Callery pear, Pyrus calleryana

Callery pear can be an attractive addition to the landscape in the right situation. This small introduced ornamental tree does have some drawbacks, including the potential to become invasive in some climates. Learn more about this species and its cultivars to decide whether it is appropriate for your situation or not in this article…

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Star Magnolia, Magnolia stellata

If you want a small tree or large shrub with large, showy white or pink flowers in early spring, star magnolia is a great choice. There are several cultivars of this deciduous ornamental with bold, glossy foliage and interesting winter architecture, making it a good specimen plant at any time of the year. Read more about Magnolia stellata in this article…

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River Birch, Betula nigra

Betula nigra is a tall native tree that makes a great ornamental for large spaces because of its graceful form and attractive bark. It is one of the most culturally adaptable and heat tolerant of the birches, thriving in moist soil, but is somewhat drought tolerant once established. To learn more about river birch, read this article…

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Chocolate, Theobroma cacao

What could be better than chocolate? Many people love this sweet, rich treat, but not everyone knows where it comes from. The process of converting the seeds of a tropical rainforest tree to the confection we know involves a number of steps. But that tree itself is an interesting plant. To learn more about where chocolate comes from, read this article…

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Cycads

Are you familiar with the ancient group of plants called cycads? These “living fossils” have been around since the time of the dinosaurs, although they are no longer as numerous as they once were. These cone-bearing plants hail primarily from the tropics, but many are easily grown as container plants. To learn more about cycads, read this article…

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Daphne xburkwoodii ‘Carol Mackie’

If you want a medium-sized shrub with fragrant flowers in spring and attractive, variegated foliage the rest of the growing season, consider ‘Carol Mackie’ daphne. This mound-shaped shrub is covered in intoxicatingly scented flowers in late spring. To learn more about this  low-maintenance plant, read this article…

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Maple Gall Mites (Eriophyidae)

Have you found little green or red bumps or other weird growths on maple leaves and wondered what caused that? Inside each bump are tiny eriophyid mites, feeding on the developing gall tissue. If you want to learn more about these mites and what to do about this problem, check out this article on maple gall mites…

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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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Cottony Maple Scale

In midsummer white cottony blobs resembling popped popcorn kernels sometimes appear on the undersides of twigs and branches of maple, boxelder and other trees. Did you know these are actually an insect? If you want to learn more about this scale insect, read this article…

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