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African Violet Care 101


It is that time of year when I start feeling desperate for flowers. Christmas, with all the decorations and lights, is past, and there are three whole months until April, with its early daffodils and crocus. So what is a perfect, ever-blooming houseplant, to brighten things up at this time of year?  The answer is African violets, and they are easier to grow than […]

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Spruce Up Your Holidays With Festive Branches

Hollies and evergreens of all types brighten winter decorating!
The gardening season is over by November for most in the country. Instead of looking out of my kitchen window and seeing roses, daylilies, and other perennials, I now look upon colorful, textural trees and shrubs with winter interest. Their festive berries, seedheads, and evergreen foliage add needed beauty to the garden in the drab winter months. […]

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Putting Perennials To Bed In The Fall


Depending on where you live in the country, September, October, and November are the main months for putting garden beds to rest.  You may still have some warm days in these months, but once the nights and then days become chilly, it’s time to get to work. And, if you do it right, it is quite a bit of work, but more work now […]

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Planting Spring Bulbs Late: Rules and Tips

You can tell the health of daffodil bulbs by squeezing them. Healthy bulbs are firm. Planting these bulbs a little late is not a problem.
If your spring-blooming bulbs are sitting around somewhere, like mine, or you have not even bought them yet, you will be glad to know that it is not too late. Bulbs can be planted as late as November or December, as […]

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Pretty Perennial Ornamental Grasses For Late Summer

Blue fescues are lovely, steely blue grasses that form tidy clumps.
It’s August and here in Indiana we often have days in the 90s.  Many summer perennials, such as daylilies, salvias, and Shasta daisies, are past their prime or have disappeared until next year. Perennial garden grasses, however, are still colorful with their bold plumes and blades. There are many species and varieties available to fit […]

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Growing Gorgeous Gladiolus


There is nothing more beautiful in the summer than sword lilies (Gladiolus hybrid) in a vase or the garden. Their stately stalks of glowing, fragrant flowers come in an array of colors that just can’t be beat! Most gardeners grow them for cut flowers, but glads can also be carefully worked into summer flower borders for floral impact. There are also compact types suitable […]

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Colorful Variegated Plants for Nonstop Garden Beauty

The fancy-leaved geranium ‘Mrs. Pollock’ is one of my favorites of all time!
While most gardeners usually focus on flowers in their garden beds, there is another group of plants just as beautiful. These are ornamentals with showy, variegated leaves in multi-colors. They include perennials, such as variegated Hostas, tender tropicals, such as Caladiums, and bedding plants, like everyone’s favorite leafy gem, Coleus. They are garden workhorses […]

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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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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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