As the growing season winds down, there are some plants, known in the trade as season extenders, that bridge the gap between fall and winter in gardens.
Many different flowers have been used as food garnishes. However, there are also many toxic plants in our gardens.
We love flowers, but we should always look at them in the garden, not eat them, as many have also been exposed to chemicals before we purchase them.
Perennial garden plants should bloom sequentially. Plants have bloom times that overlap, hopefully, so there can be a series of different plants in bloom across an entire season.
In the late 18th century, William Morris, a prominent advocate of the Arts and Crafts movement, wanted all of England to become a garden where nothing was wasted.
Late in the summer, Prunus persica produces hard little peaches that I have never have the chance to taste, as they are always knocked off the branches by wild animals.
All azaleas are rhododendrons but not all rhododendrons are azaleas.
Some may not consider the flower pretty, so perhaps "striking” is a better adjective.
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.