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Article ThumbA Gift from the Gods

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.


Article ThumbCriminy, It’s Crinums

My favorite plants have to meet a few important criteria. They must survive on their own because I can be a lazy gardener. Insects and diseases must be rare, so there will be no need to spray. I want plants that can grow in the water along the shoreline of my water garden; the hot, dry side yard; as well as indoors. They must have big, showy flowers to please the eyes, fragrance to please the nose, tasty would be nice, and if I could get them to make a noise, I would like that too.


Article ThumbSaving Dahlias

Big beefy dahlias with their dinner-plate-sized flowers are darlings of the garden from summer through the first autumn frosts. Although many gardeners treat dahlias as disposable annuals, it’s easy to store them over winter – and save money – for another display the following year. It’s simply a matter of digging up the tubers and roots after the first fall frost.


Article ThumbSummer-Blooming Bulbs

Last spring my sister called to say that she had found a wonderful new anemone to add to her collection in a mixed flower border. When she described the flower, the deeply saturated color and the black center, I knew she had purchased Anemone coronaria, a summer-flowering tender bulb. She was disappointed to learn that these magnificent flowers would not overwinter in her Indiana garden and that they must be lifted in the fall and replanted each spring.


Article ThumbWeird & Wonderful Spring Bulbs

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.


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Columns
There Is No “I” in Ideas

This, as I have been told by the esteemed staff of Chicagoland Gardening magazine, is the Ideas Issue.


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Columns
Ark de Disaster

The ultimate definition of an optimist may very well be a person who looks out at a mass of brown, smushed foliage; twisted ...


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Blog
Rain, Rain Go Away!

Our official National Weather Service rain gauge clocked in with 3.60 inches of rain at 7 a.m. this morning. And more is ...


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Columns
Volunteer Army

Pop Quiz! (Bet you didn’t see this coming. Hurry! There’s still time to turn to another page! Oops, too late.)


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Departments
From the Editor - NovDec 2017

In the world of fashion, styles change rapidly. All of a sudden this summer, women started walking down the street with their …


questions

I have a cycas palm and am not sure how much direct sunlight or water it needs. It has light brown marks developing on the leaves. What is causing this, and how do I care for my plant?

Which flowers can we plant that the bunnies won’t eat? My pansies and marigolds are all eaten.

My split-leaf Japanese maple tree is 15 to 20 years old, about 7 feet high and about 10 feet wide. It is overtaking the corner of the yard. Can I trim it, and at what time of the year?

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