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Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Common Ninebark

You may call it common or Eastern ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius), but this native shrub has become anything but common. Ninebark has been to finishing school with several fabulous new cultivars introduced. Bright, colorful foliage – burgundy, copper, gold and variegated – have replaced the standard medium green leaves of the old-fashioned ninebark. The species has been tamed, a lot more compact and less vigorous.

>> read “Common Ninebark”       #Hot Plants   #Natives   #Ornamentals   #Shrubs
Topiary Gardens

Ultimately, gardening is the act of ‘controlling’ plants and shaping the landscape to our own designs. Topiary takes ‘gardening’ to a higher level. Topiary, the art of training live plants to grow into a myriad of shapes and forms by clipping foliage and branches has been practiced since Roman times. The word itself comes from the word topiarius, a description of an ornamental landscape gardener or the creator of topia ...

>> read “Topiary Gardens”       #Art   #Design   #Landscaping   #Pruning   #Shrubs   #Themed Gardens   #Trees
A Spring-time Wonder
The setting for a different kind of blooming adventure.

In the spring, Forty Acre Rock near Lancaster, S.C., goes from drab to dramatic with a burst of flashy colors on a granite outcrop that's the centerpiece of a state preserve. Small wild plants called elf orpine, black-spored quillwort and pool sprite bloom to showcase a mix of red, green and white hues in shallow, water-filled pools. These rare plants put on their show from March through early May, until the pools dry up and Forty Acre Rock's colors revert to dull grays and greens of lichens and mosses.

>> read “A Spring-time Wonder”    
How to do that… Tidy Tips for Your Evergreens

When we begin to leave winter behind, the time will be ripe to take a good look at the evergreens in our landscapes and begin to prepare them for the upcoming spring spurt of growth. Most of our evergreen plants fall into three general categories – those with needle-like leaves, those with scale-like leaves and broadleaf plants ...

>> read “How to do that… Tidy Tips for Your Evergreens”       #Pruning   #Winter
The Underappreciated Biennial

Fans of perennial flowers admire both their longevity in the garden and their capabilities. Where they once planted a daylily, by division, they can have three or more clumps in a few years. Fans of annuals tout their quick results and their lengthy bloom period. Pop in your six-pack and, if it isn’t blooming already, it soon will be – and will bloom for months on end. No wonder biennials are the Rodney Dangerfields of the flower world ...

>> read “The Underappreciated Biennial”    
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”    
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”    
Foxgloves in the Southern Garden

The transition from the riot of color during spring’s awakening of the garden to the lazy days of summer is one of my favorite periods. Though the calendar tells us it is still spring, the flowers and the warmer temperatures inform us another spring will soon pass into the record books. It is during this transitional period that many old-fashioned favorite garden plants bloom. Irises, peonies, hollyhock and especially foxgloves make their presence known during this period.

>> read “Foxgloves in the Southern Garden”    
Shade Container Recipe

Indoor plants play a large part in this crisp container situated in the heavily dappled shade of an entryway. Alocasia amazonica takes center stage in the arrangement with its strong lines and bold colors, which almost seem to be pointing to the light green, ruffled leaves of the bird’s nest fern (Asplenium nidus). Echoing the long, narrow leaf structure of the fern is Eucomis ‘Sparkling Burgundy’.

>> read “Shade Container Recipe”    
Yellow Bells
Tecoma stans

Flowering shrubs such as Tecoma stans (esperanza, yellow bells) have a dramatic impact on a landscape, whether they are used for a colorful accent or planted along a boundary for a showy border.

>> read “Yellow Bells”       #Hot Plants
Herb in Autumn

What should I do with my herbs for the winter? Will they all die? Should I bring them all indoors? These are the most frequently asked questions about herb gardening this time of year. Herb gardening does not necessarily stop as soon as the basil flowers and goes to seed. Fall is a good time for cleanup in the herb garden and growing can continue indoors once the weather cools off to ...

>> read “Herb in Autumn”    
Harry Lauder’s Walking Stick
Corylus avellana ‘Contorta’

Are you interested in the unusual, or even the bizarre? If so, your curiosity (and that of your neighbors) might be piqued by the uniqueness of the contorted European filbert, a plant fondly known as Harry Lauder’s walking stick ...

>> read “Harry Lauder’s Walking Stick”       #Hot Plants
 
 
 

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