Gardening News and Updates

Winter Weather Protection for Warmer ClimatesWinter Weather Protection for Warmer Climates
October 31, 2014

The term "winter protection for plants" can be a little different for those of us in warmer climates. It is possible for us to overwinter some plants right in their pots.

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Map Your GardenMap Your Garden
October 30, 2014

You don't know where you're going unless you know where you've been. Plant tags and markers can get lost or carried away by varmints, but a garden map tucked away in your garden notebook will always be there when spring arrives. Here are some easy tips for an accurate map.

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Don't Throw Out Those Pelargoniums at the End of the Season!Don't Throw Out Those Pelargoniums at the End of the Season!
October 29, 2014

Storksbill geraniums (Pelargoniums) are a beloved staple in summer containers and landscaping. Every fall most of the summer's selections end up being tossed out, or composted, without a second thought. What you might not know is that Pelargoniums are simple to overwinter, and not as houseplants that require care!

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 Cute Way To Label Your Plants Cute Way To Label Your Plants
October 28, 2014

Here's a way of labeling your plants that's cute and fun!

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A Sliding Door on the Harbor Freight GreenhouseA Sliding Door on the Harbor Freight Greenhouse
October 27, 2014

After the brutal winter of 2013 I realized that I needed to improve my HFGH if I was going to use it year-round. I believed the doors were one of the major problems. I was able to get a very good Andersen 6' sliding patio door and wanted to incorporate it into the existing structure.

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Learn the LatinLearn the Latin
October 26, 2014

Learning Latin names is not as difficult as you might think. A little at a time, we can learn the Latin names of our plants and avoid quite a bit of confusion.

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Announcing the 2014 All Things Plants Photo Contest!Announcing the 2014 All Things Plants Photo Contest!
October 25, 2014

Today we begin the first of our annual photography contests, and there are excellent prizes for the winners. The contest is open for entries now. Break out your best photos for this year's contest! Sponsored by American Meadows and High Country Gardens.

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Milkweed and SolidagoMilkweed and Solidago
October 24, 2014

Native plants possess tremendous value for the backyard gardener. They add beauty, provide important habitat and food for native pollinators and other wildlife, help to preserve our natural heritage, require little maintenance once established, and serve to control soil erosion through well-adapted root systems. Current estimates indicate that, of the 20,000 plant species native to North America, almost 25 percent are at risk of becoming extinct. In this article, I will focus on two native species you might want to help preserve by planting them in your own garden: Milkweeds and Solidagos.

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Mountain MintMountain Mint
October 23, 2014

There are many wonderful native herbaceous plants and flowers growing in the wild that are all too often overlooked or forgotten. I think this is one of them.

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Crossvine, Bignonia capreolata, Bignoniaceae (Trumpet-Creeper Family)Crossvine, Bignonia capreolata, Bignoniaceae (Trumpet-Creeper Family)
October 22, 2014

This beautiful evergreen vine is disease and insect free, plus the blooms are amazing.

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The Need for Native Plants and WildflowersThe Need for Native Plants and Wildflowers
October 22, 2014

Loss of songbird habitat, fewer Monarch butterflies, mysterious bee deaths … just a few of the reports that seem to be appearing in the news more and more frequently these days. That’s the bad news. The good news is that it’s possible to do something to restore natural habitats for birds, bees, butterflies, and other wildlife in our own landscapes and gardens.

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Milkweed Vine, for Those of Us Who Have Trouble Growing Other MilkweedsMilkweed Vine, for Those of Us Who Have Trouble Growing Other Milkweeds
October 21, 2014

I have great hope for this plant to provide the abundant Milkweed we need to raise many Monarchs and Queens. This plant is also a powerful magnet for all kinds of pollinators, including bees and many other butterflies.

