Echinacea coneflowers continue to command popularity, with fanciful new varieties appearing every year. One complaint, though, is that they don’t always seem to do well in subsequent seasons.
Virtues: We love the cup plant (Silphium perfoliatum) for its sunny yellow flowers that bloom from midsummer through autumn. This tall, wetland-prairie native tolerates damp soil.
Dragonflies and damselflies are widespread across the United States and can be enticed to visit most yards. There are even species adapted to desert areas of the Southwest.
Virtues: Chinese mayapple, or Podophyllum pleianthum, has large leaves that lend bold texture to the shade garden. This perennial has an edge over US-native mayapples because it usually keeps its foliage all through summer, up to the first frost, while native … Read Article
Store-bought bouquets usually come with a packet of floral preservative that will prolong the life of the flowers when it’s mixed into their water. You can easily make your own flower food for your garden’s cut-flower bouquets so they stay … Read Article
Virtues: We love Hibiscus ‘Kopper King’ for its flashy flowers that attract butterflies and hummingbirds. Everything about this plant is showy, from its dinner plate–size flowers to its copper-tinged dark stems and foliage. Accent the border and low, wet spots of … Read Article
Hummingbird feeders can be effective attractants, but they require maintenance to keep them safe for the birds. Sugar water should be changed every three to five days, and more frequently during summer. This prevents the growth of mold.
Virtues: We love variegated Solomon’s seal for its lily-esque fragrance and showy flowers. This plant is easy to care for as well as deer and rabbit resistant. Perfect for shade gardens and cutting, with variegated leaves great for flower arrangements.
When cutting flowers from the garden, be sanitary to prolong the life of the cut flowers and to avoid possibly transferring diseases and viruses from one plant to another.
Virtues: Sun Parasols first showed their velvety petals in North America in 2003, bred by Suntory Flowers Ltd. in Japan. There are several selections in this series that are all valued for their long bloom seasons, low maintenance and resistance to … Read Article
Virtues: Veitch’s Blue thistle is an herbaceous perennial that thrives in full sun. This plant is relatively low-maintenance and it attracts bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Deer steer clear, preferring tastier plants.This is an excellent flower for cutting and drying.