SUBSCRIBE & GET YOUR FREE 10% OFF DISCOUNT CARD
Subscribe Now
Give a Gift
Preview the magazine before you buy.
Read a FREE issue online!
Iowa Gardener Cover

Subscribe Today!
1-888-265-3600

 

  Sign up for our free gardening E-newsletter 
Give us your email address* and we'll provide monthly gardening tips and how-to's, great landscape ideas and plants to try — Delivered right to your inbox!
Your Email:
* Your email address will not be sold or shared with any third parties.

 

Calendar of Events
See our calendar for local events.

 

 

Get Involved
Participate in online discussions with an SBS user account.

Register Now  or  Log in

Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Building a Scarier Scarecrow

If you have a garden, it’s more than likely that you also have a pest or three. It should be no surprise that pests and critters like our yards and gardens as much, or more, than we do. We are encouraged to invite wildlife into our yards and gardens because we love seeing them, and, in theory, they help balance our desire for our garden and nature to coexist. But what happens when they go rogue and start eating, digging and destroying all of our hard work?

Scaring them away, or we could say gently discouraging, wild and sometimes not-so-wild critters to “Step away from the garden,” is always a first and sometimes successful option.

>> read “Building a Scarier Scarecrow”       #Decorating   #Fall   #Pests
Move the Plants, Not the Pests

Container gardening is one of the fastest growing sectors of the gardening world – and why not? Containers can be grown where traditional gardens cannot, such as apartment balconies, courtyards, decks and patios. Since most containers are portable, there is a strong temptation to bring this instant landscape and color into the home once autumn transitions into the cold of winter. However, in addition to the preparation of the plants’ horticultural needs, extra precautions need to be taken to ensure that no unwanted visitors hitchhike into your home on these container plants and jeopardize the health of your current houseplants or cause a nuisance in the home.

>> read “Move the Plants, Not the Pests”       #Containers   #Insects   #Pests
Midsummer Checkup

Tall, multicolored ‘Granny’s Bouquet’ zinnias flourish in the sunny border. We’ve been clipping them regularly for the table, which encourages new flowering. Heritage garden roses are into their second or third flush. Landscape roses continue strong and brighter than ever. Grape, patio and large luscious tomatoes are at peak production. Yellow and green summer squash are so prolific that neighbors walk the other way when they see you carrying yet another vegetable.

July and August also can bring out the worst in marginally healthy plants. Plants are a collection of living cells, just like us. We’re more susceptible to going downhill fast when stressed, underfed, dehydrated, injured, too hot or too cold.

>> read “Midsummer Checkup”       #Advice   #Pests   #Summer
Squish the Squash Bug

The squash bug is common throughout the United States, and it is one of those creatures that truly has a logical name. The Anasa tristis is a true bug, and you surely want to “squash” it when seen.

>> read “Squish the Squash Bug”       #Insects   #Pests   #Vegetables
What? Me Worry?
Symptoms that aren't as serious as they look

As an arborist, I work with a lot of people who care deeply about their trees and shrubs. Almost once a week, I will get a call from someone who is alarmed that something new they’ve noticed on their tree might be a major problem. Sometimes it is a problem that needs help, but often it is something that looks bad, but isn’t. Here are some of the common issues that arise.

>> read “What? Me Worry?”       #Disease   #Pests   #Trees
Control Caterpillar Pests

Caterpillars are vexing pests to many of the plants we grow in our home landscapes and vegetable gardens. There are numerous different species of pest caterpillars, most of which specialize in feeding on a particular group of plants: azalea caterpillars sometimes defoliate whole plantings of azaleas; heavy infestations of bagworms destroy arborvitae trees; tobacco hornworms strip the leaves from homegrown tomatoes; squash borers kill squash and pumpkin vines. And the list goes on.

>> read “Control Caterpillar Pests”       #Advice   #Insects   #Pests
Spider Mites

The thought of spider mites can bring chills to an avid gardener, rekindling memories of the damage inflicted to a favorite plant by tiny creatures you can hardly see. Of all the pests in the urban landscape, spider mites are probably the most difficult to manage.

>> read “Spider Mites”       #Insects   #Pests
Stop the Vampires!
Gardening Practices to keep mosquitoes down in your yard

Besides ruining a day in the yard, certain mosquitoes can transmit West Nile and other diseases in their quest for the blood needed to produce eggs. In fall, mosquitoes mate and the males die. The females spend the cold months hidden in protected places, such as hollow logs and in the cracks of buildings. So it is a good practice to clean up debris and caulk buildings in fall.

>> read “Stop the Vampires!”       #Beneficials   #Health and Safety   #Insects   #Pests
Deadly Rose Rosette Disease Moves Across the Country

Rose gardeners throughout the country need to be vigilant in watching for the symptoms of an increasingly common problem known as rose rosette disease.

>> read “Deadly Rose Rosette Disease Moves Across the Country”       #Disease   #Pests   #Roses
Don’t Cry ‘Uncle’ When You See Ants

Ants are good guys in the garden, but bad guys in the house. Learn more about these colony-dwelling insects.

Whether it is a lone ant wandering the countertop or a column on a mission, an ant invasion can be unnerving. Landscaping with organic mulches, movement away from broadcast applications of lawn insecticides and recent mild winters seem to have increased the encounters with these unwelcome visitors.

>> read “Don’t Cry ‘Uncle’ When You See Ants”       #Advice   #Insects   #Pests
The Perils of Beneficial Insects

So you think that beneficial insects are the answer to all your pest problems? Then gather 'round, my children, and hear the twisted tale of "The Praying Mantises that Almost Took Over Evansville ..."

>> read “The Perils of Beneficial Insects”       #Humor   #Insects   #Pests
10 Most (Un)Wanted Pests and What to Do about Them

They don’t have their photos hanging on the post office walls, but these garden pests are notorious. Here are the ‘Most Wanted’ of the Midwest garden, their rap sheets and how to bring them to justice ...

>> read “10 Most (Un)Wanted Pests and What to Do about Them”       #Disease   #Pests
 
 
 

New from our Bloggers:


Spring Plant Sales
Master Gardener Plant Sales

[+] Garden Magic