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Color and contrast in landscape.

Landscaping enthusiasts can paint their outdoor canvas with a burst of colors using shrubs, flowers, and trees. The longevity of these green companions is a key factor as it affects the overall cost of maintaining them.

Spring ushers in a colorful array, from azaleas to forsythias. Summer adds althaeas and hydrangeas to the palette, while fall welcomes crape myrtles and flowery sennas. Even in the cooler months, camellias and Italian jasmines lend their hues.

Poinsettia care 101.

Poinsettias, whose bright petal-like bracts appear in late fall, have long been the most popular Christmas plant.

Hybridization has brought about many improvements to the fragile poinsettia. Plants are now more colorful; they also last longer.

Family gardens logo with vegetables and fruits.

When planning a new flower or vegetable garden, your family should be realistic about the time and cost for preparation, planting, maintenance, harvesting, and removal of residue. The suggested size for a family flower or vegetable garden is 100 to 400 square feet. You can increase or decrease it later, as needed.

Environmental control with container gardening.

Landscape and vegetable gardening in containers is growing in popularity. Containers are helpful for gardeners with limited space to provide special features or flexibility in the landscape and obtain maximum production from flower and vegetable plants. Special flowers and vegetables may be grown each spring, summer, autumn, and winter.

I moved into a townhome last October and haven’t really yet made an effort to make it feel like home. I don’t know if you can relate to this, but as a renter I get stuck in a way of thinking where I don’t allow myself to put a lot of effort into my living environment because I’m just that. . . a renter. I always run through the standard gamut of reasons– why would I add value to someone else’s property, how long will I actually be here, will I lose my deposit if I do certain things?

Second & Third Harvest Tips blog graphic

My best heat tolerant tomato varieties began to develop rope fruit in mid-August. Some of the fruit have weighed up to eight ounces. I set the plants in the garden during June, which was late for the spring crop and early for a fall crop.

Many gardeners are not familiar with Big Beef and Sunmaster tomato varieties. Big Beef was the 1994 All-American Selection Winner. It’s an indeterminate variety that matures in 73 days and has VFFNTA disease resistance. It yields an impressive 10 to 12-ounce smooth fruit with real old-time flavor, and is considered one of the finest hybrids for home gardeners.

How to care for Crotons blog graphic

Also known as variegated Laurel, Crotons come from the South Pacific Islands. The habit of growth varies with the type of plant. Dwarf croton varieties are bushy and compact. The tree-like varieties are tall and have a good spread. Crotons are usually maintained at two to three feet, but if given the opportunity, they can grow into large trees.

Tropical house plant care blog graphic

Most tropical plants do fine indoors and will even take some abuse. If properly maintained, they’ll live to a ripe old age, bringing you much enjoyment.

Here, we’re discussing their general care and maintenance. With patience and dedication, even a beginning gardener can develop a green thumb quickly.

Growing Cyclamen blog post graphic

Cyclamen are tuberous-rooted perennials grown for their beautiful flowers that resemble shooting stars.

They’re native to the Middle East, Cypress, and Crete. They have a common name of “Sow Bread” because pigs eat the big roots. Their tubers contain “cyclamin,” which is harmless to pigs but can cause gastritis and nervous tension when ingested by humans.

Orchid Care 101

Whether grown indoors or out, all orchids require roughly the same care. Of the many species and hybrid orchids, the most familiar types are cattleya, cymbidium, and paphiopedilum, which are the corsage types.

Ixora Care in Southern California Blog Graphic

Southern California has the blessing of warm weather most of the year. Winters are mild, too. These conditions allow for many tropical blooming plants in our landscapes. One such plant is Ixora, of which jungle geranium is the most common variety.

Daylily Care 101 Blog graphic

Daylilies are easy-to-care-for perennials that can enhance any landscape.

They come in various colors and range in size from one foot to 6 feet, though most are from 18 inches to 36 inches. They have a tuberous root system and can be either deciduous or evergreen. Daylilies can be used in clumps, mass plantings for flower bed borders, ground covers, or containers. Their lily-like blossoms are excellent as cut flowers.

Borders in Landscape Design blog graphic

Perennials are versatile plants with various creative uses in the garden, offering infinite exciting combinations. They add color, form, and texture, often for many years and with minimal maintenance. Looking at some landscape possibilities should stimulate ideas for your yard or garden.

How To Care For Hibiscus Plants graphic

The hibiscus is an elegant blooming plant whose popularity is growing, whether container cultivated around decks, porches, and patios or used in landscape settings as annual color.

While individual flowers may last only a day or so, especially in the hot summer, many new buds form daily for a spectacular flower show from spring through fall.

Indoor Bromeliad Care Blog graphic

Bromeliads are ideally suited for home decoration. They can be displayed in pots, hanging baskets, dish gardens, or on bark or driftwood. They are relatively easy to care for, and do not need to be in large pots or containers.

The Role of Plant Nutrients Blog Graphic

To understand fertilizer and what it does, you have to know the roles that plant nutrients play in a plant’s growth and development.

In this blog, we list the primary and secondary nutrients required by most plants. Required amounts differ from plant to plant. Plants need nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium in the largest amounts.

Lawn Care Secrets Graphic

The best kept secret for lawn care is to adjust the height up to the highest setting and leave the clippings.

The lawn has been the foundation of suburban landscapes in the USA. However, many gardeners complain that a lawn wastes water, fertilizers, chemicals and time that could be spent with more enjoyable activities.

How to Grow Hot or Sweet Peppers Graphic

Hot peppers are used worldwide more than any other spice. Salsa is now consumed more than ketchup, and peppers are one of the main ingredients in it. They’re favored for many ethnic dishes. In the USA, they’re increasingly popular in Cajun, Creole, and Southwestern cuisines.