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Mass flower bulb plantings blooming soon

Visitors to these plantings must strictly observe social distancing by maintaining six feet from others, no groups of any size, refrain from interacting with staff and exercise all necessary precautions to prevent spread of COVID-19.

daffodils along bioswale

Dominant bulbs in the planting along the bioswale near the Nevins Center shifts from daffodils in late April …

alliums in bioswale planting

to alliums in late May.

From Bill Miller, director of Cornell’s Flower Bulb Research Program, and Professor Horticulture Section, School of Integrative Plant Science.

There’s nothing like blooming flower bulbs to lift your spirits during trying times.

Since 2017, Cornell’s Flower Bulb Research Program has installed numerous mass plantings of spring-flowering bulbs around Ithaca that will be blooming soon. We made these plantings as a way of generating interest in a novel machine that makes it easy to plant thousands of bulbs directly into turfgrass.  You can see the machine in action in these videos from 2017 (Bulb planting made easy) and 2018 (8,000 bulbs planted in 11 minutes).

The backbone of most of these plantings are deer-resistant daffodils, which are great perennials and will last for many years. We selected other species to provide foraging opportunities for pollinators.

The plantings also reduce greenhouse gas emissions as they cannot be mowed until early June after the bulb foliage has withered.

We’ve installed other, much larger plantings with public and private partners on Long Island, and increasingly, throughout the state.

Plantings in Ithaca include:

Several locations in Cornell Botanical Gardens:

  • A one-meter wide strip along the edge of the bioswale near Nevin Center parking lot off Arboretum Road. Mixed bulbs from Crocus to Allium.
  • R. Newmann Arboretum. From Caldwell Road, turn into the arboretum, park in area to the left.  Planting is a double row going up the rise into the meadow.  Allium and Nectaroscordum bulbs flower in June, attracting an amazing density of bees and other pollinators).
  • A strip in front of the McClintock Shed on Arboretum Road includes later-flowering Camassia

Other locations:

  • In front of the Foundation Seed Barn near the intersection of Rt. 366 and Game Farm Road. Five strips each featuring a different mix.
  • Along the north side of Rt. 366 between Guterman Greenhouses and Triticum Drive. Mixed planting of tulips, daffodils, Crocus and others.
  • Newman Golf Course along Pier Road and the walking path. A very long strip with mixed planting of daffodils, Crocus, Scilla, Muscari, and Alliums.

Seminar video: New Developments in Municipal Arboriculture

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, New Developments in Municipal Arboriculture,  with Jeanne Grace, Ithaca City Forester, it is available online.


More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Seminar video: Invaders on our doorstep: Spotted lanternfly biology and management

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Invaders on our doorstep: Spotted lanternfly biology and management,  with Betsy Lamb, NYS Integrated Pest Management Program, it is available online.


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Additional information from Betsy:

Based on some questions in the seminar, I looked for additional information on spotted lanternfly.  The information on native range seems to vary quite a bit, including where it was found and when, and the temperature range .  I’ve included some references here for anyone interested in learning more.

University of Florida Entomology and Nematology page on spotted lanternfly

From Lifecycle section of Wikipedia entry on spotted lanternfly:

Some researchers believe that a severe cold interval is required for the eggs to develop past a certain point, however this has not yet been confirmed.[11] Testing has been done to determine how overwintering affects the eggs of the species. The minimum temperature that will kill eggs was estimated by South Korean researchers to be between −12.7 and −3.4°C (9.1 and 25.9°F) on the basis of mean daily temperatures during their winter of 2009/2010.[15] This estimate contrasts with eggs having survived the much colder winter 2013/14 temperatures in Pennsylvania, United States.[16] Another study done in South Korea suggested that -25°C is about the temperature in which no eggs are hatched, while 15°C still had limited hatching, depending upon how long they were chilled and where they were kept.[17]

Seminar video: Deploying consumer-driven breeding strategies in leafy Brassicas

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Deploying consumer-driven breeding strategies in leafy Brassicas,  with Hannah Swegarden, PhD candidate, Graduate Field of Horticulture, it is available online.


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Seminar video: Preserving the Future: the National Collection of Tart Cherry, Grape, and Apple in Geneva, NY

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Preserving the Future: the National Collection of Tart Cherry, Grape, and Apple in Geneva, NY,  with Benjamin Gutierrez, USDA-ARS, it is available online.


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Seminar video: Agricultural Workforce Outlook: How Demographics, Technology, and Markets are Transforming Farm Labor

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Agricultural Workforce Outlook: How Demographics, Technology, and Markets are Transforming Farm Labor,  with Agricultural Workforce Specialist Richard Stup, it is available online.


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Seminar video: Woody plant ornamental breeding

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Woody plant ornamental breeding,  with Todd West, North Dakota State University, it is available online.


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Seminar video: Developing an Integrated Approach to Manage Agricultural Weeds

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Developing an Integrated Approach to Manage Agricultural Weeds, with Bryan Brown, NYSIPM Program, it is available online.


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Seminar video: The Strawberry Special: An in-depth look at strawberry quality when comparing between growing practices in New York State

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, The Strawberry Special: An in-depth look at strawberry quality when comparing between growing practices in New York State, with Anya Osatuke, Graduate Field of Horticulture Master’s student, it is available online.


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Seminar video: Biodiversity in the Concrete Jungle…

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Biodiversity in the Concrete Jungle: Ecology, Management and Design for Plant Diversity , with Myla Aronson, Rutgers University, it is available online.


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