The Middlebury Landscape

July 6, 2011

Japanese Beetles

Filed under: Insects and Diseases — Tim Parsons @ 4:00 pm  Tagged

Gardeners, and especially Vermont ones, seem to like to share maxims. Like “Don’t like the weather? Wait 5 minutes.” My Nebraska wife said she’d heard that one out there too, so don’t go thinking that our weather is more strange in the Green Mountains. The one I was thinking of a couple of days ago […]

May 18, 2011

Cedar Apple Rust

Filed under: Insects and Diseases — Tim Parsons @ 5:49 am  Tagged ,

Once you see one, you start seeing them everywhere. The first warm rain in the spring makes these spores appear on Red Cedar (Juniper) trees, completing part of its life cycle. Red Cedar is a first-growth conifer pretty common in Vermont in abandoned pastures, along roads, and elsewhere, so finding these disgusting things aren’t hard. […]

April 18, 2011

Pussy Willow

Filed under: Blooms — Tim Parsons @ 5:38 am  Tagged , ,

Ask 20 gardeners, and you’ll get 40 or more answers on what they consider signs of spring. One of the most common answers, though, will probably be Pussy Willow. Salix, the Willow family, claims more than 400 members, with a range from the tropics all the way up to being the last woody plant before […]

March 2, 2011

Middlebury Becomes a Tree Campus

Filed under: Trees — Tim Parsons @ 8:45 pm  Tagged , , , , ,

I’m very (very) pleased write that Middlebury College has been named a Tree Campus for 2010, culminating work started in January of last year by the students in my Trees and the Urban Forest Winter Term class. Special thanks goes to two students in particular, Chelsea Ward-Waller and Hilary Platt, for being the driving force […]

January 25, 2011

Putty Knives

Filed under: Weather — Tim Parsons @ 6:43 am  Tagged , ,

A couple of storms ago, I caught myself absentmindedly sticking our most important snow fighting tool into my pocket, and it occurred to me I’d left it out of the list of techniques and equipment I’ve written about in the past. Yes, for some storms, the most important tool in our kit seems to be the lowly putty knife. […]

January 7, 2011

Sustainable Landscaping

Filed under: Landscape — Tim Parsons @ 12:15 pm  Tagged ,

While doing a post on the Sustainable Sites Initiative for the Atwater Landscape contest blog Turf Battle I’d remembered I also wanted to write about a homeowner version of this document called Landscape for Life. I first read about this project at the wonderful Garden Rant blog, then immediately went to read the document. I’d been following […]

October 7, 2010

Leaf Color

Filed under: Insects and Diseases,Trees — Tim Parsons @ 6:16 pm  Tagged , , ,

I’ve been reading quite a bit this fall in various newspapers, web sites, etc. about the science of leaf change, and I thought, well, heck, there goes another blog post. I don’t see the sense to retread ground others are covering. By now, you’ve probably read that leaf color changes by the shortening of day-length […]

July 23, 2010

No Mow Year Three

Filed under: No Mow — Tim Parsons @ 11:30 am  Tagged

Well, we mowed the no-mow again (loving the oxymoron), as it was due for its spring knockdown. Like I’ve seen in quite a few farmers fields this year, it actually wasn’t a great grass year-the clovers, alfalfas, and wildflowers seem to have been able to keep pace with the spring flush of grass growth this […]

July 12, 2010

When Good Plants go Bad

Filed under: Insects and Diseases — Tim Parsons @ 7:49 pm  Tagged , ,

My most depressing year at the University of Vermont would have been my junior year. All plant and soil science majors took Plant Pathology that year, two semesters worth. For all of you non-science plant geeks, plant pathology deals with diseases of plants-basically anything except insects. Virus, fungi, bacteria, even abiotic problems were addressed. After a […]

June 23, 2010

Poison Parsnip

Filed under: No Mow — Tim Parsons @ 7:35 pm  Tagged

The poison parsnip is starting to bloom on roadsides, and, being one of those plants I get asked about (and emailed about), I thought I’d fill you in on the nastiness. Poison parsnip, Pastinaca sativa, is actually Parsnip, the root vegetable. As a vegetable, it was popular in colonial times, as it matures under a […]

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