The Q&A Archives: Just moved to OH from FL. I got my first daffodil at the supermarket.

Question: The plant looks gorgeous for the first couple of weeks as it flowered. Now the leaves are dropping with yellow tips. Flowers are drying. I keep it moist especially since it is indoors with the heater. What do I do now? How do I take care of this plant? I want to have a pretty garden here in OH with all the different flowers that this client offers ( that we don't have in FL). But I hate that everything dies in the winter. I am used to seeing luscious green all year long.

Answer: I'm afraid that winter can drag on and on in Ohio! To help ease the dreary days, incorporated a few of the following into your landscape:

American holly: Spiny and glossy green leaves, plus red berries that last from October through April, make this evergreen a cold-weather staple. Be sure to plant both male and female hollies, if you want fruit.

Hollies grow slowly (about 6 to 10 inches per year). They can reach 20 to 30 feet and spread 15 to 20 feet wide when mature. Use other trees and shrubs or a building to shelter hollies from harsh winds. Plant them in acidic soils and in sun or partial shade.

Heritage river birch: The reddish-brown and pale-tan bark of this 60- to 80-foot-tall tree peels back to reveal a whitish-pink layer. A fast grower (2 to 3 feet a year), this birch spreads 50 to 70 feet. Plant it in a low spot beside water or keep it well watered. The tree resists birch borers that prey on white-bark birches. Red osier dogwood: Once this shrub drops its leaves in fall, younger stems turn deep red, a color that remains until spring. The 8- to 9-foot-tall dogwood spreads even wider than it is tall. This shrub grows well throughout the Midwest in acidic or neutral soil in sun or partial shade. Red osier dogwoods, which will thrive in low, wet areas, are hardy to Zone 3.

Catawba rhododendron: The glossy, dark-green foliage of this large broad-leaf shrub, which grows up to 12 feet tall and 18 feet wide, can be your thermometer. When it's below freezing, the shrub's leaves (up to 6 inches long) curl, then unfurl when the temperature rises. The shrub requires well-drained acidic soil and some protection from winter sun and wind.?Witch hazel: The warm yellow or red-orange flowers of witch hazel light up a landscape. This large shrub averages 10 to 15 feet tall and at least that wide. It grows slowly--about 6 to 8 inches per year. Plant the shrub in sun or partial shade. Watch for blossoms in February or early March.I'm afraid your daffodil has finished its lifecycle for this year. Cut off the flower step but allow the foliage to die down naturally. You can then remove the dead foliage and either store the bulb in a cool, dark place for planting in the fall, or you can immediately plant it in your garden for a repeat performance.

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