Filed under Perennials and Grasses

First Harvest and Shade Plants

Welcome to Plant Exchange Blog on the Northern Plains. While hot and dry summer days challenge farmers and gardeners, we’re ready to celebrate a few garden first harvests. We’ll also consider a few ornamental shade plants that grow well here.  Sunflowers are among personal favorites that grow tended and wild and free in this region. … Continue reading

Up Close in Our Gardens

Mid-season of this busy growing year is a moment to notice how our garden plants are progressing. Zinnias, smoke bush, wildflowers, and first look at sunflowers are featured today at Plant Exchange Blog. Soil warmed slowly this spring, and direct-seeded plants such as zinnias were noticeably behind greenhouse transplants in this region. Zinnias are now … Continue reading

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day July 15th

I am drawn to flowers because tending them is a chance to be outdoors. Warm seasons are short here in South Dakota. Colors and shapes of flowers and foliage are also enticing. Trying to grow a variety of plants beginning with seeds is a fun challenge. Seeing the results each growing season satisfies and also … Continue reading

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day-June 15th

Welcome to Plant Exchange blog, USDA Zone 4-5a on the Northern Plains. After a cool spring, we are having temperatures climbing to 90 degrees F and dry conditions lately. We’re excited to show you plants in bloom today. Just in time for Pollinator Week, our Northern Catalpa is in full bloom, attracting various kinds of bees. A … Continue reading

Peonies for the Northern Plains

On a day more like summer than spring, peony blossoms are rescued from the heat for a few days for enjoyment indoors. The white flowers are lightly fragrant, a hint of spice. Peonies are long-lived perennials that have many magnificent flowers over a week or so in late spring. A characteristic is that the flowers … Continue reading

Surprises in Spring Gardening

Spring gardening is fast-paced and a bit erratic at Plant Exchange blog. There are lots of surprises. Most are fun. What a surprise! Out the computer window, a favorite peony is in bloom. It dances in the breeze this mild spring day. Long-lived perennial peonies are bursts of color in spring.  Below is a versatile … Continue reading

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day-May 15th

Welcome to Plant Exchange blog on the Northern Plains. Spring is here! Trees are in flower, such as this redbud, and are leafing out. The broad palette of green is everywhere. Our region is USDA Zone 4-5a. Today’s projected temperatures are 77 degrees F. with overnight low as 48 degrees F. We have had a … Continue reading

Regional Plant-Related Event

Backyard Farmer with Nebraska Extension Educators from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln airs Thursdays on Nebraska Public Television from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. Program topics come from the growing season and responses to questions sent from around the state.

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day— April 15th

Welcome to Plant Exchange on the Northern Plains. We’re USDA Zone 4b-5a and having a couple of weeks of cool temperatures after an early spring warming. We’re featuring a few perennials and trees in bloom now. Hellebores have been in bloom since last month when it snowed, and the sturdy and droopy flowers fit this … Continue reading

Which Echinacea Coneflowers are Better?

Echinacea or coneflower is a perennial native flower staple in this Northern Plains region (USDA 4b-5a) for its beauty, long bloom season, hardiness in dry periods, ability to overwinter, and pollinator attraction. A bit more growing information about Echinacea may be useful. In the past decade, more cultivars of Echinacea have been developed to give … Continue reading