Noted: Great Design Plant: Prairie Phlox Draws Winged Beauties via Houzz

Great Design Plant: Prairie Phlox Draws Winged Beauties via Houzz

Spaces by Minnetonka Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Holm Design & Consulting LLC
 
The splashes of bright pink, fragrant flowers of prairie phlox are a welcome addition to any landscape border or edge. This is an extremely adaptable native plant that thrives in most soil types, except pure sand or pure clay. The long-lasting flower clusters attract butterflies and moths in particular; these long-tongued pollinators visit to feed on the flower’s nectar. Prairie phlox flowers in early spring before cool-season prairie grasses begin to compete for light and real estate, maximizing its potential to attract pollinators.
 
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More books, seeds and information on Prairie Phlox on Amazon.com

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Noted: The Simple Secret to Gardening Success via Houzz

The Simple Secret to Gardening Success via Houzz

Farmhouse Landscape by Nantucket Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers The Garden Design Company
 
Avid gardeners and those in the landscape industry talk about soil a lot. Clay, sand, topsoil, mulch, amendments, compost — we throw around these terms regularly because the ground is so essential to what we do. For anyone who claims to have a “black thumb,” I would like to let you in on a little gardening secret: Successful gardens begin with the soil.
 
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Video: In the garden…July 17, 2014: Sweet potatoes run amuck, containers revive and cuttings grow

Agn artwork

I check in on our sweet potatoes which are so vigorous the neighbors are beginning to notice, watch as the container garden rejuvenates and check in on the basil cuttings we potted up last week.

Video: In the garden…July 17, 2014: Sweet potatoes run amuck, containers revive and cuttings grow

Check out my collection of gardening essays, “From A Gardener’s Notebook” now available as a Kindle eBook. (You don’t need a Kindle to read it, though. Read it on your PC, Link: http://j.mp/fagnbook

Watch all past episodes of “In the garden…” in this YouTube Playlist


Music: “The One” by the Woodshedders (http://musicalley.com)

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“In the garden…” is a series for A Gardener’s Notebook highlighting what is happening in my garden, my friend’s gardens and California gardens throughout the seasons. 

Noted: The Best Composters for Kitchen Scraps via The Sweet Home

The Best Composters for Kitchen Scraps via The Sweet Home

The Best Composters for Kitchen Scraps via The Sweet Home

If we were looking for a low-maintenance composter for your yard, we’d get Earth Machine, a composter that’s big enough for most households and often available at a substantial discount from local Public Works departments. It’s easy to assemble without tools, the top opens large enough to stir and aerate the compost (or dump in a whole watermelon), it keeps rodents out of your compost-to-be, it holds together well over time, and it’s made of at least 50% post-consumer recycled polyethylene. The open bottom allows your compost-assisting worms to snuggle into your pile, and you can attach the Earth Machine to the ground with included screws or tend stakes to keep compost-consuming raccoons from knocking it over. Overall, it’s cheaper, simpler to put together, more secure against pests, and more ecologically friendly than other composters.

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More composters from Amazon.com

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“Noted” items are particularly good finds from my daily reading which I share via all my social media accounts. 

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Summer in the Garden: Iron Garden Spheres

I am always keeping a eye out for decent products for my own garden — even if they are just for my wish list. Over the course of the next few weeks, I’ll be highlighting a series of products that might fit in my garden — or yours! — Douglas


Iron Garden Spheres

I could see these arranged around a patio, a water feature (as in the picture) or even as an accent in a wide patch of lawn.

Utilitarian? Certainly not. Cool looking? Yes, I think so. (SMILE)

I would imagine the iron will gain a patina of rust over the years, increasing their character with each passing season. I wonder if you couldn’t arrange a moss ball inside on the spheres and have some trailing plant growing from inside the structure. Ideas, ideas, ideas. (LAUGH)

Summer in the Garden: Iron Garden Spheres

Large 20″, Medium 16″ and small 12″
collapse down for easy storage.

