Publications

The ISU Extension Store offers a number of publications for purchase or in a free downloadable PDF document. Publications related to flowers, lawn care, vegetables, trees and more can be found below to help you navigate to the information you need. The drop down menu will guide you to several categories containing publications, all relating to horticulture. If you have additional questions on a certain plant or problem call the Hortline at 515-294-3108 or browse our Frequently Asked Questions!

Perennials for Shady Areas
Selecting and planting shade-tolerant perennials, annuals, trees, and shrubs can turn a shady site into an attractively landscaped area. Publication discusses perennials that are good choices for partially to heavily shaded locations.
Gardening for Butterflies and Pollinators
A butterfly garden can be created as simply as planting a bunch of butterfly-favorite plants in a sunny corner of your yard. Learn about effective butterfly garden characteristics and which host and nectar plants are best for different butterflies.
Growing Blueberries in Iowa
Blueberries can be grown successfully in Iowa when their special growing needs are met. Topics include site requirements, plant choice, planting tips, plant care, and possible plant sources.
Pruning Grapevines -- Reiman Gardens
Pruning grapes is easier when you understand the growth and fruiting characteristics of the grapevine. Learn the reasons for pruning, the common training systems, and how to prune.
Pruning Raspberries
To obtain maximum yields and to control diseases, raspberries must be pruned properly.
Grasses for Special Uses -- Reiman Gardens
Describes and compares five grass species for use in special situations, including buffalograss, zoysiagrass, creeping bentgrass, rough bluegrass, and annual ryegrass.
Lighting & Houseplants -- Reiman Gardens
One of the most overlooked aspects of growing plants indoors is lighting, resulting in poor plant health with thin, sparse foliage. Learn about proper lighting as well as lists of plants that thrive in low, medium, and high light.
Ornamental Grasses with Winter Interest -- Reiman Gardens
An excellent way to brighten the winter landscape is to plant trees and shrubs with ornamental characteristics, such as colorful fruit or exfoliating bark.
Growing Amaryllis
Amaryllis are popular flowering bulbs grown indoors during the winter months. Learn how easy it is to plant an amaryllis bulb and how to care for it as it grows.
Growing Impatiens
Three of the more than 800 species of impatiens are commonly grown in gardens: impatiens , New Guinea impatiens, and rose balsam. Learn more about where to plant, when to plant, watering, and fertilizing Impatiens.
The Language of Flowers -- Reiman Gardens
Check out this list of more than 100 common flowers and their meanings. "Next time you give flowers to someone, consider selecting particular ones to express your sentiment."
Zinnias -- Reiman Gardens
Zinnias prompt memories of grandmothers'€™ gardens and cheerful bouquets. They easily earn a good reputation with their dependability and array of flower colors and heights. Learn how to grow zinnias, the different types, about zinnia diseases and pests, and how to use them as cut or dried flowers.
Cannas for Home Landscapes
Cannas are bold, exotic-looking plants grown for their attractive flowers and foliage. Find information on cannas culture, planting, starting from seed, storage, and flower varieties and sources.
African Violets -- Reiman Gardens
While African violets are relatively easy to grow, they do require consistent care and attention to light, temperature, watering, and fertilization. Find out more, including how to propagate by leaf cutting.
Miniature Roses -- Reiman Gardens
Miniature roses are ideal for container culture, and are popular flowering gifts that can brighten indoor spaces. Make your roses bloom with information on indoor and outdoor care, pest control, and recommended cultivars.
Growing and Over-wintering Garden Geraniums
Discover more about this popular flowering plant. This publication discusses geranium culture, overwintering, potting, cutting, bare root plants, and growing them from seed.
When to Divide Perennials
Herbaceous perennials are commonly divided for three reasons: to control size, to rejuvenate plants, and to propagate a prized perennial. The best time to divide perennials varies with the different plant species. Get the details here.
Early Spring Blooming Perennials -- Reiman Gardens
Several perennials that bloom in early spring are often forgotten about among flowers like crocuses and daffodils. Learn how pig squeak, heartleaf brunnera, Lenten rose, candytuft, crested iris, Virginia bluebells, moss phlox, lungwort or Bethlehem sage, pasque flower, and bloodroot could enhance your garden.
Annual Vines -- Reiman Gardens
Annual vines grow quickly and bloom profusely in one summer. They can camouflage fences or walls, accent architecture, or soften structural lines—and at the same time add color, texture, and height; screen for privacy or against the elements; or welcome birds, bees, and butterflies. Learn about their care and suggested varieties.
Poinsettia Care -- Reiman Gardens
The poinsettia is one of the most popular potted flowers in the United States. Learn how to select a healthy plant and the care involved keeping the plant and getting it to bloom again next season.
Dahlias -- Reiman Gardens
Dahlias are available in 15 different official colors and 18 types. Learn about dahlia history, planting and growing tips, fall care, and classification.
Growing Petunias
Petunias are easy to grow, bloom reliably all summer, and are available in a wide range of colors, flower forms, and growth habits. Learn about petunia types and how to grow and maintain them.
Growing Garden Lilies -- Reiman Gardens
Find out out several different varieties of true lilies. Also, in addition to being outstanding garden performers, lilies make excellent cut flowers with a long vase life.
Suggested Daffodil Cultivars for Iowa
