Category: flowering trees

Whack That Bradford Pear

A recent story in the New York Times created a new hubbub over Callery Pears, specifically the popular ornamental Bradford Pear. The Bradford Pear was one of the trees we avoided planting in home landscapes, primarily due to its weak branching structure — those… Continue Reading “Whack That Bradford Pear”

O Deer!

One important job in the home landscape should never wait. Over the years, I’ve seen whitetail deer cause severe, life threatening damage to young trees. Damage to the main trunk of a tree occurs during deer mating season, which is commonly known as “the… Continue Reading “O Deer!”

Pittsburgh’s Best Kept Secret

Packed with beautiful annual flowers, perennials, trees, shrubs and vines, this roadside garden center in the South Hills has it all. Shrubs ‘n Stuf on Library Road (Route 88 in Bethel Park), just south of the entrance to South Park and the first McDonald’s… Continue Reading “Pittsburgh’s Best Kept Secret”

Fire Blight

Some plants suffer from being ‘pushed’ with too much Nitrogen fertilizer. Fire blight is caused by the bacterium Erwinia amylovora and affects over 100 different plants. It’s generally more serious in Apple and Pear trees in orchards due to loss of production (technical information). First… Continue Reading “Fire Blight”

Tree For Me

A few tips when you are selecting and planting a tree in your yard. If ‘Spring Fever’ has grabbed you like it has me, you’ve probably found yourself at nurseries or big box stores looking at more trees for your yard, even if your… Continue Reading “Tree For Me”

Frozen Fragrances

A couple weeks ago, the weatherman was talking optimistically about this week being our average last annual Spring frost (April 23rd), but now he’s forecast up to an inch of snow this morning, with a hard freeze tonight. The snow has already begun to… Continue Reading “Frozen Fragrances”

Wrong Tree

Wondering why your tree changed color? A friend recently mentioned that part of his tree was blooming in a different color from the tree he purchased. So what’s up with that? Freak of nature, evolution, or a new discovery perhaps?? Chances are, his case… Continue Reading “Wrong Tree”

That Smell

It’s not “that smell” Lynyrd Skynyrd sings about, it’s that funky odor you smell outside on these Spring days. That funky odor caught my nose yesterday while out walking, shortly before I saw the Flowering Pear tree in the above photo. It’s the opposite… Continue Reading “That Smell”

Protecting Your Trees

A stringline trimmer aka ‘weed whacker’ can be a tree’s greatest enemy. Just inside that ‘dead looking’ outer bark of a tree trunk is living tissue in need of your protection. Damaging that living tissue can lead to the death of the tree, by… Continue Reading “Protecting Your Trees”

Epic Fails in Landscaping

Yep, we’ve all had them… frosted flowers, chewed-up plants, insects gone wild. Sometimes it’s the weather. Like the saucer Magnolia, ready for Spring-glory on Easter, only to have its blossoms wiped-out around April Fools Day… Or the “deer proof” plant. Chewed to shreds by… Continue Reading “Epic Fails in Landscaping”

Flower Lovers

Some flower lovers have wings, like this Gold Finch! Chickadees are all over those Magnolia flower buds every Spring too. Bob

Maple Flowers

You say, “WHAT???” Maples don’t flower! Some trees are known for their blossoms, like one of my favorites shown above, the Star Magnolia that was blooming yesterday. Other trees have blossoms that are far less pronounced, even though you’ve probably noticed these “insignificant” blossoms,… Continue Reading “Maple Flowers”

Trees & Shrubs for Pennsylvania Wildlife

The Pennsylvania Game Commission is selling bundles of trees and shrubs for a very reasonable price! 2021 Tree Seedlings Index“The Tree Seedlings Index for 2021 has the most variety of tree and shrub species offered by the Game Commission’s Howard Nursery: 9 evergreens, 8… Continue Reading “Trees & Shrubs for Pennsylvania Wildlife”