Iris flowers are named after a Greek goddess who delivered messages to mortals while traveling on a rainbow. Just one reason they have so many colors.
In our family, my sister Chris hosts Christmas and I host Easter. Among her many talents, Chris pulls out the stops when it comes to holiday decorating. Even in the dead of winter, her house brims with festive greenery, twinkling lights and potted poinsettias.
Then comes early spring and Easter. How can I compete? The ground is muddy at best or still snow-sodden at worst. No buds have popped yet, and any early bloomers have, more often than not, petrified pitifully in a late freeze. Being a gardener, I consider it a point of pride to find a way to jumpstart the season in time for the spring holidays.
Containers are a great solution since they can be moved to protect against volatile spring weather. But what plants might work well in early spring – I’m talking late March or early April – and where do we get our hands on them?
It’s like the emperor with no clothes. The crown imperial stands 3 to 4 feet tall, its Sun King-bright flowers lording it over the spring garden with the hauteur of Louis XIV, utterly unaware that its dignity is fatally undercut by the absurdity of its green bad-hair-day topknot.
Not every spring bulb has the classic sculptured grace of a lily-flowered tulip. Yet many bulbs beyond the ordinary have charms that can grow on a gardener, adding variety and interest where tulips, daffodils and crocuses may seem old hat.
It might have been yesterday when, huddled under a fluorescent kitchen light with a cup of instant decaf, staring vacantly ...
Hard to pronounce, easy to grow, Kolkwitzia Dream Catcher™ was worth waiting for.
I was awakened recently by the sound of a pigeon rattling my bedroom window. Peeking with one cautious eye from beneath my …
If this were a perfect world, I wouldn’t be writing this editorial for the March-April issue of Chicagoland Gardening at all.
The hot new thing in vegetable gardening is grafted plants. Burpee and Ball and other plant breeders have developed grafted ...