Skip to main content

The Scoop

Gardening news, notes and trivia for this week.
  • Author:
  • Updated:

Possible Pest-Control Poisoning
Investigators outside of Salt Lake City are trying to determine what killed a four-year-old girl and her fifteen-month-old sister earlier this week. The leading theory is accidental poisoning by phosphine gas wafting from Fumitoxin tablets applied to the home's lawn in order to rid it of voles. There is some question as to whether the chemical was applied in accordance with safety regulations, although it was administered by a professional.
Read full coverage in the Salt Lake Tribune
Read more about phosphine and commentary on this case at

Digging Out in DC
The United States Botanic Garden suffered some damage in the recent snowstorms that hit the Mid-Atlantic and Washington, DC.
Click here for details.

Dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangeas
In other news from the nation's capital, the US National Arboretum has recently released two compact forms of oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia). This is exciting news for small-space gardeners who admire this flowering native shrub. The small cultivars, 'Ruby Slippers' and 'Munchkin', grow about 3 feet tall and a bit wider. They have been released to growers and are expected to come to the market next year.
Read more about 'Ruby Slippers' and 'Munchkin'

U-Minn Veg and Flower Trials
Master Gardeners with the University of Minnesota have released the results of their 2009 vegetable and ornamental trials. The gardeners ranked several cultivars of lima beans, lettuce, zucchini, dianthus and rudbeckia, and indicated whether or not they would grow each one again. Read the results as you plan your spring gardening.
Trial results