Tag Archives: weeds

Upcoming Events: Online Gardening Classes

Looking for an online gardening class?

Check out these classes being offered by Cornell Cooperative Extensions around the state.

Click on the topic to see what classes are being offered.

Composting

Full Wooden Compost BinBasics of Organic Composting

Tuesday, July 28, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Monroe County

Two hands holding finished compostMagic of Compost

Tuesday, August 18, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Three large compost bins, one made of wire fencing and two made of palletsMagic of Compost

Tuesday, September 8, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Two hands holding finished compostMagic of Compost

Saturday, September 26, 2020
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Edible Plants

Red and green tomatoes on a tomato plant Plants and Backyard Farm

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
7:00 PM – 7:45 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Red and green tomatoes on a tomato plant Plants and Backyard Farm

Monday, August 3, 2020
10:30 AM – 11:15 AM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Famous Gardens

Downton AbbeyThe Gardens of Downton Abbey

Wednesday, August 12, 2020
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

The High Line Garden in NYC in the spring with pink flowering treesThe High Line: Lessons for Gardeners

Tuesday, August 25, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

The High Line Garden in NYC in the spring with pink flowering treesGardening Tips from the High Line

Thursday, September 17, 2020
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

The High Line Garden in NYC in the spring with pink flowering treesThe High Line: Lessons for your Garden

Wednesday, October 7, 2020
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Gardening for Birds

Hummingbird feeding from a red flowerHummingbirds in your Garden

Tuesday, August 25, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Healing Gardens

A stone path running through the APline Gardne full of color and textureHealing Gardens

Thursday, August 13, 2020
6:30 pm – 7: 30 pm
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

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Insects

Convergent Lady Beetle (Hippodmia convergens) on a leafMeet the Beneficial Insects

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
6:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

Swallow Tail Butterfly, yellow and black, feed ing off pink flowersInsects

Tuesday, August 4, 2020
2:00 PM – 2:45 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Monarch Buttery PresentationBlack and orange Monarch Butterfly feeding on a purple flower

Thursday, August 6, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Monroe County

Yellow beetle with black spotsGarden Insect ID & Organic Controls

Wednesday, August 12, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

Monarch Buttery Presentation

Tuesday, August 18, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Monroe County

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Lawns

Close up of lush green grasLawns Love Fall

Tuesday, August 4, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Close up of lush green grasLawns Love Fall

Thursday, August 13, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Close up of lush green grasLawns Love Fall

Thursday, August 13, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Close up of lush green grasLawns Love Fall

Wednesday, August 26, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Close up of lush green grasLawns Love Fall

Monday, August 31, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Native Plants

Four Echinacea or Cone Flowers in a garden - large flowers with dark pink petals and spikely centersGardening with Native Plants

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Monroe County

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Ornamentals

A vegetable garden with a combination of cabbage surrounded by small yellow and orange flowers and dark purple leafy greensAugust – What to do in the Garden this Month

Wednesday, August 5, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

Blue HydrangeasHydrangeas

Tuesday, August 18, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Pest Management

A hand how and a gloved hand pulling weedsGarden Weed Identification and Management

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

Yellow beetle with black spotsGarden Insect ID & Organic Controls

Wednesday, August 12, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

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Pollinators

Bumble bee on a pink flowerPollinator Gardens

Thursday, July 30, 2020
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Poisonous Plants

What Evil Lurks in the Heart of Your Garden?

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Orange County

What Evil Lurks in the Heart of Your Garden?

