This is a great time of year to visit other gardens and I try to always try to visit some that are new to me. Seeing how other gardeners use plants can make me think of new plants that I can use in my own garden and, any gardener knows, ‘we never have enough plants’! One of my own personal favorite plants is Melianthus major and I am seeing this used more often in other gardens. It does send up a brown bloom stalk but I think the beauty of this plant is in the foliage. With the serrated edge of the leaves and their off green color, it is a plant that attracts much attention in my garden. Give it a full sun location and enjoy the water droplets of dew that collect on the leaves in early morning.
When planing this or any other perennial that enjoys fertile ground, I start with amending the soil with rich organic material. A good product of choice is Black Gold Earthworm Castings. Not only does it provide all the needed fertility, it is also OMRI Listed for organic gardening!
Mike lives and gardens in a suburb of Portland, Oregon where he has resided since 1969.
He grew in up Tucson, Arizona where he worked at a small retail nursery during his high school and college years. He received his formal education at the University of Arizona where he was awarded a Bachelor of Science Degree in Horticulture, and though he values his formal education, he values his field-experience more. It is hard to beat the ‘hands on’ experience of actually gardening, visiting gardens, and sharing information with other gardeners.
Mike has been involved with gardening communications throughout his adult life. In addition to garden writing, he has done television gardening shows in Portland, and for over 30 years he hosted a Saturday radio talk show in Portland. Now he writes, speaks, gardens and continues to share his love of gardening.
To be connected to the gardening industry is a bonus in life for Mike. He has found gardeners to be among the friendliest and most caring, generous people. Consequently, many of his friends he has met through gardening.
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