|Ogden Botanical Garden changes workshop to help new gardeners
by Jerry Goodspeed, Ogden Botanical Gardens
I love the spring!
The only problem I have with this time of the year is about the time you
think the weather has turned and warmer days are here, it snows and freezes your enthusiasm. But fortunately, this is the intermountain
area, which means eventually spring will stay and summer is not far behind.
nature changing, we also must sometimes make changes that we think are
beneficial and helpful when needed. With
this in mind, we are going to do a little changing with our workshops (it is
still spring after all). We have
received requests to help people who are new to gardening and determined to
have a successful and productive vegetable gardens of their own. So we are going to change our trough class
and turn it into a raised bed and organic gardening class. This class, "Stretch Your Food Dollar: Grow Vegetables in Raised Beds" will be held on April 2 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens, and April 9 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Utah Botanical Center; to reserve a spot, call 801-399-8201.
be offering hands on instruction on how to construct a raised bed, improve the
soil, fertilize, control weeds, and will also give some organic options for controlling
insects and other pests. We will also be
giving all who attend a small starter kit, including some seeds, transplants,
and fertilizer, plus some plans to help build their own raised beds.
appreciate your support as we fulfill our directive to improve the quality of
life and help educate those who seek further knowledge and education.
"Raise" your gardening sites
by JayDee Gunnell
Utah soils are typically low in organic matter, have a high clay content and often
"cultivate" feelings of frustration in backyard gardeners. Raised bed gardening is one way to take the
toil out of your soil. Because most
vegetables perform well with only 6-8" of rooting depth, extravagant raised beds
are not always necessary. In fact, one
of the simplest ways to create raised beds can be done by tilling 2-3" of well-composted
organic matter into the existing soil.
Excavated walkways are then created by shoveling the amended soil into windrows
about 8-10" high and 24-36" wide. More
permanent structures are also popular and can also be easily constructed using
an array of materials. These beds are
typically 3-4' wide and vary in length.
Materials such as redwood or
cedar contain natural preservatives.
Other construction options include: cement blocks, vinyl, Trex®, railroad ties,
and pressure-treated lumber. Railroad
ties are treated with creosote, and if being used for raised beds, should be older
and have no visible oozing. Pressure-treated
lumber is infused with compounds (usually copper-based) to help preserve the
wood from insect damage and decay. For
gardeners sensitive about plants coming in contact with these compounds, a
layer of plastic may be used to line the inside (sides) of the wood to prevent
roots contacting the wood directly.
Soil mixes for raised bed
gardens are as diverse as gardeners themselves. There is no perfect recipe when it comes to soil mixes. Many local nurseries sell their own garden soil
mix-many of which contain varying proportions of compost, peat moss, and
perlite, pumice or vermiculite. These
mixes are considered soilless (no sand, silt or clay). These soilless mixes are light-weight, tend
to dry out quickly, and may not provide sufficient physical support for
plants. Sandy loam top soil can be added
to soilless garden mixes to help with these issues. Once the labor of building the raised beds
and filling them with the soil mix is complete, then the growing fun
begins. For information on planting
times, vegetables spacing and variety recommendations, go to: http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/publication/HG_313.pdf.
by Jerry Goodspeed
As a kid, I remember being fascinated by small inchworms that
would get in our maple tree every spring. I was never worried about the damage they may be causing, but instead
loved to watch them as they 'looped' their way along a twig. I am now a little older, and find that
instead of enjoying their movements and grace, I detest their voracious appetites
and ill manners.
also known as inchworms, are those green caterpillars that attack our
oaks, maples, and other ornamentals some springs. Although they can be fun to watch crawl
around, they can also defoliate many of our trees in the early spring. This can weaken the tree, but is rarely
fatal. Most trees will recover and leaf out later in the season.
larva are typically green, a little less than an inch in length, and feed for between 4 to 6 weeks right in
mid- to late-spring. They can drop to the
ground or move to adjacent trees by lowering themselves on silken threads. They will eventually mature, drop to the
ground, and pupate in the soil. They are
somewhat cyclic in nature, meaning some years will be worse than others.
reduce the amount of overwintering eggs by applying a horticultural or dormant
oil to oaks and maples in late winter. Be sure to cover the tree thoroughly. Reduced-risk insecticides for control include spinosad, Bt products, and
azadirachtin. Apply as soon as worms
are observed. There are also other
registered insecticides available for control. If you wish to read more on the subject, go to http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/factsheet/cankerworms08.pdf.
by JayDee Gunnell
Type: Small to medium flowering tree
Zone: 4-9 (to -30°F)
Size: 20-30 feet tall
25-35 feet wide
Description: Between late March and
early April, the limbs of the Eastern Redbud become scattered with clusters of
rosy pink flowers, just about the same time that enduring gardeners are shaking
off the melancholy of winter. This showy
display often stimulates homeowners into purchasing this spring flowering tree from
the local garden center when a simple appreciative perusal may be the better
option. Redbuds are considered an
understory tree and grow well in either full sun or filtered shade. They tolerate different soil types, except
constantly wet, but prefer a well drained soil.
Because many of the newer residential areas are being built on marginal
sites where heavy clay soils predominate and water drainage is poor, other
spring flowering trees such as crabapples may be a better option. These small specimen trees, however, do well
along the bench areas or other locations with well-drained soils.
