In Colorado, we love our landscapes and are spending more time outdoors where we can enjoy them. While we had some rain early this week, we are reminded that drought is a fact of life in our state. We should look for plants that are easy to grow, can handle summer heat, and don’t need a lot of water. Annuals for patios and porchesPorches and patios don’t seem complete without a container or two of annual flowers. Choosing the right…

National Dog Day is Monday, August 26—time to celebrate our four-legged friends. If you’ve got a canine family member, keep them in mind when maintaining your landscape. Avoid potentially dangerous plants Many dogs dig up or chew bulbs and plants. If your dog is a curious type who likes to dig or taste what’s growing, keep dangerous plants in an area that pups can’t access or avoid them altogether. Some plants that could make your dog sick: Spring flowering bulbs…

Saving seeds from your summer and fall veggie (and flowers) harvest saves you time and money next year when you go to plant anew. It’s easy to harvest seeds from this year’s garden for next year’s crop. We can’t wait to eat that very first ripe tomato that comes off the vine. It’s tough to resist the urge to enjoy it in a salad or BLT. Saving the seeds from your first tomato of the season can benefit next year’s…

We’re dealing with widely fluctuating summer weather temperatures right now, but it’s time to look ahead to fall when it comes to tree care. The greater-than-normal precipitation we’ve seen this year has had quite an effect on our landscapes. Plants—and weeds—grew a lot with all that extra moisture, and so have many of our trees. You may have noticed a growth spurt of branches and leaves on both new and mature trees. That’s a good thing, since we want our…

Hot days and precipitation can create a perfect environment for insects in our gardens and landscapes. Gardeners along the Front Range and higher elevations should be on the lookout for pests that could make a meal of their plants. Let’s talk about two common Colorado pests: Aphids Aphids commonly appear on mixed lettuce greens, radishes, broccoli and kale. Marigolds and lemon thyme planted in your edibles garden can help deter this messy pest. If you have roses of any kind,…

Keep color blooming the rest of summer! By late July, it’s not unusual to have patio containers or flower beds that are a mix of thriving flowers and foliage and some stragglers that are less than lush. If you didn’t set your timer to water while you were on vacation, or you got too busy to fertilize and deadhead flowers, you might have some sad spots in your landscape or container garden. But all is not lost—there are some quick…

The summer heat started later this year, but July is finally earning its reputation as the hottest month of the year. If your plants have been thriving as a result of early summer precipitation, a return to hot, dry weather could be a difficult transition. The best defense is a good offense The best way to help your plants survive Colorado’s altitude, intense sun, cold winters, and hot summers is to select plants that like to live here.We’re not in…

Your lawn has been resting all winter, and now is a good time to help it get in shape for the summer season. Aerating, a process of removing “cores” of soil from your turf, is a beneficial “exercise” as part of your landscape’s spring conditioning program. Spring snowfall has left the soil full of moisture, which makes it easier for the aerator’s tines to sink in and pull out plugs of grass and soil. The holes created allow water, nutrients,…

Successful gardens don’t have to be complicated or exotic. A great garden grows, is harvested and enjoyed by a gardener who knows and follows 10 basic steps. As in most endeavors, keeping the process simple and grounded in the basics pays off. Select smart. Know about how many plants you can grow in the space you have and avoid the temptation to over purchase. Count the days. Make sure plants have time to grow to maturity. Seed packets tell the…