Articles in Category: Classes

Pruning Blackberries

on Monday, 11 January 2016. Posted in Edibles, Fruit trees, Classes

Get those canes ready for spring growth



When we plant berry bushes, we look forward to picking handfuls of luscious berries all summer long. To achieve that, it's best to get your pruning and cleaning up of your berry patch done now. I love late winter for pruning- most leaves have dropped so you can see what you are doing and nothing is actively growing so no damage is done.   



IMG 4908IMG 6176LEFT PHOTO: Here is a 'before' photo of a blackberry patch that has been in the ground for 4 years or so. Notice there is a lot of growth from the previous summer.

Prune out the dull-colored, more hollow stems that fruited this past summer, and any small scraggly stems. Choose 3-5 main, healthy new stems that were the new growth from this past summer. These will be green in color. Train them up to be your fruit-producing canes for this summer.  

RIGHT PHOTO: Here is what it looks like after removing the spent canes. It's actually fairly simple to prune blackberries once you know what to look for.


Waterwise Gardening- Lawn Replacement Incentive

on Wednesday, 10 September 2014. Posted in Drought tolerant, Classes

City of Ashland Lawn Replacement Program

ornamental grasses

City of Ashland utility customers!  If you haven't seen this offer you are missing out.  Especially if you were wanting to create a more waterwise garden anyways.  The City of Ashland has a lawn replacement program to encourage utility customers to use less water.  They have rebates based on the square footage of living lawn you plan to take out.  Details are available on their website.

drought-tolerant-class-rudbeckia-prairie-sunSince we always love to support a more sustainable landscape and drought tolerant plants, we are offering a $25 coupon towards the purchase of plants used to replace your lawn.   Just bring in proof of your rebate from the City of Ashland and you will receive your $25 coupon that can be used on the many drought tolerant trees, shrubs, perennials, and ornamental grasses that we have in stock.   To learn more about your options for drought tolerant plants, register for one of our classes on the topic this fall!

Cold damaged plants

on Tuesday, 21 January 2014. Posted in Deer resistant, Landscape architect, Landscape contractor, Classes, New Plants

Assessing winter damage

Escallonia damage


Does your Escallonia look like this?



rosemary damage


Or your Rosemary like this?


The record cold spell we had this winter really made us realize what is truly hardy here.  We don't know about you, but we got to one degree a couple nights in a row.  That is cold.  That is the coldest we have ever been since we moved here in 2004. That is cold that may be here more regularly as global warming has its effect of erratic weather.  The cold we had was also fairly dry and long lasting which caused even more damage since the plant basically becomes dessicated.  So we are not USDA Zone 8; even Zone 7 seems a stretch these days.  But we are here to help!  

There are still alternatives that can be cold hardy and even deer resistant.  We will be answering questions I'm sure all spring about what plants need to come out and what their replacements can be.  We will be covering them in many of our upcoming spring classes.   Such as 'I Just Moved Here- What do I Plant?' and 'Deer Resistant Plants for the Rogue Valley'.


But here are a few quick suggestion I came up with while working with Bill Bumgardner of Bumgardner's Landscape . Thanks for the photos Bill!

The Escallonia's definitely got hit the hardest. There is not much hope of any of them coming back.  Same with the Viburnum 'Spring Bouquet' and Choisya ternata.  Time will tell on some others like English Laurel and Privet.  They can drop leaves and push new ones in spring.  So scratch a twig and if there is green underneath that stem is still viable.  But there are alternatives; here is a quick list, and I know there will be more to offer as the season progresses, so come visit regularly!  Check in with the deer resistant list for reference as well.  What did you have success or failures with?  We'd love to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Shooting Star Nursery's cold hardy recommendations for evergreens for sun:

Arbutus unedo 'Compacta' (most of these have had superficial damage, although if they went through zero degrees they did not make it)

Prunus 'Otto Luyken'

Choisya 'Aztec Pearl' (came through beautifully)

Ilex 'Blue Girl'

Elaeagnus 'Gilt Edge', seemed to do better than plain silver

Mahonia repens

Pinus mugo pumilo

Evergreen Berberis varieties (may show some damage but should leaf out)

Osmanthus h. Rotundifolius (looks great)

Arctostaphylos 'Howard Mcminn'- seems to have the least damage out of the hybrid Manzanitas

Prunus lusitanica- Portugeuse Laurel

Prunus lauro. 'Skip'- Skip Laurel- did better than straight English Laurel


Shooting Star Nursery's cold hardy recommendations for evergreens for shade:


Rhododendron (most varieties)


Ilex 'Blue Girl'

Mahonia aquifolium

Sarcococca ruscifolia

Arbutus unedo 'Compacta' (part shade)

Choisya 'Aztec Pearl' (part shade)

Osmanthus h. Rotundifolius (part shade)