Posts by: Rosie Lerner

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A magnet for butterflies and bees

Posted on Feb 28, 2018 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner The Perennial Plant Association  selected its 2018 Perennial Plant of the Year: Allium “Millenium” (yes, that’s Millenium with just one “n”). This announcement continues to show the focus on pollinator habitat these days — Allium Millenium is appropriately referred to as a butterfly and bee magnet! Millenium is a hybrid Allium… Continue reading.

Winter Wasps

Posted on Dec 19, 2017 in Backyard

In the dead of winter, we often find wasps on the carpet in our basement, but not always. Sometimes a dead wasp is on the windowsill, other times in a light fixture. We might see dying wasps crawling around lethargically or even attempting to fly. Like a lot of social insects, paper wasps survive subfreezing… Continue reading.

How to care for your Christmas amaryllis

Posted on Nov 30, 2017 in Backyard

by B. Rosie Lerner Amaryllis is a popular holiday gift plant, but it may have the lucky recipient wondering about its proper care. Amaryllis is a tender bulb that won’t survive outdoors even in the mildest of Indiana winters. But it can be grown indoors to provide a dramatic show of color during dreary winter… Continue reading.

Bringing houseplants in from the cold

Posted on Sep 22, 2017 in Backyard

Many houseplants thrive during the long, bright summer days, especially when properly moved outdoors. But these plants may have some trouble adjusting back to indoor conditions when colder weather strikes. Common indoor plants often are native to the tropical or subtropical climates and cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Houseplants should be brought back inside before the… Continue reading.

Still time to plant veggies

Posted on Aug 31, 2017 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner Fall is an excellent time to grow many vegetable crops in Indiana. The gardener can take advantage of cooler temperatures and more plentiful moisture, and fall gardening allows you to harvest produce after earlier crops have faded. Many vegetable crops are well adapted to planting in late summer for a fall… Continue reading.

Why doesn’t my garden grow?

Posted on Jul 01, 2017 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner Flowering plants that don’t bloom as promised can be a big disappointment in your garden. Reasons for lack of blooming are as diverse as the palette of plants from which to choose, but a little detective work can usually pinpoint the trouble. The most common factors associated with blooming, or lack… Continue reading.

Assess pruning needs

Posted on Apr 01, 2017 in Backyard

By Rosie Lerner Now’s a good time to survey your landscape and decide what needs pruning following potential freeze injury late this winter, keeping in mind that not all plants need to be trimmed. Pruning generally stimulates new buds to develop and break dormancy, so this year we recommended delaying pruning to reduce freeze injury…. Continue reading.

Mild winter brings up bulbs

Posted on Mar 01, 2017 in Outdoors

By Rosie Lerner It’s not unusual for Indiana weather to have trouble deciding what season it is. Recent warm spells have had many gardeners wondering what to do about bulbs, and perhaps a few plants that are poking their foliage through the soil. Just what should gardeners do about daffodils, dianthus and daylilies poking out… Continue reading.

butterfly milkweed

Butterfly milkweed named 2017 Perennial of the Year

Posted on Jan 03, 2017 in Backyard

By Rosie Lerner The Perennial Plant Association has named butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa), as its 2017 Perennial Plant of the Year. With much focus on pollinator habitat these days, butterfly milkweed is a terrific selection. Butterfly milkweed flowers play host to a wide range of butterflies, and milkweed foliage is the food source for monarch… Continue reading.

sage leaves

The season for sage

Posted on Dec 01, 2016 in Backyard

By Rosie Lerner Holiday dinners filled with the fragrance of sage-dusted turkey and dressing may be an American tradition, so it may surprise you to know that the sage plant, Salvia officinalis, is native to the Mediterranean. Sage is actually a diverse group of herbs belonging to the genus Salvia, many species of which are… Continue reading.

Prepare your lawn equipment for winter hibernation

Posted on Nov 01, 2016 in Backyard

November has arrived, and winter temperatures will be here soon. That means it’s time to put away your summer outdoor power equipment — such as lawn mowers and string trimmers — and take out the equipment you will need this winter — such as snow throwers and generators. The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute offers the… Continue reading.


Early pumpkins may need temporary storage

Posted on Sep 26, 2016 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner It seems that pumpkins often mature much earlier than we would like, and this year may be one of those times. Although the season got off to a slow start, the second half of summer was extremely warm and may have brought the pumpkins on in a hurry. And unfortunately, the… Continue reading.