by David Anderson, Utah Botanical Gardens
Lately I've been doing way
too much complaining about the change in the weather. I really do enjoy living
in northern Utah
and the distinct qualities of spring, summer and fall. However, I have come to not
enjoy winter so much. The important thing to remember is that winter begets
I'm grateful, as I know you are, for the great
bounty in our lives. We can have lively discussions about the newest variety of
this vegetable or that perennial. In so many parts of the world, those
discussions cannot happen, because simple survival is the constant topic of
I'm thankful for natural and manmade beauty. It
enhances our lives. We learn so much by studying it,
examining the intricacy and careful balance required to make nature
function. It's wonderful to watch - the rebirth in the spring, the vigorous
growth in the summer, the slowing and last burst of color in the fall, and yes,
the restful peace of winter. I admit it, I'm even thankful for winter.
I'm also thankful for great staff members,
associates and colleagues who help to make our gardens great places of
learning. I'm grateful for wonderful volunteers who give selflessly to assist
us. I'm grateful we were able to produce nearly 8,000 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables for the food bank this
summer - get ready for next year! And, I'm grateful for the progress we've made
at both OBG and the UBC. Please enjoy this time of thanksgiving, and remember how blessed we all are.
Shrubs for Winter Interest
by Richard Anderson
Designing a winter landscape that
offers interest and excitement poses a unique challenge in the
Intermountain West. It can be accomplished, however, by wisely placing a few
colorful conifers, uniquely sculptured trees and well-chosen shrubs, perennials
Winter gardens are best when
elements such as form and texture are incorporated in the design scheme and
coupled with striking architecture or contrasts of light and dark. Any winter
garden should include lots of evergreens of various sizes, forms and color. To
add further interest you might consider, for example, incorporating shrubs and
trees with colorful fruit and stems, exfoliating bark or weeping branches. Ornamental
grasses with interesting seed heads and perennials that bloom in late winter or
early spring can add even another dimension of depth and interest to the
winter gardens should be situated so they become landscape vignettes viewed from the kitchen or living
room window, add interest around entrances and patios and artfully play with
dark and light backgrounds.
Take a look at these publications
from USU Extension to help you plan your winter garden: Shrubs and Conifers for Utah.
|Featured Winter Tip:
Winter Stresses on Evergreens
by Jerry Goodspeed
We often think that once the outside water is turned off
and the leaves have fallen, the plants are set for the winter and we do not
have to worry about them until the spring.
For many plants this is true. However, for evergreens the winter can be a deadly time.
broadleaf and conifer evergreens can be damaged by dry, warm winter winds. Although their growth has slowed, they still use a little moisture. The
most susceptible seem to be laurels, evergreen euonymus, dwarf Alberta spruces, yews
If these plants play an
important role in your landscape, you may want to consider some protection and give them a deep drink late in the fall and even in the winter when
temperatures rise and there is no snow on the ground. For more information, click here.
by Richard Anderson
Sedum spectible 'Neon'
Type: perennial, succulent
Hardiness Zone: 5 (-20°F)
Size: 8-12 inches tall
12 inches wide
Neon is an old-fashioned, succulent perennial that
offers a pink flower punch for the late summer garden. We recommend this
stonecrop for gardens that are not of sufficient size to house the larger spectabile
cultivars of 'Autumn Joy' or 'Matrona.' Toward mid-summer, flat, tightly
packed flower heads appear just above the foliage. Each flower head opens to
reveal masses of brilliant magenta flowers, which attract a host of
by JayDee Gunnell
Type: Large evergreen
Zone: 6 (0 to -10°F)
Size: 40-60 feet tall
30-40 feet wide
have needles in tufts or clusters making them easy to distinguish from
other evergreens. The Atlas cedar performs best in a well-drained soil
and displays fair-to-good drought
resistance in Utah. There are different colors of this species
(atlantica) including blue, yellow and green. There are also different
forms such as weeping, contorted, columnar and broad. Always consider
the full size potential and different forms of this tree when planting.
The most common problem associated with Atlas cedars is improper plant
placement. Its youthful nature of being open, thin and wispy has
deceived many homeowners into planting the straight species (also known
as the massive mastodon) too close to homes and other structures.
|Down and Dirty Question and Answer:|
How do I overwinter my carrots?
by Margaret Shao, Salt Lake County Extension Agent
After harvesting, trim green carrot tops about one-half inch from root.Keep carrots in the vegetable drawer in perforated plastic bags for several weeks.
1: Select a sheltered spot, or dig a trench or hole about 12 inches
deep, in well-drained soil where the temperature stays at 32 degrees
consistently throughout the winter. Lay down about 8 inches of straw,
harvest and pile carrots keeping the pile less than about 12 inches
high, cover with another 10 inches of straw, then cover with additional
6 inches of soil.
Option 2: Leave carrots in ground, allowing the tops to die
down. Cover the carrots with a black polythene sheet or landscape
fabric. Cover this with 12 inches of straw or similar material. Carrots
will keep until spring temperatures warm up.Harvest all carrots, once
temperatures warm in spring, so the energy in carrot roots do not
divert into sending up new growth.
|Upcoming Programs and Events|
The educational building at Ogden Botanical Gardens has been closed for the
winter, but the gardens themselves are still open and available for
enjoyment. If you have any yard and garden questions during the next
three months, please call our Extension office at 801-399-8201.
|Get Growing Calendar
► Visit the Utah Botanical Center, and Ogden Botanical Gardens to enjoy fall and winter.
► Apply 1/2 pound nitrogen fertilizer per 1,000 square feet of turfgrass in early November.
►Mow the lawn between 1 1/2 to 2 inches high to prevent winter damage.
►Prepare evergreens for winter by trickling water from a hose about 2-4 feet away from the trunk, for 1 to 2 hours.
►Cut roses back to about 4 feet tall to prevent heavy snow load damage.
►Protect roses by mulching the base 4 to 6 inches above the graft union.
►Clean up perennials for winter by removing dead plant material and cutting them back to 2-4 inches high.
►Work organic matter into the garden to decompose throughout the winter. Apply nitrogen fertilizer to help break it down before tilling.
►Clean all tools and make sure they are dry before storing for winter. Sharpen and grease pruners and loppers.
►Seal and caulk openings around basements, windows and doorways to prevent spider invasions.
►Walk through crisp fall leaves and enjoy their crunch and aroma.
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