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Gardeners and their Gardens

Why Every Garden Needs A Frog

I found my three-year-old granddaughter standing by the window yesterday, sobbing her heart out. When I asked her what was wrong, she pointed a qivering finger at the pond and did that “hiccuppy” thing heartbroken children do. Eventually she sputtered out that the frogs in my pond were too cold and she wanted to bring them inside where it was warm. I managed to convince her that the frogs were just fine and that they needed to be in the pond, but the whole time there was a little voice in my head accusing me of blatantly lying to this tender-hearted child. The reality was that I had no earthly idea what frogs do during the winter – or if they were even still alive. 

 

70 to 7 and Back Again -- Can Your Garden Cope?

Our weather has been bizarre lately. We have had a string of dry, sunny 70+ degree days in December followed by a series of unusually cold snaps. In fact just this week our temperatures plummeted over 50 degrees within an 18 hour period  –  from 60 degrees F in the afternoon to 4 degrees F the next morning. Realizing the toll this weird weather is having on my psyche, I began to wonder what was happening to my landscape. What effect would these temperature fluctuations have on my plants  – especially my newly planted perennials? What can I do to minimize any negative effects to my plants? 

The Gifts Gardeners Really Want

A few close friends and I were having coffee the other morning when the conversation drifted off to holiday gift-giving and how difficult it can  be to find that exactly “right” gift for the “right” person. We started reminiscing about some of the gifts we have received through the years, usually from our husbands. Some were sweet, some were strange and some were absolutely hilarious

STOP!  PUT DOWN YOUR PRUNERS AND STEP AWAY FROM THAT BUSH!

It’s November. The daffodil bulbs are all tucked in the ground and ready for a spring showing. The overgrown perennials have been pulled, trimmed and replanted. The iris beds have been cleaned out for weeks. There really aren’t any other chores that have to be done this minute, but the sky is bright blue and the temperature is perfect and the fanatical gardeners of the world absolutely must take advantage of one more day working in the yard (It could be the last perfect day of the year, you know….) And in their need to garden just one more time, they too often reach for a potentially dangerous and deadly tool -- their pruners.

Bring Your Landscape Lighting to a New Dimension -- Add Color!

Until recently, residential landscape lighting was primarily held to various shades of white light. Colorful outdoor lights showed up during the Christmas season and then disappeared until the next year. With the introduction of colored LED and halogen lights, as well as a variety of easily used colored lens covers, white lights are no longer the only option for homeowners.

Plant These Specialty Bulbs Now to Perk Up Your Spring Landscape

While we’re on the subject of bulbs   -  be sure and read last week’s article on alliums, -  I thought that it might be fun to showcase some of the less well-known specialty bulbs.  I discovered them a few years ago while pouring over a catalog from one of Embassy’s garden products suppliers, ordered a few varieties and have been hooked on them ever since. From the ones that peek out while the snow is still falling to those that herald the beginning of a long, lazy summer,  they are all worth a prime spot in the landscape.  

Fourteen Breathtaking Alliums For Your Garden

Boxes of fall bulbs ready for planting have begun to appear in the big box stores. As I’ve looked around here, I’ve seen a satisfying variety of daffodils, tulips, hyacinths and crocus available. Even some of the smaller, less familiar bulbs like Galanthus (Snowdrops) are well represented. Sticking just to these varieties, you could have the beginnings of a beautiful spring garden, but you’d most likely miss out on one of the most dramatic, and under-appreciated stars of the spring and summer garden, the allium.