Filed under Vegetables and Fruits

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

Gardening in the Moment

In the rush of spring planting, there’s so much available to see now that quickly changes. Maybe the elusive quality of peony flowers makes them even more beautiful as you admire them now and the wind plucks their petals. Moisture is a premium this spring at Plant Exchange and throughout South Dakota this spring. Thankfully, … 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

Where Do Tomatoes Originate?

Welcome to a couple of “Dibbles and Bits” at Plant Exchange blog. The first is about the origin of tomatoes, followed by what influences the Ginkgo tree to live so long. The quest for the tastiest and then largest tomato is part of the garden season lore.  Finding the “roots” of tomatoes may help in … 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.

Would You Like to Try a Garden Cover?

Spring is here!  The first naturalized daffodil to bloom! The weather beckons to start the garden season on the Northern Plains. Likely ahead, at least a month, is unsettled weather with gusty winds, roller coaster temperatures, and grab-a-book-and read-outside days. Maybe you’d like to consider a garden cover for some root vegetables in early spring. Garden … Continue reading

Caring for Starter Plants

Spring is here Plant Exchange! Children and the rest of us may soon enjoy sweet summer cherry tomatoes on the patio. Flowerbeds always have room for more Black-eyed Susans. These can be yet be grown from seed in this region in time to transplant into the garden. The recent post “Time to Start Transplant Seeds” … Continue reading

Time to Start Transplant Seeds

Spring is here, according to migrating birds, budding and flowering trees.  If you’re thinking about starting seeds for the flower or vegetable garden, the garden catalogs, back of seed packets, and sites you “Google” have information.  Seeds from catalogs offer a wider variety of choices than garden centers. Maybe you’re looking for a bloom color … Continue reading

Almost Missed It

In the middle of the growing season, when container sunflowers on the deck look as beautiful as these, it would be easy to miss a not-so-showy failsafe of Nature.  When we think of a flower’s role in plant longevity, producing seeds come to mind. Then we look for friendly pollinators that help make that happen.  … Continue reading

Tomatoes are Ripe

Waiting for the first garden-ripened tomatoes for sandwiches is worth the anticipation! Twice this week! Plenty of bacon, lettuce, mayo, and a tomato slice that covers the bread, and extra napkins for the juice, fit the meal. Full-size tomatoes are the last to ripen fruits or vegetables in this garden. They are a versatile staple … Continue reading