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Fall is for Planting!

Trees are a fundamental element of any landscape plan. The proper position, selection, and placement can set the stage for the entire home landscape design. Trees are the most permanent plants we grow. Most will live for 50 years or more. Because they are such a long-lasting addition to the landscape, special care should be taken when selecting and planting trees in the landscape.

Function of Trees
Shade-Trees are most often planted to provide shade. When considering placement, keep in mind that you will want to provide protection from the afternoon sun. therefore situate your shade tree planting near the southwest corner of the house. Trees are the ultimate air conditioners. They will shade as well as cool the air passing through the branches through transpiration.

Framing-In addition to providing shade, trees also serve other functions. They can frame the house on the property. Select trees that will fit in proportion to the house. You can achieve dramatic effects by understanding your options. A large, two story house framed with smaller trees appears larger. Using low flat trees can lend an appearance of spaciousness. These trees are usually planted on an angle diagonal from the front corners of the house. This gives the lot an appearance of depth more than when trees are planted directly out to the sides. Juxtapose different varieties in odd numbers that are planted at irregular depths.

Background-By planting trees as a backdrop to the house you will effectively soften the roof lines and make the house standout on the property. Consider the heights of the selected trees so that the tops of the trees will be seen above the roof line at maturity. Maples, such as Acer Rubrum “October Glory”, plus A Rubrum “Red Sunset”, as well as Sugar Maples and Oaks are good choices for background plantings.
Accent-Small trees with attractive flowers, berries, leaves or bark are often used to provide distinctive touches to the landscape design. These trees, often referred to as specimen trees, should be used sparingly. However, they are often used to direct the eye towards areas of interest, such as the front entrance, around a pool or patio, or at the end of a walkway or path. Just about any landscape will benefit from the proper use of an accent tree. A few excellent examples of an accent tree would be Magnolia Stellata “Royal Star”, Cornus Kousa and Stewartia Pseudocamellia.

Attributes of Trees
Size:Trees for use in the landscape are usually classified as small, medium, or large. An example of a small tree might be a Malus, or Crabapple. These small trees add interest with flower, fruit and foliage, but will rarely reach a height of more than 25 feet. A medium tree, such as a Cornus Kousa, or Korean Dogwood, will mature at a height of around 35 to 40 feet. Large trees like the Quercus “Rubra” or Red Oak, will grow to heights in excess of 75 feet.

Shape:The shape of the tree will certainly impact the landscape design. Careful selection will blend with the property, structures, and existing plantings.

Texture:Trees offer so much in personality through leaves, branches, stems and twigs. Fine textured trees are open and airy, like the layered effect that can be exhibited by Dogwoods. This effect creates a feeling of space. Large, fine textured trees give the impression of depth to small areas. Conversely, coarse textures give the feeling of closeness and are appropriate as screens or noise barriers.
Trees are essential elements to any complete landscape design. To insure success, remember to position your tree where it will serve the greatest benefit, select the most appropriate tree for the location, and give them proper care and maintenance for the generations to follow.

Delicate white Montauk daisies (Nipponanthemum nipponicum) grow a profusion of 2-inch flowers in late summer. The daisies grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 9, and they sometimes remain green through the winter in the warmer climates. These low-maintenance plants attract butterflies, making them a suitable choice for butterfly gardens, beds and borders.

Montauk is native to the coastal regions of Japan and has been naturalized in the United States in Long Island, New York and New Jersey. Unlike other daisy species such as Leucanthemum vulgare (Oxeye daisy), this species is the only one previously associated with Chrysanthemum family.

Montauk Daisy Care

Size & Growth

These perennials may grow up to 1.5’ – 3’ feet tall, sprouting shrubby foliage with alternate leaves. 

Each leaf is toothed, has a slightly leathery texture, and oblong-shaped. 

They grow quite well under the right conditions, putting on a great floral show come bloom time.

Flowering and Fragrance

In late summer or early fall, Montauk daisies put on a showy display of beautiful white flowers until the hard freeze arrives. 

These bloomers with daisy-like white flowers have 2” – 3” inches wide flower heads with white rays and green centers.

Light & Temperature

These plants are hardy to USDA Hardiness Zones 5 to 9. 

They are acclimated to coastal climes, doing well in warm but not excessively hot temperatures. 

As for humidity, the plant can tolerate different levels.

Full sun is the optimal light conditions for Montauk daisies but partial shade in very hot and overly sunny regions is preferable.

Watering and Feeding

Weekly watering is more than enough for N. nipponicum but they are drought-tolerant and survive without frequent watering every 7 to 10 days.

If the soil has sufficient organic matter, fertilizers aren’t necessary. 

If your soil is poor in nutrients, add a balanced, 10-10-10 NPK ratio fertilizer in early spring. 

