A daffodil is lit up by a sunbeam.

Plants Of The Year and then some

In the calm of late winter, just before interest in seed-buying and plant-planning gets truly serious, gardening aficianados and various plant brands herald their choices for Plants Of The Year. Sure, we know that these accolades almost always coincide with various public relations and marketing campaigns but what’s the harm? If the Vancouver Courier can…

Monarch butterflies

Sex and the city and the Monarch butterfly

Who knew Monarch butterflies were so cosmopolitan? New research shows that these beleaguered critters prefer the comfort of a tamed urban garden than a wild meadow. Brian Cutting and Douglas W. Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home, recently wrote an article published online by Oxford University Press about where Monarch butterflies actually like to dine and…

Plant sign

Bee positive: Making a change in the garden and at the store

As the gardening season reaches full swing, promoting awareness about our beleaguered bugs has ramped up as well. Everywhere I turn, I’m finding articles and opinion pieces on the need to add pollinator-friendly plants to our gardens. On a recent garden tour organized by the Toronto Botanical Gardens, I kept finding little plastic signs stuck into flower…

Salvia in September

This salvia is a true blue winner

I don’t normally plant annuals in my flower beds. I’d rather invest in perennials that are going to come back year after year. And I splurge on ephemeral annuals for my pots where I can spotlight them in all their delicate and exotic glory. If a plant can’t survive our Southern Ontario winters then it’s…

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…