Selecting the correct Climbing Plants

House walls, garden walls, fences, archways, pergolas, trellises, poles, either single or erected tripod fashion and other vertical or near-vertical features, provide the gardener with another dimension in which to grow plants. There are attractive plants available for this purpose, many of which benefit from the extra shelter provided by a wall or fence. Types of plant Suitable plants include […]

Soil Humus

Soil Humus Humus is the term used to describe the organic matter in the soil. Its presence in adequate quantities is a vital factor in building up and maintaining soil fertility. Humus may consist of decayed vegetable or animal refuse, still showing traces of leaves, stems, stubble, bones, and so on, or it may have been completely broken down into […]

Hornbeam Growing Guide – Carpinus

Mostly hardy, leaf-losing trees or large shrubs native to Europe, eastern Asia, the Himalayas and North and Central America; they belong to the Birch family, Betulaceae. They range in height from 15-80 ft., the trees usually having short trunks, and the wood is very hard and durable. The name Carpinus is a Latin word used by Pliny. Hornbeams grow fairly […]

Silphium – Perennial Plant, How to grow

The ancient Greek name referring to the resinous juice (Compositae). Rosin-wood. A genus of 15 species of hardy perennial plants with the typical composite flower. The sap is resinous, and the plants were introduced from eastern North America. Species cultivated S. laciniatum, the compass plant, so-called because the leaves often face north and south, 6-8 feet, flowers yellow, July to […]

Growing Brussels Sprouts

BRUSSELS SPROUTS This fall and winter vegetable is included in the Mustard family, Cruciferae, and is referred to botanically as Brassica oleracea gemmifera. The plant originated as far back as the 14th century near Brussels, Belgium, from which town it gets its name. The sprouts are miniature “cabbages” or “buttons,” each, when usable, about 1 1/2-2 in. in diameter, and […]

Lupine – Perennial Plant, How to grow

From the Latin lupus, a wolf (destroyer), because it was thought that the plants depleted the fertility of the soil by sheer numbers (Leguminosae).  Lupine. A genus of over 300 species of annuals, perennials, and subshrubs, mainly from North America, though there are a few Mediterranean species which, since Roman times, have been used for green manuring. This is surprising […]

Growing and Care Bottle Brush Tree. Callistemon

CALLISTEMON—Bottle-Brush Tree (Calliste’mon). Tender evergreen flowering shrubs from Australia which belong to the Myrtle family, Myrtaceae. They are well adapted for growing outdoors in California and in similar mild climates and for greenhouse cultivation elsewhere. They have narrow, dark-green, leathery leaves, which are slightly aromatic when crushed. The flowers are densely packed in terminal cylindrical spikes resembling a bottle brush […]

Planning Cottage Gardens – History, Spring, Summer, Herbs and Rose Plants

Cottage Gardens The cottage garden tradition is one that is peculiarly English in character. The old-world charm of the cottager’s plot owed little or nothing to any of the major developments in garden design or landscape architecture. The English cottage garden just ‘happened’ and its chief attraction lies in the effect of ordered chaos that it produces. Like the wild […]

Celsia – Perennial Plant, How to grow

How to grow Celsia (sel-se-a) Commemorating the famous theologian and botanist Olaf Celsius of Upsala (Scrophulariaceae). A genus of perennials and biennials treated as half-hardy annuals. They have tall spikes of yellow flowers in summer and look not unlike mulleins (verbascums). Species cultivated: Greenhouse C. arcturus, 3 feet, perennial, flowers large, yellow with purple anthers, a good pot plant, Crete. […]

How to mow a lawn

Lawn construction and maintenance Most gardeners regard a lawn as an important, if not essential, a feature of the garden. The lawn may, in fact, be the major feature, being a big expanse suitable for garden parties and surrounded by sufficient flower beds to set it off. Alternatively, the lawn may be a minor feature designed to set off flower […]