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Featured Articles!

How to Make a Bentwood Fence
Add charm to gardens of any size

A bentwood fence adds charm to gardens of any size. It seems at once ancient and Old Worldly, yet vividly contemporary and in high fashion. Bentwood is best made from recycled materials – limbs pruned from trees in the yard, saplings that are out of place in the back fencerow, or even prunings left over from tree trimming after winter storms.

>> read “How to Make a Bentwood Fence”    
Edible Chrysanthemum
They're yellow and they're tasty. Try the Chrysanthemum

Every family in the Gu's village where I spent my childhood had a row of edible chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum nankingense) along the north side of their house and very close to the wall. Starting in early summer we pick the tender tips, about 1 inch long, and use them in stir-fry or soup. It has a very refreshing taste. This continues until early or midfall, depending on whether we want flowers. Picking encourages more growing tips (and flowers later on) and keeps the plant short and rounded. It flowers in late fall if picking stops around early fall. In late fall, tons of tiny, 1/2 inch golden yellow flowers cover and fill the plant. [Edible chrysanthemum brings sunshine to the landscape in late fall.] Edible chrysanthemum is the most shade-tolerant and pruning-tolerant chrysanthemum that I have ever seen. It not only flowers on the outside, but also the inside of the plant canopy, probably because of its shade tolerance.

>> read “Edible Chrysanthemum”       #Hot Plants
Creative & Captivating Plant Combos
Don't be afraid to mix it up!

If there was one prevalent wish among gardeners that I come in contact with, it is that they had a better flair for plant combinations. They are schooled in the horticultural technique, but something holds them back from creating captivating combinations.

>> read “Creative & Captivating Plant Combos”    
Create a Hummingbird Habitat in Your Own Backyard

You can create a hummingbird habitat in your garden, providing nectar and shelter for these beautiful, tiny birds.

>> read “Create a Hummingbird Habitat in Your Own Backyard”    
Russian Bees
Helping Out the Bee Population and Gardeners

The Russians are coming! The Russians are coming! To the nearest beehive in your neighborhood, that is. In fact, the Russian honeybees are already here. They’re buzzing around meadows and gardens around the Southeast, pollinating crops and flowers, gathering nectar and making honey for beekeepers.

>> read “Russian Bees”    
The Potting Shed: A Place to Begin

A place for everything and everything in its place: A playhouse, a winter sanctuary, a herbarium, an atrium and a structural winter solstice are all descriptions I have given to my “potting shed.” I have been a gardener since childhood, but it wasn’t until after my husband and I built our home I realized the need for a potting shed. I was spending a great amount of time walking to his shop to gather my gardening “things” before I could start on my project for the day.

>> read “The Potting Shed: A Place to Begin”    
A Walk in the Wild

Andrea Rubinstein moved to Louisiana from the San Francisco Bay area in 2004. Her new Lafayette home came with several mature camellias and azaleas scattered throughout the yard, a yaupon holly hedge hiding the front porch and a white rail fence along the sidewalk. “There wasn’t much more to the landscaping when I moved into the house,” says Andrea ...

>> read “A Walk in the Wild”    
Lemon Balm
The Scent of Sweet Dreams and Calm Nerves

What can produce a mild sedative effect, relieve cramps and gas and produce antibacterial and antiviral properties, according to modern research? Lemon balm. No new discovery, lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) was noted by the 16th century physician Paracelsus as healing patients at death’s door. The Roman scholar Pliny, another believer in the effects of lemon balm, thought ...

>> read “Lemon Balm”    
A Show of Force
Forcing fabulous spring flowering bulbs is easy

Bulbs have always intrigued me. Their much-appreciated splash of color during a generally bleak time of year brightens our lives and reminds us that warmer days are ahead. Forcing bulbs is just another way of enjoying the jewels of the late winter and spring garden, but you get to schedule the show. Let’s explore the mystery of bulbs and discuss the techniques involved in forcing them into flower ...

>> read “A Show of Force”    
Seeds of Simplicity: The Shaker Seed Industry

During the summer months, I can see the results of those tiny seed envelopes that I excitedly purchased in March from ambitiously dog-eared catalogs. A quick inventory of the garden reveals my successes and failures — summer squash overrunning the garden path and tomato seedlings that just stopped trying between my June vacation and Independence Day ...

>> read “Seeds of Simplicity: The Shaker Seed Industry”    
A Garden at Your Fingertips
Herbs are easy in pots and containers

Recently, a woman came up to me after an herb-growing presentation at a garden show. “I love cooking with herbs,” she said. “I could grow my own. But we live in an apartment with a tiny balcony and no yard.”
I hear that “no room” complaint frequently. And, while it’s somewhat understandable when it comes to growing vegetables, it’s shortsighted with herbs. Herbs lend themselves well to container growing. Indeed, they aren’t called “potherbs” for nothing ...

>> read “A Garden at Your Fingertips”    
 
 
 

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