better outdoor living at home spring

The National Cherry Blossom Festival

I’m imagining that going to the National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, DC may be one of this country’s best springtime trips ever. This year, in 2015, the festival is from March 20 to April 12.   I have not been there yet, but it is on my list of places to go. It no […]

Flowering Crabapple Trees – Choose Disease-Resistant First, Flower Color Second

  I used to have a flowering crabapple in my backyard, and it was gorgeous in bloom – its lovely dark pink blooms created a big colorful canopy. Those few weeks when it was in bloom it was simply fabulous.   But the rest of the summer months it was absolutely unsightly, just a tattered […]

Flowering Pear Trees Create a Stately Border

If you’ve ever wondered what a border row of flowering ornamental trees would look like in your yard, this yard’s beautiful row of pears may give you some inspiration. When we drove past this beautiful house in a nearby neighborhood the other day, with its lovely, tidy, and uniform row of pear trees all in […]

A Large Shade Tree Gets Cut Down

Last week I had to have a large shade tree cut down in the front yard. It was a pretty nice tree, and had become a familiar part of the yard, so it was sort of sad to see it go. Several ash trees in the neighborhood had become invaded by the emerald ash borer […]

English Ivy – Is It a Good Idea to Let It Grow on Trees

Many homeowners love seeing English ivy (Hedera helix) growing on structures, such as over the arched entryway of a house or on a wall in the landscape. It really can create a classic look, but there is one ‘structure’ in your yard that you may not want ivy to grow on. When ivy uses a […]

Do You Really Want to Install That Tree as a Shrub?

We have seen this plant installation a number of times, and it is unfortunate, because landscape plants aren’t cheap, and this tree’s enhancement to the yard could have been so effective in the right location. Some homeowners may take a liking to a certain landscape plant at the garden center and buy it without giving […]

Helpful Garden Links

FIND HELPFUL GARDEN LINKS THAT provide in depth information for plants, perennials, dividing perennials, tree selection, roses, color wheel, birding and wildlife. Plants Find Your U.S. Frost Dates (click on Onsite Resources tab) Find Your Hardiness Zone (click on Onsite Resources tab) Common Perennials Dividing Perennials Planting Perennials Gardening with Annuals Selecting Trees for Your […]

Trees and Utility Lines

It takes decades for a tree to mature into a beautiful and valuable asset for your yard. And it can take only one afternoon to reduce it’s splendor into an unsightly spectacle, if long ago it was planted too close to the overhead utility lines. The heart break of it all can be even further […]

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