The Garden Thyme Podcast – February 2021

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Hello Listener,

The long cold days of winter are upon us and even though we might like to dig in and hibernate, there’s still plenty of things to do in the garden. In this month’s episode we chatted about winter pruning, adding plants for winter interest, and the “language of flowers”!

Listen to podcast


  • The Language of Flowers at ~2:10
  • Winter Pruning at ~8:10
  • Plants for winter interest ~16:45
  • Native Plant of the Month (River Birch) at ~21:30
  • Bug of the Month (EarWigs) at ~24:45
  • Garden Tips of the Month at ~29:00


A Guide to Successful Pruning, Shrub Pruning Calendar

A Quick Guide to Pruning Roses


We hope you enjoyed this month’s episode and will tune in next month for more garden tips. 

  1.  If you have any garden related questions please email us at or look us up on Facebook at
  1. For more information about UME and these topics, please check out the UME Home and Garden Information Center website at

The Garden Thyme Podcast is a monthly podcast where we help you get down and dirty in your garden, with timely gardening tips, information about native plants, and more! The Garden Hoes Podcast is brought to you by the University of Maryland Extension. Hosts are Mikaela Boley- Senior Agent Associate (Talbot County) for Horticulture, Rachel Rhodes- Agent Associate for Horticulture (Queen Anne’s County), and Emily Zobel-Senior Agent Associate for Agriculture (Dorchester County). The University of Maryland is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Equal Access Programs. We want to remind everyone that we are open to all audiences, and will continue to serve our communities.

November Tips and Tasks

  • Prune dormant shade trees that need to be pruned. Begin by removing all dead, diseased branches, and making any necessary cosmetic cuts. Do not cut branches flush with the trunk. Leave the branch collar (swollen area on the trunk of a tree or a larger branch) but do not leave a stub. 

improperly pruned tree
Incorrect pruning and over mulching

  • Topping (photo above) is the not the correct pruning technique to help control the size of a tree. Crown reduction, pruning entire branches at their point of origin, is recommended if a tree must be reduced in size. 

several rows of brown eggs on a tree trunk
Spotted lanternfly eggs. Photo: Lawrence Barringer, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture,

  • Be on the lookout for spotted lanternfly adults and egg masses. Report any finds to the Maryland Department of Agriculture.
  • Mulch your perennials after the first hard freeze. This helps to protect them from frost heaving caused by the freezing and thawing of soil.  Mulch helps moderate temperature fluctuations, reducing this problem.