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Featured Articles!

Step-by-Step - Create a Raised Garden Bed

Now is the time to think about all those new garden beds you want to add in 2012. Here is a step-by-step primer on how to construct a raised bed the right way — from the ground up. The simple, cruel fact of ornamental gardening is that even when we do every other facet right, failure is all too common if our soil is bad. Improving our soil from the very start is an absolute must — especially when starting a new bed ...

>> read “Step-by-Step - Create a Raised Garden Bed”    
Mysterious Mosses

Soft, green, lush, touchable, ancient-looking — mosses are beautiful and fascinating additions to nearly any shade garden. And did you know that they have no root systems? Learn more about these underused undergrowths ...

>> read “Mysterious Mosses”    
‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’ Limber Pine
Pinus flexilis ‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’

Pinus flexilis ‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’, a Plant of Merit selection for 2013, is a needled evergreen. The species is native to Southwestern Canada through the Western U.S. to Mexico and is found primarily in the Rocky Mountains at elevations of 5,000 to 12,000 feet. The species name refers to the flexible branchlets and twigs ...

>> read “‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’ Limber Pine”       #Hot Plants
Buzz Off, Mosquito

It’s hard to wax poetic over the lowly mosquito—especially with West Nile virus. But mosquitoes deserve to be understood. (Then you can swat them.)

It was a perfect Sunday morning. I had a huge cup of coffee in one hand and the fat Sunday paper in the other. I went outside to sit on the deck and watch the sunrise ...

>> read “Buzz Off, Mosquito”    
Majestic Pampas Grass

Pampas is actually a perennial grass, native to South America. It grows in large clumps 8 to 10 feet tall with silvery white, rose, purple or pinkish silken plumes that look like feathers sitting atop long stalks. There are dwarf varieties that grow to a height of 4 to 5 feet tall, which seems to be preferred by those gardeners with a smaller space ...

>> read “Majestic Pampas Grass”    
Ground Cover
Strong Performers With Subtle Star Power

For every garden star, there is a supporting cast, and in most Midwestern gardens, ground covers perform the task admirably. Like their theatrical counterparts, ground covers’ roles may be understated, subtle and sometimes nearly invisible. Take them away and they would be sorely missed ...

>> read “Ground Cover”       #Feature
Turn A Drainage Ditch Into A Dandy Display

“It was a jungle back there,” Schmidt says. And she was afraid her husband would get killed mowing a very steep slope. People pay good money to have a water feature like she had running through the backyard. She wondered, “Why can’t I do something with that?” Regulatory issues, erosion and water quality concerns will likely be challenges when converting a ditch into a garden, no matter where you live in the Midwest ...

>> read “Turn A Drainage Ditch Into A Dandy Display”    
Three Ways to Celebrate Fall with Pumpkins

Maybe I always wanted to be Cinderella, but who knows? It could take a therapist several years and thousands of dollars to unearth the root cause of this obsession. Whatever the reason, I am hopelessly enchanted by pumpkins each fall. If you suffer from the same condition — and you know who you are — here are some ways to satisfy your pumpkin lust this season.

>> read “Three Ways to Celebrate Fall with Pumpkins”    
Wacky Weather Time Warp

No doubt about it. This year’s wacky weather is uprooting many gardening routines. Uncovering a fig tree in early April in East Falls (Philadelphia), I was astonished to see plump green figs bigger than golf balls. In years past, the unveilings revealed no hint of fruits and just a glimpse of green on a few buds. In a Center City Philadelphia courtyard garden, red azaleas were appropriately in full bloom. Nearby though, the usual June-flowering roses were pushing buds ready to pop ...

>> read “Wacky Weather Time Warp”    
Invasive Invaders

Many species of non-native invasive plants, insects and animals plague the Midwest. Why should gardeners care? Here is what you need to know. Chestnut blight in the early 1900s. Dutch elm disease in the mid-1900s. Emerald ash borer in the early 2000s. Asian longhorned beetle has been discovered in five states with the most recent find in Ohio. The list of invasive species goes on and grows ...

>> read “Invasive Invaders”    
No More Boring Spring Borders

Spring-blooming bulbs fill in the otherwise flowerless perennial bed with tufts of fabulous foliage and flower color. If your perennial border is boring until May, add some bulbs now — fall is the time to plant them.

>> read “No More Boring Spring Borders”    
Alliums for All

Alliums or ‘ornamental onions’ come in all sizes and colors—from giant globe-shaped purple spheres to delicate yellow sprays. The best part is that deer, squirrels, voles and rabbits find them foul-tasting. Here are some awe-inspiring alliums to add to your garden this year.

>> read “Alliums for All”    
 
 
 

New from our Bloggers:


Renovate a Neglected Perennial Garden
Steps to renovate a perennial flower bed

[+] North Country Gardening