Still Planting Despite the Heat

As crazy as it sounds I'm still putting plants in the ground with temperatures up around 100!  The weather may be hot but sometimes you just have to deal with it and move on with your garden plans.  Usually a plant will perform much better with less water requirements if it has been planted in the ground rather than left in the pot - at least that is my observation.  My plan was to plant more plants in the front garden area where I built the garden sitting wall.  It rests underneath the shade of a Bradford pear tree (which admittedly I'm taking a risk planting anything underneath since the Bradford pear could come down at any time).  What plants did I pick out to plant in this area?  Since it gets mostly afternoon shade I planted a combination of coleus and hydrangeas to go with a few hostas I…

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5 Plants I Really Like!

Fads come and go and garden fads do the same thing.  What I like today might be different in 10 years, 5 years, or even 1 year!  But for this Friday Five post I thought I'd tell you a little about the plants I really like right now.  While this list contains some specific plants it also contains a types of plants (some of which may only be loosely related.) Heucheras are the "in" plant of today or at least I think so!  They are an American native plant that thrives in dry shade areas.  Heucheras are perennial plants that need occasional dividing every 3-4 years.  They grow outward and eventually leave an open center section that can be covered back up with soil and encourages to grow back.  I prefer dividing them in the spring time by digging the plant up and separating the rooted sections into individual plants…

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Corner Shade Garden: I’ve Got Things To Do

It's been a while since I posted about the corner shade garden.  Last year it really wasn't anything to write about, it was a mess.  I neglected it due to other issues and now comes the time when I need to get it back into shape.  A year of neglect in the garden can mean a lot of work later for repairing the damage.  Weeds grow, produce seed, spread the seed, and grow three times faster when you're not looking!  So in today's post I'm going to make a list of things I need to do to get this garden back into shape.  With Easter weekend coming up I doubt I'll have time to get it all done just yet but perhaps next week I can get this garden ready for showing off. Here's the corner shade garden in its current state.  Weeds are all over.  Some grass type weeds,…

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5 Easy to Grow Plants No Garden Should Be Without! (The Friday Fives)

This year I thought I'd try to start something on each Friday.  At the end of each work week I'll make a list of five things from the garden.  They could be anything, everything is fair garden, as long as it can be related to the garden!  To start things off I'm going to mention 5 easy to grow plants that no garden should be without! See if you agree! Zinnias My monarch butterfly friend here will agree with me that zinnias in the garden are essential!  Zinnias are annuals but are very easy to grow.  Most of the time I just sprinkle the seed where I want them to grow, water, then wait.  I've never had pest problems with my zinnias but have experienced the powdery mildew issue.  It's a fungus that attacks the plants in hot and humid conditions (which we are blessed with every summer here in…

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Corner Shade Garden Then (2008) and Now (2011)

Three years ago I redid a corner spot along our house and turned it into a shade garden. Two plants were present when I started to install the shade garden: a privet (ligustrum) and a cedar tree. I removed the privet mostly because I didn't like it and removed the cedar due to a bagworm infestation I had early last spring. I replaced the privet with an oak leaf hydrangea and plants a 'Constellation' dogwood tree near where the cedar tree was. The dogwood isn't an evergreen tree and isn't as selectable to bagworms. Let's take a look back. In 2008: Here is what the Corner Shade Garden looked like three years ago. The hostas and heucheras were very young, coleus was planted in a few locations (a great annual to add a little color to a shady area), and the oak leaf hydrangea was small, very small.  I tend…

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Corner Shade Garden – April 2011

The Corner Shade Garden - April is when it all gets seriously growing. It's not completely full of hosta foliage since the season has really just begun but as the days pass, the plants will grow, and the garden will fill in very nicely! Looking at the corner shade garden through the arbor you can see a Japanese maple that is completely full of leaves already. Head on is the eyesore of the garden - the heating/AC unit - we have to have it, I just need to find a way to screen it. The rock borders have been collected over the years and added to the corner shade garden and several others. Immediately to the right as you pass beneath the arbor is the Japanese maple again along with a rain barrel I bought last year (Amazon link). It's from Fiskars and has done a really nice job of…

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The Blooming of My Lenten Rose (Hellebore orientalis)

For a couple years now I've watched and waited for our hellebore to bloom. Every year I jealously read the posts of other gardener bloggers who are happily displaying their hellebore blooms but alas, I had no flowers to share! But now the single Lenten rose I have has grown into an 18" little bush with glossy green leaves and has finally flowered. Shade is hard to come by in our yard - at least in the cultivated areas - and so the space where other hellebores could grow has been occupied by other shade loving occupants, namely hostas and heucheras, which left little room for Lenten roses. But perhaps I should make some room? I do have a location that might be perfect for more Lenten roses. There's a little garden in the very back of our yard near the garden shed that could be a new home for…

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