Garden Myths - Learn the truth about gardening

Archive for the Plants Category

Sunscald on Trees – Prevention

It might surprise you to learn that trees do get sunscald or sunburn and the remedy is not an SPF 30 lotion. Sunscald on trees usually happens on the south or south-west exposed bark. The bark is damaged and in severe cases can result in the death of the tree.

Historically, sunscald has been prevented by wrapping or painting the trunk of the tree. Do these preventative methods work? Are they still recommended? Time to have a closer look at the problem.

sunscald on sugar maple tree, prevention, by Robert Pavlis

Sunscald on a sugar maple tree, by Robert Pavlis

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Hydrangea Myths

Hydrangeas are very popular shrubs for the garden, but they can be a bit tricky to grow if you listen to all of the hydrangea myths on the internet and in books. In this blog I will look at the truth behind some of the more common hydrangea myths. Once you have the facts, you will find that hydrangeas are easy to grow.

Hydrangea myths, is it blue or pink?

Hydrangea myths, is it blue or pink?

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Hylomecon Japonica – Which is The Real Plant?

Hylomecon japonica is a fairly rare plant that is miss-identified frequently on the internet and in seed exchanges. The AGS seedex has been sending out the wrong seeds for a number of year and discussions on their forum make it clear that getting seed from the right plant has been a global problem (ref 1).

Instead of receiving Hylomecon japonica seed, it is common to get seed from one of the other wood poppies. Since I grow Hylomecon japonica and it’s 3 imposters I decided to prepare a complete review of the plants, and provide a list of features that will allow people to clearly identify their plants.

All of the details are based on my plants which represents a limited set of clones. If your findings disagree with mine, please let me know by leaving a comment.

Hylomecon japonica main

Hylomecon japonica flower and leaves

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A Garden Myth Is Born – Plants Don’t Purify Air

Since it is Christmas, I thought it would be appropriate to write about the birth of a myth. Gardening information is full of myths–untruths that seem to take on a life of their own. As part of my effort to understand these myths, I also want to understand how myths get started. The history of most myths has been lost but every once in a while I am able to find evidence that clearly shows how a myth is born.

Understanding how a myth is born can be very educational. It provides insight into how the human mind works. It also trains you to spot future potential myths and to better evaluate the information you are reading. So let’s celebrate this holiday by peering into the start of a myth.

a myth is born - plants don't purify air

A myth is born – plants don’t purify air

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Christmas Tree Water

There is nothing quite like a real Christmas tree. But the cut tree slowly dries out and we want to preserve them as long as possible. Lots of additives have been suggested to keep your tree fresh including commercial tree preservatives, molasses, sugar, bleach, soft drinks, aspirin, honey and fertilizer. Which of these work the best?

Christmas tree water

Christmas tree water

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