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August 2019

Spring Blooming Bulbs For Pollinators

I have always planted bulbs like daffodils and tulips strictly for the joy they give me in the early spring. There is nothing like finding that first green leaf tip poking up through the bare ground or seeing a burst of bright yellow out the kitchen window when everything else is still either brown or …

What's In Bloom Today?

The often mistakenly maligned perennial, Goldenrod (Solidago ) is beginning its annual fall show.     Goldenrod is a stunning, easy to grow herbaceous perennial that is often falsely accused of causing hay fever. The truth is, wind-blown pollen from plants like ragweed (pictured below) are actually the offenders. Depending on the specific species, bright yellow blooms …

What's in Bloom Today?

The native Missouri wildflower commonly called Black-eyed Susan is in full bloom right now.     Known for their bursts of bright, yellow to yellow-orange blooms, black-eyed Susans, or Rudbeckia hirta, are  favorites of butterflies but avoided by deer and rabbits because of their hairy foliage. They are biennials or short-lived perennials and will easily …

Design Ideas To Keep Deer Away

I live in a divided neighborhood.    One-half thinks our resident deer are adorable while the other half (the gardeners of the group) fantasizes about turning them into venison. Being engaged in daily competition with the herd this entire summer for my hostas, daylilies and phlox, I have to admit I lean more to the …

Green Spaces for Cities -- Part 2: Living Walls and Green Roofs

One of my favorite sessions from the recent Perennial Plant Conference I attended in Chicago was on Living Walls. It had been a reluctant choice at first — a lesser of two evils type of choice. Surprisingly though, after the first few minutes, I was hooked. The presenter didn’t try to teach me how, instead …

What's In Bloom Today?

Russian Sage, or Perovskia atriplicifolia, is giving a spectacular show right now.     A full sun perennial, Russian sage (named in honor of the Russian general V.A. Perovski), features light lavender blooms on 2 to 4 foot stems from mid July to mid October. Easy to grow, Russian sage thrives in average, well-drained soil. It …

Green Spaces for Cities -- Part 1

  Perspectives change over time, don’t they?   We were on I -90 headed to Chicago’s Union Station when I glanced out the window and noticed the downtown skyline. Ten years ago I would have commented on how exciting it was to see all of the sleek buildings dominating the landscape. This time the view made …

What's In Bloom Today?

Allium “Millenium” is currently a show stopper in the August garden.       Just when other blooms in the garden are beginning to look summer worn, this allium variety begins to shine. Unlike its spring blooming cousins, this hybrid ornamental allium stands only 12 to 18 inches tall and blooms beginning in July and …