Wednesday, August 5, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Orange County

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Soil

Light purple clover flower against a background of green leavesCover Crops for the Home Garden

Wednesday, August 26, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

A trowel stuck in a raised garden bedSecrets of Soil

Tuesday, October 6, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

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Vegetable Gardening

Red and green tomatoes on a tomato plantPlants and Backyard Farm

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
7:00 PM – 7:45 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Red and green tomatoes on a tomato plant Plants and Backyard Farm

Monday, August 3, 2020
10:30 AM – 11:15 AM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Suffolk County

Raised Garden bed with Cabbage, kael and lettuce, fitted with tubbing to for row coverPlanting Fall Vegetables

Wednesday, August 5, 2020
6:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

A vegetable garden with a combination of cabbage surrounded by small yellow and orange flowers and dark purple leafy greensAugust – What to do in the Garden this Month

Wednesday, August 5, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

Six heads of large heasd of green and red leetuce grwoing in a raised garden bedRaised Bed Gardening

Thursday, August 6, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Monroe County

Five freshly harvested heads of garlicGrowing Great Garlic

Wednesday, August 19, 2020
6:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

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Weeds

A hand how and a gloved hand pulling weedsGarden Weed Identification and Management

Wednesday, July 29, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

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Upcoming Events: Online Gardening Classes

Looking for an online gardening class?

Check out these classes being offered by Cornell Cooperative Extensions around the state.

Click on the topic to see what classes are being offered.

Container Gardening

A short wooden tub set next to a tree overflowing with plants: a tall grass with red leaves, a bright green plant with white veins and a dark purple plant spilling over the edge.Creative Container Gardening

Wednesday, May 27, 2020
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

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Composting

Full Wooden Compost BinComposting

Monday, May 18, 2020
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Onondaga County

Two hands holding finished compostBuilding Soil and Composting

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

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Fruit

Two small light green fruits (pawpaws) growing of a branchGrowing Unusual Fruits

Wednesday, May 20, 2020
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

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Herb Gardening

Bright Green Herb Plants - Chives, Basil, ParsleyGrowing Culinary HerbsSOLD OUT!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2020
6:30 pm
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

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Insects

Close-up of a leaf cutting bee on a yellow flowerPollinator Gardens

Monday, May 18, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Jefferson County

Yellow beetle with black spotsPest and Disease Management

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

Swallow Tail Butterfly, yellow and black, feed ing off pink flowersCreating a Butterfly GardenSOLD OUT!

Monday, May 27, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Broome County

Green lacewing - green bodied bug with large net-like wings sitting on a flower with pink petals and a yellow centerAll About Bugs: pollinators and more!

Thursday, May 28, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

Squash bug adult laying eggsGarden Pests

Thursday, May 28, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

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Pest Management

A hand how and a gloved hand pulling weedsWeed Identification and Management SOLD OUT!

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

A pair of gloved hands holding some freshly picked weedsGarden Weeds

Thursday, May 21, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

Yellow beetle with black spotsPest and Disease Management

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

Squash bug adult laying eggsGarden Pests

Thursday, May 28, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

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Pollinators

Close-up of a leaf cutting bee on a yellow flowerPollinator Gardens

Monday, May 18, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Jefferson County

Swallow Tail Butterfly, yellow and black, feed ing off pink flowersCreating a Butterfly GardenSOLD OUT!

Monday, May 27, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Broome County

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Soil

Two hands holding finished compostBuilding Soil and Composting

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

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Technology as a Gardening Tool

Taking a picture of a field of flowers with a smart phoneUsing Your Cell Phone as a Gardening Tool

Wednesday, May 20, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Orange County

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Vegetable Gardening

A vegetable garden with a combination of cabbage surrounded by small yellow and orange flowers and dark purple leafy greensCaring for Your Vegetable Garden

Monday, May 18, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chemung County

A cluster of cherry tomatoes growing on a tomato plant wet with the morning dew.Family Food Gardens for Beginners

Thursday, May 21, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

Pile of cucumbers, a red, yellow and green pepper, green onions, tomatoes, a bunch of parsley and a sprig of rosemaryHow Does Your Garden Grow Check-In

Thursday, June 11, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

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Weeds

A hand how and a gloved hand pulling weedsWeed Identification and ManagementSOLD OUT!

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

A pair of gloved hands holding some freshly picked weedsGarden Weeds

Thursday, May 21, 2020
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

Back to the Top

Upcoming Events: Online Gardening Classes

Looking for an online gardening class?

Check out these classes being offered by Cornell Cooperative Extensions around the state.

Click on the topic to see what classes are being offered.

