Friday, June 29, 2012

Making college campus green: University of Iowa

The University of Iowa Gardeners have started a new herb and flower garden by North Hall to grow things like borage (an edible flower), chamomile, sunflowers, and more. They spent a sunny Friday morning laying mulch and planting in the black Iowa dirt.

The UI Gardeners have been working with Barry Greenberg, executive chef for UI Residential Dining, to provide fruits, vegetables, and herbs for the Iowa Memorial Union from their main garden. The new North Hall satellite location will supplement that local food supply.

UI Gardener Rob Koehler digs a line along the outer edge
of the North Hall herb garden for planting herbs and flowers.
Photo courtesy of IowaNow

This post was created by Madison Jones

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Rain Garden Update

It’s hard to believe that only a few years ago, visitors to our lovely stone building were greeted by a disheartening mix of scraggly yews and droopy daylilies. Now this month, visitors are welcomed by giant cup plants, bright red monarda, and butterfly milkweed. The prairie dropseed and little bluestem around the rain garden’s berm are thriving, and last month we even had a bit of blue-eyed grass blooming for the first time. The asters and goldenrods are three feet high already; we will clip them so they will become bushier and bloom even more heartily in the fall. On the other hand, with this advanced summer, they may start blooming next week.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Plant of the Week

Hedge Nettle
Stachys palustris L.
other common names: woundwort, common woundwort, marsh woundwort, clown's woundwort, marsh hedge nettle
Stachys: from Greek, meaning "an ear of wheat or spike," referring to the terminal raceme
Palustris: meaning “of marshes"
Mint family: Laminaceae (Labiatae)