daffodils and hyacinth field of flowers

What to plant for a pretty spring yard

Planting spring flowering plants in the fall creates an even prettier spring yard! Flowering spring bulbs can even show their blooms when snow is melting on the ground. Here is a list of plants that give us a show early-to-late spring. From spring through fall, anytime you add plants, you’ll be happy you did because they will be enjoyed for years to come.

Spring Blooming Bulbs

These bulbs are available in late summer for you to plant in the fall when temperatures start dropping. Bulbs are one of the more popular plants because of how easy they are to plant. Fall planted bulbs need the cold dormancy period of winter before they bloom in the spring. Plant your bulbs around your late sprouting perennials to fill in the area before the foliage grows in to create a succession of blooms. If you have deer around, look for deer resistant logos on the bulb boxes.

GALLERY OF FALL PLANTED BULBS FOR EARLY SPRING BLOOMS

  • purple large allium blooms
  • yellow crocus
  • Grape Hyacinth in bloom
  • Yellow daffodils bloomin in early spring
  • red tulips
  • Snowdrop flower in the snow

Perennials

Perennials are herbaceous, which means their foliage dies down each fall and will regrow in the spring. These highlighted perennial varieties come up earlier in the spring and create an early show of color!

GALLERY OF PERENNIALS FOR SPRING BLOOMS:

  • blue flower looks like explosion of a veronica blue bomb plant
  • white, yellow, and purple hellebores flowers
  • blue and pink flowers of columbine plant
  • pink heartshaped flowers on a bleeding heart perennial
  • pink flowers of pigsqueak bergenia winter glow
  • white flowers of jacobs ladder plant
  • Tiny white flowers of woodruff plant
  • little purple blue flowers of bugleweed ground cover
  • little pink flowers osn armeria
  • blue flowers of woodland forget me not
  • lots of pink flowers on a forget me not
  • white flowers that look like pants on a dicentra cucullaria
  • golden grounsel or squaw weed yellow blooms in the spring
  • euphorbia cushion spurge yellow growth and blooms

Shrubs

Shrubs drop their foliage each fall unless they are evergreen shrubs. Their woody structures stand over winter, creating winter interest in your yard. Shrubs can create a focal point among perennials and are used to easily create a larger grouping of blooms in the spring. We’ve all seen lilacs blooming in the spring but we’d like to show many other options to consider for an array of blooms in the spring.

SHRUBS FOR SPRING COLOR:

  • forsythia northern gold yellow spring blooms
  • pjm spring blooming purple rhododendron
  • pussy willow catkins in spring
  • white flowers on standing ovation serviceberry
  • red electric lights azalea
  • Bulbous white blooms on a snowball viburnum
  • orange foliage of a barberry shrub
  • Purple flowers on a bloomerang lilac shrub

Trees

Trees will always catch our eye because of their size and the easiest to notice around town in spring arrives. The bright pinks, reds, and whites lining the streets show us that warmer days are ahead and everything is waking from dormancy.

TREES FOR SPRING BLOOMS:

  • blooming mn strain redbud
  • bubble gum pink blooms on show time crabapple
  • light pink large bloom of a first editions centennial blush magnolia tree

Please note that many of the trees and shrubs shown are sold quickly in the spring due to their colorful show and may not be available later in the season. We recommend starting a wish list so you know what to grab, even when it’s not blooming. Visiting Drummers Garden Center and Floral in the spring through fall will give you the best ideas for how your plants will transition and create a perfect yard all season long.




sanseveria on a desk with book, paper, and glasses

Plants improve your space!

Plants are a wonderful addition to our lives because they connect us with nature, which improves our mental health. Here are the top 5 reasons that plants improve your space.

1. Breathe Easier

Indoor plants will improve air quality by removing carbon dioxide, benzene, and up to 90% of formaldehyde. Formaldehyde can be found in household products such as glues, household soaps and cleaners, paints and coatings, lacquers and finishes, building materials, pet products, and more.

2. Relax and Refocus

If you are having a stressful time and need some help, put a plant nearby. Plants can help lower your blood pressure and reduce stress. This can help you reduce overall tension and refocus on the tasks you need to complete.

3. Help with Transition

Moving can be a stressful time, especially if you are moving away from home as a college student, to a different state, or for the first time! Many experts agree that plants can give you the same benefits as having a pet. If you already have plants, make sure to bring at least one with you. Plant owners feel less alone, better able to deal with stress, and hopefully feel more optimistic!

4. Friendly Flora

Not all bacteria is bad! Houseplants can increase the beneficial bacteria and microbial diversity in your indoor environment, which benefits our health while indoors. Experts do say playing in dirt helps our immune system so we are bringing that beneficial bacteria inside with us. No, that doesn’t mean you need to spread soil all around.

