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Joel's Dirt: 2020 Growing Season Reflections

Updated: Sep 24, 2020

What a year! And what a growing year! Between the riots, the election, and the pandemic, we are all worn down by the media. Thanks to all of our clients, we have kept very busy with work to keep our minds off the challenges that surround our country. Here’s a recap of 2020’s growing season:

The weather! Spring this year was set to break rainfall records, like 2019, but then we just went dry, just like 2019. Call it global warming or climate change…whatever it is, we sure are warmer. We broke the record in Central Ohio for the number of days over 90 degrees (our turfgrasses shut down at 80 degrees). Just keeping plants alive has been a challenge, let alone looking great! Regardless, I have been very proud of M.J. Design’s work and results, but it has been a non-stop year of extra monitoring—and with full-time watering crews!

Overall plant health! This year has not been a good growing season. Turfgrass is showing disease or has gone dormant. Trees are starting fall color already and dropping leaves. Shrubs have shown lots of signs of dieback. If your plants are alive, be happy; they made it through a challenging year, just like us! One plus is that insects have not liked the weather either—so they’ve seemed to be less of a nuisance for sure. Diversity in our plant material sure makes our landscapes interesting, but can also cause challenges with maintaining them since many are not true natives, as most plants have been tweaked or changed to produce a different aesthetic feature. This comes with downside though when mother nature often pushes back. Many plants are not ready to handle the weather like 2020 has had. I could go on and on with horticulture talk, but just know that if your plants are alive and not wilting, you have a reason to be happy this year. This was not the year for extra growth or vibrant foliage.

Thanks for your support this season. We appreciate everyone’s help and business. If you need more information on the issues above or other items on your landscape, please do not hesitate to call.

Buckeye football is coming back! So at least there is some normal, now we need to get kids back in school!

Take care,



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