Stachys “Hummelo:” A Must Have For Your Garden

Posted by & filed under Borders, Container Gardening, Deer Resistant Plants, Full sun, Groundcovers, Stachys ‘Hummelo’, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson   This week’s pick is by Dan Nelson, Lead Designer   Stachys ‘Hummelo’   “The 2019 Perennial Plant Association’s Plant of the Year, this is a great plant  for the perennial bed and as a ground cover. “     Largely undiscovered by today’s homeowners, Stachys ‘Hummelo’ is a true “Must Have.”  An …

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Lantana: A Must Have For Your Garden

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Broadleaf evergreen, Butterfly Gardens, Container Gardening, Deer Resistant Plants, Drought tolerant plants, Full sun, Lantana, Uncategorized

By Sandra Nelson       This week’s pick by Jo Ann Prieto, horticulturist and seasonal color specialist.   Lantana   “A great, sturdy heat tolerant plant that can be used en mass in the landscape and in pots as trailers.”       Each bloom a living rainbow for the garden, lantana adds a playful zest to …

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Spring Clean-Up, The Environmentally Friendly Way

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Causes of Insect Decline, Insects, Predatory Insects, Spring clean-up, Uncategorized

 By Sandra Nelson   We had a quick taste of spring this past weekend.    It was warm and sunny and people in our neighborhood were out in full force taking advantage of the beautiful days to begin their spring yard clean-up. Leaves were raked and bagged, perennials chopped back to the ground, trees were …

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Oak Leaf Hydrangea — A Must Have For Your Garden

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Butterfly Gardens, Fall color, Mid-summer gardens, Oak Leaf Hydrangea, Uncategorized, Winter Landscaping

  By Sandra Nelson   This week’s pick is by Sandy Defoe,  Artistic Director.   Oak Leaf Hydrangea    “In summer, the attractive green leaves show off other plants. The flowers last all summer long and then the dried flower heads stay on through the winter.”   Long a favorite for Midwest gardens (introduced in …

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Who’s Showing Off Today?

Posted by & filed under Beneficial insects, Bird Friendly Shrub, Buttonbush, Native Shrubs, Naturalizing, Rain Garden Plants, Rainscaping, Uncategorized

  With fall colors waning, structural drama is grabbing our attention now and the native deciduous shrub Buttonbush is giving an outstanding show.     An excellent rain garden plant, Buttonbush grows in moist, humas rich soil in full sun to part shade locations. It has fragrant white blooms in June and July that attract …

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What’s In Bloom Today?

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Butterfly Gardens, Coryopteris, Deciduous shrub, Fall Blooming Plants, Naturalizing, Uncategorized

Blue Mist Spireas , or bluebeards, are stealing the show right now.         Bees, butterflies and other pollinators flock to this lightly fragrant but always showy deciduous shrub throughout its lengthy fall bloom period. Caryopteris is easy to grow in a full sun, well-drained location, but does not like wet feet!  It …

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Spring Blooming Bulbs For Pollinators

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Bulbs for pollinators, Native Bulbs, Pollinator Gardens, Uncategorized

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 …

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Patience Is the Key To A Successful Butterfly Garden

Posted by & filed under Beneficial insects, Black Swallowtail Butterfly, Butterfly Gardens, Design, design process, Designing for Butterflies, Insects, Landscaping, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Uncategorized

One of my favorite things to do this summer is to quietly sit on my deck, watching dozens of butterflies floating through the yard enjoying the nectar buffet I’ve planted. This is the first year that I’ve had a steady stream of visitors and it feels like the time, effort and money I’ve put into …

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Invite An Insect: Ground Beetles

Posted by & filed under Beetles, Beneficial insects, Ground Beetles, Nocturnal Insects, Uncategorized

    Lacking the grace of a butterfly, the agility of a praying mantis or the industriousness of a bee, ground beetles are not included in the current list of trendy bugs. In fact, many people have no idea what they are losing when they deliberately squash one of these beneficial insects as it scurries …

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