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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 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.
June 5, 2017 | Cameron Macko | Learn how to identify and stop damage from chinch bugs, European chafers, Japanese beetles and sod webworms with these helpful, updated tip sheets.
June 2, 2017 | Jan Byrne | Scout for four-lined plant bug, spruce spider mite and lecanium scale crawlers.
June 1, 2017 | Duke Elsner | Learn how to monitor monarch butterflies and their habitat in Michigan by attending a free, two-day training session in Lansing on June 10-11, 2017.
June 1, 2017 | Kevin Frank | A long-term strategy to reduce white clover and black medic in turfgrass is to ensure adequate fertility levels.
Find an Expert
Aug 21, 2017 – Dec 4, 2017 | Ingham County Fair Grounds Community Center, 700 E. Ash St., Mason, MI 48854
Aug 22, 2017 – Dec 5, 2017 | Wayne County Community College District, University Center, 19305 Vernier, Harper Woods, MI 48225
Aug 24, 2017 | Ingham County Fairgrounds, 700 E Ash St., Mason, MI 48854
Aug 24, 2017 | MSU Tollgate Farm and Education Center, 28115 Meadowbrook Road, Novi, MI 48337
Aug 24, 2017 – Dec 7, 2017 | Heritage Church - Imlay City Campus, 543 N. Cedar St. (M-24 and M-55), Imlay City, MI 48444
Aug 24, 2017 | Frankenmuth Farmers Market, 534 N. Main Street, Frankenmuth, MI 48732
Aug 24, 2017 – Nov 30, 2017 | MSU Extension Jackson County Extension Office, 1715 Lansing Ave, suite 257, Jackson, MI 49202