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Ladybugs: Do they Really Work in the Garden?

There are many reasons to love ladybugs. This little red beetle started as a legend during the middle ages. European farmers, about 1000 A.D., struggled with insects that would eat and destroy their crops. At the first sign of crop damage, farmers would pray to “Our Lady the Virgin Mary” for help. The little bugs […]

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Preparing Garden Soils for Spring Planting

We know that the better the soil, the larger the harvest, the brighter the flowers, the easier the gardening. Once you’ve tried digging the first planting hole in a mountain garden, you learn that our native soils are HARD! That’s why successful mountain gardening has always come down to soil quality. Skimp on spring soil […]

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Holiday Evergreens are Ready for Planting

During the coldest months of the year, evergreens are the anchors that hold together our landscapes. Up to 25 percent of any mountain landscape should be allotted to evergreens. Get this ratio wrong and that winter landscape will appear bare, especially if neighboring yards have evergreens galore. This is a good time to assess the […]

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Houseplants Safe for Dogs and Cats

We dog and cat lovers know that some houseplants should not be in our homes. The furry friends in our lives are worth more in the hours of unconditional love they shower on us than those few houseplants we must sacrifice on their behalf. Cats and puppies instinctively like to nibble on greens, so we […]

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Ten Flowers that Insects Hate

Bugs wreak havoc on flowers leaving frustrated gardeners to ponder whether to fight back with chemical pesticides, organic poultices or angry machete chops. However, even if you’ve lost the battle with bugs this season, you can win the war by planting flowers that insects find unpalatable. These flowers naturally repel insects because of soapy sap, […]

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Creating Landscaping Property Lines

It was Robert Frost that said, “Good fences make good neighbors.” In today’s fast-paced, noisy world, we all need our privacy. Without it, we become moody – perhaps, even grumpy – neighbors. Sometimes it is enough just to define a line of demarcation along the boundary, so it’s always clear where your land ends and […]

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Helping Bees Find Our Gardens

Bees are essential pollinators, pollinating about a third of our nation’s crops. We would have far fewer food options without these little workhorses, but bees are in trouble and local gardeners can help them. Bees rely on wildflowers, and some or our traditional agricultural practices have been traded for industrial techniques that increase crop productivity […]

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Creating Edible Plantscapes

Interestingly, the front yard often is the sunniest spot in a landscape, and although vegetable gardens thrive in lots of sun, we rarely install what is basically a working farm in the front yard. With careful planning, edible plants can become parts of a striking front yard design. “Hide them in plain sight” is the […]

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