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Green Thumb

Green Thumb – Flowers of the Frost

Fall is often the forgotten gardening season. However, fall is one of the most beautiful of the seasons in nature and can be equally amazing in our home gardens. There exists a good selection of plants that do well in the fall and right up to the time when frost ...read more

Green Thumb – Beautiful Hibiscus

I need a bumper sticker with this phrase: “I brake for hibiscus.” I saw a plant last summer with flowers so big they looked like pink dinner plates hanging on a bush. Who could drive by without stopping to look? If you’ve never seen flowers this big, you might think it’s ...read more

Green Thumb – Garden Warriors at Work

Before the high tech world of smartphones, iPads, Kindles and Play Stations, there was another world to explore. This fascinating place in which I grew up was called nature. Early in the morning, neighborhood kids would gather and prepare to explore the nearby fields, ponds and woods in search of interesting ...read more

Green Thumb – Tomato Trials & Tribulations

I like to grow different tomato varieties, but I also like to find the top of my kitchen counter at harvest time. That is why I usually grow just four plants. Last summer I had 17.  Some of them were candidates for the compost pile, like the four-pack of desiccated ‘Jet ...read more

Green Thumb – Springtime in the Garden

As gardeners, we have been patiently or perhaps not so patiently waiting for April and May and the beginning of the gardening season. We look forward to enjoying some of our old garden favorites but will also be interested in exploring new gardening trends and the new plants for this ...read more

Ask a Master Gardener About Trees

Questions from University of Illinois Extension, DeKalb County Horticulture Help Desk   When winter finally ends we are eager to get out there and begin our planting projects. Mosquitoes, heat and humidity are a distant memory. We are excited about the new season and know it will be better than ever. Some of ...read more

Green Thumb – Gardening on the Internet

This web has more than spiders. Sometimes when I search for information on the Internet I feel like I’ve jumped into a landfill. Where should I begin to dig? With next year’s gardening season in mind, I recently searched for “lettuce” on Google. It came up with 80,500,000 results in 0.7 seconds.  ...read more

Green Thumb – Fall Checklist

As we enter September and October, we look forward to harvest and a beautiful fall season. We must also realize that during these two months there will be work ahead as we close up our home gardens and landscapes for the winter. September is the prime time to plant trees. Trees for ...read more

Green Thumb – Spotlight on Ornamental Grasses

If you are an ornamental grass, you need to practice the fine art of patience. While summer gardens are full of blooming flowers, ornamental grasses remain in the background, quietly and discreetly, growing and waiting their turn. In late August and early September, the role reversal begins. Summer flowering plants are ...read more

Green Thumb – Summer Checklist

By the middle of summer, some of our enthusiasm for gardening may be waning a little bit. However, some of our very favorite plants are about to appear in our gardens to be enjoyed this month. Annual plants should be filled out and looking beautiful in July. Annuals in the ground ...read more