New Shrubs for the Cutting Garden

New Shrubs for the Cutting Garden

I’m finally starting to believe that eventually these piles of snow will recede – we have a long way to go here in New England, but every day of runoff-wet roads lifts my winter weary spirits.  I’ve even started to plan for new plantings. I’m hoping to add interest and variation to my garden-fresh bouquets and…

Snippets: Flora at Tower Hill  (And I’ll be Speaking)

Snippets: Flora at Tower Hill (And I’ll be Speaking)

Do you have plans this weekend? Why not take a hike outside and gather the makings of beautiful floral arrangement? If you were able to look out my window (at many feet of snow – and with a couple more on the way) – you’d think I was ludicrous for making this suggestion. But if…

Cat’s Whiskers

Cat’s Whiskers

During 2015 at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, we are preparing to focus our educational programming around the theme of Myth, Magic, and Medicine of Plants. Over the past couple of weeks, our horticulture staff has been researching plants to support this theme. I dove into the research this week by combing through some of the on-line…

Whipping Up Some Holiday Containers

Whipping Up Some Holiday Containers

After so many years of installing countless commercial and residential holiday containers, I could do it in my sleep. Seriously, winter containers have to be the easiest thing you can throw together in less than 20 minutes and I’m going to do you a favor and type up the quick and dirty 101 of getting…

The Bittersweet Dilemma – Solved!

The Bittersweet Dilemma – Solved!

After years of yanking the pervasive (and invasive) red roots of bittersweet from my garden beds, I am highly paranoid about the re-introduction of this noxious weed. But I can’t deny that it is simply beautiful this time of year.  I’m constantly seeing it grace all sorts of stylish tables,  and long strands are regularly used…

Traffic Stopping Kale

Traffic Stopping Kale

From this title, “Traffic Stopping Kale,” you may be imagining a major traffic incident in Los Angeles or Santa Barbara where a truck loaded with kale turned over on the interstate. Then tons of drivers hit their brakes and start grazing right off of the roadway. No, that is not what I am implying at…

Viridiflora Tulips

Viridiflora Tulips

Have you started planting your spring bulbs? We started planting last week at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens and hope to be finished by early next week. This year, we are going all out and planting close to 35,000 spring flowering bulbs, most of which are tulips. We began designing our tulip displays in June and…

Jude Law, Helen of Troy, and Sneezeweed

Jude Law, Helen of Troy, and Sneezeweed

Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Patrick Dempsey, Jennifer Aniston, and Sandra Bullock. I started naming random actors whose names relay beauty and attraction. If you were to do the same exercise with plants, which might come to mind? Coneflowers, roses, hibiscus, hydrangeas, and magnolias. What about Helenium or sneezeweeds? Maybe not the first plant to come…

A Palm That Does Well In New England*

A Palm That Does Well In New England*

*sort of When I say sort of, I am alluding to the fact that this plant that looks like a palm is not really a palm. It is a grass that looks like a palm thus the common and not so creative name of palm grass. Palm grass or as is known in the Latin circles…

Mountain Mint

Mountain Mint

Of all the plants that I would recommend most everyone include in their garden, mountain mint or Pycnanthemum muticum would be near the top of this list. I knew of mountain mint before moving to Maine but really had not paid it a lot of attention because someone had first described the plant to me…