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Monday, December 19, 2011

Join TLC Today to be entered in a raffle

Join The Land Conservancy for Southern Chester County online in the next three weeks and be entered into a raffle to win one of the following great prizes:

A Landscape Visionaries session at your house 
A $50 gift card to Trail Creek Outfitters
A rain barrel from Camels Hump Rain Barrels 
A $75 gift certificate to Twelve's Grill and Cafe

Thank you to the generous donations from our local community!
Don't forget to join us for our Winter Solstice Celebration on Thursday, December 22.  More information to follow! 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Gardening for Birds in the Fall

If you like to sit and watch the birds come to the feeders in your yard, we have a few gardening tips that will help you attract birds in the autumn.  In a few months we'll add gardening tips for attracting wintering birds as well.  By the time spring comes around, you will have a comprehensive list of plants to put in your garden that will extend your bird watching year round.  

Many of our native shrubs produce berries that are prevalent in the fall months.  These berries serve as great food for birds migrating through or the ones that will stay on through the winter months.  The following shrubs will attract a variety of birds to your yard next fall: elderberry (Sambucus sp.), cranberries and other native viburnums (Viburnum sp.), and dogwoods (Cornus sp.).

Think about adding these plants to your list for great fall color and food for insects, butterflies, and our avian friends:  asters (Aster sp.), joe pye weed (Eupatorium sp.), and goldenrods (Solidago sp.). 

As we had talked about earlier, remember not to cut the heads off of your healthy perennials during the late fall garden clean-up. These seed heads will be important food sources for birds once snow has covered the ground.  The taller plants will also offer the protection of cover for birds as they hide from predators.  Stay tuned for upcoming tips about keeping those birds around your backyard for the winter as well.  Start to make a list of birds that stop by your house, and then double check it against next year's list if you have made the suggested changes to your garden.  Happy gardening and birding!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Take a Journey with Kit Deslauriers: Ski Mountaineer


Journey with Kit Deslauriers: Ski Mountaineer, through the Arctic Refuge, Northeast Alaska

We hope to see you next week for an unforgettable evening!

If you like adventure and love inspirational stories, you won't want to miss this great event. Join us as we beat the drum to Kit's journey through wilderness, for the sake of wilderness, and a celebration of a landscape that could be lost if the region is opened to oil drilling.
WHEN: 7:00 p.m, Thursday October 13, 2011
WHERE: Chester County Historical Society, 225 N High Street, West Chester, Pa.
MEET + GREET COCKTAIL PARTY: 6:00 p.m, $20 limited tickets available for this special VIP reception at Teca Restaurant and Wine Bar, 38 E Gay Street, West Chester.
Proceeds benefit The Land Conservancy for Southern Chester County.
Get your tickets here before they're gone.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Is Japanese Stilt Grass a problem for you?

Stilt grass flowering--prime time for cutting
The next two weeks provide you with the prime opportunity to gain control over the Japanese stilt grass (Microstegium vimineum) population on your property.  This annual grass is either about to flower or has just started to flower depending on its exposure to light.  If you mow or weedwack the grass when it is flowering you will prevent it from setting seed; as an annual grass, this effectively helps to control the population.  Please note, if you have had the stilt grass population for a few years on your property, it will take more than one season to gain control.  The seeds of stilt grass can stay in the seed bank for up to seven years. Good luck and happy controlling.
Stilt grass that has been left unattended

Friday, July 29, 2011

Invading your woodlands: Ailanthus Altissima

Ailanthus Altissima—Tree Of Heaven

Do you have this tree invading your woodlands?? Its’ resilience, that was featured in “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” is the same characteristic that makes Ailanthus a threat to the biodiversity of forested lands throughout the country.

I.D tips:
Leaves: Leaflets have rounded teeth at the base, as show below.
Fruit: Large Clusters of winged samaras
Odor: Leaves and stems of plant have strong, unpleasant odor when crushed
Bark: Thin gray bark with diamond-shaped markings on younger trees and pale vertical lines on older trees, as shown below.

**Not to be confused with Rhus typhina or Rhus glabra—Staghorn Sumac and Smooth Sumac.  The sumac’s are similar in appearance but have a smooth gray bark with narrow horizontal markings.  They have no odor and the underside of their leaves tends to be whitish whereas the Ailanthus leaves will be a shade of green.

Control Methods:
The most effective and direct control method for ailanthus is to use an herbicide application injected into the bark during the summer months. NOTE THIS METHOD IS NOT VERY EFFECTIVE AT OTHER TIMES OF THE YEAR.  The most efficient way to do this is to use a cordless drill and drill a hole at a downward angle into the bark, use a mustard bottle that is full of a non-diluted glyphosate product and squeeze the glyphosate directly into the hole.  A trunk with a larger diameter may require multiple holes.  
Ailanthus is a quickly growing tree that will rapidly out-compete native trees in a woodland setting.  There have been studies that have shown that Ailanthus is allelopathic (releases chemicals into the soil that inhibits the growth of other plants).  Removal of this tree from your woodlands will help to ensure diversity in your woodlands.

For more answers regarding any invasive plant or any general stewardship question on your property, Landscape Visionaries is happy to help.  Contact us at 610-347-0347 or

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