07 February 2012

Links to news and useful information for gardeners

Do you subscribe to several blogs and newsletters? Do you actually read them all? I keep trying to cut back but for each one I send the dreaded unsubscribe message, there is another (or two) to which I subscribe.

Here are a few of the links I've loved this week in no particular order -

1) State by State Gardening (full disclosure - I write for them a couple of times a year)
Marilyn Stewart of Wild Things Nursery wrote about Blackfoot Daisy, Melampodium leucanthum.

Here's a link to the article about this plant. Stewart says,
Natives of Texas
"One amazing standout in my yard has been blackfoot daisy, which has thrived in heat and limited moisture and looked, well, as fresh as a daisy the entire summer. One attribute of this plant I appreciate is how white the abundant blooms always look; there is no fading to brown. Native to several western states, I have seen it growing on clay outcrops in fierce winds and sun. It doesn’t need much in the way of care, just not too much moisture."

2) The University of California Botany Photo of the Day
features a favorite plant for our zone 7 area, Castilleja coccinea, a member of the Orobanchaceae family. Here we call it Indian Paintbrush. link here
"Castilleja has somewhere in the neighbourhood of 160-200 species, and almost all of these are in western North America. Castilleja coccinea is one of the exceptions, as it is broadly distributed across eastern North America."

3) The Bugwood Blog ran an article about invasive bamboo that reminded me of the time we planted bamboo in a 2-inch thick concrete planter and it broke out.
Bamboo Garden Center
"Bamboos rarely produce fertile seed here, but they have still managed to become an invasive problem. The genus Phyllostachys, a running bamboo, has nine species that have been reported invasive at some time. " Check it out here.

4) The University of Wisconsin Yard and Garden News ran a piece about the new hardiness zones map put out by the U.S.D.A. My zone didn't change, did yours? Check here.

5) Missouri Environment and Garden's newsletter has information on cold frames you can easily construct. I have perennial seeds in mine now.  I love the idea of a hotbed but do not have the resources to have one.
The article is here.
"For many avid gardeners, the winter months are viewed as a dull, uninspiring period that must be endured in order to experience the joy of the growing season that follows. Although cold temperatures dramatically alter gardening activities, they do not necessarily have to end them. The use of plant growth structures such as cold frames and hotbeds can transform gardening into a year-around activity. "

Which blogs and garden newsletters are your faves?

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