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Bee Aware

Honey Bees are in trouble.  In the last 50 years, experts say the domesticated honey bee population declined by nearly 50%. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) is the phenomenon in which worker bees disappear leaving behind a queen, food and a few nurse bees. It is thought...

Witch hazel

Hamamelis (pronounced; ham-a-may-lis), the genus for “Witch hazel”, is a tree that blooms in the fall and the winter and has three species native to North America, (H. ovalis, H. virginiana and H. vernalis), one in Japan (H. japonica) and one in China (H....

Snowy Owl

One of our employees spotted a Snowy Owl on a recent evening which caused this writer, an amateur birder, to launch this blog. These magnificent Arctic birds are frequent migrants to Canada and the northern parts of the United States, Europe and Asia.  Two years ago...

Red Twig Dogwood

Did you know that the word “dog” in “dogwood”  has no connection with dogs?   Historically, the dogwood was found to be particularly useful in making tools because of its hardwood properties.  “Dog”  comes from the word...

Winterberry

Ilex verticillata, or winterberry, is quite noticeable this time of year.  It is a species of holly, “Ilex” in Latin, and is native to eastern North America.  Ilex verticillata is a deciduous shrub (it loses its leaves) and is happiest in wet areas.  Not...

Grasses

I notice the grasses as I walk through my gardens, making a mental list of all that I still have to do to prepare  them for winter.  I remember that I was first drawn to switch grass, also known as Panicum virgatum, because of the sound it made when the wind would...

Mushrooms and more

I recently attended a lecture on fungi at the Mass Horticulture Society in Wellesley MA titled “The Hidden Forest” thinking that this would be a conversation about identifying and hunting the desired, edible mushrooms in which many of us are interested. ...

A perfect accent tree

Acer palmatum dissectum ‘Verde’ is a species of Japanese Maple that I would highly recommend for anyone looking for a small accent, or specimen, tree.  This Japanese maple is a green version of the highly recognizable red Japanese maple.  Its height and spread is...

Winterizing Evergreens

Winter is not an easy season for evergreen trees and shrubs.  The harsh, cold and sometimes long dry spells, fluctuations in temperature and the fact that the ground is frozen makes it difficult for evergreens to take up adequate amounts of moisture.  In fact through...

Wild Edibles

Thanks to the Nashua River Watershed Association, (NRWA), I was able to partake in a “Wild Edibles Woodland Walk ” that they had organized with Environmentalist Russ Cohen last week.  Russ introduced us to about a dozen wild edible plants that we all pass...

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