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Gardeners aim to grow good produce or nurture lovely lawns and landscaping. “Smart gardeners” obtain those goals with earth-friendly techniques that can save money. Our advice is based on science performed at Michigan State University or other land grant universities.
Don't forget to check out our Smart Gardening resources, which includes tip sheets and informational videos.
- Mow at the highest setting to promote deep roots, avoid grub damage and crowd out weeds.
- Mulch leaves and grass clippings into lawn to recycle nutrients.
- Learn how to have a smart lawn.
- Select well-adapted or native plants, trees and shrubs to simplify meeting the plant’s needs.
- Learn how to select smart flowers and trees/shrubs.
- Don’t guess, soil test to ensure an effective balance of nutrients.
- Learn how to test and build smart soils.
- Select the right vegetables for your location. Sunlight, water and good soil are essential for growing good vegetables.
- Learn how to plant a smart vegetable garden.
Smart gardening to protect pollinators
- Invite pollinators to your garden or landscape by creating a smart habitat with pollinator-friendly plants and lawns.
- Learn how to protect pollinators using smart gardening techniques.
June 27, 2017 | Erick Elgin | Safely add water features to your yard without adding risks to the environment.
June 23, 2017 | Bob Bricault | Large numbers of gypsy moth caterpillars strip trees in Mid-Michigan as drought hampers fungal controls.
June 20, 2017 | Dixie Sandborn | It’s not too late to plant zinnia seeds for late summer color that will last until the first frost. They also make an incredible cut flower with a long vase life.
June 19, 2017 | Rebecca Krans | Smart Gardening practices for growing herbs in your home garden.
June 19, 2017 | Kevin Frank | Throughout much of Michigan, lawns are under stress from high temperatures and lack of rainfall.
June 16, 2017 | Jill O’Donnell | Dry conditions, leaf drop on maple, rose chafer and forest tent caterpillar are active. Scout for scale crawlers. Symptoms of fungal pathogens are showing up.
June 9, 2017 | Beth Bishop | Near real-time weather data in graphical format allows users to visualize weather over time.
June 9, 2017 | Diane Brown | Swallow-worts are an invasive plant species that kill the larvae of monarch butterflies, are toxic to deer and livestock, and choke out more desirable plant species.
June 6, 2017 | Mariel Borgman | Michigan-grown Asparagus has a short season that Michiganders look forward to each year.
June 6, 2017 | Duke Elsner | This invasive fly, spotted wing Drosophila, can infest and destroy fruits of many plants in home gardens and landscapes.
Find an Expert
Jun 28, 2017 | Midland County MSU Extension Learning Center, 220 W. Ellsworth Street, Midland, MI 48640
Jul 9, 2017 | MSU North Farm, Rock River Rd., Chatham, MI 49816
Jul 22, 2017 | Independence Oaks County Park Wint Nature Center 9501 Sashabaw Road Clarkston, MI 48304
Jul 22, 2017 | Kent/MSU Extension 775 Ball Avenue, NE Grand Rapids 49503
Jul 26, 2017 | Flint Farmers Market, 300 E. 1st Street, Flint, MI 48502
Jul 27, 2017 | Portage Township Community Building, W17361 Davis St., Curtis, MI 49820
Jul 28, 2017 | Watersmeet Township Community Center, N4660 US Hwy 45, Watersmeet, MI 49969