Mauve lilac

In praise of Lilacs

Busting out in sumptuous clumps of intoxicatingly scented blooms, lilacs are sensational plants. So why are they so unloved? Just Google “lilacs bad luck” and you’ll find all kinds of lore about how bringing lilacs into the house is not good and wearing a sprig of them can be even worse. Then there are the…

Nesting material

A fluff piece for the birds

Warning: this post is a fluff piece. And it’s strictly for the birds. Fluff is important for building a nice, cosy nest. All soon-to-be Bird Moms know this. But pollution, weed killers and our innate desire to clean up our gardens has resulted in a dearth of plant-based fluff. But there are ways you can…

Pots of herbs

Herbs for people and pollinators

While we humans are savouring the prospects of fresh herbs plucked from our own potager garden (homemade pizza with fresh basil, potato salad with chopped chives, cucumbers tossed with dill, mmmmmmm) there are plenty of friendly flying critters, from bumblebees to lacewings, butterflies to hummingbirds, probably going through their own mental list of nom-nom-noms right…

Mixed pansy

The invincible pansy

Are we there yet? Has spring arrived? Jaded gardeners in Southern Ontario know full well that, even though it’s April, we haven’t seen the last of snow, hail, ice, slush or general smeg. Resisting the urge to plant some kind of posey is hard. But we don’t have to. There are pansies. The reasons why pansies…

Cow manure label

The scoop on manure

A friend of mine recently asked me about manure. In a nice way. And it got me thinking. And doing a little research. And what I gathered will raise some eyebrows. But first, I’ll back up a bit. She asked me about manure because she knew I’m in the middle of taking the Organic Horticulture…

Reblooming rose

Put the blooms on repeat

You can watch your fave episode of Sons Of Anarchy twice, so why can’t you do the same with your plants? Well, you can. Amazingly, there are plenty of perennials that burst into flower and then, do it again, and sometimes, again and again. Talk about getting your money’s worth–particularly when these plants, being perennials,…

Plants with tags and labels

Branded flower power

Two big boxes of live plants were delivered to my front door the other day. I hadn’t ordered them. Was there a rogue grower out there randomly gifting eager bloggers with young plants? Or what? I pulled out the contents of both boxes, trying to find a clue about their origins. I finally found the letter…

Roses at a store

Avoiding premature bloom buys

Is that beautiful rose calling your name? Are you thinking about splashing out on that gorgeous shrub with the deep discount price? Garden centres are good at selling plants. And if you’ve fallen in lust with a luscious rose dripping with blooms, then the store has done its job. But keep this in mind: some…