Arbor Day

Did you know today is Arbor Day? Wisconsin joins many other states in observing this tree-focused celebration on the last Friday in April every year. Read about how this historic holiday started and has evolved since the late 1800’s…

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Pea-Staking

Don’t like the look of metal or plastic stakes, but you need to offer some support for a few floppy annuals or perennials? How about using prunings from your yard or elsewhere to do the job in an informal way? Learn more about this time-honored technique…

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Espalier

Are you interested in getting higher yields of fruit, want a fruit tree but don’t have space for a regular-sized one, or just want an interesting pruned plant as a focal point in your garden? There is a horticultural technique involving pruning and training that can accomplish all of these goals. Read this article to learn more about the classic technique of espalier…

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Cauliflory: Flowers that Bloom on Tree Trunks

Did you know that some woody flowering plants flower and fruit directly on their trunks or main branches, instead of at the stem tips like most “normal” trees and shrubs? Learn more about this unusual botanical trait called cauliflory in this article…

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Biblical Burseraceae

The bible is filled with references to the many plants that were important to people at that time. Most people are familiar with the gifts of the three kings: gold, frankincense and myrrh – but not everyone knows that those latter two are the natural resins produced in the sap of members of the plant family Burseraceae. To learn more about the plants that produce these formerly valuable substances, read this article…

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Entomophthora muscae

Have you ever noticed a dead fly hanging with outstretched wings from a flower stalk or glued to the window in your house? These insects likely succumbed to a fungus that only affects flies. This insect destroyer called Entomophthora muscae is actually fairly common, infecting several types of flies related to house flies. To learn more about this fungus, read this article…

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Mistletoe

Hanging high in trees in warmer climates, mistletoe is a plant that has a long history of myth and tradition dating back to ancient times. Despite the fact these plants cannot tolerate the cold winters of the Midwest, most people are familiar with mistletoe as a holiday decoration. But there are many other types of mistletoe – and many species that are much more spectacular when in bloom. To find out more about this interesting group of parasitic plants, read this article…

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Mycorrhizae

Not everyone knows that plant roots have symbiotic relationships with certain types of fungi. These mycorrhizae help the plant absorb nutrients from the soil that are otherwise difficult to obtain and often provide some protection against soil-borne diseases. In exchange the plant suppliesfood to the fungus. To learn more about mycorrhizae, read this article… 

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Invasive Plants Association of Wisconsin

Many plants originally from other continents have escaped cultivation to become problematic in the environment. The Invasive Plant Association of Wisconsin (IPAW) is an organization that promotes better understanding of invasive plants and encouraging the control of their spread. To learn more about this group – and get involved – read this article…

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