Category Archives: Plant Care

Bagworms are Back!

Bagworms are back!

These invasive insects look like cone-shaped sacs that can sometimes be mistaken for pine cones. The sacs look like cocoons that hang from the tree branches. These cocoons or sacs contain bagworm eggs and once they hatch, they will begin to dine on the leaves and needles of your trees and shrubs. A heavy infestation on evergreens can cause extensive die-back and even death to the plant. Bagworms are  fond of a variety of trees such as blue spruce, cedars, white pines and junipers. On deciduous trees, bagworms will strip the leaves, leaving only bare branches.

Left untreated, bagworms can defoliate branches, causing branch die-back and eventually kill the shrub or tree. The best defense against bagworms is an insecticide spray application. If the outbreak is severe, a second application may be required.

 

 

Japanese Beetles and Scale are Back!

Just about this time last year, we were starting to see a number of trees and shrubs with Japanese beetles. Japanese beetles seem to appear overnight and can defoliate a shrub within hours and a tree within days.

Easy to distinguish by their opalescent head and copper-colored body, they emerge in early June from their larvae stage and immediately seek out food. Once they start to dine on the leaves of their host, the damaged leaves emit an odor that attracts even more beetles. Japanese beetles prey on a variety of trees and shrubs, but favorites are linden, crabapple, apple, Norway maple, pin oaks, birch, fruit trees and rose bushes.

Response time to treat your trees and shrubs should be immediate. If you see signs of Japanese beetles in your landscape, contact your local Arbor Masters to treat your trees and shrubs … Read More »

Spring Is Right Around the Corner

Spring is Just Around the Corner

With the exception of a few cold days and a few snow falls this year, the Midwest has had a warmer than usual winter. Hopefully spring is not too far behind!

While it is still too early to start planting, you can prepare your landscape for spring growth.

Late February and March are the ideal time to prune fruit trees, shrubs and ornamental grasses. Pruning trees and shrubs now while trees are still dormant will promote new growth and allow pruned areas to heal before the tree starts to bloom in spring. Prevent weeds such as crabgrass, foxtail and broadleaf from overtaking your lawn with an early pre-emergent application. A pre-emergent works on the weed seeds that may over winter in your lawn and prohibits them from germinating in the spring. Maintain the health of your ash trees and … Read More »

Protecting your Shrubs and Trees from Winter Burn

Protecting your Shrubs and Trees from Winter Burn Laura Peterson, Certified Arborist

I cannot begin to guess what this winter is going to bring; 2 feet of snow covering the ground until March, below zero with high winds and no snow until January or mild 40 degree days with sporadic snowfall and 2 inches of ice covering everything in March. Whatever conditions occur this winter it is bound to be dry for the evergreens. Soil moisture is a factor, but the almost constant winds from November through February are extremely drying and damaging to evergreens.

Drying Winter Harms Trees

Native evergreen trees and shrubs are well adapted to our winters, but the majority of plants in landscapes are not native and don’t have the resources to combat the drying winds.

Plants lose moisture through pores in the leaves. If there is not sufficient soil moisture, … Read More »

Rabbit and Deer Damage

Deer and Rabbits Can Damage your Landscape

Sweet, doe-eyed deer and adorable rabbits are fascinating to watch as they visit your neighborhood. Unfortunately, these adorable animals are also a great source of destruction to trees, shrubs, plants and your grass.  Both deer and rabbits will eat lower, tender branches and bark off trees as well as new growth on bushes, perennials and grass. In addition, deer will scrape their antlers on trees to stake their territory and attract mates. This can cause unsightly and severe damage to the trunks cutting into the protective bark of the tree.

How do I prevent Wild Life from Damaging my Landscape?

Like deer, rabbits will dine on new grass and shrub growth, even taking them back to ground level, leaving little chance for the grass or shrubs to recover. Preventing wildlife from viewing your landscape as an all-you-can eat buffet … Read More »