Plants and Places

cherry tree

Flower gardening may simply be defined as the flowers and foliage of plants, and where we place them. That is the heart of gardening. Oh sure, we know about the exercise and fresh air, we wax on and on about the interesting wildlife that come to visit our gardens … but it is the plants we love, and our gardens are where we labor with such satisfaction.

The Place

Designing it…

It doesn’t matter where you live- there is a a unique attraction to the landscape of it, which the Romans referred to as the genius loci, One of the great challenges and rewards in making your own garden is to find these attributes and make the most of them.

Each place has its own beauty, its distinctive allure nuanced with light effects, climate idiosyncrasies, and native secrets; all to be had in our own yards.

vegetable garden

Design features within your style

Learn about the genius loci of a place, as in the Style and Design article.

The Plants for the Place

I started this site with articles on spring blooming bulbs… primarily because they are so easy and rewarding. This is where I first began my own gardening journey: the planting of some fall bulbs for spring color. Those have always been a beloved, favorite flower type.

You may have a type of plant close to your heart: herbs, vegetables, roses. Start your landscape adventure with one of those featured gardens.

Plant Profiles” posts, the general articles on perennials, and the garden design posts fill out the site… pick out a few and start growing!

Nurture the Native

It may not always be about growing plants native to your region, but more people are understanding the ideal qualities of a native plant in terms of maintenance, longevity, and usefulness.
monarch butterfly
A new appreciation for natural planting and native plants has given both private gardens and public places lower maintenance, water conservation, and wildlife friendly designs.

Hardy to Your Zone

Learn about your property’s climate, and which hardiness zone applies to your location.

I’ve planted plenty of plants which couldn’t take the occasional lapse of hardiness zones into a winter cold that hits every ten years or so…. always a zone colder than the “normal”, and it has taught me to appreciate the plants that I know belong in my climate.

Have you heard of “xeriscaping”? It is basically a set of methods and plantings that conserve moisture through educated planting. a few articles, one on design and one on method help outline the idea. The New American Garden, and Dry Weather Tips.

Choosing: Exotic, Native, Both?

But I admit to love the exotics wildly- and my gardens have always been full of them. Just like I love spice in my cooking, I need to see the beautiful and unusual in plantings. Many of the transplanted “exotics” have been around for generations and are absorbed into the ecosystem.

Places in the Garden

For articles that put place foremost… peruse a few of these.

Categories of plants and numerous plant profiles are under the “Plant Library” page.

Try this sampling:

Plant Highlights

Years ago, it began with writing profiles on my personal favorites, listed here.

Then the articles expanded to include plants I experienced growing in my garden. Both the good and the bad, the successful and the failures.

But these plant highlights were some my most successful and ones I’d grown to love.

Be Aware of the Ecosystem

When discussing exoticNative to somewhere else than your place plant introductions, it is important to remember certain facts and history.

There are nuisance plants like the Kudzu vine of the South, that have taken over and smother just about everything else. There are also plants, that while less obvious in negative effects, are just as much a problem. Berried shrubs such as the bush honeysuckle can be less nutritious for birdlife than the native shrubs. More about that, here.

Nature’s balance can be a precarious thing, but part of gardening is learning about, and doing something to protect the environment. a most important part of that is which plants we invite into our gardens.

Delving Into The Garden Information

The oldest articles on this site are “evergreen”, with good information full of my early enthusiasm for the art of gardening. Bulbs, perennials, annuals, and practical stuff like tools to check out.

Explore the Garden :

Spring blooms | Minor bulbs | Tulips,etc | Just tulips | Roses | Perennials | Perennials I grow,,a list | Annuals | A Country Garden | Midwest gardening | Cottage style | Butterflies | Birds | About catalogs | Essential tools | Summer Fragrance | Garden color | My little garden pond

Proceed to Build Garden Knowledge….
Or Through the Seasons