What’s In Bloom Today?

Posted by & filed under Beneficial insects, Butterfly Gardens, Clay Soil, Deer Resistant Plants, Goldenrod, Naturalizing

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 …

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What’s in Bloom Today?

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Crape Myrtle, Deciduous shrub, Drought tolerant plants, Uncategorized

Lagerstroemia indica, better known as Crape Myrtle, is bursting into bloom here in Kansas City.       Grown as a  4 – 6 foot upright, multi-stemmed deciduous shrub here in the Midwest, Crape Myrtles sport gorgeous rose, red, purple or white colored blooms typically beginning in July and continuing through September. In milder years however, …

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Plant A Patch: Switch grass (Panicum virgatum)

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Fall gardens, Fall planting, Native Grasses, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Rain Garden Plants, Rain Gardens, Rainscaping, Switch grass, Uncategorized, Winter Landscaping

  Reminiscent of the days of the tallgrass prairie, switch grass, with its upright, columnar shape can be a striking stand alone focal point, a massed anchor for a border, or a backdrop for a rain garden. Reaching up to 6 feet in height when in bloom, switch grass is easily grown in moist, sandy …

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Plant A Grove: American Smoketree — (Cotinus obvatus)

Posted by & filed under American smoketree, Clay Soil, Deer Resistant Plants, Fall gardens, Native Shrubs, Native Trees, Trees, Uncategorized

      Grown as a small tree or a large shrub, the American smoketree is known for its unique summer appearance and glorious fall color. Smoketrees, which can reach heights of 30 feet,  require full sun but will do well in any soil type, even clay, as long as the soil drains reasonably well. …

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Plant A Patch: Copper Iris (Iris fulva)

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Copper iris, Gardens, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Nectar Plants, PerenniaLs, Rain Garden Plants, Rain Gardens, Rainscaping, Sustainable Landscaping

  A perfect plant for use in a rain garden or as a water plant , the copper iris takes its name from its unique reddish-copper color blooms which appear in May and June.Small plants, they typically reach about 2 feet in height. They love full sun, but will tolerate part shade if planted in …

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Plant A Patch: Goldenrod (Solidago speciosa)

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Gardens, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Sustainable Landscaping, Uncategorized

Often maligned and saddled with a nefarious reputation, goldenrod, commonly called showy goldenrod, is an underused native perennial. Contrary to common belief, the pollen from goldenrod does not cause allergies. (That’s ragweed!) Easily grown in dry, clay soil, this full sun perennial has club-shaped clusters of bright yellow blooms beginning in July and continuing throughout …

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Digging into Dirt, Part 2: What Kind Is It?

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Improving Soil, Loam, Microbes, Microorganisms, Sandy Soil, Silty Soil, Soil, Soil Health, Soil Tyoes

If I were a soil scientist (and that does take a huge stretch of your imagination), I would be presenting you with a list showing the taxonomy of 12 different soils, all having totally unfamiliar and unpronounceable names. Each soil group would be determined by one or two major characteristics chosen for how the soil …

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