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, 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 beds. […]

Centranthus – Perennial Plant, How to grow

How to grow Centranthus (ken-tran-thus) From the Greek kentron, a spur, anthos, a flower, alluding to the shape of the flower (Valerianaceae). A small genus of annuals and perennials, natives of Europe and the Mediterranean area. The hardy herbaceous perennial, C. ruber, the red valerian is almost a weed on cliffs, railway embankments, and old walls. The name is sometimes […]

Carnation: For Greenhouse and Outdoors

Fragrant Flowers for Cutting and Garden Decoration Carnations in all their various forms are generally considered to be derivatives of Dianthus Caryophyllus, although the origin of some is not entirely clear. In North America, when referring to Carnations we immediately think of the Carnation of commerce, the continuous or Perpetual flowering Carnation that is commonly grown under glass. There are, […]

How to fertilize plants

Under natural conditions plants feed themselves. Water makes up 80 to 90% of their weight, and the assimilation of carbon dioxide from the air provides a high proportion of the rest of the tissue material. Three elements only—carbon, hydrogen and oxygen are concerned in this: the other 1 or 2% of the plant however, consists of 60 or more different […]

How to grow Turnip plant from seed

Turnip This root vegetable, Brassica campestris rapa (syn. B. rapa), has been grown in Britain since the sixteenth century. The roots are global or flattish round. A well-drained sandy loam is suitable for both types—summer and winter. But if the soil is light and sandy, it dries out rapidly and turnip flea beetles flourish. A heavy soil is unsuitable for […]

Planting Seeds and Bulbs from Seed

Seed sowing Many garden plants are propagated from seed and good germination is encouraged by providing the seeds with the best conditions. Moisture and air must be present in the propagating medium (whether soil or a special compost) and the temperatures must be suitable. Very high temperatures are seldom necessary. Most garden and greenhouse sown seeds need temperatures of 50-60°F […]