The 15 Best Plants for Oklahoma Weather

 Photo courtesy of Jessie Leigh Photography. Tulsa, OK.

Photo courtesy of Jessie Leigh Photography. Tulsa, OK.

Flowers and shrubs in Oklahoma are known to earn their keep. With the high winds, clay soil and unpredictable weather, it’s hard to believe they can thrive in such elements. Each year, the Oklahoma Proven Selections program tests multiple species of trees, shrubs and flowers for their ability to survive in Oklahoma’s landscape.

These 15 plants are the most weather, pest and disease resistant around. Additionally, they’re multi-season and require low levels of maintenance. So before you make a trip to Lowe’s or the local greenhouse, keep this list handy for easy growing all season long.

 

1. Korean Spice Viburnum

A Korean Spice Viburnum is a fairly easy shrub to grow — and lasts for three seasons. It prefers moist, well-drained soil in full sun. During the spring, clusters of buds will open into gorgeous white and pink flowers. If you’re sensitive to smell, be aware. This species packs a spicy fragrant punch. Later during the summer months, its berries will transform with the wine-red hues of fall.

 

2. Valley Forge American Elm

Of all the Elms on the market, the Valley Forge species has shown to be the most disease resistant. It’s characterized by its broad V-shape form, yellow autumn color and eventually reaches 60 feet tall. American elms are known to adapt in various soil condition — not to mention, they’re resistant to ice salts, air pollution and drought. We don’t know about you, but that’s one tough cookie (or tree in this case).

 

3. Red Chokeberry

Chokeberry prefers average soil in full sun or part shade and reaches 6-10 feet tall. This shrub features clusters of white and light pink flowers during spring — providing tons of nectar for hummingbirds and butterflies. During the autumn months, glossy red fruit replaces the blossoms and extends on into the winter.

 

4. Giant Coneflower

In love with the colors of summer? We may have found your match. Native to Oklahoma, the Giant Coneflower prefers moist, well-drained soil in full sun. It reaches 5-6 feet tall and features beautiful golden-petaled flowers surrounding a dark cone. This species is known for attracting butterflies. And in the late summer, finches and birds. One of the most notable benefits of Giant Coneflower is that the blue stems and foliage don’t require staking in later seasons.

 

5. Persian Ironwood

Known as the best in small trees, this Persian species grows 20-40 feet fall in full sun or part shade. It blooms in early spring — before the foldable unfurls, bearing red and white flowers. The foliage itself is a mix of red and purple that transforms into a glossy green during summer. During the cooler months, it transforms yet again but into a combination of yellows and oranges.

 

6. Diabolo Ninebark

Looking for real showstopper in your landscaping efforts. The Diabolo Ninebark shrub grows 4-8 feet tall and thrives in a range of soil conditions. This particular species features deep purple foliage accompanied by white and pink flowers — bearing small purple fruit. In areas with warmer climates, you’ll notice that the foliage actually becomes greener. A true chameleon, is it not?

 

7. Bosnian Pine

Native to southeastern Europe, the slow-growing Bosnian Pine is an evergreen with an upright, pyramid form. It prefers full sun, average garden soil and is pretty drought-resistance. This tree species grows 20-30 feet tall, which makes it a great choice for suburban gardens. The branching is someone open which pairs well with yews and spruces in landscaping.

 

8. Shantung Maple

If you’re interested in an underdog, Shantung Maple is an often overlooked small tree — perfect for Oklahoma gardens. Growing 25-30 feet tall, it’s quite versatile and can tolerate both wet or dry climates. Its foliage has a red tint which changes to green in summer and sunset hues in the fall.

 

9. Magnus Purple Coneflower

Magnus is a 2.5-3 foot tall staple in many gardens. It requires full sun, well-drained soil and is a hotspot for butterflies. The center cones are orange and turn brown when matured — which are great for attracting small birds. One of the many perks of this plant is the flowers. They’re often used in dried arrangements, allowing use beyond their prime seasons of growth.

