Archive for the ‘mulching’ Category

Pineapple Lilies For Summer Garden

Pineapple lilies (Eucomis spp.) are native of South Africa and are easy to grow (USDA hardiness zones 7-10).  Several hybrid cultivars are winter hardy in zone 6 if provide a protective layer of mulch or loose leafy compost. Plants have basal rosette of strap-like, wavy-edged, purple-spotted, dark green leaves which spread upward and outward to […]

Distyliums Substitute For Cherry Laurels and Hollies

Distyliums (Distylium x), aka Isu tree, are being billed as “the best new plants you’ve never heard of”. Get accustomed to seeing these boxwood-like shrubs in local garden centers, e.g., if you live within USDA hardiness zones 6b-9. Distyliums are the result of selective breeding efforts to improve an evergreen shrub native to China at […]

Thistle-like Bear’s Breeches

Spiny bear’s breeches (Acanthus spinosa) is a clump-forming perennial treasured for its attractive thistle-like foliage and architecturally bold flower spikes (USDA hardiness zones 5b-9). Plant requires little maintenance and is long-lived. Deeply-cut, arching, glossy green, spiny, thistle-like leaves attain 2-3 feet in length on older plants and remain attractive through the growing season. Leaves bear mostly hidden spines on […]

Best of MT Cuba Center 2017 Monarda Study*

Monarda, commonly known as bee balm or wild bergamot, is a popular summer flowering perennial. Their large, brightly colored flower clusters brighten the season. Flowers attract many types of wildlife, including hummingbirds, bees, butterflies, moths, and seed-eating birds. Unfortunately, many cultivars are susceptible to powdery mildew disease which causes defoliation and plant loss. Over the past three […]

Causes of Sudden Leaf Scorch

Leaf scorch or foliage burn is caused primarily by environmental stress factors such as drying winds, drought, mechanical root injury, and winter injury . Natural pathogens, such as viruses, fungi, or bacteria, can be secondary causes. Spraying the wrong pesticide or accidentally allowing spray to drift onto a nearby susceptible landscape plant can result in chemical foliar […]

Ground Cover Types Of Flowering Abelias

Flowering abelias (Abelia x grandiflora) come in all shapes and sizes (USDA hardiness zones 6-9). Over the past decade the ground cover types have become very popular. They’re also utilized as accent plants in large containers. In zones 7 -8, they are evergreen. The term “ground cover” is used here to emphasize cultivars that  grow low, mostly […]

Firebush Is One Tough Texas Flowering Plant

Firebush. aka scarlet bush (Hamelia patens),  is indigenous from Mexico to Central America (USDA hardiness 10-11). Treat it as a tempermental perennial in zone 9, and an annual everywhere else it is not hardy. This fast growing plant blooms through most of summer into fall with showy clusters of tubular red buds and flowers. Firebush thrives in Texas heat […]

Check Out These Four Plant Select® Picks

If you’re search for top performing plants, especially very drought tolerant, take a look at the picks from Plant Select®. This is a nonprofit collaboration of Colorado State University, Denver Botanic Gardens and professional horticulturists. Their mission is to seek out and distribute the very best plants for landscapes and gardens from the intermountain region to […]

Ice Plants (Delosperma)

Ice plants (Delosperma spp.) are perennial evergreen succulents from South Africa. Two species are most popular in U.S. gardens starting with hardy ice plant (D. cooperi) (zones 6b – 9) and yellow ice plant (D. nubigenum) (zone 4 – 10). There are also many hybrid cultivars sold at garden centers and on-line. North of zone […]

Less Invasive Butterfly Bush Identified

Butterfly bush (Buddleia) is a popular garden shrub in many areas of the U.S. Buddleia invasiveness is a serious issue in the Pacific Northwest. The Oregon Dept of Agriculture, Plant Division, has approved for sale these buddleia cultivars in the state. The approved varieties produce 2% or less viable seed, meeting Oregon’s standards for sterility. The […]