Author Archives: grasstalk

About grasstalk

University of Minnesota Professor and Extension Horticulturist

Grass Pollen

Syrphid flies feeding on big bluestem pollen early morning in August in Minnesota.  Grass pollen may have less protein, but insects can be found feeding on the pollen if you look closely.

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment

Panicum ‘Cape Breeze’ falls apart

Is it the rich midwest soil, the abundant rain, or is this just what happens when ‘Cape Breeze’ switchgrass matures? These 4 plants were planted in 2015 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Last year they were much more upright. 

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment

Ernst Pagel, Germany

Ernst Pagel, famous German plantsman, grower and breeder shown in at his nursery and with attendees from the 1998 International Stauden Union, Germany. Pagel introduced many grasses and other perennials we use today throughout the world.

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment

Historic 1998 Stauden Union, Germany

All attendees from the U.S. at this international perennial growers meeting. Who are these people? Mary Meyer purple shirt second row, to her left daughter Laura, standing next to the man with the camera Wolfgang Oehme, famous landscape designer. Bill … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment

“Grasses exemplify elegance”

This is the first sentence of a recent article by a well-know horticulturist….and yet I wondered…is this true? How many people would use the work ‘elegant’ to describe grasses..and this was an article on native grasses. Perhaps grasses have moved … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment

Carex ‘Ice Dance’

‘Ice Dance’ is one of the best looking variegated sedges. It’s not super hardy in Minnesota and can look rough in the spring. Fortunately lots of new growth shows at the edges of the plant, and with some clean up … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment

Slow start for little bluestem

What’s going on with some of the little bluestem? Why so slow to start this year? The above photos show well established healthy plants in 2016. On the right rodent damage in the middle of the plant…some of the crown … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on | Leave a comment