Blog

Posted by & filed under Gardens, Groundhogs, raccoons, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson   Last year I battled groundhogs and squirrels for control of my yard. (It was a draw; neither side took complete control.) This year, they have added another ally to their side  —  a pair of devious raccoons. On the surface, they appear innocent, almost disarmingly cute with their black face masks …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Hummingbird gardens, Hummingbirds, Native Plants, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson   While a great design is the first step to a hummin’ garden (See last week’s post for design tips), the plants that you chose can actually make it or break it. Hummingbirds, like many bees and butterflies, have some fairly specific preferences when it comes to their food sources. Keeping these characteristics …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Design, designing for hummingbirds, Hummingbird gardens, Hummingbirds, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson   My neighbor two houses down routinely has 4 or 5 hummingbirds flitting around her two feeders every day. (I have to admit that I have been known to “check” occasionally.) I, on the other hand, have one diehard who comes once a day, drinks and then flies off to the neighbor’s …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Blue flowers, Brunnera, Butterfly Gardens, Deer Resistant Plants, Groundcovers, Naturalizing, Rain Gardens, Shade Gardens, Shade-loving plants, Siberian bugloss, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson Siberian bugloss   Finding attractive, well-behaved plants for moist, full- shade locations can be tricky, but Siberian bugloss (Brunnera) could be your answer.  This easy to grow groundcover thrives in areas that receive as few as 4 hours of sunlight per day. It loves rich, moist soil, but once established, will tolerate …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Birds, Butterfly Gardens, Designing for Butterflies, Drought tolerant plants, Dry gardens, ecosystems, Full sun, Gardens, Groundcovers, Insects, Native Grasses, Native groundcovers, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Rock gardens, Shade Gardens, Shade-loving plants, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson   My daughter FaceTimed me the other day. She wanted me to see a plant and tell her what would look good with it in her garden. I gave her a few suggestions, but the conversation really got me thinking. I don’t know how many times I have stood in a garden …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Bird Friendly Shrub, Butterfly Gardens, Deciduous shrub, Drought tolerant plants, ecosystems, Full sun, Gardens, Groundcovers, Host Plants, Native Groundcover, Native Plants, Native Shrubs, New Jersey Tea, Uncategorized

(Photo Credit:  JohnOyston) By Sandra Nelson   This week’s pick by Sandra Nelson,   New Jersey Tea       Picture masses of gorgeous,  pure white flowers hosting visits from dozens of brightly colored butterflies and a delicate fragrance filling the air. Even better, picture that idyllic scene on the rocky hillside in your yard where …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Edible gardens, FoodscaPING, Gardens, Uncategorized, Urban gardens, Vegetable gardens

By Sandra Nelson   With the days all seeming to melt together, it’s hard to realize that today is already May 7th. In another week or so it will be time to begin planting the bulk of my vegetable garden  —  the warm season plants like tomatoes and cucumbers and zucchini, and some seeds like …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Birds, Butterfly Gardens, Doublefile Viburnum, Fall color, Full sun, Uncategorized, Viburnum

Featured image by David J Stang By Sandra Nelson    This week’s pick is by Dan Nelson, Lead Designer at Embassy Landscape Group   Doublefile Viburnum   Reminiscent of a dogwood tree, the doublefile virburnum, “Mariesii” is a true spring beauty.     Like so many of the old-fashioned favorites, doublefile viburnum is staging a …

Read More »

Posted by & filed under Benefits of Nature, Children and Nature, Gardens, Uncategorized, Vegetable gardens

By Sandra Nelson     Being in shelter-in-place throughout April has given me lots of extra time to read online news articles. I’ve noticed two problems dominating our daily lives: 1) The vast majority of American parents seem to be overwhelmed by homeschooling and online learning; and 2) Backyard vegetable gardens are being acknowledged as …

Read More »