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Landscape Challenges

The ecological landscaper relies on landscape practices that promote the healthiest plants possible and utilizes a range of non-toxic alternatives in order to preempt and solve problems in the landscape. Landscapes benefit when those responsible for care remain present in the landscape and identify plant and animal pests and diseases early.

Adult spotted lanternfly with wings spread open. ( Photo Courtesy of Gregory Hoover.)
 

The Spotted Lanternfly Has Arrived in Massachusetts

By Tawny Simisky

The MA Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) announced on September 28, 2021, that a small, established, and breeding population of the invasive spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) was detected in Worcester County, MA, in the city of Fitchburg. Residents and professionals living and working across the Commonwealth should learn the life stages of the spotted lanternfly and be able to identify their eggs, immatures, and adults.

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Spotted Lanternfly: Invasive Insect Report

By Joshua Bruckner

Spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula, “SLF”) is an emerging invasive insect of concern in New England. Spotted lanternfly(SLF) was first detected in Pennsylvania in September 2014. It feeds on a wide range of fruit, ornamental and woody trees, with tree-of-heaven being one of the preferred hosts. It can spread long distances by people moving infested material or items containing egg masses. We must stop this pest could before it seriously impacts the country’s grape, orchard, and logging industries.

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Huertos Accessibles Para Todos

By Rachel Lindsay

Un paisaje accesible debe ser fácil de acceder físicamente y también ofrecer experiencias variadas a todos los visitantes. Los diseñadores ecológicos llevan el concepto de diseño universal aún más lejos y consideran cómo el paisaje, especialmente los jardines públicos y participativos, pueden beneficiar no solo a personas de todas las capacidades, sino también a la vida silvestre, los polinizadores, los microorganismos del suelo y las cuencas hidrográficas.

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The Beauty of Blue Carbon

By Hilary Stevens

Coastal wetlands are a valuable component of our landscape for many reasons. They provide habitat to many species that are important for fisheries and recreation. They reduce wave energy and help mitigate coastal flooding.  It turns out that they also help control the rise of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by trapping carbon dioxide in plants and in soils.

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Figure 4:  Hemlock Woolly Adelgid
 

Climate Change and Invasive Species

By Carrie Brown-Lima

Invasive species are on the rise as trade and travel accelerate the introduction and spread of new species in a way never seen before. Simultaneously, our climate is changing at an unprecedented rate resulting in climate extremes. While these two phenomena are each daunting challenge to biodiversity, their impacts can act synergistically and present additional hurdles for conservation and sustainability. 

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Callirhoe involucrata, known commonly as Wine Cups, is an excellent and very durable ground cover.
 

Nature’s Sanctuary

By Gregg Tepper

West Laurel Hill Cemetery, a level-II accredited arboretum located in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania, features a unique space called “Nature’s Sanctuary.” This one-acre space, which previously served as the cemetery’s dumpsite, now uses a managed successional plan that will gradually transition from a sunny meadow to a meadow/woodland combination and, finally, a mature forest. This article focuses on the range of native plant species grown in this one-acre space and doing so with deer pressure.

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Update: Plastic Pots Used in the Green Industry

By Marie Chieppo

In 2019, the Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD) sustainability committee asked me to research and write about plastic horticultural pots use and disposal methods. Because plastic is so easy to use, billions of plastic pots were being produced without a blueprint for what would happen as demand increased. Unfortunately, we’ve produced so much plastic that we can’t possibly recycle it all.

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Figure 6, illustrates excessive resin from injured twigs with accompanying brown needles oozing with resin.
 

PEST ALERT: Pitch Canker on White Pine

By Bruce Wenning

This past September I noticed, far off in the distance, a dying white pine (Pinus strobus) located on the edge of our driving range at The Country Club. After much research, I concluded that this white pine was infected by the pitch canker pathogenic fungus, Fusarium circinatum.  Golf balls repeatedly hit into the pine had caused wounds to needles, branches, and bark creating ports of entry for pathogenic spores of pitch canker. Learn how pitch canker spreads and signs to look for on your property. 

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Lady beetle enjoying aphids for lunch. 

When Trouble Follows You Indoors

By Nadia Ruffin

Winter is here and we have all moved our plants indoors. Everything is fine—for a few weeks. Then you notice a few leaves falling off your plants. You don’t think anything of it at first, but then your vibrant plants start to go downhill fast. After a careful inspection, you discover your plants are infested with insects.  Learn the most common house plant pests and how to manage them. 

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<em>Aster novi-belgii</em>( New York aster) and <em>Rudbeckia hirta</em>(black-eyed Susan) brighten the view toward the water.  Photo by Mirna Canales.  Midsummer.  Northeast, MD.   

As Things Always Change, the Nature of Nature Remains the Same

By Kelsey Skaroff

2020 was obviously a remarkable year for many in adjusting work, relationships, and life in general in response to a pandemic, social justice movements, the economy, climate change, and politics. After a brief moment of uncertainly my job as Head Gardner went on as normal in this most unusual year.

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