Container Gardening

 Large green pot with a plant with pink flowere, a short plant with white flowers and a varigated plant spilling over the sideContainer Gardening

Monday, May 11, 2020
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Onondaga County

A short wooden tub set next to a tree overflowing with plants: a tall grass with red leaves, a bright green plant with white veins and a dark purple plant spilling over the edge.Creative Container Gardening

Wednesday, May 13, 2020
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

A small child in a jean shirt, teal skirt and bright yellow rain boots put seeds in the groundSeed Starting and Container Gardening with Kids

Thursday, May 14, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

A short wooden tub set next to a tree overflowing with plants: a tall grass with red leaves, a bright green plant with white veins and a dark purple plant spilling over the edge.Creative Container Gardening

Wednesday, May 27, 2020
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

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Composting

Pile of kitchen scraps, mostly peels of various fruits and vegetables, spead out on top of a compost pileHome Composting

Monday, May 11, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Jefferson County

Full Wooden Compost BinComposting

Monday, May 18, 2020
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Onondaga County

Two hands holding finished compostBuilding Soil and Composting

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

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Fruit

Quince Tree with two large green quince fruit - almost apple like in shapeFruit 102: Growing Unusual Fruits: An Introduction to Unfamiliar Fruits

Monday, May 11, 2020
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Steuben County

Two small light green fruits (pawpaws) growing of a branchGrowing Unusual Fruits

Wednesday, May 20, 2020
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Tompkins County

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Gardening with Kids

A small child in a jean shirt, teal skirt and bright yellow rain boots put seeds in the groundSeed Starting and Container Gardening with Kids

Thursday, May 14, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

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Herb Gardening

Bright Green Herb Plants - Chives, Basil, ParsleyGrowing Culinary Herbs

Wednesday, May 20, 2020
6:30 pm
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

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Insects

Spotted Lanternfly adult on a green stemSpotted Lanternfly Workshop

Wednesday, May 13, 2020
9:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Ulster County

Close-up of a leaf cutting bee on a yellow flowerPollinator Gardens

Monday, May 18, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Jefferson County

Yellow beetle with black spotsPest and Disease Management

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

Swallow Tail Butterfly, yellow and black, feed ing off pink flowersCreating a Butterfly Garden

Monday, May 27, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Broome County

Green lacewing - green bodied bug with large net-like wings sitting on a flower with pink petals and a yellow centerAll About Bugs: pollinators and more!

Thursday, May 28, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

Squash bug adult laying eggsGarden Pests

Thursday, May 28, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

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Invasive Species

Spotted Lanternfly adult on a green stemSpotted Lanternfly Workshop

Wednesday, May 13, 2020
9:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Ulster County

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Pest Management

A hand how and a gloved hand pulling weedsWeed Identification and Management

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

A pair of gloved hands holding some freshly picked weedsGarden Weeds

Thursday, May 21, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

Yellow beetle with black spotsPest and Disease Management

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

Squash bug adult laying eggsGarden Pests

Thursday, May 28, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

Back to the Top

Pollinators

Close-up of a leaf cutting bee on a yellow flowerPollinator Gardens

Monday, May 18, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Jefferson County

Swallow Tail Butterfly, yellow and black, feed ing off pink flowersCreating a Butterfly Garden

Monday, May 27, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extensions
Broome County

Back to the Top

Soil

Two hands holding finished compostBuilding Soil and Composting

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

Back to the Top

Technology as a Gardening Tool

Taking a picture of a field of flowers with a smart phoneUsing Your Cell Phone as a Gardening Tool

Wednesday, May 20, 2020
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Orange County

Back to the Top

Vegetable Gardening

Assortment of heirloom vegetables on a blanket - tomatoes of various sizes, sizes colors and shapes, hote egg plants, a cucumber, a purple pepper, a pile of green beans, a few foot long beansGrowing History: Planning an Heirloom Vegetable Garden

Monday, May 11, 2020
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Delaware County

A cucurbit seedling showing the two cotyledons and the first true leaf just starting to unfold.Planting a Vegetable Garden

Monday, May 11, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chemung County

