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Boston Flower Show-Spring will soon be here

Go get inspired at the Boston Flower Show, the theme this year is Savor Spring.  It runs March 14-18, 2018 at the Seaport World Trade Center, Boston.  Follow this link for information. #bostonflowershow

Tree Identification – Great school vacation activities

Winter Tree Id Acorn Line Up – Which one fell on your head?

If you have little minds on or near school vacation, consider having them use their feet, eyes and brains to figure out what kind of trees are in their environment. This tool from the National Arbor Day Website you can access by clicking here will help, but looking at the bark, needles, twigs and most importantly, seeds or cones, make winter tree identification a rewarding challenge.

Winter Feeder-Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

Hemlock woolly adelgid egg masses produced in late winter often looks like snow between the needles of a hemlock.  The adelgid is a microscopic winter feeder of sap from hemlocks and can kill hemlocks if left untreated.  This small pest is a serious threat to hemlocks in the northeast causing hemlock decline and death.

Mid winter anti-desiccant applications soon!

Anti desiccant or anti transpirant means to keep from drying out or keep from transpiring.  This plant health care application is done in late November or early December for the first round, then a second time when we get a mid winter thaw.  We have just started the second round and will finish the second mid winter round next week.  This application is a wax material that is sprayed on the leaf tissue of evergreens, such as boxwood, pieris or rhododendrons.  The wax keeps the stomates from opening and water from leaving the leaf when there is little available ground moisture (due to it being frozen) to replace it.  Once moisture leaves the leave and is not replaced the leaf tissue may turn brown and look burned.

Winter Burn Boxwood

Lawn & Plant Health Care Renewals

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Organic Lawn Care Service

Spring is coming.  Lawn and plant health care renewal notifications are now in your mailbox or email box.  Prepay discounts continue this year with a 5% off for full season prepayment made by March 21st.  For customers with aeration that prepay for the season by January 31st take another $50 off the aeration service.  If you want to update your program or have any questions just call us or email renewals@greenhow.com.

 

Deer Protection

  

Over the winter deer can devastate ornamental plantings like arborvitae, rhododendron, boxwood and holly. We apply Deer Pro up to deer browsing height to make the plant tissue have a bitter taste. Deer tend to feed on preferred sources over and over so only light sampling will occur and the deer will feed on other, tastier, plants. The light green color at the bottom of the pictured arborvitae is the treated area. It lasts all winter, has anti-dessicant properties to protect the plant from winter burn as well and will weather off with the spring rains.

Fall Plant Health Care – Horticultural Oil

The Hemlock below has the woolly masses of Hemlock Woolly Adelgid eggs between the needles or leaves pictured in the photo.  Severe infestations resemble snow.  Dormant oil or Fall Horticultural oil applications to your plants has many benefits.  For hemlocks, the oil application suffocates hemlock woolly adelgid.

  • Oils are effective controls of many plant pests.
  • Advantages of oils include safety, effectiveness and limited effects on beneficial insects.
  • Horticultural oil sprays are directed to specific targets and do not leave a residual impact on beneficial insects or other organisms.

Various oils have been used for centuries to control insect and mite pests. Oils are an important tool to manage certain pest problems (e.g., scales, aphids, mites) on fruit trees, shade trees and woody ornamental plants. Several recently developed oils extend this usefulness to flowers, vegetables and other herbaceous plants. Oils also can control some plant diseases, such as powdery mildew. Oils used to protect plants have been called by many names, but perhaps horticultural oils best describes them.

  • For spider mites – hemlock, euonymus, forsythia, privet and pine.
  • For scale – euonymus, cherry, magnolia, hemlock, pine, oak, taxus, rhododendron, fruit trees, blueberry.
  • For hemlock woolly adelgid.
  • For lace bugs – andromeda, azalea, rhododendron
  • For winter moth – maple, birch, oak, blueberry and fruit trees.

Oils have different effects on pest insects. The most important is that they block the air holes (spiracles) through which insects breathe, causing them to die from asphyxiation. In some cases, oils also may act as poisons, interacting with the fatty acids of the insect and interfering with normal metabolism. Oils also may disrupt how an insect feeds, a feature that is particularly important in the transmission of some plant viruses by aphids.

Oils pose few risks to people or to most desirable species, including beneficial natural enemies of insect pests. This allows oils to integrate well with biological controls. Toxicity is minimal, at least compared to alternative pesticides, and oils quickly dissipate through evaporation, leaving little residue.

 

Lawn and Plant Care Boston

Make plans to get to 2017 Boston Flower and Garden Show – Superheroes of the Garden!

Make plans to get to the 2017 Boston Flower and Garden Show.  It is March 22 to 26 at the Seaport World Trade Center in Boston.  When in the neighborhood, stop by La Casa de Pedro’s newest location 505 Congress St, Boston.  The theme this year is Superhero’s.

-Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc.
www.GreenHow.com. Effective Organic & Low Impact Solutions, Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton and Metro Boston.

Valentine’s Day Lovebug

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  The Lovebug is a small black fly that is common in areas of South, Central and Gulf Coast North America.  The male and female Lovebugs are known for their large swarms twice a year.  Lovebugs will mate and remain attached for days, even in flight, leading to their name.  These bugs are unfortunately attracted to vehicle exhaust, especially diesel exhaust, and end up in large numbers near roads and highways.  They are so numerous near highways they cover windshields, body panels and even radiators leading to engine overheating in extreme cases.  In entomological terms, the name Lovebug lets you know it is not a true bug.  True bugs, order Hemiptera, have a space between the name and the word bug, like Bed bug.  Ladybugs and Lovebugs are not true bugs, so have no space in the name.  The Disney movie of the same name is based on the Volkswagen Beetle, but rules don’t apply when describing a car.

-Sean Greenhow