Deb Babcock, 51, has been writing the weekly gardening column for the newspaper as a volunteer master gardener since May 2000. Master gardeners are volunteers who have completed a course of study through the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension office and provide research-based advice and assistance to local home gardeners. Prior to moving to Steamboat Springs, Deb was a market researcher in Ann Arbor, Mich., and now spends her time gardening, hiking, skiing and creating pottery at her studio, Blue Sky Pottery, in the Pine Grove Center.
Now is a good time to propagate many of the perennials in your garden if they’ve become overgrown, if you just want to have more of a particular plant, or if they seem to have lost some of their hardiness.
With fall upon us, now is a great time to enjoy your garden and think about ways to extend the season as we move toward freezing temperatures.
If you look closely while hiking the forests around Steamboat Springs this fall, you might notice a pretty wide variety of mushrooms that are poking their heads through the leaf litter and conifer needles at the base of our alpine trees, perhaps because of all the wonderful moisture we've gotten this year.
Now that many of our spring and early summer flowers are finished blooming, it's time to clean up around those beds by deadheading spent blooms (unless you want them to reseed your garden in places) and removing dead foliage.
Between grasshoppers and the hail storm we experienced a couple weeks ago, gardens in parts of Routt County are in a shambles. Plants and trees have been stripped of their leaves and many plants were so beaten down or chewed up it appears they might not recover from the damage.
Now that things seem to be getting back on track with the economy locally, more development is occurring in neighborhoods throughout the county. And more development often means less space and privacy in our yards and outdoor spaces. Trees and shrubs in your yard and garden can help you achieve a sense of privacy and personal space.
Recreating a wildflower palette in your yard isn't as simple as strewing a packet of wildflower seeds on top of your soil, as most gardeners who've tried this will tell you. But the rewards of a wildflower patch are worth the work involved to create this informal, natural landscape.
When I was a little girl, I had to be careful going outdoors barefoot in the summer because our yard had sharp plants in it that I called "pickers." Now as an adult and a Master Gardener, I've learned that these weeds are thistles and they are not simply a problem for tender feet, they're actually harmful to our environment and our animals.
Rhubarb is a cold hardy plant that thrives in our mountain environment. It grows best in a southern exposure with minimal shade.
Even though our growing season is pretty short here in the Yampa Valley, there are many vegetables that can be grown from seed. This includes most root vegetables, many leafy vegetables, some herbs and a few others.