Pepper seedlings in tray of biodegradeable potsSeed Starting

Tuesday, May 12, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chenango County

A small child in a jean shirt, teal skirt and bright yellow rain boots put seeds in the groundSeed Starting and Container Gardening with Kids

Thursday, May 14, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

A vegetable garden with a combination of cabbage surrounded by small yellow and orange flowers and dark purple leafy greensCaring for Your Vegetable Garden

Monday, May 18, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Chemung County

A cluster of cherry tomatoes growing on a tomato plant wet with the morning dew.Family Food Gardens for Beginners

Thursday, May 21, 2020
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Warren County

Pile of cucumbers, a red, yellow and green pepper, green onions, tomatoes, a bunch of parsley and a sprig of rosemaryHow Does Your Garden Grow Check-In

Thursday, June 11, 2020
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

Back to the Top

Weeds

A hand how and a gloved hand pulling weedsWeed Identification and Management

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
6:30 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Broome County

A pair of gloved hands holding some freshly picked weedsGarden Weeds

Thursday, May 21, 2020
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Madison County

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What’s in Bloom? – April 2020

Even though most of the trees are still bare and must of us awoke to snow on the ground this weekend, spring has arrived and with it are some of the most beautiful blooms of the year.

Spring Flowering Bulbs

Pink and purple hyacinth flowers
Hyacinthus orientalis
Clump of white daffodils with bright orange centers and yellow daffodils
Daffodils (Narcissus spp.)

The crocuses have all but faded, but the daffodils continue to bloom, brightening up the drab landscape with their cheery yellows and oranges.   They have recently been joined by the hyacinths.  With their overpowering fragrance, these flowers add to springs color palette with their cool colors of pink and purple.

Grape Hyacinth - cones of tightly packed purple flowers

You may have noticed some small purple flowers known as grape hyacinths.   Not a true hyacinth,  the inflorescence of this flower is a cone of small purple flowers that almost looks like a miniature clump of grapes.

White daffodiles with bright yellow center
Daffodil ‘Ice Follies‘

If you want to bring some spring cheer inside (highly recommended), it is best to give daffodils their own vase as their stems secrete a substance that is harmful to other flowers.

 

Spring Ephemerals

White and purple flowers growing out of a patch of soil
A mixture of the white spring ephemeral bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) and the purple spring bulb green anemone (Anemone blanda).
Clump of small flowers with five purple petals a light yellow center
Hepatica nobilis

One of the great joys of spring is the appearance of spring ephemerals.  These native plants grow in wooded areas and only have a short time to flower before the trees above them leaf out and block their sunlight.  When you are walking through wooded areas in the spring, make sure you watch your feet or might step on the delicate flowers of the bloodroot or the hepatica.

Other Spring Blooms

Clusters of cascading pink flowers
Andromeda (Pieris japonica)
Small purple and magenta flowers in a mass of green leaves with white spots
Lungwort (Pulmaria spp.)

From the showy flowers of the andromeda bush to the subtle flowers of the lungwort, the more time you spend out side the more flowers you’ll notice.

Weeds – It’s all in the eye of the beholder.

Dandelion with a bright yellow flower growing in the crack between two pavers
Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)

Many spring flowering plants are considered weeds.  You may think that dandelion in your lawn is unsightly, but the bees beg to differ.  Dandelions are an important source of pollen and nectar for bees in the early spring as are other spring flowering ‘weeds’ like purple deadnettle and henbit.

What about Fungus?

Bright orange sphere with orange tentecales attached to the needles of an evergreen tree
Cedar-Apple Rust Gall (Gymnosporangium juniperi-virginianae)

Now fungi aren’t plants, so they don’t have flowers, but they can add color to the landscape.  In the spring cedar-apple rust galls that overwintered on juniper become more noticeable as they produce gelatinous tendrils that release spores  into the air.  Some of these spores will find their way to apple trees where they can cause problems by infecting the leaves and the fruit of the tree.


Happy Spring!

Spring bouquet of bright yellow daffodils and forsythia, purple grape hyacunth, white andromeda, and buds of a pink cherry treeThanks to all of the Master Gardener Volunteers who provided their thoughts and photos for this post!

