Fall

Optimal Growing Conditions? A few thoughts.

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A bit of research work has had me at my books lately, looking up optimal growing conditions for several plants and making notes for spring purchases. It has taken me years to successfully grow poppies, or rather, for seeds to find the right conditions in which to flourish. However, even at half-strength they have [...]

Fall Berry & Bulb Color

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It’s harvest season. Even those who don’t harvest anything more than a cereal box off a shelf know that autumn means decorative berries. But did you know it also can also mean the brightness of autumn-blooming bulbs?  Let’s finish this series on the fall garden (both online and off) with a few suggestions for both. [...]

Fall Foliage Color

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Continuing with the theme of possibilities for your autumn garden – I’d like to take your eyes off the flowers for a moment and focus them squarely on foliage – a forgotten area for too many gardeners, no matter what the season. Another stunning Chanticleer foliage combination. Not completely hardy, but completely gorgeous until [...]

Fall Bloom Color

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What’s working in your autumn garden right now?  If you’re shrugging and pointing to a top heavy mum that’s got more juice running through its veins than a Russian weightlifter, you’re on the wrong track.  I’m asking what’s working. Plectranthus 'Mona Lavender' at Chanticleer Garden Perhaps I should ask, what’s working in the [...]

Preparing for The End

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There is an end to every good party and thankfully, every bad one, but whichever one your garden has taken you to this year, it’s time to start hunting for your coat and keys. Rugosa alba hips redden on a brilliant yellow backdrop You might have exited early – wearied by the interminable [...]

Order from Chaos: A Season with Raised Beds

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September is bringing cool, early morning breezes to the garden which invite a bit of work – albeit under the pretext of slipping outside for a wander with coffee in hand.  Lower humidity levels have also been gifted to us, quite possibly making it an actual crime to go inside when life has finally returned [...]

The Gardener’s Autumn Wardrobe

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“WHAT are you wearing?!?” I was asked this the other day by a friend who dropped by to find me clothed in some terrible mixture of camisole and cargo short paired with heavy boots. I wasn’t winning fashion awards, but such is my summertime garden wardrobe and I told her so – explaining why sandals [...]

Ordered Chaos: The Case for a Potting Station

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In every home there is a place where unfolded laundry is thrown and a week’s worth of junk is shoved when guests rap upon the door unexpectedly. For some lucky souls it may be a spare room. For others it might be a more traditional space like a basement, garage, attic, or even a cupboard [...]

An Exhausting Autumn

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A warm wet autumn means lots of mushroom foraging. Here oyster mushrooms & wood ears, destined for a stir fry. Boy we’ve had it good this season. A fall season that doesn’t just tempt, but delivers on a promise is a rare and precious thing, and I have wrung every bit of loveliness [...]

When Everyone Is Watching: Garden Design for Non-Designers

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A front-and-center garden puts artwork on display and invites accolades or criticism. I've got nothing but accolades for this Oregon homeowner. Designing a garden is a humbling experience, period. But when your design is instantly on display because you are planting an entrance or a driveway, it’s a worrying experience. And, [...]