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December 3, 2010

Purchasing Seed

Purchasing Seed

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There are two ways to purchase grass seed.  One method is to visit the garden section of a retail store and pick out a package labeled with intended use, such as “Shade Mix.”  Alternatively, you can buy the latest cultivars and make up your own mix. Either way you will still need to know the basics about purchasing seed, beginning with the terms species and cultivar.  Species refers to a group…

native grasses

Native Grasses

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Native Grasses Native Grasses are survivors having evolved and adapted to the arid grassland plains. Unlike turfgrasses, native grasses are open and natural in appearance, and require little maintenance.  Native Grasses prefer full sun so grow best during the hot summer months.  Native Grasses are especially suited to the Central Plains states but have been widely adapted across the United States and Canada.  Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service (CSREES)…

Cool-Season, Warm-Season, or Transition Zone

Cool-Season, Warm-Season, or Transition Zone

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There is no breed of grass able to thrive on both a Vermont ski slope and a Florida orange grove.  For this reason grasses are divided into two main groups, cool-season and warm-season, and then further divided into two subgroups,  transition zone and native. Cool-season grasses all thrive in northern areas, including Canada, as well as higher elevations farther south.  The main growing period for cool-season grass is in spring and…

Create a Garden to Attract Beneficial Insects

Create a Garden to Attract Beneficial Insects

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To encourage high beneficial insect populations design your garden to incorporate a variety of flowering plants rich in nectar and pollen.  Choose cultivars with easily accessible pollen found in plants with a single layer of petals or a tubular flower form.  Common herbs, wildflowers, and scented plants are all attractive to beneficial insects.  Do not clear out dead foliage in the fall, this is an important habitat for beneficial over…