April is Citizen Science Month!

What is citizen science? 

Scientists are limited in the amount of data they can collect by both time and money.  With help from members of the general public, known as citizen scientists, researchers are able to crowd source data collection collecting more data from more places helping them find answers to real-world questions.

So if you want to do something fun and educational that contributes to the advancement of scientific knowledge, consider becoming a citizen scientist.

Citizen Science Projects


Monarch Butterfly (Orang and Black) - Jouney NorthThe Journey North

This project focuses on migration and seasonal changes.   People all over the United States, Canada, and Mexico, report sightings of birds, monarchs, frogs, and other organism.   Watch as reported sightings are mapped in real-time as waves of migrations that move across the continent.


inaturalist logoi-Naturalist

iNaturalist lets you photograph, identify, and document what’s around you.  Every observation can contribute to biodiversity science, from the rarest butterfly to the most common backyard weed.  By sharing your observations with scientists, you will help build our understanding of the natural world.

Never Home Alone

In studying life, scientists have overlooked many regions. Some regions have not been studied because they are so remote. Others because they are so diverse that it is hard to know where to even begin. Then there is the great indoors, which we believe has been understudied in part because it is so immediate. This project aims to document the species that live indoors with humans.


The Cornell Lab of Ornithology - Logo with Bird in MiddleThe Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Hundreds of thousands of people around the world contribute bird observations to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology each year, gathering data on a scale once unimaginable. Scientists use these data to reveal how birds are affected by habitat loss, pollution, disease, climate, and other environmental changes. Your participation will help trace bird migration, nesting success, and changes in bird numbers through time.

Celebrate Urban Birds

Celebrate Urban Birds is a citizen science project focused on better understanding the value of green spaces for birds. This project connects people of all ages and backgrounds to birds and the natural world through the arts and fun neighborhood activities.

e-bird

The goal of this project is to gather this information on bird sightings, archive it, and freely share it to power new data-driven approaches to science, conservation and education.  e-Bird also develops tools that make birding more rewarding.  It provides the most current and useful information to the birding community from photos and audio recordings, to seeing real-time maps of species distribution and alerts that let you know when species have been seen.

NestWatch

NestWatch is a nationwide monitoring program designed to track status and trends in the reproductive biology of birds, including when nesting occurs, number of eggs laid, how many eggs hatch, and how many hatchlings survive.  Their database is intended to be used to study the current condition of breeding bird populations and how they may be changing over time as a result of climate change, habitat degradation and loss, expansion of urban areas, and the introduction of non-native plants and animals.


Logo - The Tick App - Bulls Eye with a the outline of a tick in the miidle suurounded by the words The Tick AppThe Tick App

The Tick App allows people living in high-risk areas for Lyme disease, like Orange County New York, to participate in a tick behavioral study.   Participants complete daily logs and report ticks.  The app provides information on how to remove ticks, prevent tick bites, and general information about ticks.   When enough people are involved, it can also provides information about blacklegged and deer tick activity in our area.


Monarch Caterpilar (Yellow, white, black stripped) on a green leaf - Monarch Larva Monitoring ProjectMonarch Larva Monitoring Program

This citizen science project’s mission is to better understand the distribution and abundance of breeding monarchs and to use that knowledge to inform and inspire monarch conservation.  People from across the United States and Canada participate in this monarch research.  Their observations aid in conserving monarchs and their threatened migratory phenomenon, and advance the understanding of butterfly ecology in general.


Logo - Monarch Watch.org Education, Conservation, ResearchMonarch Watch

Monarch Watch strives to provide the public with information about the biology of monarch butterflies, their spectacular migration, and how to use monarchs to further science education in primary and secondary schools. They engage in research on monarch migration biology and monarch population dynamics to better understand how to conserve the monarch migration.

Monarch Calendar Project

In the spring and fall volunteers collect observations of adult monarchs.  This information is used to  assemble quantitative data on monarch numbers at critical times during the breeding season.

