One of the best features of my house is the big screened in porch in my backyard. Except for the coldest months of the year my family – including our cats – love to spend time here. When we moved in almost 10 years ago I was excited to add plants to the space, but quickly realized that not all plants work well in this environment. Though my porch is on the south side of the house it is actually quite shady, making most flowering plants not an option. Additionally, I am notoriously bad at watering my containers, so my plants need to be highly drought tolerant. Read on to learn about some evergreen perennials that have worked great for my space for several years.
Continue reading Selecting Plants for a Porch – My Strategy and Recommendations
I spend a lot of time observing the wildlife in my yard. In 2015, my sister suggested I try to certify my garden as a wildlife habitat. Read on to learn about the four elements to a wildlife habitat and how to become certified.
NC Wildlife Federation Certified Wildlife Habitat Certificate and Sign Continue reading How to Certify Your Wildlife Habitat
After working as a landscape designer for almost ten years I’ve learned that all gardens, no matter how big or small, need four elements of interest: Foliage, Fragrance, Flowering, and Fall Color. Read on to learn how to combine these elements in your garden.
Foliage – Loropetalum ‘Purple Pixie’ and Osmanthus ‘Goshiki’
Continue reading 4 F’s Every Garden Needs: Foliage, Fragrance, Flowering, Fall Color
After living in my house for 10 years, I decided to do a yard renovation. I removed the existing foundation plants and completed a new landscape design. Read on to learn about some of the plants I chose.
Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’ Fall Color
I chose a variety of plants for the purple foliage. Loropetalum ‘Daruma’, Distylium ‘Cinnamon Girl’, and Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’ all have seasonal shades of purple in their leaves. I created a cohesive design by repeating these colors throughout the garden. Continue reading Plants in My New Landscape Design
I grew up working with my Grandmother in her garden in Virginia. She had grown up on a tobacco farm in Tennessee and had an amazing capacity for yard work. The two of us planted hundreds of daffodils – in her opinion they were the best bulb – deer resistant, perennial, and no maintenance. Over the years I’ve planted hundreds more daffodils – both for myself and our clients, during the fall. However, I don’t have much experience with bulbs that you plant in the spring. I decided it was time to learn about these plants – read on to learn more.
Continue reading Spring Planted Bulbs that I Want
Last fall, I was sitting around the kitchen table having tea with my sister. We decided to take a tour of my garden and identify plants that I can make tea from. Read on to learn about which plants I plan to use for tea.
Camellia sinensis (Fall Blooming Camellia) and Dried Tea Leaves
The first plant that jumped out was one of my Camellias. Camellia sinensis leaves and leaf buds are a nice choice for homemade tea. If you like Oolong tea, try making this.
Continue reading Plants to Include in a Tea Garden
Winter is a great time to plan your garden and many local gardens offer fantastic programming during this time. Last year I attended the Winter Symposium at JC Raulston Arboretum, and wanted to share two fabulous books for gardeners planning a new space.
Continue reading January: Planning Your Garden – 2 Books to Check Out
I started planting my garden in 2009 and over the last nine years I’ve used up most of the open space available. At this point any plant that gets added has to be pretty special to make it the cut in my limited remaining space. This year I had the opportunity to add two new shrubs, and I selected Cotinus ‘Royal Purple’ and Chamecyparis ‘Kosteri’. Read on to learn why.
Cotinus ‘Royal Purple’ – Purple Smokebush
Continue reading Two Plants I Added to My Garden This Year and Why I Chose Them
I incorporate a variety of walkways and paths into my landscape designs. Some factors to consider when choosing which material to use are budget, tree presence, and frequency of use. Read on to learn about how I decide what type of material to use for a walkway.
Natural Stone Walkway
Continue reading How to Decide What Type of Material to Use for a Walkway
I enjoy working with clients that have a low stacked stone wall or a retaining wall for a steep slope, because it gives me the chance to incorporate plants that will highlight this feature into their design. Read on to learn about some examples of plant choices that spill over the edge of retaining walls.
Continue reading Plant Choices that Spill Over the Edge of Retaining Walls