Gardening columns

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: Thistle harmful to environment and animals

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.

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: Growing rhubarb in Routt County

Rhubarb is a cold hardy plant that thrives in our mountain environment. It grows best in a southern exposure with minimal shade.

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: Which vegetables grow best here?

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.

Gardening with Deb Babcock: Which perennials will thrive here?

The United States Department of Agriculture updated its map of the country's planting zones two years ago — the first update since 1990. The map, originally published in 1960, looks at every state, including Hawaii, Alaska and the territory of Puerto Rico, and classifies them into planting zones by 10 degree differences.

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: Simple steps to a healthy lawn

The melting snow has given way to lushness here in the Yampa Valley that many homeowners would like to capitalize on and maintain throughout our hot, dry summer.

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: Fertilizing your garden plants

If your soil has been well-tended by the addition of compost and mulches, there may be no need for supplemental fertilizer. This is especially true with ornamentals since you also can recycle the spent plant materials back into the soil providing all the necessary nutrients for the next growing season.

Locovores asked to 'Grow a Row' of produce for LIFT-UP food bank in Steamboat Springs

There’s a new initiative to send more vegetables to LIFT-UP of Routt County. It’s taking root within the greater movement to encourage locally grown food in Northwest Colorado, and it’s called “Grow a Row.”

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: The complicated life of aphids

Almost all of the trees and shrubs that grow here in the high mountains, as well as many plants, can become infested with aphids.

Gardening with Estella Heitman: Botanic inspiration

Like most garden enthusiasts, I spend a great deal of time throughout the year thinking about my garden and planning for the coming season. In February and March, my mailbox is crowded with seed and garden supply catalogs.

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Gardening with Deb Babcock: Naturalize bulbs for unexpected color

The entrance to the house of my friends, Kathleen and Rocco, was left in its natural state. There are some gambol oak, serviceberry and chokecherry trees and native grasses, but what I especially love about their entrance in the springtime is a merry drift of daffodils that pops up through the grasses.

Gardening with Estella Heitman: Growing asparagus

Asparagus is one of only a few perennial vegetable crops. It is a cold weather plant that, once established, can live for 15 years. Asparagus, however, is not a plant for the impatient gardener.

Gardening with Deb Babcock: Itching to work in the garden?

With hints of spring in the air, many of us who enjoy gardening are itching to get out and start working in the garden. Should we? Not yet, unless you want to do a little clean up and pruning of trees that haven't leafed out yet. It's too early to start digging around in the soil.

Gardening with Deb Babcock: Currants a great garden shrub

If you’re looking for a great shrub for your Steamboat Springs area garden, look no further than Ribes spp, commonly called the currant bush.

Gardening with Deb Babcock: Moths in the house

I like to relax by reading in the evenings before going to bed, but some nights, I spend more time chasing down and swatting moths attracted to my reading lights. Is this happening at your home, too?

Gardening with Jane McLeod: In mint condition

Choosing culinary herbs for your garden is a pleasant task, and maybe becoming a connoisseur of mints would be a worthwhile undertaking some summer.