Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Beltway Blizzard

Our second snow of the season is Bigger and Badder than the last. This is not a mere "frosting" of snow, this snow is deep (2ft.) and heavy and just might stick around. Our driveway is impassable and we are stranded at home. Guess I'll have plenty of time to catch up on my favorite Gardening Blogs/Books/Magazines.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What's In Bloom?

My orchid collection is always growing, and I just couldn't resist the beautiful (though pricey) Cymbidium and precious pink Phalenopsis found at Home Depot over the weekend.

Adding to my indoor Bloom Fest, are 2 potted Amaryllis now in full bloom...

...and a set of African Violets.

The dark Winter days are so much more bearable when you've got gorgeous blooms and greenery to greet you every day. Thanks to May Dreams Gardens, I don't have to wait until May to get my Gardening Fix.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Seeing Red

Amaryllis Bulbs are amazing and magical. I potted these up after Thanksgiving, and it looks like I'll have plenty of bright red blooms to get me through the Holiday Season.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

A Snowy Day

The Mid-Atlantic winters are typically mild and rarely snowy, but today around mid-morning snow flurries began to fall, and by afternoon the landscape was blanketed in the softest freshest snow. It is all so beautiful, from the Japanese Maple and Harry Lauder's Walking stick out front, to the Camellia and Holly shrubs out back. My Woodland Wonderland has become a Winter Wonderland.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Washington Gardener Magazine

I'm the organizer of a local Garden Club, and last month some of us attended a talk by the Editor of Washington Gardener Magazine. Since I am always looking for ways to get my Gardening Fix, I decided to subscribe, and I loved the issue that arrived so much that I went ahead and ordered a dozen back issues. What a wonderful great local gardening source! The magazine is put together so extremely well and is a verifiable goldmine of useful information, with loads of ideas & tips all throughout. Best of all, the magazine is tailored precisely to a local audience of passionate gardeners like me. I am so happy to have discovered this gem, and look forward to expanding my gardening knowledge and know-how with the help of Washington Gardener.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Mulching Leaves

We have a heavily wooded lot and could easily produce 100 large bags of leaves for the curbside each Autumn, but instead we mulch and compost and this is working out great for us. Below is an illustrated demostration of the process we follow for getting a wonderful organic end-product.

Step 1:
Rake leaves into piles and mow with a mulching lawnmower, then place these mowed-over leaves in a big pile.

Step 2:
Mow over the big pile again and again, until the pile is reduced by 90%.

Step 3:
With the leaves now chopped until fine-textured, gather and use to mulch garden beds & borders, or place in your compost pile.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Garden Art

All Spring and Summer, I longed to liven up my Garden with some tasteful Art & Sculptures, but affordable non-kitsch options alluded me. And now, while out shopping on "Black Friday", I came across these at Marshalls/HomeGoods for an irresistible price! They were $29.99 a piece, and well worth it as they are sturdy and unique with good craftsmanship. I'll be excited to see these out in the Garden come Spring!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

10 Arbor Day Trees

I was very excited to receive 10 Tree Seedlings after becoming a member of the Arbor Day Foundation, they arrived yesterday and were planted this morning! Hopefully, they will be ready for transplanting to their permanent location in about 2-3 years. Since we bought our home earlier this year, we've planted 4 trees (3 Eastern Redbud 'Forest Pansy', 1 Flowering Dogwood 'Cherokee Brave'), and definitely I'd like to plant at least a few more. I *LOVE* trees, and they are so great for the environment!

10 Arbor Day Trees
2 Sargent Crabapples
2 White Flowering Dogwoods
2 Eastern Redbuds
2 Goldenraintrees
2 Washington Hawthorns
+ 1 Crapemyrtle Shrub

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Camellia Sasanqua 'Kanjiro'

This Japanese Beauty, Camellia Sasanqua 'Kanjiro', is providing a very welcome display of Late Fall Blooms. It really brightens a drab corner of my backyard, and once these evergreen shrubs reach their full spread of 8 to 10 ft. tall and wide, they will perform the wonderful task of screening our home from the neighbors. I do have some concerns that the spot where I planted them may prove to be far too shady for next season's buds to form, but I'm really hoping the situation will work out because I cannot imagine a Garden without Camellias.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Look Close...what do you see?

While sitting in my car at the Post Office yesterday, waiting for my husband to mail a package, something caught my eye! Nestled in the lovely Abelia Shrub, was a graceful Praying Mantis, and I was totally captivated.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Exquisite and Elegant

Thriller: Purple Fountain Grass
Filler: Garden Mum (pink, faded to white)
Spiller: Viola 'Sorbet Citrus Mix'

**Updated Front-Entry Fall Container in early-October.

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Coneflower Solution

I have a beautiful Japanese Maple in the middle of one of my front foundation beds, and one thing I discovered during the 2009 growing season is that there's a tad too much shade behind the Maple to grow Full-Sun plants. The Salvia May Night got kind of floppy back there. And so, I moved them forward in early October, and that left me with the problem of trying to figure out what exactly to plant in the shady parts towards the back of bed. Last night, I discovered that Echinacea Magnus can indeed take Part-Sun/Part-Shade conditions, which is exactly how to describe the space in question. And so, I will give it a try come Spring 2010, and below is a synopsis of what it kinda sorta should look like.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Our Japanese Maple is quite the impressive specimen. In a 30-day period, it completely transformed itself. What a perfect little tree!

-- 9/21/09


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Peony Resilience

I have always heard good things about how hardy and tough Peonies are, and how they are near impossible to kill. Well I hope the rumors are true, because I ordered "Breck's Lifetime Peony Collection" for $29.99 but they were mostly dried out tiny little bareroot things. I believe it may be 2-3 years before they bloom if at all. I planted 3 of them under the Kousa Dogwood at the front of my house, 1 went out back near the Redbuds joining 2 other peonies that I'd bought in the Spring at Home Depot, and then 1 was in very poor shape and it got planted near the garage between some daylilies.

Breck's Lifetime Peony Collection

Sarah Bernhardt Peony - Bright pink

Felix Supreme Peony - Bright red

Festiva Maxima Peony - Bright white

Sorbet Peony - Bright pink and creamy white

Pillow Talk Peony - Light pink

Monday, October 26, 2009

2010 Plant Wishlist

Over the weekend I did Fall Garden Clean-up, cutting back all the Hosta/Salvia/Daylily foliage and mulching the front garden beds. I've planted at least 350-400 Tulip/Daffodil/Hyacinth/Muscari bulbs over the past couple of weekends, and so there's gonna be a crazy-explosion of bulbs-a-blooming come Spring and I simply can't wait to see that view. At this point, my garden creation is near complete, I've put so many trees/shrubs/perennials in the ground that there is nary a spot left available for future planting. Yet, I keep on discovering new plants that I want to give a try. Here are a few of my dream plants for 2010/2011:

* Tiarella Foamflower "Sugar & Spice"
* Butterfly Bush "Nanho Blue"
* Rose Bush "Gertrude Jekyll"
* Shasta Daisy
* Rudbeckia "Goldstrum"
* Phlox David
* Japanese Snowbell Tree
* Oakleaf Hydrangea
* Lamium Purple Dragon
* Creeping Phlox Sherwood Purple
* Itea Little Henry
* Solomon's Seal

Saturday, October 24, 2009


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