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Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Take a Load Off
Seating in your garden can extend your enjoyment

After a long day working in your garden, there should be a special spot where you can stop and enjoy your labors. Whether it’s a small whimsical bench tucked in along a little garden path or a swing for two, seating in your garden can extend your enjoyment of your garden tremendously.

>> read “Take a Load Off”    
Designing with Boulders
Don't be afraid to be bold with boulders in your yard

Designing with boulders is becoming one of the most popular landscaping trends, but experts agree on some basic tips to consider when placing boulders in your landscape.

>> read “Designing with Boulders”    
Building a Garden Pond
Guidelines to help you build your own garden oasis

Constructing your own garden pond is not difficult, but certain aspects of the job must be done precisely. Here are some guidelines that will help you avoid common mistakes and create the garden pond of your dreams.

>> read “Building a Garden Pond”    
Rule the Roost
Adventures in permaculture with a chicken tractor

What has wings, a manual transmission and runs on weeds and bugs? If you answered chicken tractor, you might be a gardener who owns chickens or one familiar with permaculture methods.

When I first learned of chicken tractors, I thought, now there is an idea I can get behind … literally. I couldn’t wait to give it a go. My son got me my first tractor equipped with two bantam chickens we named Taco and Cornbread. I couldn’t wait to start it up and watch it work.

>> read “Rule the Roost”    
Winter Sowing

I first heard about the technique of winter sowing for starting seeds while I was listening to a podcast over a year ago. The hosts were homesteaders from Texas. They had extensive gardens and also sold plants. They propagated most of their seedlings using this method

>> read “Winter Sowing”       #Propagation   #Seeds   #Winter
Christmas Tree Alternatives

With the Christmas season upon us, many folks have already spent $50 to $100 dollars for a dead, cut Christmas tree, or perhaps dragged their plastic version out of storage. While there is something to be said about having a traditional cut tree such as a blue spruce or Douglas fir, it is hard for me to fathom spending that much money on a dead tree you will only enjoy a few weeks. If you are one of those folks that have procrastinated and not gotten the tree up yet, you might want to think about some alternatives that will work for Christmas morning, but also give you lasting enjoyment in your landscape for years to come.

>> read “Christmas Tree Alternatives”       #Holiday: Christmas   #Decorating   #Trees
How Toxic is This Insecticide?

Few gardeners enjoy applying pesticides, but it is something we all need to do occasionally to protect our vegetables and ornamental plants from pest damage. One question that often comes to mind when planning or applying a pesticide treatment is: “How toxic is this product and how do I handle and apply it safely?”

>> read “How Toxic is This Insecticide?”    
Caring For Your Poinsettia Year Round

People have different opinions about the poinsettia. Some consider it a holiday plant to be enjoyed during the month of December, then discarded with the Christmas tree. Others like to nurture their plants, coaxing them into bloom season after season.

There's no guarantee that your poinsettia will bloom again next December, even with year-round care. But if you would like to try, here are a few tips.

>> read “Caring For Your Poinsettia Year Round”       #Holiday: Christmas   #Flowers   #How to
Southern Jewels
Plant camellias to add pop to the cold season

As the weather gets cold and dreary, we tend to put away the gardening boots in favor of an easy chair and a good book (or plant catalog). But wait, there’s still something beautiful going on in the garden. Or there should be: camellias.

>> read “Southern Jewels”       #Flowers   #Pink   #Shrubs
What Are Nurse Logs?

Being a gardener in shade, I have long been fascinated by logs. I have admired them in nature since childhood. There is something about the sight of one that draws me to it for a closer look; wanting to know about its past life as well as investigate how it keeps on giving even as it takes on a new life. However, it has been only in the last 5 years or so that I have begun to bring “nurse logs” into my garden.

>> read “What Are Nurse Logs?”       #Beneficials   #Environment   #Shade
Simple Winter Sheet Pan Dinners

I love winter cooking. There is nothing that makes you feel cozier than the aromas of garlic, rosemary, potatoes, and whatever else you love to eat. But I’m also all for making cooking as simple as possible. I discovered the beauty of sheet pan dinners a few years ago and have been using them as my go-to for busy days and even for entertaining ever since.

>> read “Simple Winter Sheet Pan Dinners”       #Edibles   #Recipes   #Vegetables
A Painted ‘Forest’
Try this cool idea this winter for long-lasting color

When we moved into our new condo, there was a dead mountain ash tree in the backyard. I’d just come back from a visit to Chicago and I’d seen how the parks department there had painted dead trees, turning them into art. Inspired, I painted my own dead tree, and used it to hang wind chimes, lamps, and houseplants summering outdoors. The bright purple was a great accent color in the garden.

>> read “A Painted ‘Forest’”       #Art   #Colorful   #Design   #How to
 
 
 

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