• Check for Black Knot Now

    The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has posted a notice reminding gardeners that Black Knot is easy to see on Prunus sp. at this time.  This large genus includes almond, peach, plum, cherry, and apricot among other popular flowering and fruit bearing trees. Gardeners should monitor gardens and adjacent wild areas for Prunus shrubs and trees with large black growths on previous years twigs. Below is an image of Black Knot of Prunus from the University ...

  • LEAF Publishes Handy Guide to Tree Damage

    LEAF (Local Enhancement & Appreciation of Forests) has issued a simple guide about the sources of physical damage that may affect your trees and how you can prevent or control them. You can find a copy here. And for more specific information on damage you may find on your trees, you may ask a Master Gardener for advice here.

  • Toronto Master Gardeners Free Advice Clinic Every Thursday at TBG Organic Farmers’ Market

    Sustainable gardening practices and organic foods make a great combo! Come to the Toronto Botanical Garden, 777 Lawrence Avenue East, every Thursday between 2:00 and 7:00 to ask gardening questions at the free Toronto Master Gardeners Advice Clinic, meet organic farmers and buy local produce, bread, meat, cheese, honey, and prepared food. Free parking is available on site. For more information about the Farmers' Market, click here.

  • On Feb 17 Toronto Master Gardeners Help You Get the Jump on Spring

    On Saturday, February 17, from 10am to 4pm, Toronto Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer your gardening questions at Get the Jump on Spring, the Toronto Botanical Garden’s annual Horticultural Open House. In addition to advice, demonstrations and presentations; more than 30 specialty vendors and artisans will be on hand and there will be a floral design competition and show as well as an organic farmers’ market, book sale and winter garden tours. And special ...

  • Toronto MP Urges Adoption of Bunchberry as Canadian National Flower

    M.P. Nathaniel Erskine-Smith (Beaches-East York) rose in the House on Monday December 4 to support the Master Gardeners of Ontario petition to make Bunchberry (Cornus canadensis) Canada's official floral emblem. To read the MP's media release, click here. And to see a video of his presentation to Parliament, click here.

  • STOP: Check Soil Moisture Before Fertilizing Trees and Shrubs

    Although we've had a few rainy nights recently, most Toronto gardens are still very dry, which means that it's not a good idea to apply fall fertilizers yet.  Dig down 6-10 inches to see if you can feel some moisture and see the soil particles adhering together when you squeeze a handful. By splitting annual fertilizer requirements into separate fall and spring applications, we can actually maximize plant uptake of important nutrients such as nitrogen.  Potassium is another ...

  • Manage Beech Scale Now

    Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has posted a notice advising that at this time of year, the white waxy covering that female Introduced Beech scale (Cryptococcus fagisugae) produce to protect their eggs is easier to see  on native American beech (Fagus grandifolia).  Look for tiny tufts of white, cottony-like masses on the main trunk and large branches and plan to treat them with horticultural oil or by pressure washing the tree trunks. ...

  • Start Managing the 2018 Magnolia Scale Population Now

    Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has posted a notice advising homeowners that magnolia scale females have recently given birth to live young, and these tiny, dark crawlers have ventured out to feed on twigs. The 2017 population of this insect has been very high and the resulting excess honeydew attracted insects harmful to the trees. Now, and again in fall, employ insecticidal soap or horticultural oil to control the generation that's emerging ...

  • Urge Parliament to Declare Bunchberry Our National Flower!

    Master Gardeners of Ontario are urging Canadian Heritage to declare the bunchberry as Canada's National Flower. You can sign the petition to the Government of Canada here. Bunchberry (Cornus canadensis) was the choice of some 80% of the nearly 10,000 Canadians who voted in the nation-wide contest organized by Master Gardeners of Ontario ...

  • Prune Boxwood and Eastern White Cedar Now to Help Control Leafminers

    Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has posted a notice advising homeowners to lightly shear boxwood and cedars now to reduce populations of leafminer larvae that would normally persist into 2018. They note that annual summer sheering of these evergreen hosts can, over time, reduce infestations of leafmining pests, and also create a more full look by supporting increased lateral bud growth. For more information, including images of leafminer damage, visit the OMAFRA posting ...