Peonies: a Fragrant Late Spring Flower to Last and Love

The peony flower, (genus: paeonia) is one of the most elegantly iconic flowers associated with late spring. We eagerly await those first peony buds to open up to reveal luscious, showy flowers. And the scent? It’s sweet and intoxicating. It’s no wonder that peonies are considered by many gardeners to be the perfect flower for … Read more

Smart Tips for Winterizing Your Yard and Garden

winter garden features

The days are shorter, and there’s a decidedly cold nip in the air. Your friends are enjoying hot toddies and planning ugly Christmas sweater parties. On the other hand, there you are—experiencing a bad case of gardening withdrawal. Don’t be down about it. Instead, use your time winterizing your yard and garden with an eye … Read more

Plant Covers for Frost Protection

Plant covers, row covers

What Temp Is Frost? Living here in the western Piedmont of North Carolina, we have the fortune of gardening well into fall.  The first local “Frost Alert” has been issued and it looks like our more tender crops will be taken out by Mr. Jack. We still have a bumper crop (for our little space) … Read more

Garden Newsletter: Hurricane Michael Came and Went

More Rain and Wind than Hurricane Florence We live in the north central Piedmont of North Carolina. Last Thursday, the remnants of Hurricane Michael remained strong enough to give us a lashing and drenching. Local forecasters had warned only of flash flooding. The storm track had shifted further north and west. Trees came down, low … Read more

Knockout Roses – Stand Out Fall Flowers

Those of us who live in temperate zones are indeed fortunate to have more time to enjoy the late bloomers of fall. Our garden blooms have certainly diminished but those that remain are all the more appreciated. One of those is our Knockout Roses. Knockout Roses These patented knock out roses are not strutting their … Read more

Night Blooming Cereus – Queen of the Night Flower

“Cereus-ly” Worth the Wait The Night Blooming Cereus is a wonderful, mysteriously elegant desert plant. Lady Cereus, also goes by the names of Queen of the Night, Christ in Manger, Dance of Night and Orchid Cactus. We haven’t yet grown this lovely lady-in-waiting ourselves yet, but several in our community are growing them and have … Read more

Fall Gardening: Gynura Procumbens, Okra, and Feathered Friends

Newsletter Fall is definitely on! The dogwood trees are loaded with red berries and the birds (cardinals, goldfinches, brown thrushes, and gray catbirds) are all vying for a beak full. Other birds are visiting as well. We cover in this short garden newsletter, Gynura Procumbens, okra and birds. Audio Article – Fall Gardening: The monkey-like … Read more

Growing Longevity Spinach—Gynura Procumbens—a Medicinal Protein Vegetable

We’re really enjoying our longevity spinach! Related to but not the same as “Okinawa spinach”, longevity spinach (scientific name gynura procumbens, from the family Asteraceae), is a  low-growing, semi-succulent leaf vegetable very popular in Southeast Asia, its home turf. Audio Article – Growing Longevity Spinach:   Why is the Gynura Plant Called Longevity Spinach? Nicknamed “longevity spinach”, this amazing plant … Read more

Harvesting, Freezing and Storing Winter Squash

The most popular winter squash next to pumpkins, is butternut squash. But when it comes to winter squash, gardeners have a wealth of selections to choose from. The squash family is huge. Audio Article – Winter Squash:  All types of winter squash belong in the Cucurbitaceae family, the same family as cucumbers, watermelon and summer … Read more

Loving Marconi Peppers – Red and Green!

We Love Our Marconi Peppers! We’ve grown the Marconi Peppers (red variety), Capsicum annum, for three straight growing seasons. These Marconi sweet peppers come on a bit late with beautiful long green fruits that gradually redden as the season progresses. Audio Article – Marconi Peppers:   We procured the seed from Baker Creek/,  and though … Read more