Another Late Bloomer

Plants like the Northern Catalpa and people who are slightly out-of-step with the crowd interest me. The catalpa leaves are among the latest to appear among deciduous trees in spring. Late enough, that in a drought spring, one wonders if the tree is still viable.  After most other trees have bloomed, the catalpa’s dramatic white … Continue reading

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day-June 15th

Welcome to Plant Exchange Blog on the Northern Plains (USDA zone 4b-5a). Summer temperatures are beginning to roll over the short spring. Peonies have been beautiful this year. This flower and a shrub of white peonies are still blooming. The flowers are as beautiful and short-lived on the plant and as cut arrangements.  There’s always … Continue reading

What You Looking At?

What someone sees, who likes plants, and what Ms. Wild Turkey sees likely differ. After spring rains, the yellow yarrow and purple catmint begin to bloom. The lime barberry shrub accents the yellow. Most of the trees and shrubs in this region now have leaves, except for the fenced Japanese maple, which is slow to … Continue reading

Planned, Wild, and Free

Many herbaceous and woody perennials are growing again. It’s a time to celebrate plants that have broken dormancy in the fall and winter drought conditions. Likely, we will find gaps in the flowerbeds, and local greenhouses have many options. Don Engebretson, design writer for the Northern Gardener magazine, is quoted in an article in the June issue … Continue reading

Peonies’ “Repeated Refrains of Nature”

We’re watching our perennials begin to grow this slow-to-warm spring. Peonies (Hardiness Zone 3-8) are among the earliest herbaceous perennials to emerge from winter. We saw their red stems about the time daffodils bloomed.   Green leaves unfurl later as the warming sun shines several days in a row and rains fall. Finally, the plant … Continue reading

Plant Markers of Spring–May 15th

Lilacs have leafed out and are reaching full bloom as spring conditions improve, quite a remarkable plant sustainability trait. Lilacs line the Lewis & Clark Recreation Area along the Missouri River near home in a USDA 4-5a hardiness zone. Welcome to Plant Exchange Blog in South Dakota. Fall planted spring bulbs such as daffodils and … Continue reading

Black-eyed Susans and other Rudbeckias

Black-eyed Susans grow in lots of yards in this USDA zone 4-5a region. The perennial, full-sun, yellow flower mounds appear by summer and bloom into fall. Their bold color and easy maintenance make them attractive for borders.  Black-eyed Susans and other Rudbeckias are featured this week as attractive, hardy North American native plants with large … Continue reading

Regional Plant-Related Event

South Dakota State University Extension Hosts “Garden Hour Webinar” online this season. For the free, hour long gardening show for our region, go to www.extension.sdstate.edu website. Choose the “Events” tab and see more information and the registration for Garden Hour Webinar. Featured to discuss the current season in the garden will be horticulturist Dr. Rhoda Burrows, tree … Continue reading

Spring is Busting Out All Over

Even after cold winds and low moisture in the region, we are glad that spring has arrived. Here are some findings on a walk around the yard.  Leaf buds of this Ohio Buckeye/ Hawthorn tree show the energy of spring. Trees that flower before they leaf out, such as maples, have bursting buds. Recurring daffodils … Continue reading

Lettuce and Spring Go Together

People who like to eat fresh produce and gardeners might have lettuce in common. Spring growing conditions for lettuce is usually favorable. It’s easy to be enthusiastic with an early green thumb success in spring. Lettuce harvested, washed, and on the plate couldn’t be tastier.  Would you like to grow your salad greens? Materials:   A … Continue reading