native-plants

Water Hemlock: Wildflower Wednesday

– Posted in: Native/Invasive
water hemlock featured image

A couple of weeks ago, my thirty-something daughter was busy gathering wildflowers for her brother's wedding. "Mom, do you know what that plant is?" There it was, growing in our backyard along the creek. I am pretty sure it has been there ever since we moved in almost five years ago. But no, I didn't [...]

My Spicebush Is Blooming! Wildflower Wednesday April 2016

– Posted in: Native/Invasive, The Secret Garden, What's up/blooming
Spicebush featured image

My spicebush is blooming! Only a mother--I mean, a gardener--could be so happy about the blessed event. See: Well--ahem--yes, they are rather small. Try this:Okay, let's really zoom in: I saw my first spicebushes in 2009 in the Mundy Wildflower Garden on the grounds of Cornell Plantation in Ithaca, New York. There were several of [...]

Apprentice to a Garden: Book Review

– Posted in: Book reviews

Apprentice to a Garden: A new urban gardener goes wild by Evelyn Hadden is a collection of essays chronicling the development of Hadden's garden and her growth as a gardener. Evelyn starts out as "the omnipotent landowner," but gradually discovers that she doesn't know enough to be a totalitarian dictator. She begins observing more, and [...]

Winterberries: Wildflower Wednesday

– Posted in: Native/Invasive

Winterberry (Ilex verticillata) is a native holly that drops its leaves in the fall. That's what enables them to survive in colder climates. If your winter landscape seems dark and dreary, you will want to plant some of these shrubs where you can see their profusion of colorful berries from the heated side of your [...]

Trailing Arbutus

– Posted in: Native/Invasive

I've been trying to go for a walk up in our woods every day that it isn't raining. (We got 8.55 inches of rain this April and our normal is 3.49 inches, so there haven't been as many opportunities as in past springs.) During this time of year, when the native spring ephemerals are blooming, [...]

Pussy Willow: Wildflower Wednesday

– Posted in: Native/Invasive

For Wildflower Wednesday, I try to feature a native plant growing wild on our property. I took a walk on Monday to see what was blooming, and found only one plant blooming, a shrub which looked to me like a pussy willow. I looked through my books and discovered that's exactly what it was: Salix [...]

Native Enthusiasm

– Posted in: Native/Invasive

At last.  Finally. Why chicory, Cichorium intybus, the blue flower of August roadsides, should have avoided our rural road for so long, is a mystery to me. So forlorn have I been made by its absence, when all neighbouring roads were bright with its sky-blue gaiety, that I have from time to time been tempted [...]