Urban forests and natural areas are alive and well in New York City as a result of the hard work of NYC Parks, its staff and volunteers. Learn how they do it, and pick up some pointers, in this EcoBeneficial interview with Kristy King, the Director of Forest Restoration for the Natural Resources Group of NYC Parks….
We have quite a bit of Jimsonweed in a garden within a public park that our organization maintains. Using RoundUp is out of the question. Are there any ways to remove it organically?
Jimsonweed (Datura stramonium) is an introduced weed, often classified as a noxious weed or an invasive plant, depending on the state. It is a prolific annual that can produce as many as 30,000 seeds per plant. For more details on the plant,…
What are the benefits of Jimsonweed? Are there any virtues to this plant? It seems to be a common, aggressive, but interesting “weed.” I’d like to keep some of it and mix with other beneficial plants in the New York area.
I think that all plants have some virtue, but are always best sited in their native range. Even Japanese Knotweed has some virtues – in Japan. New York beekeepers often tell me how great the late-season nectar of Japanese Knotweed is for their honey bees….
Confused about the terminology associated with native gardening? If you are, it’s not surprising, since there are numerous definitions just for the simple word “native.” Native, non-native, exotic, alien, naturalized – these terms, and others, are often misused. Hopefully the following explanations will clear up some confusion!
Terminology for Native (or not)
While different sources vary on the definition of “native species,” Federal Executive Order 11987 (May 1977) defines native species as “all species of plants and animals naturally occurring,…
Ever wonder why those terrific native viburnums you planted are not producing fruit? You are not alone. It’s one of the frustrations of gardening ecologically in a world where “cross pollination” is rarely mentioned at local nurseries or garden centers (and forget about the big box stores!). Some plants, although deemed self-fruitful, may need a “pollinator partner” to bear fruit reliably.
Although potentially self-fruitful, native viburnums are actually pretty self-incompatible and typically require cross-pollination for good fruit production. Two genetically different plants of the same species should be planted in reasonably close proximity. …
Is organic fertilizer harmful to pollinators, especially my fave, bumble bees? My husband bought this stuff and I don’t know if it is harmful to bees, or not. I want to help save our precious pollinators.
Thank you for keeping bumble bees in mind in your vegetable garden. Note that tomato plants are self-fertile, but their pollination will be far more successful with the assistance of bumble bees – resulting in more fruit for you to enjoy. Bumble bees are incredibly effective pollinators of tomato plants,…
The hot and humid days of summer are certainly not ideal for planting, but you can plant in summer with some special care and vigilance.
Maybe you just found a fantastic plant you have been looking for, or, perhaps you didn’t get around to planting some native perennials or shrubs you bought in the spring. Keeping plants in containers over the summer requires constant watering, so it may be worth planting now, or…?
Best Times for Planting
The best practice is to plant when the days are warm and the nights are cool….
Join Kim Eierman for this EcoBeneficial interview with Jessica Schuler, Director of the Thain Family Forest at the New York Botanical Garden, as they discuss how this acclaimed botanical garden improves and sustains the ecology of a first-growth urban forest. Schuler shares ecological lessons and insights that can be applied to any landscape….
While searching for native plants for clients this spring, I have once again encountered the annoying challenge of trying to find male pollinators for female plants when plants are dioecious (male and female plants). Conventional nurseries and native nurseries alike often fail to deliver the goods. It’s a serious problem for those of us who want to plant for wildlife, especially when we want to provide fruit for birds and other creatures. Read this article and ask your native nursery to meet the Mr….