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Gardening 750 Ideabooks

Most gardeners can agree that September is one of the best months for being outdoors. Around the United States, changing seasons breathe life into gardens and gardeners’ enthusiasm, and with this one the oppressive grip of summer’s heat finally loosens. It’s planting time again. Everything from cool-season...
Be a Butterfly Savior — Garden for the Monarchs
I had a 10-gallon aquarium sitting on our dining room table in 2011. I’d browsed Craigslist to find a rearing tank for monarchs. When I met with the seller in a McDonald’s parking lot, I discovered she was about 13, and her older brother came out...
How to Grow Your Own Sweet Summer Crops
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,...
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...
Summer Crops: How to Grow Tomatoes
There’s no contest: Homegrown tomatoes, freshly picked, taste best. Given that, including them in a summer vegetable garden is a no-brainer. The next question is, which one to grow? There are tomatoes for every region, from Alaska with its short summers...
Great Design Plant: Dwarf Blue Indigo Offers Carefree Beauty
I’m a big fan of Baptisia. There are many species, most underutilized, but the most common one you’ll see for sale — as either a hybrid or straight species — is Baptisia...
Great Design Plant: Foamflower Cushions Shady Garden Areas
Need a densely growing ground cover for a shady spot? Foamflower (Tiarella cordifolia) fits the bill and then some. The foliage of this Mid-Atlantic native plant is evergreen, except in very cold winters, and the white, midspring blooms brighten...
What Monarch Butterflies Taught Me About Garden Design
The monarchs are beginning their migration south this month and will be in full tilt into September, ending up in central Mexico around the end of October. Over their thousands of miles, both in fall and again next spring, they will inspire gardeners...
Make This Fall’s Garden the Best Ever
As the heat of summer begins to wane, people venture out from the comfort of their air-conditioned homes to enjoy the cooler temperatures of fall. People aren’t the only ones who enjoy fall temperatures — plants do too. In fact, fall can be one...
Great Design Plant: Snowberry Pleases Year-Round
Wander along nearly any stretch of Pacific Northwest roadside or through a forest clearing, and you will soon encounter vast thickets of snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus). Most commonly seen in roadside ditches in farming areas, growing with steeplebush...
Great Design Plant: Anise Hyssop Delights Licorice Lovers
If you love black licorice, as I do, then you will want to include anise hyssop (Agastache foeniculum) in your landscape; crushing the foliage releases an anise (licorice) scent that smells wonderful to a licorice lover but helps keep deer and...
Autumn Joy: How to Get 3 Months of Fall Flowers
I’ve become a bit of an aster hound. There are just so many asters out there that we never hear of or that nurseries don’t sell. And I’m talking native species asters...
Great Design Plant: Western Sword Fern Adds Prehistoric Drama
While commonly seen in the Pacific Northwest, western sword fern (Polystichum munitum) is nevertheless one of the region’s most visually distinctive — even dramatic — native plants. Its dark green, prehistoric-looking fronds can reach...
Gardening Solutions for Dry, Sandy Soils
One of the benefits of gardening with sandy soil is that it’s easy to dig and till, making transplanting easy. However, dry, sandy soil does not hold nutrients or water well. It takes additions of compost,...