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Sunflower SecretsSunflower Secrets
October 21, 2014

Amazing blooms, those sunflowers have, and behind every huge golden petaled, chocolate-centered face, there hides a world of secrets. Their seeds are filled with nutrition, their young faces follow the sun, and their petals, seeds, and hulls provide both yellow and a dark purple dye. But that's not all: Sunflowers are the globetrotters of the plant world.

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 Bidens: Native Wildflower or Weed? Bidens: Native Wildflower or Weed?
October 20, 2014

"A weed is but an unloved flower.” ~ Ella Wheeler Wilcox, author and poet, 1850 - 1919

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Texas OrchidsTexas Orchids
October 19, 2014

When you think of orchids, you probably think of the tropical variety. They are often found in “big box” store garden centers or used in corsages. But there are 25,000 to 30,000 species of orchids in the world, and at least 10,000 of these grow in the tropics. Orchids have been found on every continent except Antarctica. There are even a few species that grow above the Arctic Circle.

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The Top 50 All Things Plants WildflowersThe Top 50 All Things Plants Wildflowers
October 18, 2014

It's hard to figure out which plants are wildflowers and which ones aren't, so lists like these are hard to come up with. Nevertheless, with help from our members we made a list of areas of the database that qualify, and here's the top 50 most popular species from among them!

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What To Do with an Old Aquarium? Make a Terrarium!What To Do with an Old Aquarium? Make a Terrarium!
October 17, 2014

You can turn an aquarium into a beautiful living terrarium full of plants, and it can include fish, frogs, and other small amphibians.

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"Perilla Magilla" vs. Perilla vs. Coleus"Perilla Magilla" vs. Perilla vs. Coleus
October 16, 2014

"Perilla Magilla" is not the edible Perilla you might expect.

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Plain White Paper Plates Help Seed SortingPlain White Paper Plates Help Seed Sorting
October 15, 2014

Using paper plates makes cleaning and sorting seeds so much easier.

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Mulch Those Daylilies with Fall LeavesMulch Those Daylilies with Fall Leaves
October 14, 2014

Each fall I use the abundance of free leaves to heavily mulch my daylily gardens before the winter.

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Rube Goldberg, Macro Photography, and You: Close-Ups on a BudgetRube Goldberg, Macro Photography, and You: Close-Ups on a Budget
October 13, 2014

Dedicated macro lenses can be expensive, but there are a variety of other methods to shoot close-up photos using the lens(es) you already have, paired with inexpensive accessories. This article examines and illustrates some of these methods.

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How To Make a Cheap "Light Box" for Sorting SeedsHow To Make a Cheap "Light Box" for Sorting Seeds
October 12, 2014

Do you have seeds that can be candled to check for viability? Make a cheap light box that is customizable and will get the job done!

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The October 2014 Hardy Cacti, Succulents, Natives and Wildflowers Not-A-Raffle-Raffle!The October 2014 Hardy Cacti, Succulents, Natives and Wildflowers Not-A-Raffle-Raffle!
October 11, 2014

This is it! The final raffle of the year, and it's another great one, loaded down with huge prizes from some of our favorite companies.

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Hardy Cactus OpuntiaHardy Cactus Opuntia
October 10, 2014

If you live with snow a few months a year and yearn to have a desert garden but think it is not possible, think again: It is possible. There are many cacti that are cold hardy down to -30 degrees, but I will discuss mainly Opuntia cactus planting, designs, and companion plants that will give the appearance of a desert garden. There are numerous hardy Opuntia cacti that are hardy to -30 degrees and will survive under a foot of snow. When spring arrives for us northern gardeners, the opuntias usually are lying flat and may look dead, but they will plump up and reward you with 4" - 6" peony-form flowers in colors of yellow, pink, peach, and red in June-July.

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Where To Look for Sempervivum Color at ATPWhere To Look for Sempervivum Color at ATP
October 9, 2014

Sempervivums are available in a great variety of vibrant colors, but within a year's worth of growing time Sempervivums can undergo several color changes.

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