Don’t overfeed the plants as the plant may flop.

Soil & Transplanting

Montauk daisies are drought-tolerant and can succeed in dry, well-drained soils. 

They thrive in most average soils with medium moisture. 

If the soil doesn’t drain well, improve it by adding sand or small pebbles.

Be careful with using heavy soils with poor drainage as Nippon daisies don’t tolerate sogginess around the roots.

Transplant root divisions in spring or mid to late-summer, moving them to a new position in full sun, planted in dry soil.

Grooming and Maintenance

Growth on these daisies can become leggy and woody if it doesn’t die back during winter. It’s important to cut back the foliage in late fall.

In spring to early summer, when the plant is in its active growing season, to encourage better growth pinch plants back to half their size.

Cease pinching the stems once the flowering season begins.

Deadheading spent daisy flowers can stimulate the plant for additional blooming.

Sterilize the pruning shears before you pruning daisies.

Besides these grooming requirements, the plant is deer-resistant and low-maintenance.

$200.00 for 1 hour private hayride for 6 people. Additional guest $25 per person, up to 24 people.  

24 people maximum per private hayride

Included is a private hayride to pick a pumpkin from the private field, apple cider, and apple cider donuts.

Please call 413-442-4749

Pumpkin Fest – Sept 26th – October 25th.

Fridays 1pm-5pm

Saturday and Sunday 11am-5pm

Corn Maze and Pony Rides

Upick Pumpkin Patch and fall festivities

In order to have a successful U-Pick season during the Covid-19 pandemic, careful planning and adjustments must be made with how we manage our guests, and our crops. 

As a way for us to operate more efficiently, and meet the town, state and federal recommendations for social distancing, we are managing the U-Pick fields by limiting the number of guests we can have at one time in the Upick field. We hope that this will help us better manage our guest experience and safely maintain our crops during this time. So please have patience as we navigate new territory, and work out the kinks. 

We have measured the fields, made maps, and divided them into sections according to social distancing and safe harvest guidelines mandated by the State of Massachusetts and the Cheshire board of health. This provides us a guideline for how many guests we can accommodate in each field. 

Our Admissions process has changed

  • All guests will need to check in to our U-pick pumpkin patch and provide Covid Contact Trace information that includes your name, phone number, time into our field, and number in your party.
  • Social distancing of at least 6 feet will be observed and maintained in all areas of the farm.
  • Masks are required to enter the farm and the pumpkin patch. Any guests over the age of 2 must properly be wearing a mask.
  • Hand washing is required before entering the U-pick pumpkin patch.
  • Children must stay within arm’s reach of adults and not wander in the field.
  • No outside food is permitted. Our picnic area is reserved for guests purchasing food items from our Farm Market. 
  • We have set up two egress points one as an entrance one as an exit. The U-pick field will be fully fenced in and you must enter and exit through the access points. This allows us to keep an accurate count on the number of guests we have in our field at once.

Haunted Corn Maze Admission

  • We will be counting people in and out of the maze. When you enter you cannot exit unless it is from the designed exit point.
  • We will be spacing each group out to allow proper spacing. This will increase the wait time, we ask for your patience.
  • Social distancing of at least 6 feet will be observed and maintained in all areas of the farm, including the maze.
  • If you are in the maze please give adequate space to others. If you see a group in front of you please allow them to move forward before advancing.
  • Masks are required to enter the maze. Any guests over the age of 2 must properly be wearing a mask.
  • Hand sanitation is required before entering the maze.
  • Children must stay within arm’s reach of adults and not wander alone in the maze.
  • We as that you do not touch props or decorations in the corn maze.
  • Admission to the maze is $7 for unlimited trips.

We are also doing private hayrides this year we would like a slider that links to this information, we would like the slider to have this information on it:Book your private fall hayride today! Private 1 hour hayride to a private pumpkin patch.  The ride will includes pumpkin, fresh apple cider donuts and apple cider. 

Private Hayrides

  • We are unable to offer regular hayrides this season due to the size of the hay wagon as well as the sanitation requirements
  • We will be offering a private hayride that includes a 1 hour private hayride to a private pumpkin patch where you can pick your own pumpkins. The ride will includes fresh apple cider donuts and apple cider. Pumpkin included in price.
  • The cost for a 1 hour private hayride is $200 for a family of 6, additional participants can join for an additional $25 per person with a maximum of 24 people per private hayride.
  • Hand sanitation is required before entering the hay wagon.
  • While loading and unloading from the wagon we ask that you wear a mask.

