Keeping Garden Maintenance Low

Keeping Maintenance Low With increasingly busy lifestyles, even keen gardeners find it hard to devote enough time to their garden. Here we discuss how you can create a low maintenance garden that still looks attractive. The Challenge Our client had moved to a brand new house, and as usual the garden was just a bare plot. The builders had already started [...]

Siberian Iris

Friends and family who visit my garden when the Iris is bloom, often exclaim, “Aren’t these colorful! What type of Iris are they?” They are referring to the Siberian Irises, which are planted in long drifts above the bog garden path. Apparently, for all their graceful beauty, with flowers poised like resting butterflies on tall, reed-like stems, they are not truely [...]

GARDEN CENTERS – Elisabeth Ginsburg

GARDEN  CENTERS I love to visit garden centers, and I make it a regular habit throughout the growing season. I don’t always buy, but I live in the hope that I will discover a new and different plant, or find just the right thing to fill a hole in my border, or uncover a source of inspiration in the displays. [...]

Gone but not Forgotten

GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN There is a beautiful, rather elegiac song by the American composer, Samuel Barber called “Sure On This Shining Night”. The piece has a particularly luscious phrase–“high summer holds the earth”. Right now in my garden, that phrase comes to life.  The middle of the daylily bloom cycle has coincided with the beginning of the flowering of [...]


SPLENDOR IN THE CRABGRASS Contact  Elisabeth Ginsburg I admire tenacity. It is a trait that I strive for myself and have tried to instill in my child. I am moved when I hear stories about people who overcome adversity or achieve great things by trying repeatedly until they reach their goals. And yet, when a great example of tenacity occurs [...]

Mixed Blessings

Mixed Blessings Common sense would dictate that I do not need any more garden beds to care for. This does not stop me, addict that I am, from having an insatiable desire to create new planting schemes. In fact, my affliction is so bad that I sometimes look covetously at my neighbor’s more generous acreage and dream of what I [...]

Watering Houseplants – January Gardening Tips

Watering houseplants properly, checking them for spider mites regularly, and ordering seeds early are some of the gardening activities for this month. Feel the soil of your houseplants.  When it’s dry an inch or so deep, apply enough water so it comes out the bottom drainage hole. The larger the pot, the longer you can wait in between watering.  If [...]

Attractive Bark – Winter Landscapes

The short, gray days of winter in the north, coupled with snow, often create landscapes that resemble a black and white photo.  Winter landscapes need not be drab and dreary and can have color, by choosing plants for interesting bark. One of my favorite shrubs for its bright red stems is the Red-osier dogwood (Cornus sericea).  For even better color than [...]

Indoor Winter Gardening Questions

How to treat unplanted spring-flowering bulbs, an amaryllis when through flowering, and houseplants dropping leaves, are some of the common indoor gardening questions this time of year.    Many also ask if there are food crops that you can grow indoors during winter. If you purchased spring-flowering bulbs this fall but didn’t get them all planted, what should you do with them?  [...]

Easy House Plants – Umbrella Plant

The umbrella plant may be seen as octopus tree—both names from the spreading leaves with large leaflets in an umbrella spoke pattern.  It often goes just by the genus name of Schefflera (said as scheff-Lair-ah), named after the nineteenth-century German botanist J.C. Scheffler.  Don’t confuse it with the grass-like umbrella sedge, a water plant. Schefflera is not too fussy about [...]