How to Avoid Road Salt Damage in Your Garden

Road salt and other de-icers are a fact of life in Minnesota winters, keeping ice from forming on roads and sidewalks. And, just as many pet owners take precautions to protect their animals’ feet, gardeners should give thought to plants that may be affected by road salt. How Does Road Salt Affect Plants? Road salts…

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Attracting Hummingbirds to Your Garden

There is something magical about seeing a hummingbird darting from flower to flower in your garden. Some mornings, I sit on the back steps with my coffee in hopes of spotting a hummingbird, and in late summer, I am often rewarded with a glimpse of metallic green and red. Attracting hummingbirds to your garden is…

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Tips from Garden Tours 2021

It’s been great fun to be on garden tours again in 2021 after a year off during the pandemic. As always, I’m learning a lot from the wonderful gardeners who open their yards to visitors. Here are three tips from garden tours this year: Chartreuse is a Power Color My sister and I took the…

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6 Tips for Great Garden Photos

Will you be entering the Great Gardening Contest 2021? MSHS started this garden photography contest in 2020 when the pandemic forced cancellation of the Minnesota State Fair and our annual potted plant show. The in-person plant show is back, but we loved seeing your garden photos and are continuing the Great Gardening Contest this year!…

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Effective Watering Strategies for Northern Gardeners

Whether it’s hot like it is now or you just want to conserve a precious resource, understanding effective watering strategies is important for northern gardeners. Here are a few basic questions to consider when deciding when, how much and how to water. How Much Water Do My Plants Need? This depends a lot on the…

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Tips for Heatwave Gardening

Normally, we’re all about the tips for gardening in the cold and extending the season. But with a week or more of 90-plus degree temperatures, we decided to investigate the best tips for heatwave gardening. The forecast for the Twin Cities calls for temperatures in the 90s through Thursday—with similar highs throughout the state, with…

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December Garden To-Do List, 2021

Plant an amaryllis bulb now for blooms in January. It’s hard to believe we have already hit December, especially given how little snow and cold those of us in the southern half of Minnesota have seen. As I write this, the high today is predicted to hit 50 degrees. December is one of the quietest…

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Here’s Your To-Do List of November Garden Chores

Updated for 2021. By the time we hit November, many gardeners are ready to throw in the trowel—or at least, clean it up and put it away. November is the last chance to get any garden chores you’ve been putting off done before the first permanent snow and the long winter. Here are some things…

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Garden Tools We Recommend

Some garden tools are real keepers — they fit great in your hand and perform the task you want them to perform perfectly. This year at the Minnesota State Fair, our MSHS booth includes three garden tools for sale that we recommend. Betty Ann Addison, author, lecturer, photographer and owner of the Gardens of Rice…

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Leaving Perennials Standing: Pros and Cons

perennial not cut down

As fall plods on and more plants start to brown or whither, the urge to “clean up just a little” is strong, and for many gardeners the question of whether to cut back perennials or leave them standing is one they consider every year.  There is a lot of ground between those who clean every…

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