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Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Blue Star
Amsonia hubrichtii

Easy to grow, providing three seasons of strong interest and serving as an airy focal point in the perennial border, or in a great mass, the blue star (Amsonia hubrichtii) should be used more often in Midwestern gardens ...

>> read “Blue Star”       #Hot Plants
Don’t Cry for Me

We use a catchall term, weeping trees, to describe trees that are pendulous in nature. But so many other adjectives can be used to describe them. Some cascade; some drop like a curtain of rain, straight to the earth; others puddle and leapfrog along the ground; and a few stretch out as if they have wings and look as though they could take flight. People seem to either love them or hate them. The latter find them sad looking or depressing while the former find grace and elegance in their forms ...

>> read “Don’t Cry for Me”    
Winter Is for Reading

You don’t have to drool over catalogs with photographs of pastel petals dripping in dew, now arriving by the armloads, to feed your flower addiction in winter. Instead you can discover great, important, entertaining, informing and jaw-dropping beautiful garden books, magazines and pictures — with expired copyrights — completely free on the Internet. Everything you ever wanted to see and everything you never knew you wanted to see ...

>> read “Winter Is for Reading”    
Follow the Shade

Now that the hot summer weather is behind us, this is a good time to make a promise to yourself: no more working in the heat. Ever. Again. The saying “work smarter, not harder” applies — here is a great idea to avoid broiling in the sun next year ...

>> read “Follow the Shade”    
Oh, Deer! 10 Tips for Keeping Deer out of Your Garden

A small herd of hungry deer —or even just a couple — can wipe out entire hosta beds, rows of hedges, swaths of daylilies and tulips and eat all of your roses. Close your garden “salad bar” by using several of these tips ...

>> read “Oh, Deer! 10 Tips for Keeping Deer out of Your Garden”    
Preserving the Fall’s Colors

From rocket reds to flaming oranges and sunshine yellows, fall's brilliant colors blow past our windows on breezy winds. Wouldn't it be nice to capture some of these amazing colors to see throughout the year, instead of only during autumn? The good news is that you can. Preserving leaves with glycerin is an easy craft that anyone can do. Leave preserved with glycerin will ...

>> read “Preserving the Fall’s Colors”    
Is THIS Poison Ivy?

Several weeks ago, poison ivy horticulturist Umar Mycka and I were driving to Longwood Gardens to do training about poison ivy. “Look at that,” said Mycka, pointing to the right. I saw a tall privet hedge overhanging a public sidewalk by half. He'd spotted huge leaves of poison ivy waving from deep inside the shrub ...

>> read “Is THIS Poison Ivy?”    
A Plan to Cram

Getting as many veggies into a raised bed—throughout the short Midwest growing season—is a quest for many gardeners. What goes where, when and why when stuffing raise beds with vegetables and herbs?

>> read “A Plan to Cram”    
Backyard Grape Growing for the Freshest Wines

Surely you’ve seen — in envious awe just as I have — fields of grapes sprouting along the Iowa plains and taken mental notes to stop by a winery or two some day. Or maybe you’ve already traveled to the corners of the state, enjoying sips from all our proud vineyards. You may have even wondered how our fellow Iowans manage to create such a picturesque landscape as if it were flown in from California ...

>> read “Backyard Grape Growing for the Freshest Wines”       #Edibles   #Feature
Create the Look of an English Garden In Your Midwest Landscape

Clusters of fragrant double roses clambering over white picket fences, fields of wildflowers and cottage gardens filled with lupines and delphiniums — this is what I expected to find when I traveled to London last spring for the first time ...

>> read “Create the Look of an English Garden In Your Midwest Landscape”    
Beautyberry
Callicarpa spp.

No plant has given me so much pleasure spring through fall as beautyberry (Callicarpa spp.), with its tiny pink flowers in early summer, the arching branches that protect my pink sweet woodruff through the summer and the glowing purple berries in the fall that persist into early winter ...

>> read “Beautyberry”       #Hot Plants
Thought for Food: Planning Perfect Produce

Winter in Iowa is tailor-made for solving problems in the vegetable garden – before they begin. Our long cold nights are perfect for curling up in your favorite chair with garden books, magazines and the new crop of seed catalogs. Start by choosing troublefree varieties ...

>> read “Thought for Food: Planning Perfect Produce”       #Advice   #Edibles
 
 
 

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