Gold Nugget Ice Plant
by Richard Anderson
Gold Nugget Ice Plant
Size: 2-3 inches tall
Description: Gold Nugget is a true alpine succulent, coming from the highest peaks of
distant South Africa. In bloom, Delosperma congestum is
irresistible; the large, shiny yellow flowers sit right on top of the succulent
foliage and have a distinctive white eye. It blooms once in early summer, and then gathers energy to put on a fall
show of reddish foliage. An excellent
choice for groundcover companions such as Callirhoe,
Ajuga, and Thymes. Spreads slowly and sometimes suffers in extreme
heat. Plant Gold Nugget where it
receives some afternoon shade, particularly where summer temperatures are hot.
A gem for mountain rock gardens (Photo Credits: Richard M. Anderson 2007).
Down and Dirty Question:
When do I spray my apples for codling moth?
by Marion Murray, IPM Project Leader
In general, codling moth sprays
should begin around 14 to 28 days after bloom. For greater accuracy, we
can determine the exact starting spray date using "degree days" (Click here).
Because degree days are based on daily temperatures, the predicted date
varies from year to year. For example, in Davis County, the first
spray for 2006 was May 23; for 2007, it was May 16; and for 2008, it
was June 4! For this reason, we never provide a static calendar
date for controlling codling moth. To determine this spring's starting spray
date for codling moth in your area, check the Utah Pests Web site for the weekly IPM
pest advisory (http://utahpests.usu.edu/ipm/htm/advisories/treefruit), or ask your county Extension agent starting about 1 to 2 weeks after bloom.
|Learn About Utah's Natural Systems
you ever wanted to learn more about Utah's natural systems, but never quite
found a comprehensive program? If so, then the Utah Master Naturalist
Program is for you!
The UMNP is a Utah State University Extension program that consists of three
40-hour modules - watersheds, deserts, and mountains - with at least half of the
time spent in the field learning from resource experts. The deserts class
has already sold out, but the watersheds class still has several openings this
Watersheds Module: Utah's Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City on Fridays,
9 a.m. to 5 p.m., May 1-29, 2009. From high alpine lakes and streams to the Great Salt Lake and unique temporary
wetlands of the arid desert, Utah has a vast diversity of aquatic systems that
interact with each other throughout, and across, watersheds.
For more information or to register online, please visit
|Upcoming Programs and Events
Free Open Public Classes
No pre-registration or fees required
► "Dessert First" Grafting Class with Mike Pace, Box
Elder County Agriculture Agent
April 17 - 12 to 1 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens
Enjoy eating your lunch in the gardens early, then prior
to the class we will serve you dessert to eat during the presentation.
► Spring Celebration Family Night
April 20 - 6 to 8 p.m. at the Utah House
Celebrate the arrival of spring
at the Utah House. This free event will include Utah House tours, garden walks,
and children activities. Bring the whole family and explore the new
Wetland Discovery Point. Staff will be on hand to lead families through the new
facility. For more information call
► Plant Sale
May 14 - 4 to 6 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens, Members Only Preview
May 15 - 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens, Public Sale
Purchase great perennials, annuals, vegetables, herbs, water-wise plants, and
much more at great prices!
► "Dessert First" Perennials Class with JayDee Gunnell, Davis
County Horticulture Agent
May 15 - 12 to 1 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens
JayDee will share lots of great ideas for creating and caring
for perennials in your landscape. Enjoy a complimentary dessert along
with the presentation.
Pre-registration and fees paid prior to taking the
► "Stretch Your Food Dollar: Grow
Vegetables in Raised Beds"
April 2 - 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens
April 9 - 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Utah Botanical Center
Learn from the experts how to construct
raised beds, prepare the soil, plant, and select the most desirable
varieties. We will share helpful shortcuts to garden maintenance, pest
and disease control, and tips for harvesting delicious vegetables. Each participant
will go home with some seeds, transplants, and plans. Please call to
reserve a spot in the class. This will be $5 for all members of the
gardens and $10 for the public.
► "Creating a Hanging Basket" Class
May 7 - 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Ogden Botanical Gardens
Learn to design and
fill a basket for sun, shade, or any other location. Participants take home a large
hanging basket of their own creation. Fee: $25/OBG Members*; $30/Non-members.
For a full schedule of classes to register for, go to http://extension.usu.edu/weber
*Contact Ogden Botanical Gardens or Utah Botanical Center to find out about
becoming a "friend" of the gardens to receive many discounts on classes/plant
materials/other merchandise, and be invited to attend special plant sales,
flori-tours, and much, more.
Click here for a complete list of events at the Utah Botanical Center
Click here for a complete list of events at the Ogden Botanical Gardens
Plant pansies and primrose to enhance the bulbs that will soon be up.
► Aerate the lawn to avoid compaction and help water and nutrients penetrate
better throughout the growing season.
► Control annual weeds such as crabgrass, spurge, and foxtail in lawn by applying
a pre-emergent by April 1 (sooner in areas next to cement
structures or curbing which break dormancy slightly earlier).
► Prune flowering shrubs that bloom after June 1.
► Prune and clean up roses.
► Plant some new perennials in the landscape to add season-long color.
► Apply a high-nitrogen fertilizer to the lawn.
► Towards the end of the month, plant semi-cool season crops such as beets,
carrots, lettuce, Swiss Chard, and potatoes.
► Add some new strawberry plants to the berry patch.
► Register for some of the wonderful gardening classes offered at the Ogden
Botanical Gardens and Utah Botanical Center.
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