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Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Do Not Touch These Backyard Bugs

While you are in your garden, you will come across a great variety of bugs and insects. Some look so soft and furry you just want to cuddle them. Others appear downright scary and dangerous and send some running in fear. Yet, when it comes to backyard bugs, looks can be deceiving.

>> read “Do Not Touch These Backyard Bugs”    
Herb in Autumn

What should I do with my herbs for the winter? Will they all die? Should I bring them all indoors? These are the most frequently asked questions about herb gardening this time of year. Herb gardening does not necessarily stop as soon as the basil flowers and goes to seed. Fall is a good time for cleanup in the herb garden and growing can continue indoors once the weather cools off to ...

>> read “Herb in Autumn”    
Wildlife-Friendly Gardening
Helping Little Creatures So They Can Return the Favor

Ask any gardener what their definition is of a garden and you will get a different answer each time. For most of us, it’s a place of beauty, a place of serenity, somewhere to let out our frustrations, get some exercise or all of the above.

>> read “Wildlife-Friendly Gardening”    
Recipes for Winter Vegetables

Common belief seems to be that winter vegetables are those that grow in the cool days of late fall into winter or that begin their growth spurt in the still cold days of winter and come to harvest in early spring. Many of the vegetables in the cabbage family often show up on lists of winter vegetables, as do lettuce, spinach, kale and a number of leafy greens ...

>> read “Recipes for Winter Vegetables”    
Dealing With Drought
Keep Your Garden Going When the Rain Stops

Over the past months, most areas of the country have set records for heat and drought. While the experts debate the “whys” and “hows,” the rest of us are stuck with the bottom line — it’s harder to grow things. Extreme temperatures and lack of moisture stresses most garden and landscape plants that would normally be considered tried-and-true standards. In addition, the availability and expense of irrigation has become problematic ...

>> read “Dealing With Drought”    
A Show of Force
Forcing fabulous spring flowering bulbs is easy

Bulbs have always intrigued me. Their much-appreciated splash of color during a generally bleak time of year brightens our lives and reminds us that warmer days are ahead. Forcing bulbs is just another way of enjoying the jewels of the late winter and spring garden, but you get to schedule the show. Let’s explore the mystery of bulbs and discuss the techniques involved in forcing them into flower ...

>> read “A Show of Force”    
Sky flower
Thunbergia grandiflora

Sky flower (Thunbergia grandiflora) packs a late summer color punch just when our gardens desperately need one. In late July or early August, just as the crapemyrtle blossoms start to fade and zinnias begin to melt away, this vine produces glorious clusters of 3-inch-wide, periwinkle-blue flowers. As if caught in a perpetual yawn, these bell-shaped blossoms show off creamy white or buttery yellow throats.

>> read “Sky flower”    
Cover Crops in the Vegetable Garden

If you have harvested everything from your vegetable garden and decided not to plant cool-season crops, then now is the time to start a cover crop, which just means planting something to cover up the dirt. Big-time farmers plant cover crops such as clover and rye, and backyard gardeners can reap the same benefits for their dormant gardens during the winter months with a cover crop.

>> read “Cover Crops in the Vegetable Garden”    
Tillandsia: Plentiful and Diverse

Mention the genus Tillandsia to most gardeners, and you get a puzzled look. No, I’m not talking about the eight-legged spider (that the mere mention of its name invokes fear). I said, “Tillandsia,” not tarantula. These plants don’t bite! Even though Tillandsia, the largest genus of the bromeliad family of plants, has several species that resemble the ominous tarantula, rest assured that no harm will come to you by owning these unique plants ...

>> read “Tillandsia: Plentiful and Diverse”    
Cool Tools For the Garden – Great Gift Ideas

Giving a gift to someone you care about certainly feels good – giving them a gift that you also love makes the event even more special. Ask any gardener about their favorite tool and you will surely hear about at least one item that they always carry with them into the garden.

>> read “Cool Tools For the Garden – Great Gift Ideas”    
Christmastime from Nature

Decorating from nature doesn’t require lists of instructions or rules; in fact, some of the simplest materials and compositions yield beautiful results. Children often make simple ornaments in school from natural objects such as walnut shells or dried seedpods. Years ago as a third-grade room mother, I helped children construct Christmas arrangements for their mothers using cut greenery, stalks of seeds ...

>> read “Christmastime from Nature”    
The New Faces of Urban Spaces
Raise Chickens, Rabbits and Goats

The food movement in this country has prompted many to rethink where our food comes from. Economic times have brought people around to giving “growing their own” some serious thought; after all, many remember our parents or grandparents stepping into the backyard and gathering eggs for breakfast or a mess of green beans for dinner or fresh milk from the family cow or goat.

>> read “The New Faces of Urban Spaces”    
 
 
 

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