 

10. Winter Jasmine

It’s rare you come across plants that bloom in winter, but it appears we have a contender. Winter Jasmine does well in drained, sandy soil with regular moisture, and can reach 12-15 feet tall. We recommend planting it on the south side of your home where it’ll receive the best winter light. Additionally, it’s known to be a climber. You can pair it with a trellis or allow it to fall naturally over a wall.

 

11. Japanese Painted Fern

The Japanese Painted Fern prefers full to part shade in moist, rich soil. This species can grow up to 12-18 inches tall and is very low maintenance. With its metallic silver-gray foliage with hints of red and blue, it’s a wonderful stand-out piece with Hosta, Foam Flower and Sedge.

 

12. Silver Linden

Silver Linden prefers moist, well-drained soil in full sun. Reaching up to 50-70 feet tall and 25-35 feet wide, it’s tolerant of pollution in urban areas. Also known as a lime tree, it’s beautifully shaped and characterized by its dark green and silvery foliage. During summer, it blooms soft yellow flowers and attracts butterflies.

 

13. Bald Cypress

Bald Cypress is a unique species. It prefers acidic soil, full sun and reaches a height of 50-70 feet tall. At first glance, it looks like an evergreen tree with its needles. But, around autumn, the needles will turn copper-orange and fall to the ground.

 

14. Arizona Cypress

Wish it could be Christmas year ‘round? The Arizona Cypress is a native tree which is sometimes used during the holidays. Strangely fast-growing, it reaches up 20-30 feet tall and 15 feet wide. This species is also great for windbreaks, erosion control and can stand up to harsh winds (which we all know too well in Oklahoma). Worried about the warmer months? No problem, the Arizona Cypress is drought-tolerant once established and provides beautiful gray-green texture to your garden. 

 

15. Lenten Rose

Lenten Rose is a perennial that grows 1-2 feet tall and does best in well-drained rich soil in partial or full shade. It prefers being sheltered from cold wind and is fairly deer-resistant in wooded areas. Lenten rose got its name because it flowers bloom in late winter, the time of Lenton season. The flowers themselves range in color from white to purple. It’s most often planted in groups due to its green foliage — which provides fantastic ground cover.

 

Do you grow any of these plants in your Oklahoma garden or landscape?

If you’re still in the midst of planning your yards for the spring season ahead, let us lend you a hand. Just give us a call at (405) 824-8353 and we’d be happy to discuss your project over a free estimate.

 

How to Prepare Your Lawn for Spring

How to Prepare Your Lawn for Spring

As the weather warms up, most of us enjoy spending a little more time outdoors. One of the simple pleasures of spring is the lush vegetation. Any of you who rent or own a home can understand the sigh of happiness that comes with a nicely kept lawn.

Unfortunately, though, most lawns aren’t in peak condition when mother nature rolls around. The harsh elements can leave your greenery weak from lying dormant all these months. However, there are a few simple steps you can take to prepare your lawn for spring. Keep reading to get started!

 

1. Do some actual spring cleaning.

The first step is prepping your lawn is clearing away leaves, twigs, and debris. Debris has the ability to get stuck in your lawn mower — blocking fertilizers from proper absorption. Raking away these things loosens the surface of the soil, encouraging healthy airflow. 

 

2. Prep your yard for the season ahead.

Early in spring, use a combination of fertilizer and pre-emergent. Oddly enough, this dynamic duo feeds your grass while keeping crabgrass at bay. Then, you’ll need to apply both again 6-8 weeks later.

 

3. Mow early and often.

If you let your grass grow too high before mowing, it stunts root growth. Instead, try mowing every five days and keep it 2.5-3.5 inches. Your grass will grow thicker and healthier while promoting a better-established roots system.

 

4. Get down to the root of things.

It’s important to consider how often you’re watering your lawn. If you’re doing it regularly, but with less water, you could be spoiling the roots a bit. What we mean by this, is by watering deep and sparingly, you’ll train the grassroots to dig deeper into the soil. Remember, it’s the roots that are responsible for the health of your lawn. If you can keep them healthy, you’ll be able to enjoy a green yard all season long.

 

5. Mulch is your buddy.

Mulch locks in and protects the soil’s moisture. After you’ve taken care of your lawn, trim back shrubs and dead greenery and apply 2-4 inches deep of mulch around trees, shrubs and especially your garden. This will help those beautiful flowers retain water!

