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Gardening Articles, Tips and How-tos - Dave's Garden

Welcome to our library of articles, where you can search and browse over 2,000 articles written by our own team of garden writers. Interested in becoming a Dave's Garden writer? Submit an article to apply.

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Gardening Tips Cactus and Succulents Vines Spring Gardening
Perennial Flowers Fruits and Berries Invasives and Weeds Summer Gardening
Annual Flowers Garden Humor Herbs and Herbalism Fall Gardening
Ornamental Trees and Shrubs Tropical Plants Houseplants Winter Gardening

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

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Penstemon: An introduction to species and cultivars
By Susanne Talbert (art_n_garden)

Penstemon is a wonderful native American genus of wildly varied, flowering perennials. This is a little known genus of vast proportions that would be hard to comprehend in one sitting, maybe even one lifetime. From dwarf ground covers to tall shrubs, xeriscaping to consistent moisture, Penstemons run the gamut of diversity. Here is a brief overview of this wonderful wildflower, straight from a Lay gardener's research journal.

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Read more articles about:  North American native plants Penstemons garden journals xeriscaping ground covers perennial flowers
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Bugleweed: Ajuga
By Sharon Brown (Sharran)

Bugleweed is another plant that made its way around the mountainside in southeast KY. It was used as a medicinal plant, but it also served as a nice comfy mat for napping, or reading, or just watching the clouds roll by overhead. It also lined the floor of my hideout.

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Read more articles about:  herbs ground covers folklore and legends

Monday, July 14, 2014

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Japanese Barberry Linked to Lyme Disease: What Gardeners Need to Know
By Sally G. Miller (sallyg)

New human cases of Lyme disease number 20,000 to 30,000 each year in the US. Lyme is not decreasing, despite our understanding major factors of transmission since 1981. A study by University of Connecticut has shown a link between thickets of nonnative invasive Berberis and increased risk of Lyme disease. Scientists in Maine find that various nonnative invasive species create a thick underbrush loaded with infected mice. Gardeners should know about these recent findings concerning Japanese barberry and other nonnative invasive plants plaguing northeastern forests.

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Read more articles about:  North American Native Plants Nature Invasives And Weeds Wildlife Garden Safety
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Chemical-Free Ways to Deal With Invasive Weeds
By April Dowling (ADowling)

Weeds are inevitable, but sometimes they get completely out of control. When this happens, weeds steal nutrients in the soil, choking the life from other surrounding plants. The sooner you deal with invasive weeds the more likely youíll be able to control them and save nearby plants.

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Read more articles about:  weeds invasives

Sunday, July 13, 2014

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Compost confessions: How low can I go?
By Summer Walla (summerkid)

A few months ago, I wrote about my sloppy, laissez-faire, super-easy composting methods. But in the ensuing two seasons, I've "refined" my approach (Read: I'm now even sloppier & laissez-fairer.).

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Read more articles about:  soil and composting gardening tips
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Garden Jokes and Humor: Dave's Garden Sunday Funnies
By Melody Rose (melody)

Gardeners have a keen sense of humor and we know that you'll enjoy adding your family-friendly quote or description to the image. We'll supply the picture and everyone can post their funniest title. We can't wait to see what you come up with!

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Read more articles about:  sunday funnies garden humor

Saturday, July 12, 2014

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Green bean soup: a summer delight that cooks in a snap
By Jill M. Nicolaus (critterologist)

Whether you grow bush beans or pole beans in your garden, seek out snap beans at a local farmers market, or luck into a fresh delivery of green beans at the grocery store, these slender veggies are a favorite summer treat. Read on for more about growing, harvesting, and preparing these garden-fresh delightsÖ

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Read more articles about:  summer gardening vegetable gardening beans green beans recipes
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How to Freeze and Preserve Sweet Corn
By Melody Rose (melody)

Summer's bounty is upon us and learning to preserve our fresh fruits and vegetables is a healthy and economical way to enjoy our hard work. Often gardeners give away excess, or roadside stands appear offering garden fresh produce. Corn is easy to put by for the winter and you don't have to own any special equipment to take advantage of the harvest.

