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New Perennial Mukgenia

Mukgenia   This perennial is awesome! I spotted it at Holdridge Garden Center (in Ledyard, CT) when I spoke there earlier this month. It is a cross between Mukdenia ‘Crimson Fans’ and Bergenia. The rich pink flowers, attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies, open in April and continue into early June. The jagged leathery leaves turn a…

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Spring Garden Maintenance

Last Sunday was my first chance to putter about my gardens, enjoy the bursting new plant life, and do some spring clean-up. As I mentioned earlier, not only has my schedule been insanely busy, but spring has also been very slow to arrive in Kennebunk, Maine. Even though it was cold (in the 40’s) and…

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Jump-Start Gardens in Spring

With spring around the corner, I’m itching to get out in my gardens. Colorful flower gardening catalogs and magazines can only satisfy my gardening cravings for so long. At this time of the year I feel like a ship’s captain scanning the horizon for land – except I am searching for small green shoots. The…

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Superior Deer and Rabbit Repellent

It’s understandable that you might feel the urge to go outside to defend your plants from midwinter gnawing by deer, rabbit and voles. Especially when you watch your neighbors frantically racing about their yards blasting plants with hot pepper spray; tossing coyote urine granules about; twining mylar string with little flapping flags around borders, staking…

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Perennializing Spring Blooming Bulbs

I hate having to repeat myself, but when it comes to digging in spring blooming bulbs each fall to replace those that fizzled away or were munched by critters, I CAN stop this expensive, repetitive madness. Now I plant long-lived, naturalizing bulbs that stick around for years. Here are a few of my tried and…

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Hurray for Garden Center Clearance Sales!

I love rummaging through plants on garden center clearance tables at this time of the year. And I know I’m not alone. It is so much fun discovering a gem selling for 75% less than it should cost. Come to Mama! One of my favorite finds are Itoh (intersectional) peonies. These usually sell for $85…

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Spectacular Plants, including Angelonia and Blue Asters

Angelonia ANGELFACE ‘Perfectly Pink’. This new annual from Proven Winners (available in 2017) has me speechless. I’ve been trialing it this year to evaluate its blooming habit. I planted it in containers in May and it has bloomed nonstop – with zero deadheading. Even at the end of August, it still had robust blooms, despite…

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Blue-tiful Blue Flowering Perennials

True blue is a captivating hue and an elusive color in the world of perennials, but there are some flowers that come close. Allow me to introduce you to some ‘blue-tiful’ perennials. Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia) Part Shade- Shade, spring bloomer, Zones 3 – 8 Lungwort ‘Blue Ensign’ (Pulmonaira) Part Shade – Shade, spring bloomer, Zones…

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Chipmunk Insanity!

Last month I wrote about a surge in the rabbit population. It seems Chip, Dale and Theodore’s gang are making a power play on Thumper’s neighborhood. Suddenly there seem to be chipmunks everywhere! And even though some say chipmunks are cute, these little rascals can wreak havoc in the landscape as well as in the…

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10 No-No Plants if you have rabbits

In many regions there seems to have been an explosion in the rabbit population. And like deer (especially fawns) they are adorable to look at. Unfortunately the damage they can do to our gardens is not so adorable. It is downright sickening. One way to reduce our heartache is to steer clear of perennials that…

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