Siberian Iris

Friends and family who visit my garden when the Iris in 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 truly […]

How to Enhance Your Backyard with Besser Blocks

Looking for ways to improve the appearance and usability of your home’s backyard space? You have many different options. You could choose to use stacked stone. You could go with traditional brick. You might decide on customer concrete. However, Besser blocks offer a lot of versatility and the ability to create just about any sort of aesthetic you might desire. […]

Choosing and care of Christmas tree

According to the National Christmas Tree Association (www.realchristmastrees.org), 25 to 30 million real Christmas trees are sold each year.   Of those with real trees, about three out of four bought them at retail outlets, the others cut their own at a tree farm—a trend that has been increasing in recent years.  If you get a tree, either way, this year, […]

Mistletoe Myths and Medicines

Most people associate mistletoe with kissing, as it’s customary for anyone caught standing under a sprig of this plant (often strategically placed in a doorway) to receive a kiss. But did you know that mistletoe, now considered a Christmas plant, was used as a religious symbol in pagan rites centuries before the time of Christ?   To the ancient Druids of […]

Kalanchoe – A Holiday Plant

Kalanchoe is a popular flowering indoor plant used year round but particularly found for sale during the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons.  This succulent plant (thick, fleshy leaves) has bright flowers, coming in various colors, and with the proper care lasts for weeks.  Kalanchoe (pronounced kal-AN-cho or KAL-an-CO-ee) come with either red, pink, orange, yellow, or white flowers.  Often you can […]

Rattan Garden Furniture

Rattan Garden Furniture There are many reasons to make rattan garden furniture a part of your garden set up. In the last few years, more and more people are choosing to use the garden like an extra room. Rattan furniture is perfect for this purpose as it’s tough, attractive, and better suited to being outside than other types of garden […]

Insect Control and Bug Problems

There are many species of insects. The vast majority pose no problem and make a positive contribution to the interesting fauna of the region. Insect numbers are normally kept in reasonable bounds by unfavorable weather conditions and by various insect and animal predators. Still, a few species do at times, mar the beauty of the landscape and others reduce the […]

Benefits of using plants indoors

Studies have shown that plants in homes and workplaces help reduce stress, increase productivity, enhance employee attitudes, lower operating costs, help in “green building” design, and improve air quality.  Although many of these studies involved workplaces, the principles apply to homes as well. A Human Spaces report in 2015 on biophilic design showed that, globally, nearly two-thirds of workers have […]

Easy Houseplants – Rubber Plant

Rubber plants (Ficus elastica) are easy-to-grow houseplants and low maintenance, have few problems, and tolerate a wide range of conditions—just not cold temperatures.  For these reasons, they are good for beginners or those that feel “gardening challenged”, or good choices for tough indoor conditions such as in commercial and business settings. This native of southern and southeast Asia is neither made […]