Several thousand daffodil cultivars are available. One way to choose is by considering the physical characteristics of different types. Brochure briefly describes 48 cultivars that are known to do well in Iowa.
Growing and Over-wintering Tender Perennials -- Reiman Gardens
Tuberous begonias, gladioli, caladium, cannas, and dahlias provide welcome color until a killing frost. Check these tips for growing and storing these perennial favorites.
Caring for Roses in Iowa
Learn how to grow roses that you’ll be proud of. Information on planting, watering, fertilizing, deadheading, weed and pest control, winter preparations, and pruning for roses in Iowa gardens.
The Griffith Buck Roses
Griffith Buck developed more than 85 roses that are noted for their free-flowering habit, disease resistance, and winter hardiness. Several varieties are described here, along with where you can find them.
Growing Holiday Cacti -- Reiman Gardens
Discover more information about the three types of holiday cacti: Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter, along with their culture and propagation.
Clematis
Clematis are often referred to as the queen of the flowering vines. Learn about the varying types of clematis, growing tips, how to support the plant, pests, use in vases, and species that work best in Iowa.
Delphiniums
Learn more about delphiniums with this brochure on delphinium traits, care, plant sources, problems, staking, and commonly available varieties.
Growing Chrysanthemums in the Garden
Chrysanthemums reach their peak when most annuals and perennials are winding down for the season. Mums also offer gardeners a wide range of colors and flower forms and only require moderate levels of maintenance.
Late Season Perennial Flowers -- Reiman Gardens
Mums, 'Autumn Joy'€™ sedum, and rudbeckia are familiar perennials that bloom in late summer to fall. Adding any of these eighteen other less common, late season perennials discussed in this publication will also extend the color in your garden.
Daylilies
Daylilies are easy to grow, relatively pest free, and many varieties multiple quickly. Learn more about daylily characteristics, propagation, growth needs, types, and landscape uses.
Edible Flowers
Edible flowers are a popular way to add color, texture, scent, and flavor to foods. Included is a list of some edible flowers, their culture, and suggested uses.
Growing Annuals in Containers -- Reiman Gardens
Container gardens are a great way to grow plants in limited spaces. Look here for tips on choosing containers and plants, as as tips on maintenance.
Gardening in Iowa Zones
Zone maps are a gardener's best tool for selecting plants that will do well in local gardens.  This publication includes information about and how to use the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map and the AHS Plant Heat Zone Map.
Choosing an Arborist
Tree work should be performed only by a properly trained and equipped arborist. Considerations in choosing an arborist include certification, insurance, references, contracts, etc.
Choosing a Landscape Contractor
Hiring a landscaper can be a daunting task. This publication provides information on professional certification and other requirements in Iowa, and topics to discuss with potential contractors.
Pollinators in the Garden -- Reiman Gardens
Publication discusses what pollination is, common pollinators in Iowa, and how to attract pollinators to your garden.
Sphinx Moths -- Reiman Gardens
Learn more about a fascinating insect behavior viewed in the home garden—nectar feeding by large, dark moths (sphinx moths) that look like hummingbirds.
Organic Mulches
When choosing which organic mulch to use, consider availability, cost, appearance, function, and durability. Includes information on using bark, cocoa-bean hulls, corncobs, grass clippings, leaves, newspapers, pine needles, sawdust, straw, and wood chips.
Botanical Insecticides in the Home Garden -- Reiman Gardens
Botanical insecticides are naturally occurring insect toxins extracted from plants. Several have been formulated for insect management in the home garden. Learn more about the pluses and minuses.
Nonchemical Pest Control for the Home Lawn and Garden -- Reiman Gardens
Nonchemical pest control alternatives include some new developments along with some old-time practices. Effectiveness varies. Learn about 17 alternatives.
Questions About Composting -- Reiman Gardens
If you are starting a compost pile in your yard or garden this year, this publication answers a few of the commonly asked questions about composting.
Store Pesticides Safely -- Reiman Gardens
Proper storage of pesticides is important for many reasons, especially protecting human health, preserving the environment, and maintaining chemical effectiveness. Four steps to storing pesticides safely.
Apply Pesticides Safely -- Reiman Gardens
Learn about seven tips for applying pesticides safely. Some first aid tips also provided.
Choose Pesticides Wisely -- Reiman Gardens
Detailed tips on choosing pesticides wisely: first consider, do you really need one? If yes, choose the least toxic product and use good cultural practices to reduce the need for pesticides.
Understand Pesticide Labels -- Reiman Gardens
Detailed descriptions of all parts of pesticide labels provided. The label is the law. As a buyer, you assume responsibility for the consequences if the product is used in any way different from the label directions.
El manejo integrado de plagas para los huertos de hortalizas -- Reiman Gardens
Identifying and encouraging naturally occurring predators and parasites is a useful gardening skill. This fact sheet describes 10 beneficial insects and also offers other tips for preventing insect and disease problems.
Integrated Pest Management for Home Gardens and Landscapes
Identifying and encouraging naturally occurring predators and parasites is a useful gardening skill. This fact sheet describes 10 beneficial insects and also offers other tips for preventing insect and disease problems.

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