5. Aesthetically Pleasing

They are purely just pleasing to the eye. It doesn’t need to help us heal, accelerate output, boost our energy, or improve creativity, which plants can do! We can add plants just because it bring us joy and it creates the space that makes us feel more comfortable. That’s really the only reason you need to add plants. Your space is sacred and you make it into what you want!

Head to our Houseplants and Tropical Plant page to read more about the houseplants we offer and for link to plant care search through Costa Farms.

Late Summer Garden Tasks

It’s late summer and fall is around the corner. Slowing down, enjoying time in the garden and eating delicious fresh produce are the reasons this is a fulfilling time of year. If you are wondering what you can do in the garden, here are a few garden and landscape tasks and tips.

Late Summer Garden and Landscape Tasks

PLANT CARE

Watering:
Keep watering an inch of water weekly to your plants. For instance, trees and shrubs will soon set their leaf and flower buds for next season as well as keep growing their root structure. If you have fruiting plants, produce from pumpkins to apples are now making the final push to plump and ripen.

Weeding:
The weeds are still growing and some may be flowering. Pull those weeds to prevent them from reseeding. Invest in some weeding tools to prevent hand fatigue and easily pull prickly weeds like thistles that you may be skipping without gloves or a weeder.

Fertilization:
If your lawn is not in dormancy from drought, you can use a fall lawn fertilizer like Max Lawn Fall Lawn Food Winterizer to give your lawn a boost of nutrients before winter dormancy and have green grass in the spring.

You can also fertilize your trees, shrubs, and perennials with a fertilizer that is higher in Phosphate and lower in Nitrogen to promote more root growth before winter freeze. This boosts plant health going into winter and for the next season.

Pruning:
If you have any woody plants or perennials to prune, the 3rd or 4th week of August should be the last week for these tasks. You don’t want to prune too late in the season because as the days shorten, plants begin the process of hardening off for the winter. Any new growth that doesn’t have time to complete this process may have damaged foliage in the spring.

GARDENING AND PLANTING:

Sowing turf grass or cover crops:
Mid-August through mid-September is an ideal time to start new grass from seed. We carry high quality seed from Ramy Seeds in Mankato.  If it seems daunting to keep the soil moist to sprout grass this time of year, you can wait until late fall to sow seeds that will start growing in spring with the snow melt and spring rains.

Dividing perennials (PDF List of perennials and dividing time):
When the days are cooler and your perennials are done flowering, you can divide and replant your perennials if they are crowded or not performing well in their original spot. A good rule of thumb for figuring out if you can split a particular perennial is if it blooms in the late summer or fall, divide in the spring. If the plant blooms in the spring, divide in the fall. It’s very important to boost root growth with Biotone Starter or anything with higher Phosphate and lower in Nitrogen when you transplant. Phosphate promotes root growth over foliage growth which is more important when transplanting in the fall.

Plant fall crops:
You can still grow more food! Fresh produce you can grow late summer into fall include radish, spinach, kale, cilantro, broccoli, and brussel sprouts, as some examples. Look for veggies with short growing periods or can take light frost.

Cover crops are also an option if you are done with your garden space until next spring or before you plant garlic in late Sept. or Oct.  A cover crop is used to slow erosion from wind and rain, improve soil health, smother weeds, help control pests and diseases, break up compacted soil, and increase biodiversity. Plant a quick growing crop like peas, oats, radishes, or buckwheat. Using a cover crop may reduce the need to use compost to prepare your garden soil for next year

Read our post about Living Soil which covers best practices for healthier soil and head over to the University of MN Extension article with a cover crops selector tool to choose a cover crop for your soil goals. For example: If you fertilize with liquid fertilizers you probably have excess nitrogen in your soil or if you grew peas ( nitrogen fixers) in an area then you’d choose a cover crop that adds other nutrients and provides other benefits.

while and pink amaryllis blooming

Indoor Amaryllis Bulbs

Planting Amaryllis Bulbs Step-by-Step:

(Click through image gallery for all steps)

 

  1. Select firm bulbs – the biggest you can find. The larger the bulb, the more blooms it can have. Use any pot, with drainage, that is about 1 to 2 inches wider than the bulb.  Or, try a larger container with several amaryllis. Plant bulbs an inch apart, if planting more than one.
  2. Plant or restart your bulb 8-10 weeks in advance of when you want it to bloom. Plant different varieties, as well as plant in fall and early winter for blooms throughout the winter.
  3. Fill the pot 1/3 to 1/2 full with all-purpose potting soil, set the bulb on top of soil and then fill the pot with soil so the 1/3 to 1/2 of the bulb is exposed.  The soil can be topped with the moss, rocks, or a decorative item.
  4. Water well to settle the soil then water sparingly until active growth is visible. No more than 1/4 cup of water a week. Fertilize at half the recommended strength each time you water.
  5. Place the pot in a warm, sunny (indirect bright light is best) spot and you’ll start to see it growing its flower stalks. you’ll have blooms in about two months. Be patient! You can then move the pot wherever you’d like indoors to enjoy after they are in bloom.