Garden Fundamentals - Learn about plants and gardening

Archive for the Plant Care Category

Winter Protection for Plants

If you garden in areas that get a cold winter you will be familiar with a number of winter protection schemes that are used in the garden. Humans get cold, so we think that plants also get cold and need a warm blanket, but a lot of winter protection practices are a waste of time. Many are poorly understood, so people keep doing them.

In this blog I will review what should and should not be done to protect plants in winter.

Winter protection for plants

Winter protection for plants

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Water Lilies: Hardy and Tropical Water Lilies for Ponds

Water lilies (Nymphaea species) are extremely valuable to the pond. They not only look great and flower well, but the floating leaves provide shade, eliminating the light needed by algae. They also provide a hiding place for fish and other water creatures. Water lilies should cover half of the open water space to help maintain a balanced ecosystem. They do best in quiet water, so keep them away from fountains and waterfalls.

Water lily pond at Longwood Gardens, by Robert Pavlis

Water lily pond at Longwood Gardens, by Robert Pavlis

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Why Hydrangeas Don’t Flower

Why does my hydrangea not flower? This most commonly asked question about hydrangeas, especially in colder climates. The answer is not always a simple one but I’ll try to answer the question in this post.

Reasons for not flowering depend very much on the type of hydrangea you are growing. It is therefore important that you know the type. Have a look at Hydrangea Identification to find out which type you have.

Hydrangea paniculata 'limelight', If you select the right hydrangea it will flower reliably, by Robert Pavlis

Hydrangea paniculata ‘limelight’, If you select the right hydrangea it will flower reliably, by Robert Pavlis

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Hydrangea Identification

Are you wondering why your hydrangea is not flowering? Would you like to know when and how to prune your hydrangea? These are important questions, but no one can provide the correct answers until you know what type of hydrangea you have. This post will help with your hydrangea identification. It won’t provide cultivar names but it will identify the type of hydrangea.

It is always a good idea to keep plant names since it makes it so much easier to find the correct cultural information at a later date. But life happens and it is quite common for people to loose the name of a plant.

Hydrangea macrophylla blue bigleaf hydrangea, Hydrangea Identification

Hydrangea macrophylla also called the bigleaf hydrangea

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Blooming Orchids

In a previous post, Orchid Care, I provided general orchid care information. Once you know how to grow them it is time to learn how to flower them. Blooming orchids is very easy and I’ll show you exactly how to re-bloom them here. The main focus of this post is on the phalaenopsis orchid, but most of the advice also applies to other orchids.

Blooming Orchids - Phalaenopsis

Blooming Orchids – Phalaenopsis

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