lilac bush

Lovely Lilacs

“Memories, imagination, old sentiments, and associations are more readily reached through the sense of smell than through any other channel.”  Oliver Wendell Holmes Aside from roses, there is no flower as beautiful and aromatic as lilacs. Lilacs have a distinctive, memorable fragrance. When the smell of lilacs heralds the arrival of spring, where does the […]

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Dames Rocket

Dame’s Rocket

A plant with pretty pink to purple flowers, a long bloom season, fragrant – especially in the evening, attracts butterflies, deer don’t like it, no disease problems, and easy to grow. Sounds like a perfect ornamental plant for the home garden. Not so fast! This “perfect” plant is dame’s rocket (Hesperis matronalis) and it’s on […]

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Edible Nettles (Large)

Delectable, Edible Stinging Nettle

There are a number of edible weeds, including dandelion, purslane, and lambs quarter. While it might be hard to swallow, figuratively speaking, stinging nettle may be added to that list. Urtica dioica, or stinging nettle is a perennial herb native to Europe and most of North America. The Latin term is quite descriptive: urtica means […]

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mower-432793_960_720

Lawn and Garden Safety

The weather is warming up and many of us are heading outside to our lawns and gardens. As you tend to your gardens, here are some guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (cdc.gov) to keep your gardening season a safe one. When working outside, protect yourself from sunburn by wearing a long-sleeved shirt, long […]

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Argiope feasting on prey

Along Came a Spider

Spiders. Are they creepy, crawly creatures to be feared, monitored, squished or evaded as quickly as possible? Or, wonderful beings that add immensely to gardens? According to mental health statistics, arachnophobia, or a fear of spiders that overwhelms reason, is one of the top ten phobias with millions of sufferers worldwide. In the United States, […]

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P1000825 (Large)

Made in the Shade

Some homeowners have been blessed with an abundance of beautiful, mature trees in the landscape. This means there is also an abundance of shade, which poses some challenges when choosing plants to surround the trees. Landscaping in the shade does not have to be limited to the ever popular hostas. While there are a wide […]

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Oriental Poppy

The Bold, Vibrant Oriental Poppy

Now that spring has officially arrived, the flowers will bloom and brighten the corners of the landscape. First will be the bulb flowers such as the crocus, daffodil, hyacinth, and tulips. Then, a late spring, eye-catching brilliant display of Oriental poppies will dazzle the eyes for many gardeners. Oriental poppies, Papaver orientale, are an old-fashioned […]

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Harvesting Cinnamon

Spicing it up!

We might not give spices much thought while we’re using them, but many have a history that goes back to the beginning of civilization. Spices have caused wars and great adventures. They have been used as currency, status symbols, medicine, and for embalming. Spices come from the roots, flowers, fruits, seeds, or bark of herbaceous […]

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