Warm climate shrubs, fatsia

Three Favorite Warm Climate Shrubs

In the southern parts of our Mid-Atlantic region, some warm climate shrubs are winter hardy and thrive in places like Virginia Beach, Va. On a recent visit there, I enjoyed seeing three of my favorites for winter interest: Pittosporum, Fatsia and ‘Shishi Gashira’ Camellias. Variegated Pittosporum (Pittosporum tobira ‘Variegatum’) Japanese Variegated Pittosporum is winter hardy…

Paul Dougherty

Paul Dougherty “Stickwork” Exhibit at Hermitage

The Paul Dougherty exhibit “Stickwork” at the Hermitage Museum and Gardens in Norfolk, Va. is a real treat. We toured it yesterday and left with lighter hearts and inspiration for new creative projects in our own gardens. Paul Dougherty is an internationally acclaimed environmental artist who designs and creates monument-sized sculptures from sticks. He has…

Microgreens, Wiki

Microgreens: 6 Reasons to Plant Them

Microgreens are baby plants, and on January 10 and 17, 2017, the Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia will be teaching folks how to plant them. I caught up with Rebecca Halbe, who will be leading the workshops, and she shared these excellent reasons for growing your own. Greater variety. Yes, you’ll find commercially grown microgreens…

Christmas decorations from nature

Christmas Decorations from Nature

Christmas decorations featuring materials from nature are among my favorite sights of the season. On a recent trip to the Delaware shore, I discovered a wide variety of examples that sparked my imagination and filled my head with ideas for next year. Here are some of the favorites.           What are…

Little Bluestem

Little Bluestem: Native Plant Favorite

Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) is now turning shades of pink, purple and bronze in landscapes across our region. And that’s one of the primary reasons this native plant is a popular ornamental grass. But if you’re also looking for an extremely durable plant for tough environments, add Little Bluestem to your list of plant to…

Monarda research report, wiki

New Monarda Research Report Now Available

A new Monarda research report is now available from Mt. Cuba Center in Hockessin, Del. Also known as bee balm or wild bergamot, Monarda is a native perennial that’s cherished by many gardeners for its summer blooms in shades of pink, magenta, purple, and red that attract a variety pollinators. The free report from Mt….

Delaware Botanic Gardens, DBG

Delaware Botanic Gardens Breaks Ground

Construction of the new Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek officially began earlier this month with a groundbreaking ceremony at the site located outside the town of Dagsboro in Sussex County. Guided by a 10-year multi-phase plan, organizers envision establishing a major public garden for the southern Delmarva region that reflects the unique environment of…

AHS Convention

AHS Convention Coming to Norfolk

The American Hemerocallis Society (AHS) has selected Norfolk, Va as the site for its annual convention, June 21-24, 2017 at the Norfolk Waterside Marriot Hotel. More than 600 daylily growers and admirers are expected at the event, which is open to the public. A variety of workshops and clinics will teach participants about all things…

Holiday light shows and displays, Longwood

Best Holiday Light Shows and Displays

Looking for the best holiday light shows and displays at public gardens in our region? These five gardens are overflowing with the sights and sounds of the season. Longwood Gardens “A Longwood Christmas,” now through January 8, 2017, features a musically inspired display inside the four-acre Conservatory with more than 50 trees adorned with glass…

Amsonia hubrichtii

Amsonia hubrichtii: Native Plant Favorite

Amsonia hubrichtii, commonly known as blue star, is taking center stage this time of year across our region. It’s hard to miss those yellow and gold clouds of feathery leaves swaying in the slightest breezes. And I’m delighted to see that interest in Amsonia is spreading from residential gardens into public and commercial spaces. In…