Arts & Leisure / The Whistling Gardener

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Hybrid Tea, Floribunda or Grandiflora?

I had an interesting conversation with a customer a few weeks ago. She was of Asian decent and was raving about our Hybrid Tea Roses. I understood her to say that she was amazed at the variety of rose...

 

June is a great month to be gardening

June is a fabulous month to be gardening in the northwest. The soils have warmed up adequately and the air temp is very pleasant. There's lots of daylight, so we can get out after work and still get...

 

Plants that will survive our dry summers

It always seems odd to be talking about drought tolerance when we get literally feet of rain every year and we generally have an adequate supply of water for the summer months, but as we all know,...

 

Dogwoods - A 'Coast to Coast' favorite

When I hear the word "dogwood" I am immediately transported back to a time in my life when I was living on the east coast in Virginia serving my country as a trumpet player in the 392nd Army Band. If...

 

May is not the only month for planting

Never in my 30 years of operating my garden center have I seen such an influx of customers come in all at the same time. Last weekend was like a feeding frenzy for gardeners where they were feeding...

 

Early standouts for your garden

One of the things that always gets me all twitterpated this time of year is “new growth” — it is so clean, unblemished by the elements or the insects and incredibly vibrant. Even if you are a...

 

The simple joys of gardening

It's a good thing I am easily pleased, it doesn't take much to make me happy - especially when I am working in the garden. Take this last week for example. Like most of us, I just tried to cram four...

 

Small space gardening - Where there's a will, there's a way

As houses continue to get larger and yards smaller, it is becoming more and more challenging to find the space to plant everything that we would love to have in our gardens. In many cases, a tree -...

 

Gardening myths and old wives' tales

I have been employed on and off in the horticultural industry since I was 14 (which is an incredible 56 years ago) and during that time I think I have heard just about every conceivable crazy idea...

 

Focus on the garden, not the weather

April is a tortuous month for me. While it is clear that spring has arrived in the garden, the weather still feels like winter with only an occasional sunny day here and there to try and cram in all t...

 

Organic gardening for the beginner

Lets flashback to the late 60’s and early 70’s… I was so heavy into the organic gardening movement that I tried to convince my wife to name our first born either Mulch for a boy or Compostina...

 

Some interesting facts about dirt

The world has changed from when I was a child. Today, it seems like we are obsessed with cleanliness. Nobody wants to get their hands dirty. Nitrile gloves and hand sanitizers are standard fare...

 

Tree Frogs - Yet another sign of spring

After having so much fun last week talking about Robins, I thought, let’s explore tree frogs. After all, what could go wrong? Turns out there are a lot of interesting facts about these amphibians....

 

There are many signs of spring

One of the many signs of spring, besides the annoying ritual of "springing ahead" with our clocks, is the return of flocks of American robins. While I saw a couple of pairs back in February, it was ju...

 

Getting back into the swing of things

Winter is over as far as I am concerned. I mowed my lawn this week for the first time, and for me, that makes it official. I am totally psyched to get back in the swing of things, especially since Jan...

 

How plants go through 'change of life'

Considering that it is still pretty darn cold out there, I thought it might be interesting to digress a bit and talk about how some plants go through the "change of life" as they grow up into adult pl...

 

How do plants survive freezes?

This recent spate of freezing temperatures has got me thinking about how some plants in my garden seem to be unfazed while others turn to mush. I find it fascinating that the flowers on my witch...

 

More things to do in February

Considering all the rain that we have received lately, it is probably safe to assume that most of us have not completed the tasks I wrote about last week. I managed to hoe out some of my shot weed...

 

February To-Do List for gardeners

Okay folks, it's time to get serious about gardening again. Like I mentioned last time, it feels to me like we are going to have an early spring (unless it continues to rain like crazy and it stays...

 

This is your last chance to goof off

Like last week, I am giving you permission to lay low and take it easy for the rest of this month, but watch out! Based on what is happening in my garden, I am going to predict that we will have an...

 

What's happening at the garden center

January is typically a slow month in the garden and since I don’t have a long list of chores for you to accomplish this month I thought it might be enlightening to share a little information on...

 

Houseplants are all the rage (again)

Houseplants are all the rage (again). That's right, back in the late 60's and early 70's everyone was decorating their homes and apartments with all sorts of foliage plants and even making macramé...

 

What are your plans for the new year?

A new gardening season is upon us and with it comes an opportunity to review what worked and what failed in our gardens in 2017. More importantly, now is our chance to dream big and make plans for an...

 

What every gardener wants for Christmas

You've seen the ads this time of year, every car dealer is running them nonstop. You can't escape them. It's the one where it's Christmas morning and out in the driveway is a brand new car with a gian...

 

The December To-Do List for gardeners

I always feel bad sending out a list of chores this month. Somehow it feels like we should be taking this month off and for the most part we probably can, but just in case you didn’t finish the tasks you should have accomplished in November, here...

 

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