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Design

Get to know your plants and save time with the Know Maintenance approach

April 2, 2014

Roy Diblik wants you to get to know your plants. Understanding how plants grow and interact with each other in nature, he tells us, is key to creating self-sustaining communities, decreasing time spent on maintenance and allowing gardeners more time to use and enjoy the garden space. Roy calls this the “Know Maintenance” approach. It […]

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Landscaping for privacy: Windbreaks & salt buffers

February 12, 2014

While landscaping for privacy can shield your yard from neighbors, reduce noise, or hide an eyesore, it can also provide protection. In this post, Marty Wingate offers advice on how to contend with two common environmental intrusions, wind and salt.

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Designing a beautiful no-mow yard: 5 considerations

January 31, 2014

When designing your no-mow yard, Evelyen Hadden, author of Beautiful No-Mow Yards: 50 Amazing Lawn Alternatives, writes that each choice “should be based not only on your aesthetics or comfort but also on the natural processes and character of your site.” The following are five things to consider when contemplating replacing your lawn with a now-mow […]

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Attracting Benefical Bugs to Your Garden: 6 confessions

January 21, 2014

Jessica Walliser is just like you. Except she likes bugs. Like may even be an understatement. But it wasn’t always that way. “I am a former bug hater,” she writes in her book, Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden. In the following six confessions, she details her journey from pesticide-loving bug hater to organic gardener […]

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Plant Conservation: Why It Matters and How It Works

January 17, 2014

What on Earth have plants been doing for us? Everything! It’s true, humans would not exist without plants. “Plants have always been, and always will be, the only renewable, sustainable supply of all our needs,” writes Timothy Walker, author of Plant Conservation: Why It Matters and How It Works. It’s tempting to think of plants […]

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Wanted: Bugs for Natural Pest Control

January 10, 2014
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The problem is the solution: Attracting beneficial bugs to your garden

January 6, 2014

Jessica Walliser, author of Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden, used to spray pesticides. Once she was educated about the harmful effects of this practice, however, she began looking for an organic solution. And that’s where the bugs come in. Bugs can be pests. They can also be predators that feed on the pests. To […]

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3 views of the jewel box garden at Brandywine Cottage

December 8, 2013

David Culp achieves year-round visual interest in the gardens at Brandywine Cottage, his home in Pennsylvania. The jewel box garden, tucked in near the house, is a good example. Here, David shares his approach to creating a layered garden in this spot.

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Signature planting: developing an identity

December 7, 2013

The idea of signature is a strong one in the art world, the distinctive stamp of an artist or maker. Good garden designers have all developed a very strong signature, so that the knowledgeable could probably recognize one of their gardens if they were parachuted into one they had not seen before. Gardens too can […]

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Natives and exotics: Noel Kingsbury and Piet Oudolf weigh in on the debate

December 3, 2013

The long-standing debate over the role of native and exotic (introduced) species continues, with an unfortunate tendency toward adopting entrenched positions in some countries (such as the USA) or arousing little interest in others (Japan). The key issue is the role of plants in gardens and designed landscapes to contribute to biodiversity by supporting food […]

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