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Gardening 664 Ideabooks

Summer is the height of gardening season. Farmer's markets and roadside stands are filled with fresh produce, while home gardens are at the peak of production. It’s a time when eating fresh and healthy is easy and enticing. To reach this stage, you need to start early — in late winter and early spring. That’s...
10 Easy Edibles for First-Time Gardeners
The idea of growing edibles is always tempting. Photos of edible gardens promise you lush landscapes filled with a tantalizing mix of vegetables, herbs and flowers that will make all passersby stop and stare. Getting started with an edible garden can...
Grow a Beautiful Garden With Ecofriendly Greywater
You’re probably irrigating your yard with drinking water, since the same water that comes out of your kitchen faucet also comes out of your hose bibs. But do your plants need drinking water? It turns out that most plants are perfectly happy with gently...
Unleash Your Guerilla Gardener
Every fall I walk through my small garden and gather seeds from my region’s native perennials. I have a little paper lunch bag for each plant (nearly 100), labeled...
Great Garden Combo: Rose + Clematis for Small-Space Impact
I love lush, abundant gardens, but in small spaces they can be difficult to achieve, due to narrow borders that don’t allow for multiple layers of trees and shrubs. The answer when you can’t go out is to go up, using one climbing plant to support...
Simple Pleasures: Savor the First Spring Day in the Garden
Is there anything better than that first spring day when the weather finally feels warm enough to really spend time outdoors? Celebrate spring with a full day spent puttering in the garden, tending to chores, sprucing things up and pampering...
New Ways to Think About All That Mulch in the Garden
After four years my neighbor finally put in a modest foundation bed last summer. I watched her laboriously dig out a 3-foot-deep bed, tearing at the fescue imbedded in potter’s clay (that’s our soil). Eventually she put in a row of three evenly spaced...
Great Design Plant: Try Blue Bells for Blooms in Dry Soil
Imagine what characteristics you would want in the perfect shrub. How about one that blooms throughout the year, loves hot temperatures but can handle cooler ones, all while needing no pruning? Would you add one to your landscape? Well, imagine no longer,...
7 Great Container Plants for Early-Spring Appeal
In cold climates early spring is still too early for planting containers with summer-blooming annuals. It’s best to wait until you are past your average last frost date. But that...
Great Design Plant: Columbine Grows Happily in Shade and Sun
When spring arrives with bursts of color and scent, one of my favorite perennials appears — star-shaped columbine. It grows in my woodland garden amid other delicate wildflowers, such as bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis), trillium and speckled...
Great Plants for Lush, Low-Water Gardens
If you are dealing with water restrictions, have a lackluster irrigation system or simply want to conserve resources, adding plants that don’t get thirsty is a smart way to green up your outdoor space. Yes, you heard that right; I said “green.”...
Great Design Plant: Blackfoot Daisy for Prettier Dry Ground
Daisies will brighten up any landscape, and blackfoot daisy is no exception. Despite its fragile appearance, this low-growing perennial flourishes with little water in areas that experience bitter-cold winters, while also thriving in hot, dry desert...
Great Design Plant: Bugle Weed, a Quick Ground Cover
This versatile ground cover is often overlooked, yet I have found it to be a reliable workhorse. Ignored by deer and rabbits in my garden — so far — it fills in quickly between boulders and larger plants, bringing year-round color and texture, while...
Lessons in the Rewards of Selfless Gardening
For the first few years, I gardened for myself. It was an explosion of energy as I bought plants, dug them in, dug them up and moved them a few inches. Plants, plants, plants. Oh, the colors and textures and potential. The garden was for me — my vision,...
Easygoing Tulip Ideas From a Grand California Garden
I was fortunate to have the opportunity to visit the Filoli garden, near San Francisco, recently. The sky was blue, the birds were singing, and spring sunshine bathed the immaculate gardens in a soft, warm glow. As...