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GBDW – Made for the Shade Wrap-Up

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So, who’s complaining about shade, anyway? Certainly not this month’s GBDW contributors! Check out their postings on favorite plants, combination ideas, and design pointers, and you just might find yourself wishing for more shade in your own garden. Continue Reading →

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Garden Bloggers Design Workshop – Made for the Shade

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For gardeners, shade is kind of like rain: if we don’t have it, we wish for it; if we do have it, we often long for less. And with both, there are no simple solutions. In my own garden, set in a wide-open, sun-baked field, shade is scarce, and it’ll be many years yet before any of my tiny trees will be big enough to create any. What passes for my shade border is on the northeast side of the house, but it still gets sun from dawn until 1:00 or so, which is way more sun than even the sunniest spot in my last garden. Still, it’s been interesting to experiment with traditonal shade-lovers and find out how much sun they tolerate without extra watering.

What about the rest of you? Want to share your strategies for dealing with too much or too little shade? Continue Reading →

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GBDW – Water-Wise Gardening Wrap-Up

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So, it’s been a little dry here in Pennsylvania. Well, it’s not really as bad as it looks; my soil frequently cracks like that until I’ve worked on building up the organic matter for a few years. But still, after weeks of cool temperatures and rain every other day, dealing with a week of summer-like heat and no rain is pretty tough on the garden, and the gardener, too. If I hear one more person raving about the supposedly wonderful weather we’ve been having, I’m going to get a little cranky. Ever since I read somewhere the thought that “The next drought starts with the first rainless day” (or something along that line), I almost dread the forecast of “nice” weather.

Well, whether you have to cope with too much rain or too little rain in your own garden, you’ll find something of interest in this month’s contributions for the topic of water-wise gardening. Here’s the list of contributors: Continue Reading →

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Garden Bloggers Design Workshop – Water-Wise Gardening

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When the concept of xeriscaping first entered my consciousness back in the late ’80s, it didn’t appear to have much to do with my own garden. I live in southeastern Pennsylvania, after all, where we get about 40 inches of rainfall a year. Sure, we have dry spells, and even longer rainless periods that can qualify as drought, but for the most part, we’re pretty lucky. I figured that gravel and cacti were okay for folks out west but hardly appropriate for our greener mid-Atlantic landscapes. Gradually, though, I began to realize that the principles behind that seemingly irrelevant concept really were applicable even here. Continue Reading →

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Recession Gardens

foundation-border-with-veggies-june-25-07Victory gardens are so last century. Now, according to CNN, at least, the time has come for “recession gardens.” CNN.com picked up a story for their web site from user-generated ireport.com on ‘Recession gardens’ trim grocery bills, teach lessons. I doubt that the stats on the increased interest in gardening will be a surprise to any of us. But the article does raise a good point, about where the people who are gardening for the first time are getting their information. Continue Reading →

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