There are over 200 species of hibiscus, and they are beloved because of their big showy flowers and green, clean-looking foliage. They fall into three different major categories: tropical, perennial and hardy.
Cottage gardens are the product of the homeowner's own work and vision, and William Robinson advised, "Let the flowers tell their story to the heart."
Later in the summer when garden flowers are less abundant, I look for foliage and other things to use as filler in my vases of cut flowers.
English Lord Holland wrote a poem about his wife who got dahlia seeds from Madrid (via the New World): “The dahlias you brought to our isle, your praises forever shall speak; mid gardens as sweet as your smile, and color as bright as your cheek."
Some types of birds prefer ground level water sources also, so even a plant pot saucer can serve during hot days. You don't need feeders during the summer, but water is crucial in times of drought.
Each of these three types of geraniums is associated with long-billed wading birds.
Canna comes from the Greek word spelled kanna, which means reed, though the canna plant does not have narrow reed-like leaves.
These flowers grow wild, creating deep velvet-red carpets in Nebraskan pastures.
Oenothera fruticosa's common name is sundrops, and its nectar attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.
A suitable habitat for birds includes predictable water sources, an open area of lawn, some dense shrubs for cover, some tall trees, plants with berries, and nesting places for ground birds.
This fungus appears white on leaves. Some plants are more susceptible than others and some varieties have more resistance to this disease than others.
Blue false indigo's flowering period is short, but the foliage always looks cool even on the hottest day of summer.
There are about 250 species of these showy herbaceous plants and nearly all are perennial and native to temperate parts of the northern hemisphere.
Native to Mexico, dahlias probably grew in Aztec gardens as they were already in cultivation when the Spaniards arrived.
So many varieties of these gorgeous flowers have travelled here from far-away lands to sweeten the air in our gardens.
Red Hot Pokers belong to the genus Kniphofia (Kniphofia uvaria) and are also known as tritoma or torch lilies.
The common name "pinks” does not refer to the color but to the fringed edging of the petals that makes them look as if they had been cut with pinking shears.
When working outdoors we should tuck our pant legs into our socks, wear long sleeves, and use tick repellent often and liberally.
Many of us had grandmothers who used lavender as their signature fragrance.
Research shows that despite the commonly held idea that hummingbirds love red, that is not the case.
Spring is a time to plant perennial chrysanthemums. They'll mature during the summer and produce breathtaking fall color in your garden.
I would not be without my annual larkspur, which I have enjoyed year after year and some often self-seed and return, but in order to be sure, I always buy some seeds. I don't want to risk a year without it!
While roses take care, trial and error over time will help a gardener learn which varieties thrive best in their climate.