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Easy Okras for Hot Summer Gardens

Red, burgundy, and purple okra varieties are extra pretty in the garden.

Okra is a southern staple crop for several reasons. The tasty podded vegetable thrives in heat and even drought, and it is so easy to grow. Newer varieties are more tender, prolific, and lack painful spines. As an added bonus, you can let the pods mature and become woody at the end of the […]

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Garden Perennials That Don’t Stop Blooming

As flowering plants, most perennials are a mixed blessing. To their credit, they produce some of the garden’s signature blooms, on plants that return reliably year after year. What would spring be without primroses and trilliums, or summer without bee-balm and black-eyed Susans, or fall without asters and Japanese anemones?

Seasonality of bloom does have its downside, however. Many perennials are as fleeting as they are […]

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The Ten Most Beautiful Edibles

Ornamental vegetables look pretty when planted in tidy, geometric arrangements.

The traditional French potager, or kitchen garden, combined both edible and ornamental elements to create beds that were both beautiful and productive. Given the array of fruit, vegetable, and herb varieties available now, just about anyone can do the same thing. 

Grow The Edibles That You Love

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Growing Hybrid Tea Roses for Cutting

Long-stemmed roses grown for their big, lush blooms are hybrid tea roses. They are noted for their open, upright habits, and long-stemmed roses, which are ideal for cutting. Earlier in the 20th Century, these were the most popular roses for gardens, but times have changed. Now, they are underplanted, relative to popular shrub, grandiflora, and floribunda roses, which are denser and flower-covered. Hybrid tea blooms […]

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How Do You Grow Waterlilies in Containers?

“I would like to know more about waterlilies, container-growing, and how to plant them.” Question from Uma of Wellington, Florida–

Answer: You are in luck! There are quite a few tropical, compact waterlilies that grow beautifully in containers. Tropical lilies would be best for your zone and climate.

Tropical Waterlilies for Containers

There are many great options available, which may be listed as pygmy or miniature tropical […]

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Sweet Spring-Garden Primroses

Cowslips are easy-care European native wildflowers that lend a cottage-garden look to spring beds.

Primroses (known botanically as Primula) have a reputation for being garden prima donnas. Often, this characterization is deserved. Many Primula are fussy garden dwellers at best, hailing from specialized habitats such as alpine crevices and glacial screes. Don’t let this fact keep you from the numerous easily cultivated and highly rewarding members […]

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Divide and Conquer Your Garden Perennials

Divide and Conquer Your Garden Perennials Featured ImageDividing perennials allows you to share them with friends or move them to new garden spaces.

In the time of Roman Emperor Julius Caesar, “divide and conquer” was a battlefield technique that defeated the Emperor’s enemies and expanded the Roman Empire.  You can expand your own empire—or at least your supply of ornamental plants—by dividing mature clumps of perennials.  […]

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Four-Season Perennial Garden Design

Four-Season Perennial Garden Design Featured ImageJoe-Pye weed, purple coneflower, pale pink Culver’s root, and flowering sedums are all summer-to-fall-blooming perennial powerhouses.

Perennials are garden workhorses that save money by returning yearly, but most do not bloom nonstop. That’s why seasonality is an essential design factor when creating perennial gardens. Designing a beautiful bed with seamless seasonal appeal takes a little skill and knowledge, and it all […]

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Wonderful Wood Sorrel for Pots and Gardens

Wonderful Wood Sorrel for Pots and Gardens Featured ImageCandy cane sorrel (Oxalis versicolor) is named for its white flowers with red edges.

Wood sorrels – known botanically as Oxalis – include some of our most familiar and most annoying garden weeds. But this circumglobal genus has its good side too, encompassing dozens of outstanding garden and greenhouse plants.

Saint Patrick’s Shamrock

Purple-leaved Oxalis [...]
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Plants with Heart-Shaped Leaves and Flowers

Plants with Heart-Shaped Leaves and Flowers Featured Image

Hearts are on sleeves–and everywhere else–in February.  Valentine’s Day, arriving at mid-month, is a high point, celebrating love in its many forms.  But Valentine’s hearts are not the only ones in the spotlight. The American Heart Association has designated February as “American Heart Month” to raise awareness of heart health nationwide. Clearly, warm hearts rule in mid-winter.

It is a […]

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