 

6. Strategize your grass seed.

It’s tempting to apply seed when you have brown patches in your hard. But it’s important to remember: seeds won’t germinate when you’re also using pre-emergent and weed killer. Be patient for a while and allow your grass to grow. If you spot any dead grass areas when summer arrives, rake the surface and mix in the grass seed with the new soil. And if you have any questions, give our New Season Landscaping team a call at (405) 824-8353.

 

What tips do YOU have for mastering that evergreen lawn?

Share your stories and ideas with us in the comments below. We’d love to hear your thoughts!

 

8 Tips for Cost-Effective Weed Control

8 Tips for Cost-Effective Weed Control.png

It can be difficult keeping weeds at bay between services. Herbicides are a cost-effective solution when used correctly. To get the most benefit from your weed spraying, our team here at New Season recommends these eight tips for cost-effective weed control.

 

1. Properly Identify the Problem

Identifying the problem might be a given, but your choice of herbicide and application will vary by weed species. Here are the most common herbicides you’ll encounter and the cases best used:

  • Pre-emergent: works by preventing seed germination. They’re best used as a preventative spot-treatment in weedy patches, during winter or the summer dormant season. 
  • Post-emergent: works by interrupting photosynthesis, protein production or root growth. It’s best applied when then plant is actively growing or during the fall when plants are storing their nutrients in the roots. 
  • Selective: targets certain plants by identifying specific enzymes or chemical makeup. Most often, selective herbicides are designed to target monocots like grasses. 
  • Non-selective: kills any plant it comes in contact with and should only be used for spot-treatment. 
  • Total Vegetation: kills all plants and sterilizes the ground for a certain period of time.
  • Combination: contains more than one post-emergent, nonselective herbicide. It’s designed to kill plants it comes in contact with and sterilize the ground up to one year.

 

2. Study Your Environmental Needs

It’s important to take soil residual activity and plant residue into consideration. For example, any grasses treated with soil residual herbicide may carry residue that can be transferred to the soil. Likewise, plants will have different needs — both environmental and application. Here’s a great resource to refer to. Or, if you’re trying to grow a specific plant or crop, give our New Season team a call and we’d be happy to provide a few pointers.

 

3. Assess the Growth Setbacks

Oklahoma experiences a wide span of weather. During summer, drought-stressed and mature weeds are more difficult to control. Additionally, your spray’s effectiveness might be produced without adequate moisture. If you’re using a non-selective, total vegetation or combination herbicide, we suggest holding off unless you’re willing to increase the affected range.

 

4. Create a Customized Plan of Action

Develop and center your maintenance program around the most problematic aspects of your landscaping. Based on the weed type and growth rate, some areas may require little maintenance while others may require regular servicing.

 

5. Use a Calibrated Sprayer

We recommend using a calibrated sprayer whenever possible. It’ll prevent waste and over-application while giving you more control over the herbicide.

 

6. Follow the Directions Closely

Follow label directions for application and mixing. 

It’s so easy to discard directions as “mere guidelines.” But trust us, it’ll mean the difference between a green lawn and a patched up mess. If you’re spraying a garden, you’ll want to incorporate these six methods into your weed control routine. 

If you’re simply zapping weeds from your grass, these are the 12 most common weeds and how to get rid of them. To return your lawn to a green masterpiece, we recommend using biosolid fertilizers containing iron.

 

7. Spray at the Correct Rate

It’s important to not only spray during the right time of year but also the correct rate. Weeds are most susceptible early in the season when they’re actively growing and moisture’s present in the soil. If you conduct maintenance during this time, you may enjoy several weeks without weed growth.

 

8. Know When to Call in Reinforcements

Trying to take care of weed control yourself can turn into a full-time job. And between weekly trips to the supply store and cost of materials, it can be a real balancing act. If you’re dealing with pesky weeds, know that New Season is by your side. Our Six Easy Application will get your lawn weed-free and beautiful just in time for spring. Give us a call New Season at (405) 824-8353 for more details!