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Read more articles about:  vegetable gardening canning and preserving corn freezing corn

Friday, July 11, 2014

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California Bay or Oregon Myrtle: Umbellularia californica
By Kelli Kallenborn (Kelli)

Though the home range of Umbellularia californica is not particularly large, the plant is known by many common names, including California bay, bay laurel, pepperwood, and Oregon myrtle. This tree is native to the coast of California, southwest Oregon, and the lower western slopes of the Sierra Nevada. It is often found in forests and woodlands with other trees such as coast live oak and coast redwood.

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Read more articles about:  North American Native Plants Cooking Ethnobotany
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Planting Butterfly Host Plants
By Damian Fagan (D_Fagan)

Growing a butterfly garden often includes a variety of nectar plants such as zinnia, pentsemon, scabiosa, zinnia, milkweeds, coneflower and many others. There is nothing sweeter than watching flitting and floating butterflies cruising through the garden. These flowering plants provide food for the adult butterflies, but what about the caterpillar stages?

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Read more articles about:  insects pests perennials

Thursday, July 10, 2014

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Frozen Berry Treat
By Stephanie Boles (josette63)

Did you freeze those plump, delicious berries from the garden this year? Perhaps you have last year's frozen berries yet hanging around in the freezer. This quick berry recipe is great for desert, breakfast or anytime you are craving berries. It begins with a medley of frozen berries. It ends with an empty plate and your family crying out for more.

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Read more articles about:  fruits and berries cooking canning and preserving foods recipes
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This Seasonís Fruit: Citrus
By Jean-Jacques Segalen (jjacques)

It is Austral winter again in the Southern hemisphere which means cooler weather, shorter days, less rains and colorful Citrus fruits on market stalls. Oranges, lemons, grapefruits, shaddocks and Kaffir limes, let us have a good dose of Vitamin C!

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Read more articles about:  Citrus orange lemons lime grapefruit Kaffir lime

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

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Monarda: Fireworks in the Garden
By Gwen Bruno (gwen21)

With leaves redolent of mint and long-blooming flowers in jewel-like shades, monarda refreshes the senses throughout the high days of summer. Resembling tiny explosions of color, the nectar-rich blossoms are irresistible to bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.

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Read more articles about:  monarda bee balm perennials
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Homemade Bug Juice
By Bonnie Grant (BGrant)

Nothing ruins an outing quite like the stinging, biting, swarming hordes of insects at your BBQ, camping trip or weenie roast. The solution used to be chemical sprays with acrid dangerous fumes and stinging formulas. The last thing you want around your food, pets and children is toxic chemicals that can be harmful to health and you don't want to walk around covered in mosquito netting. Many items that are in the household and garden make excellent deterrents and don't pollute your environment.

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Read more articles about:  insects pests

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

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Raspberries!!!
By Lee Anne Stark (threegardeners)

The Raspberry. Everybody knows Raspberries. Those big, fat, juicy red ones in the garden, or the ones in the stores they want an arm and leg for. Don't forget wild Raspberries the next time you crave them.

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Read more articles about:  fruits and berries raspberries foraging
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Special Exhibits Division of a Standard Flower Show
By Marie Harrison (can2grow)

Standard Flower Shows have three possible divisions: Horticulture, Design, and Special Exhibits. The Horticulture Division and the Design Division are required. The Special Exhibits Division, however, is optional, and may include a wide range of exhibits that add interest to the show.

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Read more articles about:  Standard Flower Show Artistic Crafts

Monday, July 7, 2014

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Peculiar Pocketbook Flower
By Audrey Stallsmith (Audrey)

Do you remember the little leather change purses with snap clasps at the top that our grandmothers or great-aunts used to carry? The shape of calceolaria or pocketbook flowers reminds me of the semi-circular appearance of those pouches.

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Read more articles about:  calceolaria pocketbook plant pocketbook flower slipperwort
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Fertilizers - Synthetic or Natural?
By Mary Frucelli (MFrucelli)

Everyone knows plants need nutrients. But the question isn't just how much they need. It's also a matter of what kind of fertilizer you want to use. Synthetic? Or natural?

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Read more articles about:  fertilizers

Sunday, July 6, 2014

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Excessive Roses
By Melva Wheeler (melvatoo)

About ten years ago a friend and I were bitten by the rose bug. There is no cure; it just gets worse and worse.

