Lawns & Gardening

Lawn Care


Below are a couple of methods for lawn care that lean towards being earth friendly from Cornell University or Cornell Cooperative Extension

Homeowners Lawn Care Water Quality Almanac (PDF, Suffolk)

Lawn Care without Pesticides (PDF, Suffolk)

Just Mow It: A Guide to Grass Recycling (PDF, Suffolk)

Repetitive Overseeding – Increase Your Lawn Density (PDF, Rensselear)

Cornell Lawn Pest Control – Suffolk County




Native Plant List for NY, NJ & PA


Annual plants

What is a annual? Mr. Cullina states, in the book Understanding Perennials, annuals are “those that complete their lifecycle in one growing season.”


Perennial plants

What is a perennial? William Cullina put it this way in his book Understanding Perennials, “a plant that survives from year to year in a temperate climate but dies back to just above or below the ground at the onset of the dormant season.”

Perennial Plant of the Year

National Gardening Association: To Cut or Not to Cut a perennial before cold weather strikes.



A shrub is defined as “a woody plant that is never tree-like in habit and produces branches or shoots from or near the base” from the Manual of Woody Landscape Plants written by Michael A. Dirr.

I met a gentleman that was having problems with a Hydrangea bush. Here is some advice to help your Hydrangea’s bloom: Tip One: Do little or no pruning because once the blooms are set it would be a shame to cut them off. Tip Two: Protect from winter temperatures by covering plant before single digit temps hit. Tip Three: Plant Hydrangeas in a guarded area with a southern exposure and away from wind. Click on this link for more details.



A tree is described by Dirr as “a woody plant with one main stem at least 12 to 15 feet tall, and having a distinct head in most cases”, in the Manual of Woody Landscape Plants.

Link from DEC: Care and Pruning of Damaged Trees

Trees & Destress: Study of tree coverage and newborn babies.

Cornell Guide for Planting & Maintaining Trees & Shrubs (link to PDF)

Tree Benefits Calculator link

Learn about Oak Wilt Disease

How are your evergreens doing? Take a peek at the ‘Stress-related Conifer Dieback Fact Sheet’ (PDF) provided by Purdue University.

University of Missouri Extension, First Aid for Storm Damaged Trees

Michigan State University, Dealing with Storm Damaged Trees

Road Salt & Trees, Cornell




Here is an interesting article written by Peter Del Tredici: Nature Abhors a Garden

Check out ‘All-American Selections’ for award winning varieties of fruits, vegetables and perennials.



Planting Zone

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Find out what hardiness zone your are in by clicking on Plant Hardiness Zone Map. According to this map Hopewell Junction is in zone 6A (-10 to -5 F) which has changed over the years it use to be 5B.



Soil & Composting

Small Scale Composting: Cornell University Compost Basics

Start composting indoors with worms. Special worms called Red Wigglers (Eisenia foetida) can be used to eat some of your garbage. They will eat food scraps and shredded paper products. Here is a link from the University of Nebraska on Vermicomposting to help you get started.

Here is an article that explains the importance of testing your soil.



Vegetable Gardening

Website for Vegetable Variety List for NY gardeners from Cornell

USDA, Agricultural Research: Fruits & Vegetables

Here is a link for Cornell University Vegetable MD Online in case you have problems with disease in your garden.

Link to Cornell University Vegetable MD Online: Disease Fact Sheets listed by crophttp://contentmgr4/CMS/Icons/CommandButtons/ok.gif

Vegetable Pathology website highlights: Late blight on tomatoes – see link for more information from Cornell LI Extension

Late blight on tomatoes & potatoes – see link from Cornell



Fall Garden Clean-up

Winter storage of: Canna, Dahlia, Gladiolus corms, Caladium, Geranium from Purdue University, check out this PDF for advice.

In planting Zone 6 it is recommended to plant bulbs mid October or before a hard frost. Remember to water them upon planting so rootwork can establish and mark site with a popsicle stick. Cover bulbs at or just below ground level with chicken wire to protect rodents from digging them up. Hide chicken wire with soil or mulch. Wait for spring display.