Tips for Hardy Gardeners

Tom Kasper

Larry Weber likes to talk about the magical time of what he calls aut-win: the time between the leaf drop and the first snowfall.

And Tom Kasper says, while you're in your yard, taking time to smell the roses anyway (that's his shrub rose in bloom last Friday, November 11), you might as well take advantage of the good visibility to finish lopping storm-damaged branches off your trees.

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Master gardener Tom Kasper draws some flack for not being on top of the national pumpkin conversations this week.

Adam Koford/Flickr

In the Autumn a young gardener's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of rose-tipping, planting spring bulbs and garlic.

©Lisa Johnson

Master gardener Tom Kasper is excited about all the new fruit trees folks are planting to replace trees downed in summer storms.

But the problem is, rabbits, mice and deer are excited about them, too.

Lisa Johnson

Master Gardener Tom Kasper says now is the time to divide perennials - like peonies - and maybe even organize a swap with your friends.

F. D. Richards [via Flickr]

  The soggy ground continues to bring the threat of black molds and powdery mildew, and gardeners need to be mindful of what flowers and plants to prune, and what to keep and possibly treat to prevent the return of these fungi next spring.

Despite the soggy ground, now is the time to divide perennials - irises and peonies, for example - to best prepare them for next year.  Dividing can help underperforming flowers to produce more and better blooms in  the coming seasons.

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It's true: the warm weather, abundant rains and sunshine have produced bumper crops of just about everything - including black mold and powdery mildew.

Sharon Mollerus [via Flickr]

Weeds are smarter than we think they are, says Tom Kasper. They blend in with surrounding vegetation and grow very fast. 

In the warm and often drier month of August, Tom reminds us to keep our gardens watered and weeded. Fruits and vegetables are starting to ripen, so keeping them fed and free of competition will help ensure they finish the summer healthy.  Stay vigilant.

Lisa Johnson

Every year, master gardener Tom Kasper carefully tips the roses at the Rose Garden to protect them through the winter.

But trees aren't rosebushes, and trying to tip storm-uprooted silver maples and spruces back into place is a recipe for disaster.

Also: when it comes time to replant trees, Tom has some ideas for replacements with sturdy root systems.

Tom Kasper is pretty excited about some of the new easy care roses, including the two pictured here: The Winnipeg Parks rose and the Como Park rose.

Bill Dickinson/Flickr

You know how, a couple of times a year, school (sometimes the whole city) shuts down and everyone is told to stay home for a snow day?

Tom Kasper, a regular feature host on Northland Morning (called "an epicenter of social change") says he could absolutely get behind the idea of everything shutting down and being told to stay home on a sunny, 75 degree day - to garden.

Flickr

Master gardener Tom Kasper says not only is there still time to get your garden in ... tender new plants will be much less stressed and do better going into the ground when it's cool and wet (as opposed to sunny and dry).

The annuals and vegetables are going into the ground - along with the haul from some recent local plant sales - and the game of wits between gardeners and deer and rabbits begins another season ...

paige_eliz/Flickr

Tom Kasper reminds hardy gardeners about the two big gardening events on the way: the Monarch Butterfly Festival this Saturday (May 21) and the Duluth Garden Flower Society's Annual Plant Sale the following Saturday (May 30.)

Kenny Phung/Flickr

A Save the Monarch Festival is winging its way to the Northland May 21st ... and Tom Kasper is already encouraging gardeners to make preparations (whatever they might be) for the Duluth Garden and Flower Society's Annual Plant Sale, May 28.

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