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How to Prune Spring-Flowering Shrubs

Unless you are removing dead or dying stems, it is best to prune spring-flowering shrubs just after they bloom.
When we think of pruning our shrubs and trees, we probably think of late fall and early winter as the ideal time. For many trees and shrubs, this is a good time, but there are many spring-flowering plants that should be pruned after flowering and there is […]

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Heavenly Non-Invasive Honeysuckles for Pollinators

Many native honeysuckles are adapted for hummingbird pollination.
 
I love the honeysuckles (Lonicera japonica) of old. Their fragrance is unmatched, and their nectar-filled flowers sweet to taste. But sadly, the rampant, rambling wild vines are Asian in origin and unfriendly to North American landscapes. They take over; smothering native landscapes in a sweetly-scented blanket of blooms. There is, however, an upside. There are loads of native, […]

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Beautiful Buckeye Trees for Yard and Garden

The flowers of Aesculus x carnea may be pink or red, depending on the variety.
Probably known to many, the state tree of Ohio is the Ohio Buckeye (Aesculus glabra, 20-50 feet, USDA Hardiness Zones 3-7), a large tree native across eastern North America. Another common name is horse chestnut, a name that refers to its round, inedible, husked nuts with a mahogany sheen. In general, […]

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The Best Disease-Resistant Roses

Knock Out roses of all colors are everblooming and resist common rose diseases.
Roses are among the most beautiful flowers on the planet, but they are also prone to some of the nastiest foliar diseases as well.  The three worst of these are rose black spot (Diplocarpon rosae), powdery mildew (order Erysiphales), and rose rust (Phragmidium spp.), but new roses are challenging their damage. Many of the largest rose […]

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Aloe Vera Culture and Benefits

Aloe is so easy to grow and so useful.
With gorgeous thick leaves and sparsely spiny edges, the aloe vera plant (Aloe vera, USDA Hardiness Zone 9-11) is renowned for its healing properties. Native to eastern and southern Africa, it is one of the oldest-known healing plants used by humans. Aloe grows wonderfully in dry regions because its succulent leaves hold moisture and make it incredibly […]

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Perennial Spring Beauties for Gorgeous Gardens

Some of the prettiest Lenten rose varieties have pretty spotted flowers, like ‘Confetti Cake’. Some are even double.
There are many perennial flowers that come up in early spring, to let us know the beauty of our spring gardens has arrived. After a long year of COVID-19, and the recent terrible weather across much of the US, I want to boost my spirits with as much […]

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Beautiful, Blooming, Cascading Begonias for Hanging

The Belgian ‘Double Apricot’ pendulous begonia is a showstopper.
By February, I am longing for some beauty when I look out of the window.  It’s the worst month of the year here in the Midwest, with its dead and bleak outdoors. So,  now’s the time I start dreaming of the flower beds and containers for the coming year. This year I plan to focus on cascading Begonias […]

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Getting Phalaenopsis and Oncidium to Rebloom

Moth orchids, or Phalaenopsis, are the most commonly sold orchids and easiest to grow.
I think that most of us have walked into a grocery store or the houseplant section of a garden center and seen colorful displays of colorful blooming orchid plants. With their unique and beautiful flowers, it can be difficult not to buy one. Once purchased, it is easy to get hooked on […]

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Inspirational Classic English Gardens

Inspirational Classic English Gardens
I have always been in love with English gardens, from the informality of cottage gardens, filled with hollyhocks and climbing roses, to more formal gardens around estates and castles, with tidy clipped evergreen topiaries, tree allées, and flower borders.  In many of England’s most famous gardens you find a mix of both informal and formal garden styles. Some designs are attainable and […]

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The Hippest Roses with Colorful Hips

Rose hips can really add bright color to the fall and early winter landscape.
Generally, when gardeners purchase roses, they think of flower color, fragrance, disease resistance, and the overall beauty of the plant. Whether a rose has hips is usually not a high priority. But, if our gardens can have blooming roses all summer, why not end the season with the added bonus of colorful […]

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