A small clump of Maidenhair fern.

Small, shade garden ideas with surprising Maidenhair fern

Ferns are having a moment not just because they’re sharing airtime with Zach Galifianakis during his hilarious/shockingly irreverent celebrity interviews on Between Two Ferns. Their general gorgeousness, lush but not overpowering, make them a popular choice for small gardens and many have an impressive hardiness that’s earning them starring roles in high profile places like New…

Norway maples trees in a nursery.

The niceness of newer unnatural Norway maples

Norway maples (Acer platanoides) have a bad rep in Canada and the U.S. these days and there’s no denying that they’ve earned it. Introduced to North America from continental Europe in the mid-1700’s, the tree’s impressive adaptability (see What’s Not To Love, below) made it first a desirable ornamental for gardeners and nowadays the dictionary…

Coreopsis a star reborn in the summer garden

It goes by the unglamorous common name of Tickseed. The botanical Coreopsis sounds much more appealing but, in fact, just glosses over a hard reality. This fancier name comes from the Greek koris, for bug, and opsis, for ‘like’, meaning the seeds of this plant look like bugs or ticks. Resemblances to insects aside, these starry flowers are…