. It produces beautiful, 5-inch, pure white flowers shaped like the end of, well, a trumpet. ...

The Cedar Rapids area lost all kinds of trees in the Aug. 10 derecho, but for now, lets focus on canopy (above 30 feet) and understory (less than 30 feet) trees that will bring diversity to your property and improve the habitat for pollinators and wildlife. ...

Caleb and Jayne Ryder bought their current home with gardening in mind. They used to drive around as young adults looking at land and property, dreaming of their someday home. When they noticed a home with a large corner lot, a south-facing yard and a gentle slope, they told each other, 'T ...

When the debris is removed from your property, the damage to the remaining trees and shrubs becomes clear. ...

Estimates of tree/shrub damage in Linn County are almost 100 percent - it's difficult to find ANY foundation plants that don't have some damage. Although I don't presently live in Iowa, as a Linn County Master Gardener I soon heard from friends and family about questions folks are having a ...

I hope that by the time you read this, you are back in your home, your power is back on, the branches and trees have been removed from your yard, and any damage to cars and buildings is getting resolved. ...

August gardening maintenance tips

Saturday, August 08, 2020

Each month, Master Gardeners provide some maintenance ideas for your annuals, perennials, vegetables, lawns, trees and shrubs. These gardening tips will help you to de-stress in nature while beautifying your landscape. ...

When is it time to cut down milkweed?

Saturday, August 08, 2020

Q: When should I cut my milkweed? I want to make sure I leave it long enough to help the monarchs. ...

Q. I saw on social media that some people are receiving unsolicited seeds in the mail. Is this a real thing? ...

Q: My Asiatic lily plant is turning brown. Can I move them now? ...

I've been in my garden now for more than 30 years. The first decade was spent establishing the beds and borders, and I worked in seemingly mountainloads of soil amendments such as sphagnum peat, chopped autumn leaves, but mainly compost - spades and spades full of compost. ...

Q: How do I remove ivy vines from siding? ...

Weeding is a chore that few home gardeners enjoy doing. In this article we'll discuss what a weed is, why weed management is important, different types of weeds and how to manage weeds so that you can spend more time enjoying your beautiful landscape. ...

Practically perfect penstemons

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Penstemons have been valued for centuries, but it's only in recent decades that they've become more widely planted in Iowa gardens. ...

During those dog days of summer, some parts of your garden may look stressed and tired. Even watering doesn't correct the problem. There are various things that you can do now that will freshen up your gardening projects and carry you through the colder weather to come. ...

Q: When should I prune my grape vines? ...

Q: It looks like I have carpenter ants in trees (pine tree, ash, etc.) What should I do? ...

Each month, the Master Gardeners will provide some maintenance ideas for your annuals, perennials, vegetables, lawns, trees and shrubs. These gardening tips will help you to de-stress in nature while beautifying your landscape. ...

Keep watch for invasive plants

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Back when I was a beginning gardener, I purposely sought out those plants that carried warning labels. These were the plants with catalog descriptions and labels that used terms like 'can be invasive,' 'spreads rapidly,' 'vigorous reseeder,' and 'multiplies readily.' ...

We're in a whole new world and many of us are now home-schoolers by default. We want to find ways to make it fun and effortless, but we can't leave our house. And many folks want to grow a 'quarantine garden' and they're asking how to get started. My garden adventures are more popular than ...

During the global pandemic, many people are looking for ways to occupy their time by learning new skills or starting new projects. Gardening is on the top of the list for many, but the idea can be overwhelming, both in scope and cost. Anyone can grow food, so if the desire is there, give i ...

How to water your plants

Saturday, June 06, 2020

Everyone knows how to water plants, right? Well, actually, wrong. I was reminded of this during a recent community landscaping project, where we planted hostas, daylilies, grasses and more for a local nonprofit. It was all good, until watering time. Those plants we'd all labored over were ...

I've been helping my brother at the family farm. My grandparents established the farm and my parents took it over. In recent years, it's been neglected but Tom is doing a tremendous job of clearing it out, cleaning it up, and undertaking restoration. ...