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs

Previously in Summer in the Garden:

Noted: Shopper’s Diary: Bleuet Coquelicot in Paris by Michelle Slatalla via Gardenista

Shopper’s Diary: Bleuet Coquelicot in Paris by Michelle Slatalla via Gardenista

ToShopper's Diary: Bleuet Coquelicot in Paris by Michelle Slatalla via Gardenista

It’s hard to miss Bleuet Coquelicot: Plants and flowers of all colors spill onto the sidewalk from a tiny storefront on a busy street in Paris’s Canal St. Martin neighborhood. Most customers are neighborhood regulars. They stop by to say hello and share a cup of coffee (from Ten Belles next door, which serves the best in Paris) with the proprietor, who prefers to be known as “Tom des Fleurs.”

Is Bleuet Coquelicot the sort of shop that could only exist in Paris? We sent photographer Mimi Giboin to take a look. Here is her report:

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Noted: Pistil-Whipped: This Video Makes Flowers Look Like The Most Magical Organisms On Earth via Fast Company

Pistil-Whipped: This Video Makes Flowers Look Like The Most Magical Organisms On Earth via Fast Company

Pistil-Whipped: This Video Makes Flowers Look Like The Most Magical Organisms On Earth via Fast Company

Madrid-based nature photographer David de los Santos Gil spent nine months capturing the delicate dance of flowers in bloom.

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Garden Decor: Teapot Birdhouse from Clifford Earl Sculpture

Teapot Birdhouse from Clifford Earl Sculpture

Whimsical birdhouse always add a nice touch to any garden, and you might just invite some new residents, too. This clever use of a teapot as the base of the birdhouse is a great way of reusing an object. The artist then embellishes the original piece to create something quite new and beautiful.

Garden Decor: Teapot Birdhouse from Clifford Earl Sculpture 

Discovered via Pinterest User Deedra Sherron

Birdhouses of all sorts from Amazon.com

 * a portion of each Amazon sales goes directly to support A Gardener’s Notebook
** some of these books may be available at your local library. Check it out!
 
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Horticulture Jobs Available – Search by location and keyword

Check out our list of horticulture jobs (and others) available via SimplyHired.com.

Enter your location for jobs close to you. You can also search on other keywords. Horticulture jobs

 

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Flowering Now: Plumaria, Van Nuys Civic Center, Los Angeles, California

Plumaria

We happened upon these lovely plumaria on a walk around the neighborhood on Monday. These are part of the landscaping at the Marvin Braude Constituent Service Center just up the street. The bright yellows against the dark foliage is quite striking.

Flowering Now: Plumaria, Van Nuys Civic Center, Los Angeles, California

Flowering Now: Plumaria, Van Nuys Civic Center, Los Angeles, California

Photo: Douglas E. Welch, A Gardener’s Notebook

Plumeria (common name Frangipani[citation needed]) is a genus of flowering plants in the dogbane family, Apocynaceae.[1] It contains seven or eight species of mainly deciduous shrubs and small trees. They are native to Central AmericaMexico, the Caribbean, and South America as far south as Brazil [3] but can be grown in tropical and sub-tropical regions.

Plumeria is related to the Oleander, Nerium oleander, and both possess an irritant, rather similar to that of Euphorbia. Contact with the sap may irritate eyes and skin.[4]Each of the separate species of Plumeria bears differently shaped, alternate leaves with distinct form and growth habits. The leaves of P. alba are quite narrow and corrugated, whereas leaves of P. pudica have an elongated shape and glossy, dark-green color. P. pudica is one of the everblooming types with non-deciduous, evergreen leaves. Another species that retains leaves and flowers in winter is P. obtusa; though its common name is “Singapore,” it is originally from Colombia.

Plumeria flowers are most fragrant at night in order to lure sphinx moths to pollinate them. The flowers have no nectar, however, and simply dupe their pollinators. The moths inadvertently pollinate them by transferring pollen from flower to flower in their fruitless search for nectar.

Plumeria species may be propagated easily from cuttings of leafless stem tips in spring. Cuttings are allowed to dry at the base before planting in well-drained soil. Cuttings are particularly susceptible to rot in moist soil.  – Wikipedia.org

 
More information on Plumeria:

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** Some of these books, and more, may be available at your local library. Check it out!

Previously in Flowering Now: