Winter Watering Your Thirsty Landscape

January 26th, 2011 § Comments Off on Winter Watering Your Thirsty Landscape § permalink

Winter Watering Your Thirsty Landscape
The past year drew to a close with extreme dry conditions. We recorded only a little over 9 inches of moisture… even with that wonderfully wet May! Average norm is 17.16 inches! So we are dry as a brittle bone, crispy as an autumn leaf, chapped as a cowboy… we are DRY!

Blue Planet gardeners are popping in to winter water our clients’ landscapes when we can to keep the root zones from drying out too desperately. Dry soil actually pulls water from living roots, desiccating them and potentially killing the plant. So we work to keep the soil mulched and occasionally watered. If you see sprinklers watering the “lawn”, just know that we are watering the shade trees that have expansive root systems under the grass.

Drought can be so difficult to grasp, especially when we are so water conscious and wanting to conserve, conserve… all the while the plants need more, more water with weather like this.

To winter water, the temperature needs to be above 40 degrees, and that usually translates into a 5-hour window from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Watering stops before the temperatures drop. This allows the water to percolate into the soil and prevent water girdling if it refreezes on the surface.

Certainly you can water your plants whenever you like and have time. Once a month is the normal rate of water in a normal winter, however, with this incredible dryness, we are favoring three weeks between watering. Please call us if you have any questions about winter water. In the meantime, pray for snow and lots of it!

Call 719-685-0290 or email us to schedule an extensive garden/permaculture consultation.
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Pruning Your Garden Through the Seasons

January 24th, 2011 § Comments Off on Pruning Your Garden Through the Seasons § permalink

Proper pruning keeps your garden healthy

Pruning Your Garden
Pruning is an art, a science and a skill that impacts the way plants respond and grow. Understanding the science and knowing how a plant responds is important to achieving the results you desire.

Some plants never need pruning, while others may require an annual haircut. Never prune ornamental pines; instead, if possible, “candle snap” the buds. Pines have “candles” (long buds) which should be “snapped” (broken off by hand) to control growth, rather than cutting.

Some garden styles require more pruning, while most habitats rarely need pruning. Know your individual trees and shrubs to tailor your pruning to the species.

Here are some seasonal pruning tips:

Late Winter/Early Spring before the buds pop

  • Trim out unwanted low branches and crossing branches on flowering ornamental shrubs
  • Remove old canes from shrubs, except spring flowering
  • Keep tools sterilized to prevent spread of diseases
  • Rose care: cut live canes back halfway or knee-high… not too early in Spring!
  • Avoid pruning in spring while leaf buds are opening.

Late Spring/Early Summer

  • Remove old canes from spring flowering shrubs after blooming
  • Pinch new growth on flowering shrubs to encourage branching…more flowers!
  • Spring flowering shrubs, like lilacs, should be pruned after the bloom


Prune evergreens. There is less stress in the summer for them.

Remove low branches from younger shade trees


  • No more evergreen pruning
  • Prune shade trees
  • Prune fruit trees and flowering ornamentals
  • Summer and fall bloomers, like blue mist, should be pruned in late winter

Dead branches can always be removed, regardless of season.

Remember to keep your tools sharp to avoid damage to delicate bark and tissues, and clean them after each pruning to keep disease from spreading.

Blue Planet Earthscapes’ experienced gardeners know when to prune and how to prune to keep your understory trees and shrubs at their best year round.

Call 719-685-0290 or email us to schedule an extensive garden/permaculture consultation.
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Our brand-new website is here!

January 15th, 2011 § Comments Off on Our brand-new website is here! § permalink

Blue Planet Earthscapes has retired ye-olde-website and has hired eDao, Inc to implement a new WordPress site. You can look forward to regular posts from your favorite editors, pictures from our&your gardens, special offers, writings on what’s new on the gardening front, videos we find inspiring, and upcoming classes and announcements!

Take a moment and browse around. Feel free to comment on our blog entries and submit your favorite writing, picture or video to We are looking forward to your input!

The Blue Planet Earthscapes Team.