The key to successful gardening is to go (and grow) with what you’ve
got. If your garden has acid soil and lots of shade, go with acid- and
shade-loving plants. If sunny, dry, alkaline conditions dominate, then plan and
plant accordingly. This also holds true for the garden’s aesthetic. For
example, more “naturalistic” settings (such as a woodland edge) call for more
informal, nature-evoking plantings. Beautiful and bountiful things happen when
a garden is […]
The cusp of the New Year is not prime gardening season in much of the United States. But, it’s often an excellent time to map and design a new garden or planting border, even in areas that experience real winter. All that is required are bare ground, a relatively mild day, and a few common household items.
Start by considering the garden’s location, size, shape, and desired plants and […]
Some garden settings are just made for the stylized, symmetrical look of sheared shrubs. Likewise, some shrub species take especially well to being sheared into dense, geometrical shapes
An essential ingredient of formal Japanese gardens, French parterres, English hedges, and other stylized landscape features, sheared shrubs excel at providing structure or at balancing other architectural elements (such as pillared entryways and granite walls). To fill this bill requires a […]
Dwarf Cavendish bananas and calamondins and are super tropical fruits for indoor growing.
Growing tropical fruits in Toledo (or Toronto or Trenton) may seem like the stuff of fantasy. It’s perfectly doable, though, thanks to the numerous dwarf tropical fruit trees that take well to containers and flower and fruit at a young age. A warm sunny outdoor location in summer, an equally sunny indoor niche in […]
When planting bulbs in fall, plant small. “Minor” bulbs can have a major impact in the spring garden. Individually, they may not measure up to bulbous divas such as Darwin tulips and large-cupped daffodils. But combine a few divas with a chorus of lesser companions, and the real magic happens. Why have a quartet when you […]
Both the bad and good bittersweet seeds are spread by birds, such as this red-breasted nuthatch.
When it comes to garden plants gone wrong, few have gone wronger than oriental
bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus). Introduced from East Asia to Western
horticulture in the early eighteenth century, this twining vine was widely
planted for its ornamental clusters of yellow pea-sized fruits that open in
fall to reveal brilliant-red interiors. Now
it’s widely reviled for its ability […]
Think of chaste tree (Vitex agnus–castus) as an equally showy but less invasive alternative to the ubiquitous butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii). A shrub or small tree that behaves as a dieback perennial in the coldest fringes of its USDA Hardiness Zones 5b to 9 hardiness range, it bears candelabras of lavender-blue flowers from summer into fall, […]
This allée of bald cypresses shows that these strong, wetland trees also perform beautifully as street trees.
If you live in hurricane country –which encompasses just about any
place in the U.S. within 100 miles of the Atlantic seaboard – the wrong tree in
the wrong place can pose a major threat to life and property. This is something […]
Caladium can come in shades of pink, red, white and many shades of green.
Download the Nursery Ready Plant List
Summer color is always a challenge in the shade garden. Among the most valuable plants for filling the summer color void are the many showy-leaved hybrids of the tropical American native, Caladium bicolor. Available in a range of flamboyant hues, including flamingo-pink and flaming red, these tender perennials kick into […]
Japanese maples in the Palmatum Group bear hand-shaped leaves with 5 to 7 (or occasionally 9) pointed lobes.
Download the Nursery Ready Plant List
Japanese maples are a whole field (or forest) of horticulture in themselves. Encompassing thousands of cultivars, this enchanting tribe of small trees is the stuff of which lifelong horticultural obsessions are made.
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