One step forward, one step back. So it goes with indoor, container gardening it seems. Just yesterday, I posted an update on my oldest Staghorn Fern and how it was putting on the first basal frond since I've owned it. Today...showing a photo of a setback: my Creeping Fig Vine Mickey Topiary took a hit. It seems that I let it dry out and the vine has gone dry across a huge amount of the face of the frame. I THINK that I caught it just in time and watered it to keep the vine alive. In part. See below for the current state: You can see the dry parts of the vine with dead leaves. But, also..what seems like a little bit of new, growth (the lighter green leaves). I brought this inside back in October and it was THRIVING. Look at this photo to see the post-Summer flush growth of Creeping Fig Vine . I've been trying to keep the topiary watered in since the incident, but this really is a product of my plants being sent downstairs to the basement during the Christmas season.
Showing posts with the label drought
What a difference one year makes. At least that's the case with our Cascade Hops vine that is growing in our backyard. Last August (the first growing season) the vine threw off fruit (hops) by mid-August. In that post, the vine was happy and thriving . This August? Not so much. First...there are no hops. And, second...there's quite a bit of yellowing and browning on both the vine and the leaves. Below, is a photo showing the current - late August - view of the vine: I have NOT fed this, but I'm thinking that's a step that I need to take going forward. I've also not paid much attention to this water-wise, but I'm also thinking that's something I need to do next season. The other dynamic here is that I did trellis this up (somewhat) , but it needs to be trellis'd higher because I'm pretty sure the tips of the vine were/are leaking OVER to my neighbors yard. I'm thinking that means I need to create taller (and likely wire) trellis system
Every year, we go on a little vacation to Wisconsin or somewhere else where we find ourselves away from our house for a number of weeks in a row. Each year, I try to set up an irrigation system that provides enough water to allow for the plants, shrubs and trees - as well as the grass - to simply survive. In most years, we usually get a LITTLE lucky and get a rain event once or twice while we're gone and most everything survives. Last year, we went on vacation in the middle of the Summer and weren't lucky enough to have that rain event. Couple that with a REALLY dry Spring (Drought) and my sprinkler setup not covering EVERYTHING and we have things die out. One of the specimens who suffered last year was the Weeping White Spruce columnar tree that is planted on the southside of our beds, near the Lindens that are espalier'd. By mid-July last year, it was showing a bunch of needle drop - when we came back from vacation . And by September, it had gotten worse. Dead b
Yesterday, I shared a couple of photos of the very young Japanese White Pine tree that has a ton of brown and orange needles . The tree is either in severe decline and will be dead soon. Or, it is going through a normal process of needle drop to get ready for some new Spring growth. I have no idea. I *do* know that the tree was stressed before I planted it and the cones were already present at the top - indicating that (I think) the tree was concerned for its own wellbeing, so it threw out a good crop of cones based on the size of the tree. In that post, I mentioned that the small (and adjacent) Weeping White Spruce appears to have stabilized after suffering some heavy drought damage this Summer. It seems like the needle loss has stopped and the remaining sections are green and well-connected. I shared a mid-Summer update on this tree where you can see the needle loss, but when you compare the photos from September to now , it is clear that even more needles were dropped in the
We have had a particularly difficult grass-growing season this Summer. The heat and drought sent the majority of our Kentucky Blue Grass into dormancy. There were a couple of spots that I believe went beyond dormancy into death including the low spot outside of our patio area in back. At first, I thought that maybe this was grub damage - because it wasn't responding to water - but after digging up the turf and having a look, all I saw was worms. No grubs. But, I also found a pretty shallow area of topsoil on top of gravel for our drywell. I haven't done any sizeable Fall seeding projects, but based on the soil temperature, coupled with a forecast that called for a period of cooler temperatures and some rain, I thought that I'd take on trying to overseed a good portion of this area. I first used my thatch rake to remove a lot of the dead material , then took out my manual aeration tool to create some holes. After doing a little bit of research, I decided to buy som
We have had an interesting growing season in terms of precipitation in our zone - USDA growing Zone 5b - in Northern Illinois. I say 'interesting' because the Illinois State Climatologist has posted over the Summer on their blog and talk about a dry Spring/early Summer followed by a really wet period. A few callouts from that post: The first two-thirds of June was very dry across Illinois (Figure 5). In fact, the period between June 1 and 20 was the sixth and seventh driest on record in the northwest and northeast Illinois climate divisions, respectively. But... Due to the very wet last 7 to 10 days of the month, June ended wetter than average in all but the northwest and southwest climate divisions, and it was the sixth wettest on record in the east-central division. That 'really wet' period was great. But, it was followed by another very dry period. If you look at the US Drought Monitor from late August , you can see that our county (DuPage County) is in the
Yesterday, I posted a couple of photos of the Prairie Winds Totem Pole Switch Grass that I planted in our front porch bed. While I was over there taking those photos, I noticed that our Limelight Hydrangeas were in bad shape. Ut oh. These things have always been so very happy and have performed so very well in their spot. But, this year, something is wrong. Bad wrong. They have flowered (profusely), but when you look at them, you can see that they've dropped A LOT of leaves. Here's a photo of the pair of them below. Notice the curled, brown leaves on the ground. Here, below, is a closer look: What is so hard to figure out is that the TIPS of the plant are seemingly happy and growing. Below, shows some of the new growth: I'm guessing that the Spring drought has given these some trouble and they're showing water-related stress, so I'm planning on soaking them both with the hose a couple of times this week to see if I can get them to recover in any meaningf
For the better part of the Spring and beginning of Summer, our area was in a drought. We had very little rain. Then, starting about three or four weeks ago, we had TONS of rain. The problem is that the drought we experienced was hard on a lot of our garden and yard. I kept up on watering as best that I could, but since we don't have built-in irrigation, I was bound to miss some things. One of the trees that has suffered from the lack of water this year is our little Weeping White Spruce. Here, below, is a photo showing how it has dropped a bunch of needles and has a lot of brown on it. I'm very concerned about it not being able to recover and is on the way towards browning out completely. I noticed it browning out when we came back from a week in Wisconsin and since then, I've tried to baby it with water - every few days a direct watering from the hose. This story from the University of Minnesota Extension office talks about the drought and watering of trees and
Back at the end of February, I published my 25 point "to do" list for the yard and garden for 2021 . In that list, I included what I called two "priority areas" as #1 and #2. The item in spot #3 was to work the area between the two driveways. The first two priority areas are in the backyard, but this one is in the front yard and I didn't label it as a priority area before I published the list, so I'm not sure I can now. Instead, let's just call this"Between Two Driveways". I mentioned it yesterday as a potential location for some transplanted peonies. This is a long, narrow strip that was - up until last fall - just turf with a very small Bald Cypress and a troubled Chanticleer Pear tree . Our neighbors directly to the north of us have recently built their new house and moved in this past Fall. As part of their new construction, they added a new driveway that runs parallel to ours - thus creating this long strip of land. The Bald Cypr
I went out in the #newoldbackyard to check on some of the trees we had planted this year recently and was surprised that MOST of them were doing just fine despite the almost drought-like conditions. But the Dawn Redwood seems like it might be in trouble. That's it above where you can see a lot of brown, yellow'd needles that have dropped off. But, many of the 'tips' of the limbs are still green - see the photo below: See the green needles on the far edges of the limbs? So, there is *some* life in this thing, but did the drought get to the rest? I've seen another of these (or perhaps it was a Bald Cypress??) in the neighborhood that had all of it's needles drop, so while I'm concerned that the drought affected my dear Dawn Redwood, maybe it will be fine? I'll be watching this one bud out early in the Spring and will - of course - report back on it here.