When together is better in the garden

A little luck and a whole lot of hard work have produced award-winning results in this front garden. Knowing the traits and needs of individual plants is important – very important – but the knack or skill of taking that knowledge and combining plants to create beauty is what good design is all about. One […]

Lavender Haze

What do you do with 50 acres of reclaimed coal fields? Well, if you are Appalachian Botanical Company, you grow lavender.  What started as a conversation in 2016 has become a thriving business in Boone County with a mission of building a profitable botanical enterprise that puts West Virginians and reclaimed coal mine land back […]

Attracting hummingbirds to your garden

I find small gardens magical. With limited space, gardeners are creative and playful with their choices. They also tend to care for them to the point of perfection. I spent time in a garden this week that glowed.  With a reflecting pool and Mark Blumenstein art as a spout, the water sound babbling was the […]

Leaves of three, let them be

Whoever said good things come in threes never met poison ivy. Those shiny leaflets grouped in threes along a stem are anything but good. To be honest, the plant’s evil powers don’t come from the leaf but from the oil and urushiol they produce.  Learning to identify poison ivy is important. Changing its identity is […]

Spring is Here

Although our Charleston winter has been mild, I am still excited to welcome spring. A walk through my neighborhood and yard, even during my daily travels, you can begin to see the landscape “greening up” and coming to life.   This a tricky time. Although the calendar will say Spring on March 20, the weather will […]

Who needs words when flowers can express the moment?

What fun that we can send messages by sending flowers. The trick is to know the floral language and choose the right flower for the right moment. Let’s start with the easy one – red roses communicate love, passion, and perfection. Perfect for lovers and expressing desire no wonder it is a Valentine’s Day staple. […]

Winter Damage to the Garden

Here we are – the end of January with several weeks of winter yet to come. That means several weeks of potential winter damage to the garden. Oh, the normal up and down of temperatures can be endured by most plants if they are in the proper USDA Zone (Zone 6a and 6b for most […]

A moment of escape

As the year begins, I am treating myself to a daily indulgence. Yes, chocolate is involved, but there is more. I read.   I have always been a reader, but this book is special. It was given to me as a gift and has been the perfect way to end my day and send me to […]

O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum -how lovely are thy branches

There is something about a Christmas tree. That magical glow from the lights, the reflection of shiny trinkets, the smiles, the smells – it all makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. A decorated tree creates childlike wonder, but raising and grooming those beautiful trees is a year-round job. To learn more about the tree’s […]

Edible ornaments for our outside friends

As I wandered around the tree lot last year looking for my tree, I saw many friends, but it was a conversation with Betsy and her daughter that has stuck with me all year.  This dynamic mother-daughter duo was searching for a misfit tree to add to their outside seating area. Get this: it was […]