May 9, 2023

Crop Rotation in the Vegetable Garden

Crop rotation is an important and beneficial factor when planning a vegetable garden. Problems with diseases, insect pests, and soil fertility can increase when the same crop is planted in the same area in successive years. With careful planning and consideration, crop rotation can reduce issues with diseases and pests and balance the soil's nutrients. Learn how to best rotate your vegetable crops at home.

Growing Rhubarb in Iowa

Rhubarb is a favorite for many Iowa gardeners. The rhubarb leaf stalk (botanically called a petiole) is used in pies, tarts, sauces, jams, jellies, puddings, and punch. Although categorized as a vegetable, rhubarb is used as a fruit because its high acidity gives it a tart flavor. Find more information about rhubarb including cultivars, growing conditions, fertilization, harvesting, care, and disease and insect management.

May Blooming Perennials

April showers truly bring May flowers.  May is often the peak bloom time for spring blooming plants in Iowa.  While crabapple and lilac flowers often garner considerable attention in May, there are several perennials that produce an equally impressive display of spring blooms.

AAS Winners are Great New Flowers to Grow in Your Home Garden

All-America Selections has been trialing edible and ornamental plants for over 90 years, presenting awards to entries that will impress home gardeners with their performance regionally or nationally. There have been plenty of exciting new winners that merit a place in your garden that will be highlighted in this series. 

New Text Line for Sending Images to the Plant & Insect Diagnostic Clinic

The Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic (PIDC) receives images of insects and arthropods for identification, and images of plants that accompany physical sample submissions. We have opened a new text line to send images directly from your smartphone or mobile device.

New Complimentary Service from the Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic: Sample Trackers!

The Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic is introducing a new Sample Tracker for clients of the clinic to check the status of their sample(s). The plan is to update the sample trackers daily at 5pm.

New Podcast on Weather and Vegetable Gardening is Available

A new podcast is now available to help specialty crops growers understand Iowa weather better so they can make better decisions for growing specialty crops. Hosts are Dan Fillius, Field Specialist for Commercial Vegetables, and Justin Glisan, Iowa’s State Climatologist. New episodes are out roughly every Thursday.