Some of us soon might be gazing wistfully at snow out our windows, but the truth is spring is not far away. What better way is there to beat the winter doldrums than to gear up for spring planting? Continue reading
Category Archives: Gardens
I cannot live without coffee and chocolate. Therefore, I cannot live without pollinators.
Chelone, (it rhymes with phony and baloney) is a native member of the figwort family. It is more commonly known as turtlehead. It's not hard to figure out how it got its common name; those blooms shaped like turtleheads are so adorable that even someone who is not a fan of turtles can’t resist them. They remind me of kids running around in the rain with their tongues sticking out to catch the droplets. Chelone was a nymph in Greek mythology that offended the gods by not attending the wedding of Zeus to Hera. To punish her, they turned her into a turtle. Continue reading
The Teaching Garden at the Benedictine Monastery in Bristow, Va., is maintained by Master Gardeners of Prince William County. In this garden, Master Gardeners grow fresh produce for the Plant a Row for the Hungry project. It is also where they teach others how to grow vegetables, practice low-maintenance gardening techniques and demonstrate plants that grow well locally. Continue reading
Warning: Bloodroot can be extremely toxic, even fatal.
I'm not going to discuss the medical uses for bloodroot. There is plenty of information on the web (and from professional herbalists, which I certainly am not) explaining its benefits and dangers. Just let me say do your research very well. Also, consider pets and children before planting it in your landscape. As beautiful as this plant is, it is not worth risking loved ones’ health or possibly even lives. Continue reading
My favorite shrub is oakleaf hydrangea, Hydrangea quercifolia (querci- oak, and folia - leaf). This native plant ranges from Tennessee to Florida and west to the Mississippi River. In Virginia, we are a bit north of its native range but it grows very well here. It grows naturally in forests, along streams and on forested hillsides. Continue reading
The idea couldn’t be simpler. You have seeds left over from last year’s garden but, this year, would like to try some new plants. Somewhere nearby, a fellow gardener is in the same boat. The two of you attend a neighborhood seed swap organized by one very ambitious person or group and — voilà — you both have new seeds to plant. Continue reading
For most people, gardening is an at-home activity, a hobby for the weekend or a way to unwind after a day spent sitting behind a desk.
But for several employees with the Virginia Department of Health, the joys of gardening are part of the daily work routine. They participate in a program called Plaza Planter Adopt-a-Box at their department’s headquarters — the Madison Building in downtown Richmond. Continue reading