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Garden Vocabulary

Garden Leaves: Echeveria – 4 in a series

In the natural world, flowers get all the attention and I have been guilty of perpetuating that bias here in my own blogs. That said, leaves are amazing, too, so in this series I will highlight the many forms of leaves available out there. — Douglas Echeveria These might not look like traditional leaves, but leaves […]

Garden Leaves: Lemon – 3 in a series

In the natural world, flowers get all the attention and I have been guilty of perpetuating that bias here in my own blogs. That said, leaves are amazing, too, so in this series I will highlight the many forms of leaves available out there. — Douglas Lemon A shot of our lemon leaves here in the […]

Garden Vocabulary: Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt)

Garden Vocabulary: Bacillus thuringiensis Gardener’s will often come across mention of Bacillus thuringiensis or BT as it is commonly called. It is a bacteria and biological pesticide that is often used in organic farming and gardening as it does not have many of the environmental and human side effects as other chemically-derived pesticides. It is most […]

Garden Vocabulary: Palmatum

Garden Vocabulary: Palmatum Today’s Garden Vocabulary is another garden epithet — a descriptive term — usually Latin — that is used as part of a plants name to describe its most defining characteristic. Palmatum means “shaped like the palm of a hand” 1 and is used quite frequently in plant descriptions. This weeks “Interesting Plant” […]

Garden Vocabulary: Annual

In most gardens, annual plants are used to dress up flower beds and containers during the height of the growing season. Those gardeners in temperate zones tend to rely on annuals as they are designed to grow, flower and die within on growing season and therefore don’t require any special care or protection in order […]

Garden Vocabulary: Parterre

Parterre gardens, with their air of formality, aren’t for everyone, but I would guess it is one of the most popular garden styles even today, long after its first invention. Today’s gardens, especially here in the US, tend to lean towards more casual styles, but you will see elements of the parterre garden style in […]

Garden Vocabulary: Sepal

To paraphrase Old Possums Book of Practical Cats, “The naming of plant (parts) is a difficult matter. In this edition of Garden Vocabulary, we focus on the part of plant that most people ignore, even though is can be a large part of the decorative aspect of a flower. It can take quite a bit […]

Garden Vocabulary: Latin Botanical Epithets – Augustifolia

After watching 2 days of coverage of the Chelsea Garden Show and noting all the plant names I see, it re-interested me in a project to research those Latin words that appear frequently in plant names. Some are very common and others quote rare, but I figured I would start with one of the most […]

Garden Vocabulary: Bolting

Bolting “Bolting is when agricultural and horticultural crops prematurely produce a flowering stem (or stems) before the crop is harvested, in a natural attempt to produce seeds[1] and hence reproduce. These flowering stems are usually vigorous extensions of existing leaf-bearing stems, and in order to produce them, a plant diverts resources away from producing the […]

Garden Vocabulary: Soil pH

Soil pH “The soil pH is a measure of the acidity or basicity in soils.  A pH below 7 is acidic and above 7 is basic. Soil pH is considered a master variable in soils as it controls many chemical processes that take place. It specifically affects plant nutrient availability by controlling the chemical forms of […]