Plant of the Month
Zelkova serrata ‘Halka’
Zelkova is an Asian species in the Elm family. It has been promoted as a substitute for American Elm, since it is resistant to Dutch Elm Disease. Like American Elms, Zelkovas are known for forming a dense, uniform pyramidal tree, ideal for many shade tree applications.
The cultivar ‘Halka’ is the largest and the fastest growing selection of Zelkova, maturing at 40 feet tall or more. None of the nursery descriptions I read mention the bark on Zelkova; but at least on a snowy day in February in Moscow the bark was quite striking.
The two ‘Halka’ Zelkovas in the Arboretum were planted in 1990 as part of the J.F. Schmidt Trial Pack program, when they were introduced as new selections. ‘Halka’ has since become a popular selection and is widely available. Since 1990, there have been five other cultivars of Zelkova planted in the Arboretum and they have all done well here.
Last month I said that winter was a no-show in Moscow and I was badly mistaken. Although there have not been any dangerously low temperatures and snow has not built up to unusual depths, snowfall has been relentless. Out of 15 possible ‘work days’ so far in February I have had to shovel snow on campus (part of my ‘other duties as assigned’) on 11 of them! That has not left much time for Arboretum duties!
One thing that I am working on is trying to schedule the automatic irrigation. It is a time consuming challenge to try to schedule 139 valves to water during the 12 hours we are allowed to irrigate, while coordinating mowing schedules and balancing pressure usage without running more than 4 valves at a time. No doubt if I were 30 years younger I would develop an algorithm for that and have an app on my phone do the work; but, time and pencil and paper work for me.
Arboretum Associates Annual General Membership Meeting
Thursday, April 18 at 6:30 p.m.
1912 Center Great Room, Moscow
Guest Speaker Linda Chalker-Scott, WSU Extension Agent and author of several gardening books.
Arboretum Associates Annual Plant Sale
2019 Plant Sale List
Saturday, May 18 from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Rotary Ice Rink, Latah County Fairgrounds