Tagging Monarchs

Each fall Monarch Watch distributes more than a quarter of a million tags to thousands of volunteers across North America who tag monarchs as they migrate through their area. These citizen scientists capture monarchs throughout the migration season, record the tag code, tag date, gender of the butterfly, and geographic location then tag and release them. At the end of the tagging season, these data are submitted to Monarch Watch and added to their database to be used in research.


Logo - The Lost Ladybug ProjectThe Lost Ladybug Project

In the past twenty years, native ladybugs that were once very common have become extremely rare.  During this same time, ladybugs from other parts of the world have greatly increased in both numbers and range. This is happening very quickly and no one knows how, why, or what impact it will have on ladybug diversity.  Citizen scientists involved in this project help scientists answer these questions by photographing ladybugs and submitting the photos along with information about when and where the ladybugs were found.


Logo - Vegetable Varieties for GardenersVegetable Varieties for Gardeners

A project of Cornell University’s Garden Based Learning, this web forum provides an avenue for gardeners to share knowledge.  Gardeners report what vegetable varieties perform well – and not so well – in their gardens.  Other gardeners can view ratings and read the reviews to decide which might work well for them.  Researchers  use the information gain new insight into the performance of vegetable varieties under a wide range of conditions and practices. The information gathered is also used to make a  Selected List of Vegetable Varieties for Gardeners in New York State.


Logo - The outline of New York State under a picture of a moth, a beetle, a moth and a fly with the words Empire State Native Pollinator SurveyEmpire State Native Pollinator Survey

Native pollinators play an essential role in the pollination of flowering plants, including native plants and wildflowers, garden plants, as well as cultivated crops. Some native pollinator species have suffered population declines over the last few decades.   Participants  in this study submit photographs and/or specimens to help  determine the conservation status of a wide array of native insect pollinators in non-agricultural habitats.


iMapInvasivesiMapInvasives

iMapInvasives is an on-line, GIS-based data management system used to assist citizen scientists and natural resource professionals working to protect our natural resources from the threat of invasive species.  Citizen scientists are provided with resources to help them identify invasive species. Their invasive species findings are aggregated with data from a wide variety of sources contributing to early detection of invasive species as well as analysis of management strategies.


A curated beetle collection with pinned specimens above tagsNotes from Nature

Natural history museums across the world share a common goal – to conserve and make available knowledge about natural and cultural heritage. The Notes from Nature project gives you the opportunity to make a scientifically important contribution towards that goal by transcribing museum records. Every transcription that is completed brings us closer to filling gaps in our knowledge of global biodiversity and natural heritage.


Logo - citizenscience.orgCitizen Science Database

This is an official government website designed to accelerate the use of crowdsourcing and citizen science across the U.S. government.  It includes a searchable database of  a government-wide listing of citizen science and crowdsourcing projects designed to improve cross-agency collaboration, reveal opportunities for new high-impact projects, and make it easier for volunteers to find out about projects they can join.


Become a Citizen Scientist today!

Out in the Garden

As the days get warmer and the sun sets later and later, I hope you all have the opportunity to spend more and more time outside.  Sunshine and fresh air are good for the soul!

If you happen to have a garden or have decided that this is the year to start one there are lots of things to keep you busy at this time of year!

Perennial Beds

A mantis egg mass, straw colored foam like mass the size of a golf ball, on the branch of a forsythia bush covered with yellow flower buds
Mantis ootheca on forsythia

Hopefully you waited until spring to clean up your garden to allow beneficial insects and other arthropods such as bees and butterflies to overwinter.  Now that spring has sprung you should leave debris as long as you can to give these creatures a chance to emerge from their winter hiding places.  You should start carefully removing debris from around blossoming plants.  If you must cut back hollow stems, bundle them so any pollinators overwintering inside have a chance to emerge.   As you are cleaning up be on the look out for praying mantis egg cases know as ootheca.   This is one time when you should leave things till tomorrow!

