Monday, May 7, 2012

Heathly Holly...An easy fix to lackluster holly bushes.

Holly is one of my favorite shrubs for its brilliant green foliage for basically all seasons!  If your holly is looking a bit drab there is something you may be missing that is any easy fix!  Holly bushes require some extra care when it comes to fertilization.  Holly bushes thrive in slightly acidic soils that contain high amounts of organic matter.   If no soil test was conducted, follow the label directions on the fertilizer package for broadleaf evergreen shrubs and plants. Various strengths and types of fertilizers will have different application rates. Consult the soil test results if the yellow leaves persist on the holly bush after the addition of fertilizer. The yellow leaf condition can be a result of an improper pH level.  Add an acid based fertilizer each late fall, after a hard freeze, to the holly bush. Over time the acid base nutrients will aid in correcting any pH problem. Add a layer of humus rich compost down around the base of the bush. This will aid in the overall health of the holly plant.  Also, keep a nice mulch layer around the shrub to help retain water around the plant.  I use a very basic fertilizer that can be purchased at most home and garden stores that is specifically labeled for HOLLY.  These products do a wonderful job in keep my holly bushes glossy green and producing the signature, bright red berries.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Growing Hops....Make Any Garden A Beer Garden!

Yes...You can grow hops in your garden!  Hops are a perennial plant, meaning with proper care one plant will produce for many years. Hops like fertile soil, plenty of sun and water, and something to climb on.  And boy will they climb!  A hop garden is mesmerizing to watch grow. Each day there is new growth and never a boring watch. You will find yourself checking them every day, it is that addicting.  These may be a little bit tricky to find but your local horticulture professional can help!  Forget the man can have a man garden!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Coreopsis 'Mango Punch...Add some fresh,soft, low maintenace color.


'Mango Punch'

The low, mounding perennial covers itself in summer with mango-orange flowers that have a red blush.

I love the fresh, fruity hue of this new variety. I have it in a couple different front of some Russian Sage as well as mixed in with some white Obedient Plant.  Both plantings are gorgeous! Clip the faded blooms so the flowers will keep coming.

General Description
Low, nicely branched stems with rusty orange daisy flowers describes the Mango Punch tickseed's summer appearance. An herbaceous perennial selected by Terra Nova Nurseries of Canby, Oregon, 'Mango Punch' grows as a low mound with limited winter cold tolerance. The many rusty orange daisy flowers attract butterflies and bees. Promptly trimming off spent flowers ensures a constant flush of new flowers in summer, even into early autumn.
Plant 'Mango Punch' in a well-draining moist to slightly dry soil that is fertile and not highly alkaline in pH. Capable of enduring light drought, water it if both heat and dry soil occur in unison to prevent browning. This sun-loving perennial is well-suited to the front of perennial borders, rockeries, containers or as an edging. Its intolerance of prolonged subfreezing winter temperatures finds it best as a vivid seasonal container plant or bedding annual outside its hardiness range. It does, however, need a winter dormancy to return, even in frost-free gardens.


  • Plant Type
  • Sun Exposure
    Full Sun, Partial Sun
  • Height
    8"-11" / 20.3cm - 27.9cm
  • Width
    12"-14" / 30.5cm - 35.6cm
  • Native To
    Hybrid Origin

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH
  • Soil Drainage
  • Soil type
  • Growth Rate
  • Water Requirements
    Drought Tolerant, Average Water
  • Habit
  • Seasonal Interest
    Summer, Fall


    Special Characteristics

  • Usage
    Container, Cutflower, Feature Plant, Wildflower
  • Sharp or Has Thorns
  • Invasive
  • Attracts
  • Self-Sowing

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Divide & Conquer...Or Spread The Love!

This is a great time to start dividing your plants!  Hostas and Daylily plants are hardy and easy to divide with a spade or knife.  When you divide you can replant them in another spot, give your bounty to friends, or put them in pots to donate to local gardens etc.  I have donated plants to a garden club plant sale as well as a couple of community gardens.  When you start digging and dividing you may be worried that you are damaging the plant, but fear not they will spring right back and give you a great season!  If you do decide to pot some of these guys, a gallon size pot is a good choice, with good soil, and decent drainage.  Also, make sure they get a good drink!  After a couple of plants you will be a professional!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Hosta 'Frozen Margarita'

Add some sizzle to your hosta collection with the 'Frozen Margarita' selection available this season!  The crisp white margins of the leaves make a bold contrast for any hosta fan.  I have already put some on order.  I am starting a hosta collection section in one of my gardens!  Planting season is right around the corner.  Time to start planning your plots!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Upcycled Wine Bottle Hummingbird Feeder

For all of you hummingbird fans out there this is a really great little feeder that recycles those wine bottles that are so plentiful during the social summer months! Great gift idea too! Glass beads for the handle to hang all over garden make for a flurry of activity!   You can get one here:  

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Petite Perennials....Smaller Scale Favorites

Perennials have long been a popular choice for adding color to gardens.  However, today many homeowners don't have the space or the time for extensive perennials borders.  You can still incorporate many of these perennials if you choose your cultivars carefully.

Bold colors of Phlox have been introduced in cultivars that are both compact and disease-resistant, including the Flame Series and the Volcano Series.

Bee Balms which are a magnet for hummingbirds and butterflies can be an amazing color show but most varieties are quite tall making them too large for the small garden.  There are pint-sized selections such as Fireball and Petite Wonder that will suit any small space with vibrant grace.


Explore the new plants and new cultivars.  There are so many options and choice sure to fill any space!