Best Flowering Groundcovers for Full Sun

The term "groundcover" was new to me when we moved to the USA over 25 years ago. My English gardens never had any bare earth showing, every conceivable space both horizontally and vertically being planted in casual layers of annuals, perennials, edibles, shrubs, and more. There was no additional earth that needed to be covered!…

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Surprising Melt-Proof Annuals

Seattle is better known for its rainy climate than searing temperatures, and it's a local joke that our summer begins on July 5th (the day after we huddle around bonfires to stay warm as we celebrate Independence Day). So when we hit well over 100'F for several consecutive days last week there was an initial…

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Connecting Garden Beds with Color

We all have areas in our garden that pose a significant design challenge. Such is the case with this bijou bed adjacent to our main patio. It is seen from the kitchen windows year-round yet is part of a 5-acre landscape with much larger sweeping borders. Measuring approximately 12 feet square with a central container…

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Flowers & Foliage – My Favorite, Easy-Care Shrubs

Here in the Pacific Northwest the ubiquitous rhododendron are doing their thing with oversized, luscious blooms in every shade from purest white to deepest purple. They are positively seductive – until suddenly they're not. The sad reality is that a garden filled with these has only a limited season of interest, after which there's just…

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Color-Changing Evergreens

Funnily enough, no-one has ever asked me to design a high maintenance garden, yet there is a common misconception that low maintenance translates to an endless row of boxwood or a border entirely devoted to rhododendrons. While these may be easy care they certainly won’t win any design awards. Yet evergreen trees and shrubs are…

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