Fall Birthday parties – Book your party today, limited slots available click here or call 413-442-4749 for more information 

Birthday Parties

  • We will be offering birthday parties on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday (weather permitting)
  • Parties will be offered during the hours of pumpkin fest Friday 1pm-5pm Saturday and Sunday 11am-5 pm
  • We are limiting birthday parties to 12 guest including adults.
  • We will be hosting no more than two parties at the same time
  • Parties will have their own designed and reserved tables.
  • Cost per person is $15 and includes table space for 1 ½ hours, a u pick sugar pumpkin, and unlimited trips through the maze.
  • Masks are required to enter the farm and the pumpkin patch. Any guests over the age of 2 must properly be wearing a mask. 

Many folks are surprised to learn that autumn runs a close second to spring as an ideal planting time, but it’s true: cool temperatures, reliable rainfall, and short, bright days help plants make a quick and easy transition to your landscape. Despite the cold weather lurking around the corner, the entire first half of autumn (and then some) provides ample opportunity for plants to grow roots and get off to a good start in their new home. Before you run off to the garden center, though, there are a few things you should know to ensure success with fall planting:

– You can plant up to 6 weeks before your ground freezes. Once the ground is frozen, root growth will cease almost entirely until spring, and that six week window gives the plant time to get established enough to withstand cold and snow. The date that your ground actually freezes varies from year to year, of course, and some areas won’t have frozen ground at all. If you’re unsure, mid-November is a safe planting deadline for nearly everyone.

– Get everything in the ground before the ground freezes. If you still have plants in their nursery pots, get them in the ground before winter, no matter how late it has gotten. The plants will be much happier and better protected in the ground than in their thin plastic pots, so even if it’s getting quite late in the season, just plant them where you can. You can always move them come spring if you change your mind.

– Provide supplemental water when needed. Autumn weather can be quite cool and rainy, but that doesn’t mean that new plantings should be ignored, particularly if weather has been dry and/or windy. Water all plants thoroughly after planting, and continue to water them as needed until the ground freezes.

– Mulch. Just as you pile on blankets and quilts when the temperatures dip, mulch acts as insulation for plants. Mulch also creates the ideal environment for vigorous root growth, which helps new plantings get off to a good start. While even established plants benefit from a nice layer of mulch, newly planted specimens especially appreciate the protection it offers from the challenges of winter.

– Know what to expect. You won’t see much top growth emerge on fall-planted shrubs, but this is actually a good thing: any new growth that the plant produces now will be too soft to survive the impending cold anyway. Autumn planting is all about giving the plant a chance to put on root growth, which continues until temperatures average about 48°F/9°C. Plantings will be raring to go come spring thanks to the roots they create in fall.

There are also a few things to avoid:

– Avoid planting evergreens in mid-late fall. Because they keep their foliage all winter, they are more susceptible to drying out when the soil is frozen and the winds are blowing. Having several months (rather than several weeks) to develop a sizeable root system better prepares them to face these challenges. This is especially important for broadleaf evergreens like holly, rhododendron, and boxwood, as their large leaves are far more likely to get windburned and drought-stressed than conifers with needle or scale-like foliage.

– Avoid planting varieties that typically get winter damage in your climate. Certain plants get a bit of winter damage every year, no matter what – butterfly bush, caryopteris, and big-leaf hydrangea are some common examples. If you’ve got a shrub in your yard that you prune each spring to remove dead, winter-damaged stems, similar varieties would be better planted in spring than fall.

– Avoid planting anything that’s pushing it in terms of hardiness. Hardiness zones are a guideline, not an absolute, and lots of gardeners happily experiment with them. If you’d like to try something that’s perhaps not entirely hardy in your area, it’s far better to plant it in spring so it gets the whole season to grow roots instead of just a few weeks. The more roots it has, the better-equipped it is to survive winter.

Bonus tip: All of these guidelines apply to transplanting as well as new plantings, so if you’ve been considering moving something that’s already a part of your landscape, fall is a great time to do it.

https://www.provenwinners.com/learn/planting/why-plant-fall

Asters are daisy-like perennials with starry-shaped flower heads. They bring delightful color to the garden in late summer and autumn when many of your other summer blooms may be fading.

There are many species and varieties of asters, so the plant’s height can range from 8 inches to 8 feet, depending on the type. 

The plant can be used in many places, such as in borders, rock gardens, or wildflower gardens. Asters also attract bees and butterflies, providing the pollinators with an important late-season supply of nectar.

PLANTING

CHOOSING AND PREPARING A PLANTING SITE

  • Asters prefer climates with cool, moist summers—especially cool night temperatures. In warmer climates, plant asters in areas that avoid the hot mid-day sun.
  • Select a site with full to partial sun.
  • Soil should be moist but well-drained, and loamy.
  • Mix compost into the soil prior to planting. (Learn more about soil amendments and preparing soil for planting.)

