How Do You Know If A Plant Is Hardy?

– Posted in: FAQ, Featured, Plant info
snow on roses

I was just reading Graham Rice's musings on plants that grow in the coldest climates. He observed that the resources he consulted did not agree on which plants were tough enough to take USDA zone 2. If you've been gardening for any length of time (which of course Graham has), this won't surprise you. First, [...]

When is my last spring frost?

– Posted in: FAQ, Weather

Usually, when you want to know your last spring frost, the experts send you to a hardiness zone map, a chart, or even the NOAA records, conceding that this will only give you a ballpark figure. If you really want to know your local last frost date, consult a neighbor--at least until you've kept records [...]

Why rain gauges break and plants heave

– Posted in: FAQ, Weather

It was a balmy 57F out today, a pleasant change from last week's snow, so I took a stroll around the garden to see what I could see. I saw the new growth of sedums at soil level, and I saw colchicums emerging from the earth, way too early as usual.I also saw the damage [...]

Snow is good for dormant plants

– Posted in: FAQ, Weather

"Finally, a decent snowfall." That's my first reaction as an ornamental gardener, thinking about the dormant plants. Snow is a great insulator and keeps the soil--and the roots of plants--warmer than if that same soil were exposed to the air. This is one reason why Ellen Hornig of Seneca Hill Perennials can grow many plants [...]