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Garden Variety: Growing plants can be good for mental, physical health

Gardeners are from all walks of life and have interests ranging from indoor tropical plants, food (fruit and vegetable) production, native plants, pollinator and wildlife habitats, traditional lawns and landscapes, and any combination of those. The arrival of the new year is the perfect time to ...

Garden Variety: Emerald ash borer regulations changing

The emerald ash borer is a destructive insect pest that has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees in the U.S. since its introduction into the country. Federal and state regulatory officials attempted to slow it down by regulating movement of ash trees, wood and mulch, but their efforts have ...

Garden Variety: Build a terrarium garden at home

Terrarium gardens are a fun and educational activity for people of all ages, and they can be as simple or as complicated as you want. Terrarium gardens are appropriate year-round (and should last for years), but winter building offers a special opportunity to connect with nature when the ...

Garden Variety: For evergreens in Kansas, think beyond pine trees

Pine trees are often the first things that come to mind when thinking about evergreen plants to add to the landscape for screening, windbreaks and winter interest. There are many other options, though, and many are better suited for planting in northeast Kansas than pines. Take a look around ...

Garden Variety: Gifts for gardeners can be wide-ranging

Do you have a gardener or aspiring gardener on your holiday gift list this year? Are you a gardener or aspiring gardener and looking for a special treat for yourself? Winter, and the holiday season especially, is a great time to shop for garden tools and supplies, indoor plants, books, and ...

Garden Variety: Make sure your plants have proper lighting indoors

Lighting is one of the biggest challenges to maintaining healthy plants indoors, and the shortened days of fall and winter make these seasons the toughest. Fortunately, plant-appropriate supplemental lighting has improved in recent years and is more energy-efficient, affordable and ...

Couple transformed gutted historic Haskell Row home into modern farmhouse

Ashley and Aaron Weigel were living in Olathe when they heard about a gutted property for sale on a two-acre lot in Lawrence. At first, they imagined the home would be an investment they could turn into a rental property. But once they saw it in person, they knew they wanted to live there — ...

Garden Variety: Reasons to compost yard waste and how to start

Compost is the best soil conditioner available for use in any kind of garden, landscape, or lawn. There are many kinds of compost available for purchase at most garden centers, but it is also easy to make with a little space and time. Making compost saves money and benefits the environment ...

Garden Variety: Lay the groundwork now for a healthy lawn

For fescue and bluegrass lawns, late fall is one of the most important times to provide extra maintenance in the form of fertilizer. Fertilizer is needed at least occasionally to keep lawn grasses healthy in most soils. Healthy lawns reduce soil erosion and stormwater runoff. They outcompete ...

Garden Variety: Ways to preserve fall leaves

Leaves have started falling from deciduous trees in the Lawrence area, and some admirers might want to pick up a few of the prettiest leaves and take them home. But these small ornaments of fall quickly dry and fade — unless they are preserved or made into art. Pressing leaves is the ...

Garden Variety: Can mums survive the winter? It depends on planting, care

Chrysanthemums, often called mums for short, are the most popular flower for fall color in the landscape in the Midwest. They adorn porches, planters and gardens with their varied hues of gold, orange, pink, red and white and are often paired with other fall favorites such as pumpkins, corn ...

Garden Variety: Monstera plants growing in popularity

Interest in indoor plants has increased steadily in the U.S. over the last several years, and a few specific plants and types of plants are stealing the show. One of these plant groups is Monstera. Basic types of Monstera are widely available, but rare forms sell for hundreds or thousands of ...

Meet Charles and Agatha: the two skeletons doing the most this October

Charles and Agatha are truly winning October, despite the circumstances. They’ve been sunbathing, wining and dining, camping out and playing in the leaves. One might even say they are living their best lives – if not for the fact that they are dead. Every Oct. 1, Lawrence resident Kelly ...

Garden Variety: With hardy crops and cold protection, gardeners can keep on growing

Freezing temperatures will likely arrive over the next few weeks in northeast Kansas, but the gardening season continues for vigilant gardeners who are interested in prolonging the harvest. How do these gardeners keep vegetables growing into fall and winter? Only certain crops are suitable for ...

Garden Variety: Many factors play a role in deciduous trees’ fall color

Why do some trees display brilliant fall color while others drop their leaves without a show? Fall color in leaves of deciduous trees is determined by genetics, site conditions and weather. Here in Kansas, weather and site conditions can be especially limiting and make the extent of each ...

Garden Variety: Kaw Valley Farm Tour returning soon

The 16th annual Kaw Valley Farm Tour will be held as planned on Oct. 3 and 4. The self-guided tour of local farms is an opportunity to meet farmers, learn about locally produced agricultural products and see ag production practices firsthand. The bulk of the tour is outdoors with plenty of ...