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Your USDA Hardiness Zone

Featured Articles!

Making a Comeback
Self Seeding Annuals and Biennials

I will never forget the year I planted my front flowerbed near the road. To my delight, I literally had cars stopping in front of my house and strangers coming by to ask about my beautiful garden. Of course, it was not the switch grass and daylilies that everyone was so enamored with. My showstopping combination was a haphazard mix of blue larkspur and red poppies. A friend gave me the seeds and I literally threw them over the garden in mid-November, thinking they might help add a little color while the perennials were filling out.

>> read “Making a Comeback”    
Cattleya Culture
Growing Cattleya Orchids

To many people, the beautiful Cattleya is what they think of when the word “orchid” is mentioned — and with good reason. The flowers of the cattleya orchid are large, showy and colorful. Because of their popularity for use in corsages, cattleyas are commonly known as “the corsage orchid.” Named for the English horticulturist William Cattley (1788-1835), Cattleya is among the easiest of the orchid ...

>> read “Cattleya Culture”    
Street Trees are Money Trees

Neighborhood street trees increase property value, save energy and help with storm water retention. They also create shady, walkable sidewalks ...

>> read “Street Trees are Money Trees”       #Finance   #Landscaping   #Trees
Mamou
Erythrina herbacea

Erythrina herbacea is best known in Louisiana as mamou, but it also answers to coral bean, Cherokee bean and cardinal spear. A member of the Fabaceae (bean) family, mamou has compound (trifoliate) leaves, thorny stems and showy red flowers on tall spikes in late spring to early summer, followed by long slender pods opening to reveal bright crimson-red seeds.

>> read “Mamou”       #Hot Plants
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”    
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”    
Space Saver Tips for Winter Vegetable Gardening

Like most gardeners in the South, you probably maintain a vegetable garden for three seasons: spring, summer and fall. But if you’re not living in Zone 9, where plants can grow all year round without much protection, you might think that keeping a winter garden is difficult at best ...

>> read “Space Saver Tips for Winter Vegetable Gardening”    
The American Chestnut Story
Hopefully there will be a happy ending

It’s sad, but much of today’s news contains stories about the endangerment or extinction of a plant or animal, or even an outright environmental catastrophe. Contrary to that trend, when I recently stumbled on an article about efforts to restore the endangered American chestnut tree to a place of importance in our forests, I immediately thought...

>> read “The American Chestnut Story”    
Chrysanthemum ‘Cathy’s Rust’

When it comes to mums, I have a love/hate relationship. I’m not a fan of the potted varieties you buy in the fall that are perfect, round meatballs of a plant. That being said, I absolutely love the old-fashioned garden mums that have been passed along for generations.

>> read “Chrysanthemum ‘Cathy’s Rust’”       #Hot Plants
Three Tasty, Warm-Season Herbs

If you drive through any small town across America, you will find either (or both) Mexican or a wide variety of Asian restaurants. Where burgers, pizza or fried chicken and mashed potatoes were once all that was available to choose from for supper, a huge variety of flavors have cropped up. Today, Indian, Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, Guatemalan and a vast array of other ethnic restaurants exist throughout the country ...

>> read “Three Tasty, Warm-Season Herbs”    
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”    
Gear Up for Cold Weather Gardening

It’s hard to keep an avid gardener cooped up inside all winter. The gardener starts to go stir crazy and, in turn, drives all those around her – those who are perfectly content to remain cozied up on the couch, mind you – just as crazy. But on the coldest winter days it can be just as difficult for the gardener to put on enough layers to keep out the chill without morphing into an awkward creature that ambles through the garden like the unfortunate love child of Sasquatch and a penguin.

>> read “Gear Up for Cold Weather Gardening”    
 
 
 

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