Category Archives: Easy Care Perennials

Planning A Low Pollen Garden

After seemingly endless rain, warmer, brighter days feel especially welcome. Our flowers seem to feel the same way, for blossoms on practically everything are bigger and more abundant than ever this year. However, lots of flowers also means lots of pollen, which spells acute discomfort for many people and even some pets. As pollen fills the air and dusts our cars and garden furniture and even us, we may be tempted to rip out the borders and turn them all to lawn. Well, except perhaps those of us who are allergic to grasses. (!) Fortunately there are more rewarding alternatives, since living without gardens hardly bears consideration. Continue reading

Posted in Annual Color, Easy Care Perennials, Health & Wellbeing, Sustainable Gardening, Sustainable Living | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Bluest Of The Blues

So far, anyway, deer have ignored my delphiniums, along with the foxgloves, the sea hollies, the globe thistles, the agastaches, the penstemons and the cone flowers (Echinacea). Perhaps best of all, these new hybrids can stand up for themselves, so no unsightly cages or stakes are needed. In borders on flat ground, such props can usually be more or less hidden but in mounded or sloping beds, they are all too visible, even when the metals is carefully wound about with willow switches or raffia. The old delphiniums had strong stems but tended to blow over, and when they were staked, they’d snap right at the top of the stakes or cages. Happily, these new ones are cage-free and take windy days in stride. Continue reading

Posted in Drainage, Easy Care Perennials, Garden Prep, Pollinators, Soil, Sustainable Gardening, Sustainable Living | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Saving All the Bees

Nectar is not the only attraction in a well stocked garden, so don’t get bugged by bugs. Having a haze of insects hovering over your beds will just about guarantee you a host of birds (even hummers need protein as well as sweet desserts) as well as butterflies. Housing helps too; many grasses (especially stipas) are butterfly friendly host plants, while roses offer building material to leaf cutter bees along with their pollen and nectar. That’s a large part of why I tidy now, in late winter and early spring instead of in autumn; putting off the work protect and supports native pollinators and when I finally get around to it, there’s a lot less to do, since so much as self-composted in place. Continue reading

Posted in composting, Early Crops, Easy Care Perennials, fall/winter crops, Garden Prep, Pollinators | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Double Your Primrose Pleasure

Today, these rescued treasures are available as You and Me primroses (Primula x tommasinii). The large, fragrant blooms are pink or white, rose or cream, blue or purple, yellow or coral, and two laced forms have red or burgundy petals with silvery edges. These free flowering primulas bloom from late winter into June and are solidly perennial, retaining their foliage rosettes all year round. They do best in partial or filtered shade and if divided every few years, the plants will happily carpet a woodland or shade garden.
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