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Tales from a Plant Addict

Fun (& a few serious) facts, tips and tricks for every gardener, new and old.


This time of year I am on the lookout for plants that still look good in the garden. Most plants look pretty tired and haggard by late August. Adding in some plants that are starting to bloom or still blooming by late summer breathes some life into a tired landscape. If you're looking for a real workhorse of a plant for your perennial garden, consider Coreops...

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I've been wondering for the last month or so why my blackberries have not set fruit. People have said to me in the past that since I have my Ph.D. in Horticulture I must not kill plants or make mistakes in my garden. On the contrary I tell them-- I just kill plants and make mistakes in a far more complicated manner than most. My blackberries are no exception. Blackberries ar...

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Homegrown Tomatoes

I love my homegrown tomatoes, but I am beginning to wonder if the ones in my garden will ripen before frosty weather returns! The cool weather, though more comfortable for us this summer, is not helpful for the local tomato population. Tomatoes will not ripen properly in daytime high temperatures above about 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Researcher's evidence suggests...

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About a year ago, one of my sisters called me with a harrowing tale of her dog Blaize's encounter with a skunk. My sister and her husband were sitting on their patio one night, ready to relax after a long day. That evening proved to be nothing close to relaxing. As my sister described it, it all started when they saw a skunk emerge from a clump of ornamental grass near their...

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Deer and Rabbit Damage in the Landscape

I grew up as a kid that loved all the wildlife that wandered into our yard. As an adult homeowner with a relatively new landscape in a new subdivision, I feel like this year I've declared war on the local wildlife while trying to defend my tender young plants. I've been in my ho...

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