Perennials

PerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Centurea

Learn how to grow centurea or mountain bluet. Listen to podcast: This late spring blooming perennial flower has been looking beautiful this year. It goes by a number of common names such as mountain bluet, perennial bachelor's buttons, and corn flower. I know it mostly by its botanical name, Centaurea montana. This European native is popular in English cottage gardens and across our region. It produces blue, white, or burgundy colored, spider-like blooms. It grows 2 to 3 feet tall and can flop over, so is best grown in groups and caged to...

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PerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Chelone

Listen to this podcast about caring for and growing chelone or turtle's head perennial flowers.   I used to own a camp with a swimming pond in the Northeast Kingdom. I remember in late summer swimming in the pond and admiring these plants growing along the pond edge. They were 2- to 3-feet tall with rounded stems, deep green, boldly veined leaves and white or pink flower on the top of the stems. The flowers reminded me of an animal's head. Do you know the animal I'm talking about? Yes, it was chelone or turtle head. You don't have to...

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AnnualsGarden Design & CarePerennialsVegetable

How to Grow: Chop & Drop Perennial Care

Listen to this podcast on how to clean up flower and vegetable beds with the chop and drop method.   For years, in fall we've faithfully cut back our herbaceous perennial flowers, such as peony, hosta, phlox, and echinacea to clean up the beds for winter. But now my thinking has changed. It all started when I asked myself why remove all that plant matter at all. Usually we cut the foliage to the ground, move it to the compost pile and next year move some compost into the beds. But why create all that extra work. Why not compost the...

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HouseplantsPerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Christmas Cactus

Learn about how to grow Christmas cactus to flower this winter in your home. Listen to Podcast: This common flowering houseplant is native the southeastern, coastal mountains of Brazil. It flowers in May in the Southern hemisphere in response to the shorter day lengths. Europeans starting breeding this plant in the 1800's and now it's one of our most treasured symbols of the holidays. It's the Christmas cactus. Christmas cactus is actually a misnomer. This plant can bloom from November to March and it's not really a cactus. Christmas...

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AnnualsPerennials

How to Grow: Chrysanthemum

Learn about chrysanthemums, including varieties and how to plant and grow them. Listen to Podcast: This common flower symbolizes fall as much as pumpkins and corn stalks. It’s been grown for thousands of years in China and Japan not only for its beauty, but for medicinal and culinary uses. A Chinese proverb says, “If you want to be happy for a lifetime, grow chrysanthemums." Chrysanthemums have come a long way as far as their plant shape. Earlier varieties were so daisy-like with an irregular shape that English humorist P.G. Worehouse once...

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Perennials Vines

How to Grow: Clematis

Learn how to grow clematis including information on varieties. Listen to podcast: podcast transcript Clematis spp and hybrids   Other Name Virgin's bower   Sun Requirements full, part sun   Bloom Period and Seasonal Color Spring to fall depending on the variety, in colors including white, pink, blue, red, yellow and bi colors   Mature Height x Spread 6 to 20 feet x 2 to 5 feet   Added Benefits attracts beneficials, deer resistant   This romantic, fast growing vine comes in a wide variety of flower colors, shapes and sizes....

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Perennials

How to Grow: Columbine

Learn about growing columbines including information on varieties. Listen to podcast: podcast transcript Aquilegia spp and hybrids   Other Name Granny's Bonnet   Sun Requirements Part sun, part shade   Bloom Period and Seasonal Color Spring in colors such as white, yellow, blue, purple, red, orange, and bi colors   Mature Height x Spread 1 to 3 feet x 6 to 24 inches   Added Benefits Native, attracts beneficials, attracts hummingbirds, drought tolerant, deer resistant   Often one of the first spring wildflowers to appear in...

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Perennials Weeds

How to Grow: Control Japanese Knotweed

Learn how to identify and control Japanese knotweed invasive perennial in your landscape   There are invasive weeds and then, there is Japanese knotweed. This weed takes over wetlands, stream banks, roadsides, and moist landscapes, crowding out other plants and destroying habitat. In Japan, knotweed is kept under control by a variety of native insects and diseases. It arrived in North America via Europe in the late 1800s and it's considered invasive in 42 states and 8 Canadian provinces. It grows quickly in spring from underground...

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PerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Coral Bells

Learn about growing the part shade loving coral bells for its beautiful flowers and colorful foliage. Listen to podcast: podcast transcript How To Grow: Coral Bells Heuchera spp and hybrids   Other Name alum root   Sun Requirements Part sun, part shade   Bloom Period and Seasonal Color Late spring to mid summer in colors such as white, red, pink, and coral   Mature Height x Spread 1 to 2 feet x 1 to 2 feet   Added Benefits attracts beneficials, attracts hummingbirds, native, deer resistant   Coral bells are a great option for...

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GroundcoversPerennialsPodcast

How to Grow: Corydalis

Listen to this podcast on growing and caring for cordyalis perennial groundcover. This spring blooming ground cover often carpets areas under deciduous trees and in gardens with its pink or white blooms. This tuberous plant has been used in Chinese medicine from chronic pain relief. What is this spring beauty? It's corydalis. Corydalis is a poppy family wildflower related to bleeding hearts that grows wild in open areas but also can be cultivated in the garden. The most common and hardiest type has pink or white flowers. I often admire a...

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