Azaleas are the queens of the spring garden, according to many gardeners and a lot of lore. Get up to speed on varieties and gardens to visit, and find resources for solving common problems at the Louisiana Azalea Society Web site.
Favorite or New Plant
Ajuga reptans, the ground cover known as bugle flower, is easy to overlook except when it's in bloom. Then the matted carpet of rosettes bursts with spikes full of tiny white or blue cylinders. They do look like tiny bugles and are almost transparent, catching every bit of light available in shady settings. Well-drained soil with plenty of organic matter and fertilizer once a year or so is all they need to spread moderately fast into a small area. Ajuga is not invasive but easily propagated by transplanting small plants with rhizomes attached.