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Read more articles about:  roses fragrant plants and flowers
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Garden Jokes and Humor: Dave's Garden Sunday Funnies
By Melody Rose (melody)

Gardeners have a keen sense of humor and we know that you'll enjoy adding your family-friendly quote or description to the image. We'll supply the picture and everyone can post their funniest title. We can't wait to see what you come up with!

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Read more articles about:  sunday funnies garden humor

Saturday, July 5, 2014

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Raising Butterflies ó Member Methods
By Marna Towne (Mrs_Ed)

What's growing in your garden? Many plants and trees in the garden play host to butterfly larva, or caterpillars. These (sometimes not so) cute critters happily gobble host plants until they are ready to transform into a butterfly. Why not encourage them to do so in your yard by planting host plants and raising the caterpillars yourself? Here's a brief primer on raising caterpillars.

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Read more articles about:  caterpillars butterflies cocoon chrysalis
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Rose Rosette, Killer With A Double-Edged Sword
By Melody Rose (melody)

There's a killer loose in the garden. It's silent and invisible, with superpowers that overwhelm any rose it infects.

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Read more articles about:  roses rose rosette rose diseases

Friday, July 4, 2014

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'Fireworks' for plant lovers, and not just on the Fourth of July
By Sally G. Miller (sallyg)

Fireworks! The flammable kind can get you in trouble with the local authorities. Stay safe this Fourth and avoid the ones with gunpowder. Plant hybridizers have developed dozens of cultivars, named 'Fireworks', and hoped for the excitement to translate into profit. The range of successful introductions to date give an opportunity for almost any plant lover to legally own and use 'Fireworks'.

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Read more articles about:  Holiday celebrations Summer gardening Theme gardens
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Romanian Borsh or How to Make the Most Out of Wheat
By Adina Dosan (adinamiti)

In Romania we like a good sour broth for lunch, but the sourness isn't given by lemons or vinegar, but by a special wheat juice we call borsh.

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Read more articles about:  wheat bors borsh wheat bran

Thursday, July 3, 2014

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Theme Gardens: Let's Grow Tomato Salsa
By Cathy M Wallace (cathy4)

Do you LOVE salsa? Me too! While at the grocery store picking out the ingredients for salsa, it dawned on me that I could grow almost all of them in the back yard! Let's plan a salsa garden! It can be in the garden or on the patio in pots. We will have the freshest salsa in town, and it will be exactly how we like it, a little spicy to fire breathing dragon!

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Read more articles about:  vegetable gardening canning and preserving foods tomatoes salsa
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Pick Your Own Blueberries, Bake Your Own Muffins!
By Jill M. Nicolaus (critterologist)

Blueberry season has wonderful opportunities for pick-your-own expeditions. Although I could buy these luscious berries at the Saturday farmerís market, Iíll save a dollar or two per pint by picking my own. For the same money, Iíll get a lot more blueberries for eating, freezing, baking, and jam making. Plus, Iíll be spending some time in one of the prettiest fields around!

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Read more articles about:  fruits and berries blueberries u-pick farms recipes July Blueberry Series

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

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A Sea of Pastel: Mountain Garland & Rocket Larkspur
By Jacqueline Cross (libellule)

Here, we will look at two beautiful bloomers, Mountain Garland (Clarkia elegans) and Rocket Larkspur (Consolida ambigua), with lovely clusters of blooms. Two plants which are perfect for the neglectful gardener.

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Read more articles about:  North American native plants Delphinium
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A jaundiced view of yellow
By Carrie Lamont (carrielamont)

I like color. No, I love color. Most colors stimulate and excite me, scarlets, corals, indigos and magentas. Unfortunately, yellow puts me to sleep.

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Read more articles about:  annual flowers color theory perennial flowers

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

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Planting a Garden in the Midnight Sun
By Sharon Brown (Sharran)

How on earth did someone from the mountains of Kentucky end up planting a garden on the Kenai Peninsula in Seward, Alaska? Well, there are some similarities: Alaska does have mountains, great glorious ones that are barren on top except for the goats and bears that live there. Here is the story of my incredible visit to Alaska, and what I found in that harshly beautiful land.

