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Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Green on Green

If it’s a crime to plant loads of color, then I plead guilty. Color just feels good. Or does it?

The last few years during my morning walks around my neighborhood, I began to notice that my eyes were continually seeking out green-on-green gardens, landscapes that relied on nothing for their beauty other than year-round evergreens and perhaps a lawn area and some especially bright green summer additions.

>> read “Green on Green”       #Ornamentals   #Themed Gardens
Super Size It!

I love big plants! Whether I’m designing a large estate garden or a small courtyard, big plants with large, architectural leaves and sometimes stunning flowers always play a role. A very wide-growing plant may be difficult to accommodate in a small space, but tall plants can be used almost anywhere, so don’t let the height of a plant scare you away! In fact, you’ll find that tall plants, even in small spaces, add a dramatic sense of layering and help to create that lush garden effect that we’re all after.

So what are my favorite super-sized plants? I’m glad you asked! Here are a few large-growing favorites that have graced my garden and the gardens of my clients for many years.

>> read “Super Size It!”       #Design   #Ornamentals   #Unusual
Give Your Vegetable Garden a Makeover

A National Gardening Association survey calculated that 25 percent of all U.S. households had vegetable gardens in 2011. Now more and more of us know what goes into and onto our food. These gardens give us so much. Is it greedy then to ask that the gardens also be pretty?

>> read “Give Your Vegetable Garden a Makeover”       #Ornamentals   #Vegetables
Fresh Foundations

Foundation plantings – usually evergreen shrubs – have always had a reputation for being boring. To make matters worse, many of the South’s go-to choices are now also suffering from a host of disease and insect problems.

Luckily, there are several new introductions that make fantastic, low-maintenance substitutions with similar growth habits. Some even offer a fresh twist with colorful foliage or flowers that can add some pizzazz to your plantings.

>> read “Fresh Foundations”       #Advice   #Design   #Ornamentals   #Shrubs
Dahlias for Smiles, Not for Show
You don’t have to be ‘serious’ to grow dahlias

My grandfather’s neighbor grew dahlias – giant things, with huge, coarse leaves. Their stems were trussed to stout bamboo poles, held captive to protect the hope of a flower. He’d pinch out most of the flower buds, trampling them into the ground, squeezing the plant’s energy into one tremendous effort of bloom. I don't grow these dahlias.

>> read “Dahlias for Smiles, Not for Show”       #Colorful   #Flowers   #Ornamentals
Space-Saving Herbs

If you could only grow one group of edibles, herbs should be at the top of your list.

>> read “Space-Saving Herbs”       #Herbs   #Ornamentals   #Variegated
Muhly grass
Muhlenbergia capillaris

As a single specimen or planted en masse, muhly grass (Muhlenbergia capillaris) is dramatic, drought resistant and easy to grow.

Hardy in USDA Zones 5-10, the growing conditions for muhly grass are precise, requiring full sun and excellent drainage for the best results. The optimal time for moving or dividing is during the cooler months, when rainfall or hand watering can be done in abundance – although muhly grass is extremely drought-tolerant once established, it needs copious amounts of water to get the roots settled in to its liking.

>> read “Muhly grass”       #Ornamentals   #Video
How to: Dividing Orchids

Here's an example of an orchid that has been in the same container for probably about ten years in the greenhouse. It really should have been divided 2 or 3 times in that period of time, but since it was not, we will try to show you what you would do to get that back in better shape.

>> read “How to: Dividing Orchids”       #Flowers   #How to   #Ornamentals   #Propagation   #Video
Festive Fall and Winter Containers

Just because it’s fall and the temperatures drop, it doesn’t mean that gardening has to stop and you throw in the towel. Our plant palette changes with the seasons, and that means selecting the proper plants for this time of year, yet still fulfilling our desire for color and texture ...

>> read “Festive Fall and Winter Containers”       #Containers   #Design   #Fall   #Ornamentals
Taking Care of Irises
Late summer is prime time for planting and dividing bear

Sometimes called the poor man’s orchid, the bearded iris, with its myriad of colors, puts a new box of crayons to shame. These diverse, drought-resistant garden beauties provide an elegant centerpiece for many Southern gardens, with their magnificent spring blooms. But the plants are great in the garden even after the blooms have faded, thanks to their lush green stalks.

>> read “Taking Care of Irises”       #Flowers   #Ornamentals
Hairy Wood Mint
Blephilia hirsuta

Hairy wood mint (Blephilia hirsuta) is a wonderful native plant that can be grown in a rock garden or in light dappled shade at the edge of the woodland garden. Like most mints, it is fragrant, and the small, tubular flowers are dotted with purple at the edge of the lip. It has unusually hairy stems, opposite leaves and whorls of small flowers ...

>> read “Hairy Wood Mint”       #Hot Plants   #Natives   #Ornamentals
Common Ninebark

You may call it common or Eastern ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius), but this native shrub has become anything but common. Ninebark has been to finishing school with several fabulous new cultivars introduced. Bright, colorful foliage – burgundy, copper, gold and variegated – have replaced the standard medium green leaves of the old-fashioned ninebark. The species has been tamed, a lot more compact and less vigorous.

>> read “Common Ninebark”       #Hot Plants   #Natives   #Ornamentals   #Shrubs
 
 
 

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