Trimming Ornamental Grasses – Spring Plant Care Tips

Spring is the time to trim your ornamental and native grasses.  You will want to get this done before the new growth begins.

Cut all of your grasses down to just a few inches above the ground.  You want to remove all of last year’s foliage to allow the new growth to emerge from the crowns.

Some grasses will start to grow right away, (like Karl Foerster), but be patient with Switch or Flame Grasses as they will not show signs of new growth until the soil warms up.  Spring is also the best time to divide your grasses if they have gotten to large.

Contact Paul Swartz Nursery today for more tips, special offers and plant care advice –


Summer Plant Health Tip

Summer is a great time for an addition of mulch to your planting beds for weed prevention and better soil moisture retention (2-3” layer).  Be very careful not to mound the mulch up around the trunks of trees, as it can kill the tree.

Maintaining good soil moisture is important – especially for new plantings.  New plantings typically take about 6 weeks to get some new roots established and watering can be less frequent and more at each application.  Ideally, a good, slow, deep watering is required about every 7-10 days for trees and shrubs after they are established.  Newly planted B&B and container plants need to be watched very carefully during that first 6 week break-in period after planting or until they have had a chance to get rooted in.  The easiest method of checking to see if a plant needs water is to stick your finger in the soil it was planted with, and if it feels dry – water it, and if it feels moist – skip watering it.  Typically sprinkler systems do not work well for establishing new plantings unless they are putting water on the roots where needed. 

Why are my Evergreens BROWN!!!!

Winter burn is discoloration resulting from plants not able to take up moisture from the ground because of our harsh winter and the frozen ground.  This can cause needles or leaves of evergreens to dry out.

Evergreens can loose moisture through their leaves or needles in the winter months.  When the ground is frozen, the plants’ roots cannot absorb the moisture it needs.  Add some sunny days thru the winter and evaporation increases.  Discolored or “burned” foliage may start to appear.  This discoloration usually appears on the side of the plant facing the sun or the side with exposure to the wind.  Please note, this can also occur with plants too close to a dryer or furnace vent.

Please be patient with these plants.  Make sure they have adequate water and wait to trim until new growth appears.