Horticulturalists at the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences are predicting some strong trends based on their feedback from their County Extension Offices. They report that more and more gardeners are seeking information about sustainability.
Specific questions about native plants have increased significantly, as well as wildlife-friendly landscapes, dwarf hybrids, succulents, novel edible greens, and landscaping to mitigate natural disasters. Modern gardeners want plants that do not require much water or fertilizer and resist insects and disease. In short, plants that are good for the environment and not hard to maintain.
Gardeners also want to do less pruning, so prefer smaller shrubs that can be left natural in shape, as well as fruit-bearing shrubs that can provide food as well as attract birds to the garden. Modern gardeners also like to layer shrubs of varied heights in their gardens to provide shelter for wildlife. They also prefer trees that will survive storms since storms are more unpredictable than they used to be.
Another trend is a preference for decorative foliage in addition to flowers in gardens. For example, dark foliage plants with red, purple, or black leaves year-round, in addition to plants with fall foliage colors. Foliage can provide contrast and year-round interest and can also be used in bouquets.
This is Moya Andrews and today we focused on gardening trends.