Thursday, October 27, 2011


Sawtooth Oak
Forty 4 year olds, their parents and teachers recently toured the Arboretum.  The curious, inquisitive group searched for butterflies, watched bees on the Mexican Bush Sage (Salvia leucantha), caught insects, collected seeds from Love-in-a-Puff (Cardiospermum halicacabum), tickled their noses with wands of Pink Muhly Grass (Muhlenbergia capillaris), searched the Childrens' Garden to find the letter of their name, and filled their pockets with Sawtooth Oak (Quercus acutissma) acorns.  They later enjoyed treats brought by the parents and spread out on blankets next to the Butterfly Garden.

If you are not able to come to the regular free walking tours given by Master Gardener Volunteers on the 1st Thursday of every month, please call 902-1709 to schedule a private tour for your group at other times.  Please call at least a week before your desired tour time and date.  Our next scheduled tour will be Nov. 3rd beginning at 10:00 AM in front of the Ag Center.  This month's theme will be COMPOSTING - very relevant now that leaves have begun to fall.  Come out and learn what else you can compost and see how easy it is to make black gold!

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Presented by Danny Lauderdale, Extension Agent and the 
Pitt County Master Gardener Volunteers

Date:  November 16, 2011
Time:  10:00 a.m.-Noon Check-In at 9:45 a.m.
Where:  Pitt County Ag Center Auditorium
                   with outdoor demonstrations in the Arboretum
      What:  Learn how & when to prune trees, 
                shrubs, vines, and perennials

Free demonstration, but you need to register by Nov. 14th by calling 902-1709
Homeowners, Commercial, Landscapers, Professionals

Friday, October 21, 2011


The final harvest of grapes netted twenty-three pounds of grapes.  That brings the total harvest for the season to 60 pounds which were donated to the Greenville Food Bank with some minor sampling done by the picking crew to make sure they were just right!  According to our Small Fruit Curator, nothing needs to be done this fall to the grape vines.  The leaves will fall off and then in late winter/early spring they will be pruned back severely.  Follow this blog and we'll let you know when we are doing that task.

Hurricane Irene did some damage to the trellises and they will be straightened up at pruning time.

Saturday, October 15, 2011



Photos by Master Gardener A.S.

We didn't plant them and we don't harvest them, but they're here anyway growing in our mulched beds.  What do we do about them?  Nothing really.  Mushrooms in the mulch are actually helping to decompose twigs, leaves, and other organic matter.  Most disappear on their own in a few days.  If they are bothersome to you in your garden you could pick them and dispose of them.  Don't eat them, unless you are
110% sure they are edible.  Here are two publications with more details on fungi:  'What's Growing in my Landscape Mulch'  and Mushrooms and Other Nuisance Fungi in Your Lawn 

So what to do?  Enjoy their unique beauty!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Ornamental Grasses

If you are looking for something

  • easy to grow and maintain
  • drought tolerant 
  • high pest and disease resistance
  • 4 season interest
  • large variety of sizes
Look no further than ornamental grasses.  Click here to read about selections good for North Carolina:  Ornamental Grasses .

Below are pictures of the Arboretum's Wildflower Garden where native Pink Muhly Grass, Muhlenbergia capillaris, is at its peak.  It is especially lush this year, perhaps due to the extra rain we've had.
Muhlenbergia capillaris
Gaillardia aristata

Salvia coccinea
Muhlenbergia capillaris

(Photos by Master Gardener C.T.)
For all you could possibly want to know about muhly grass, click here .

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Join Master Gardener Volunteers this Thursday, October 6, 2011, for the next free walking tour of the Pitt County Arboretum.  This month's tour will feature tips on planting spring bulbs and self-seeding annuals.  The tour begins at 10:00 AM under the Green Roof Shelter in front of the Ag Center.  Click on the map link in the right hand column for directions.