Choosing Plants

Choosing Plants

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Most of us probably remember this popular nursery rhyme; Mary, Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow?  While we aren’t likely to be growing silver bells, cockleshells and pretty maids all in a row, we are interested in how our gardens grow.  Gardening tends to be a skill that is learned best by doing. 

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Five Flowering Trees to Plant instead of Bradford Pear

One of the surest signs that spring has arrived each year is the blooming of the Bradford pear trees. Widely planted as a street tree, in the parking lots of malls and offices, and in home landscapes, they’re impossible to miss: oval-canopied trees with a mantle of white flowers so thick that it almost resembles snow.

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Shade Garden Sanctuary

Sometimes, temperatures in August make it to hot to think, yet work in the garden. That’s when you move to the shade. You can create a little sanctuary for yourself (and a few lucky friends) with the addition of shade-loving plants, a water source such as a gurgling fountain and a colorful patio umbrella if you don’t have mature trees nearby.

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Spring Flowering Trees & Shrubs

When walking through the neighborhood or taking a drive, notice how many spring blooming trees and shrubs catch your eye. You probably have a spot in mind where one will fit in your yard. Here are a few choices that work well in suburban landscapes.

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Adding More Blooms to Your Garden Invites More Birds

Over the last 20 years we’ve lost billions of birds – birds that are both beautiful and play critical roles in the environment… such as eating pests. We do not know all the complex drivers leading to the population decline of birds, but habitat loss is certainly part of the story.

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9 Native Illinois Shrubs for Sun and Shade

Whether you have an area around your home that gets full sun or shade, is wet or dry, there is a native shrub option for you. Native shrubs are touted as easier to care for and provide ecosystems services like flowers for pollinators and berries for bird. When planting native shrubs, plant in groups and water during the establishment period.

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These Plants are Best Friends Forever

In nature, plants grow in communities, but we often treat them as individuals in our gardens. When we learn how to grow them together, we can take advantage of their natural harmonies, boost the strength of each plant, and make our whole garden sing. Here’s a guide to companion planting!

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5 Everyday Plants for a DIY Wedding Bouquet

It can be tricky to pick the perfect flower arrangements and bouquets for a wedding. Even trickier can be creating something that’s unique and original. We’ve compiled a short list of five, unique plants sure to bring interest and beauty to any arrangement, whether it’s for a special day or every day at home.

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Shade Garden Success in 5 Steps

When your landscape offers the bonus of cool, refreshing shade, creating a beautiful garden requires a fresh approach to plant selection and care. Many go-to favorites for sunny gardens fall short on blooms, beauty and health in low-light situations.

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