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Read more articles about:  summer gardening North American native plants wildlife lupines
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Manure to Global Positions Systems, the Story of Fertilizers
By Paul Rodman (paulgrow)

It keeps roses red, and vegetables growing; It can come from restaurants, restrooms or dumpsters, no matter how we get it, fertilizer plays an important role in food production worldwide.

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Read more articles about:  Fertillizers

Monday, June 30, 2014

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Benefits of Organic Fertilizers  An Overview
By Kathleen Marshall (KRMarshall)

The debate of organic vs. chemical gardening is an ongoing one that may never end. It all boils down to personal choice, but before you make a choice, you need to be educated. One place to start is to learn about the benefits of organic fertilizers.

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Read more articles about:  fertilizers organics
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Russell Lupines: The Story Behind the Glory of Those Colorful Spires
By Angela Carson (Bookerc1)

Lupines, also known as lupins, are lovely garden flowers, and inspire a quiet passion in the people who fall in love with their spiky elegance. Read on to learn how the elegant spires of this plant inspired the lifework of a little-known British gardener from York, George Russell (1857-1951).

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Read more articles about:  Lupines Lupinus Garden History Cottage Gardens North American Native Plants

Sunday, June 29, 2014

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Garden Jokes and Humor: Dave's Garden Sunday Funnies
By Melody Rose (melody)

Gardeners have a keen sense of humor and we know that you'll enjoy adding your family-friendly quote or description to the image. We'll supply the picture and everyone can post their funniest title. We can't wait to see what you come up with!

Continue reading »

Read more articles about:  sunday funnies garden humor
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Your Lush, Green Lawn: Should You Keep It or Not?
By Millie Rainer (millierainer)

A beautiful and well-kept lawn is a treat for tired eyes which soothes and calms your senses. It comforts and relaxes when you have your morning cuppa outside or lay on it gazing at the stars on a balmy night.

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Read more articles about:  lawns

Saturday, June 28, 2014

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Masterful Masterworts
By Todd Boland (Todd_Boland)

Like so many modern garden ornamentals, Astrantia or masterwort, are currently enjoying a surge in popularity. If you are not familiar with these long-lasting perennials, then this article will provide you with an overview of this small but wonderful group of plants.

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Read more articles about:  perennial flowers Astrantia dried flowers
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A Visit to Southern California (and Lots of Cool Plants!)
By Melody Rose (melody)

Most of my articles reflect my west Kentucky location and have a southeastern North American themes. This week, this Southern gal makes a quick visit to sunny California and it was a huge contrast in climate and flora, which was quite educational.

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Read more articles about:  southern california drought tolerant plants frost sensitive plants

Friday, June 27, 2014

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Attracting Birds to Your Garden With (Simple) Water Features
By Tricia Drevets (tdrevets)

There is something so gratifying about seeing and hearing birds on your property. Not only are they interesting to watch and listen to, but birds can play a powerful role in de-bugging your garden.

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Read more articles about:  birds wildlife water features
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Citronella Geranium: Is It Really a Mosquito Repellent?
By Angela Carson (Bookerc1)

Even in the gardening world, we should remember that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Such was the case with the promise that the leaves of citronella geraniums, also known as Mosquito Plant, would repel the mosquitoes that find me so very irresistible!

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Read more articles about:  Citronella Mosquitoes Repellent Mosquito Plant Insect Repellent Mosquitos Tender Perennials

Thursday, June 26, 2014

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Botany for Gardeners - The Basics of Fruits
By LariAnn Garner (LariAnn)

After flowers, many gardeners grow plants in the hope of obtaining fruits. Wait a minute, what about vegetables? Well, much of the vegetable produce that we are expecting from our gardens is actually fruit! When is a fruit the same as a vegetable? Read on . . .

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Read more articles about:  botany tropicals vegetable gardening
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The Special Exhibits Division of a Standard Flower Show
By Marie Harrison (can2grow)

Standard Flower Shows have three possible divisions: Horticulture, Design, and Special Exhibits. The Horticulture Division and the Design Division are required. The Special Exhibits Division, however, is optional, and may include a wide range of exhibits that add interest to the show.

Continue reading »

Read more articles about:  Standard Flower Show Artistic Crafts

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