PLANTING ASTERS

  • While asters can be grown from seed, germination can be uneven. You can start the seeds indoors during the winter by sowing seeds in pots or flats and keeping them in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 weeks to simulate winter dormancy. Sow seeds one inch deep. After 4 to 6 weeks, put the seeds in a sunny spot in your home. Plant outside after the danger of frost has passed. (See local frost dates.)
  • The best time to plant young asters is in mid- to late spring. Fully-grown, potted asters may be planted as soon as they become available in your area.
  • Space asters 1 to 3 feet apart, depending on the type and how large it’s expected to get.
  • Give plants plenty of water at the time of planting.
  • Add mulch after planting to keep soil cool and prevent weeds.

CARE

HOW TO GROW ASTERS

  • Add a thin layer of compost (or a portion of balanced fertilizer) with a 2–inch layer of mulch around the plants every spring to encourage vigorous growth.
  • If you receive less than 1 inch of rain a week, remember to water your plants regularly during the summer. However, many asters are moisture-sensitive; if your plants have too much moisture or too little moisture, they will often lose their lower foliage or not flower well. Keep an eye out for any stressed plants and try a different watering method if your plants are losing flowers.
  • Stake the tall varieties in order to keep them from falling over.
  • Pinch back asters once or twice in the early summer to promote bushier growth and more blooms. Don’t worry, they can take it!
  • Cut asters back in winter after the foliage has died, or leave them through the winter to add some off-season interest to your garden.
    • Note: Aster flowers that are allowed to mature fully may reseed themselves, but resulting asters may not bloom true.
  • Divide every 2 to 3 years in the spring to maintain your plant’s vigor and flower quality.

There are many species and varieties of asters, so the plant’s height can range from 8 inches to 8 feet, depending on the type. You can find an aster for almost any garden at our garden center in autumn!

The plant can be used in many places, such as in borders, rock gardens, or wildflower gardens. Asters also attract bees and butterflies, providing the pollinators with an important late-season supply of nectar.

RECOMMENDED VARIETIES

The most common asters available in North America are the New England aster(Symphyotrichum novae-angliae) and the New York aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii). Both of these plants are native to North America and are great flowers for pollinators. We recommend planting a native species of aster over a non-native species when possible.

NORTH AMERICAN ASTERS

  • New England asters (S. novae-angliae): Varieties have a range of flower colors, from magenta to deep purple. They typically grow larger than New York asters, though some varieties are on the smaller side.
  • New York asters (S. novi-belgii): There are many, many varieties of New York asters available. Their flowers range from bright pink to bluish-purple and may be double, semi-double, or single.
  • Blue wood aster (S. cordifolium): Bushy with small, blue-to-white flowers.
  • Heath aster (S. ericoides): A low-growing ground cover (similar to creeping phlox) with small, white flowers.
  • Smooth aster (S. laeve): A tall, upright aster with small, lavender flowers.

EUROPEAN/EURASIAN ASTERS

  • Frikart’s aster (Aster x frikartii) ‘Mönch’: Hailing from Switzerland, this mid-sized aster has large, lilac-blue flowers.
  • Rhone aster (A. sedifolius) ‘Nanus’: This aster is known for its small, star-shaped, lilac-blue flowers and compact growth.

We have had many inquiries regarding IF and WHEN we will be able to open U Pick. PLEASE READ THOROUGHLY

The good news is YES!!! We will be open for picking once we have ripe fruit, and enough berries to accommodate U pick. 

MDAR (Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources) has released guidance for Pick-Your- Own farms to follow in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. In order to protect the health and safety of our staff and guests, along with meeting the requirements set by the State, 

Upick will need to run differently this season.

Click here to see the full Bulletin released by MDAR

https://www.mass.gov/…/mdar-bulletin-16-farm-pick…/download…

WHAT TO EXPECT:

Social distancing of at least 6 feet will be observed and maintained in all areas of the farm.

Masks are required to enter the farm. Any guests over the age of 2 must properly be wearing a mask.

Eating or sampling fruit in the fields and orchards is not permitted, by order of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

No reusable containers or bags are allowed at this time. 

You must check in at the Farm Market or Corn Truck to pick up your container. We will provide a new, single use container for your picking. Please do not bring backpacks, used shopping bags, plastic containers etc. into fields.

Children MUST remain within arm’s reach of family members or guardians.

We will continue to offer online ordering, you can order Whitney’s grown blueberries through our websites at https://whitneysfarm.com/product-category/farm-market/produce/

We know change can be difficult, but these rules are in place for the best interest of all, and mandated by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. U pick activities and our Farm Store provide an important method of getting local produce into the food supply chain and into your homes. In order for the State to fully reopen, and things return to some sort of normalcy, we need to do our part to stop the spread of Covid 19, while still providing the community with nutritious, delicious, and healthy produce.

Despite the pandemic challenges, the crops look great! We look forward to seeing you all and a successful 2020 season.