Freshly mulched garden bed in front of a house
Freshly mulched garden beds

Mulching is another spring time activity.  There are many different types of organic mulch that will not only suppress weeds, but also add organic material to the soil as they break down.  You don’t have to mulch everything, in fact many ground nesting bees such as bumble bees need a bit of bare earth to make their nests.  And if you are mulching your trees make sure to keep the mulch at least 3 inches away from the base of the tree so that it is not touching the bark.

And it is never to early to start weeding!  Lots of winter annual weeds such as common chickweed and prickly lettuce have already sprouted!

Vegetable and Herb Gardening

Starting Seeds Indoors

It is not to late to seed one more round of cool season crop such as cabbage, kale,  and lettuce, but it is also time to start seeding warm season crops such as eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes.

To start seeds you will need:

      • seeds
Several flats of seedlings
Flats of seedlings

There are lots of places online where you can purchase seeds. If you still have seeds left over from last year and don’t know if they are still good, don’t throw them out, try this simple home germination test.

      • sterile potting mix

It is important to use sterile potting mix to avoid disease issues like damping off.  Do not reuse potting mix and do not use garden compost.

      • container
20 or 30 chard seelings sprouting in a small plastic container filled with soil
Rainbow chard seedlings in a supermarket salad container

You don’t need to buy a fancy container to start seeds.  Just make sure the container has been sterilized and has drainage holes.

      • water

You want to keep the soil moist, but be careful not to over water or you may have a problem with damping off.

      • light source
A bookcase converted into a light frame for seedlings -grow lights above seed trays placed on the shelves
Bookcase converted into a grow frame

Some seeds need  light to germinate, but all seeds need light after they germinate. Once your seeds sprout  a light source will help prevent them from becoming leggy.  You can purchase grow lights or just use a soft white fluorescent bulb.  Here are directions on how to build a Low-Cost Grow-Light Frame.

      • heat
Mini greenhouse made from areused plastic container covering a small tray with 8 small cups of soilEight small cups of soil
Mini greenhouse

Most seeds will germinate between the temperatures of 55°F and 75°F,  but the optimal temperature for each type of seed varies.  You can create a mini-green house to trap heat and moisture.  You can also buy heating mats to warm the soil.  Click here to see  Soil Temperature Conditions for Vegetable Seed Germination.

Out in the Garden

A small child in a jean shirt, teal skirt and bright yellow rain boots put seeds in the ground
Planting peas

Gardening is an activity for the whole family!  Children love helping plant seeds!  Right now you can be direct seeding cool season crops in your garden such as beets, carrots, lettuce, peas, radishes, spinach, and turnips.  If you want to have a continual harvest, consider succession planting or  seeding several smaller plantings of the same crop at timed intervals, rather than all at once.

Chive plant in a raised garden bed
Chives

While most people are busy seeding, some perennial plants are already coming up or even ready to harvest!  Chives are a great example of a perennial that allows you add something fresh and green to your meals in the early spring.  If you planted chives in your garden last year, they are probably already making their way to your table.  This perennial of the onion family begins growing in early March and is able to be snipped with scissors and eaten soon after and throughout the growing season right up until the fall frost.

Crinkly green and dark purple leaves with bright pink stems sticking out ogf the soil
Rhubarb

Another perennial making an appearance is rhubarb!  Rhubarb is a great addition to any vegetable garden and as it is deer resistant and highly attractive it can also be used as part of your edible landscape.  Although the leaves of rhubarb are considered poisonous, the stems of this spring crop that can be used to make the classic strawberry rhubarb pie as well as many other delicious snacks.

Click here for vegetable gardening resources! 

And as always, if you are having any issues in your garden, need help identifying the cause of a problem or figuring out a management strategy give us a call.  Our Garden Helpline phones are staffed April – November, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, from 9:30 am – 12:30 pm.  But you can always leave us a message or send us an e-mail.

Call (845) 343-0664 or e-mail your questions to mghelpline@cornell.edu.


Whatever kind of garden you have, spend some time enjoying its beauty!

A hanging ball of greens and fuzzy pussy wilow branches
December’s Kissing Ball transformed into a ‘Kitty Ball’ by the addition of Pussy Willow branches

Thanks to all of the Master Gardener Volunteers who provided their thoughts and photos for this post!