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Tidying the ivy

Tidying the ivy

By Dave
My Garden

Yes, I admit, my wife is always right, and hopefully this admission cools any hot water that is likely to bubble up when I question otherwise. Of course, I knew that some of the various ivies would be problems, someday, and I didn’t pay much attention until I drove home yesterday and found her at…

Finally, this is spring

By Dave
My Garden

I must be getting old, or at least more crotchety (is that possible?). Finally, spring has arrived, and though the threat of chilly temperatures continues, I’m betting (and hopeful) that the worst of it is over. All winters seem to drag on, but this one seemed to last forever (regardless that it was not severe),…

A new holly

By Dave
My Garden

Seedlings from various plants are not unusual in the garden. Hellebores and Japanese maples seed by the hundreds, and occasionally seedlings are found in densely planted areas already grown to a foot or two in height before they are seen. Then, the Japanese maple (or whatever) is weeded out and discarded, or occasionally, potted or…

Magnolias, and a few cherries

By Dave
My Garden

The cheery, delicate blossoms of flowering cherries are everywhere. Visitors flock to area parks and gardens that feature the spring blooms, but a ride through any local neighborhood will display dozens, and even hundreds of the showy trees. The primary attraction is the white flowered ‘Yoshino’, though later in the blooming cycle these are joined…

An early spring update

By Dave
My Garden

As early spring progresses and I am more regularly out in the garden, it is clear that the cursory clean up of the garden was inadequate. Yes, the clearing of piles of leaves brought hellebore blooms into full view, but the current sloppiness is hardly acceptable. Additional raking is necessary, or perhaps the rapid decay…

More fragrance in early spring

By Dave
My Garden

On occasion, two variegated winter daphnes (Daphne odora ‘Aureomarginata’, below) flower late in January, though more typically in early March, and a time or two not at all when a severe winter kills the flowering branch tips of this marginally cold hardy shrub. This year, two degrees below zero (Fahrenheit) was enough to damage leaves,…

Top 5 Houseplants That Are Safe For Pets

By Mike
Houseplants

In my time in the nursery, I’ve spoken to many people who never attempted growing houseplants in their homes and offices. Unfortunately, one of the recurring reasons I kept hearing–they owned pets, and so many houseplants are toxic to animals. While it is true that that are many houseplant varieties that can cause toxic effects…

Unexpected and unexplained

The young gardener understands that things will go wrong, but expects that there will be fewer issues as he gains experience. And then he tends his garden for a decade or two, with fewer, but continuing unexpected and unexplained occurrences, and he wonders if he will ever figure this out. No, he will not, at … Continue reading

No better place

What better place is possible than here, today? Could there be anything more beautiful than this winding, potholed Virginia back road decorated by flowers of redbuds, dogwoods, and a scattering of serviceberries? Abundant redbuds in full bloom lean far out from the tall canopy of maples and poplars, reaching for sunlight, while less numerous white … Continue reading

A passion for parrotia

Not every garden needs a Persian ironwood (Parrotia persica, below), much less two, but then, a garden need not have Japanese maples or hydrangeas, or whatever marvelous plants if the gardener prefers otherwise. A garden of clipped hedges without a single bloom might delight one gardener, no matter that I am unlikely to give it … Continue reading

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