Author Archives: kingwood

Garden Thug: A plant with the potential to be a huge pain in the asparagus

By Ellen Azotea

What is a Garden Thug? Most gardeners have encountered at least one Garden Thug in their experience…plants that grow vigorously and choke out less aggressive nearby plants. They tend to be a really interesting, pretty plant that grows so easily for you that you are suddenly overrun with it. Beware taking a new, unfamiliar plant that someone offers by the boxful. The giver might say things like, “It’s a really enthusiastic plant!  I just rip it out… I’m sure it’ll grow for you!” Or, “I have so much I just had to share!” 

Sometimes we buy plants from a garden store, and other times we get “pass along” plants from fellow gardeners. Or we see a plant growing wild in a field or ditch and think it might look great in our gardens.  No matter where you acquire a plant, use a bit of restraint and do some research online first. Don’t dump thugs on your friends, and beware of bringing an unknown botanical headache into your own garden, from a well-meaning but uninformed friend or garden center. 

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Martagon

By Chuck Gleaves

The European native martagon lilies (Lilium martagon and hybrids of five closely related lilies) bloom around here in north central Ohio in about mid-June. As I write this on June 11th, 2018 my martagon lily flowers are close, but not yet open. Martagons have smaller and earlier blooming flowers than most of the popular hybrid lilies; they are more shade tolerant: and they seem to be more resistant to deer predation. Since lilies in general are a favorite snack for deer, that says a lot.

This is Lilium martagon ‘Claude Schride’ growing at my house.

This is Lilium martagon ‘Claude Schride’ growing at my house.

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Irrigation Tips

By Michael Albert

Irrigation can be an intimidating prospect to many gardeners. I would like to provide people with a few helpful hints about irrigation.

Effective irrigation is about getting the right amount of water directly to the plant roots. Water in the air or on leaves can be inefficient and can cause disease, sunspot and pests. The best time to water is early morning for this reason. Irrigation that is broken, turned the wrong way, spraying into the plant, or not level, will waste water.

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Sensory Garden

By Carly Hatfield

My childhood home always had a small vegetable plot during the growing season thanks to my parents. Our backyard had blackberry and honeysuckle bushes as well as a pear tree. My brothers and I would dodge the hovering bees to pluck a tiny honeysuckle bloom and suck the sweet nectar from it. We would show our friends our newly acquired talent, giving a glimpse into the wonders of the world in our own backyard. Picking apples, blueberries and strawberries showed us how to appreciate fresh fruit because once winter came, store bought blackberries didn’t hold a candle to the ones we just happened to have all summer long in our backyard.

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Feelin’ Hot, Hot, HOT

By Ellen Azotea

It’s a gorgeous summer day, and the garden is calling. Perhaps the lawn mower and hedge trimmers are chiming in too. In my garden, I tend to jump right in without planning for what my body might need—my plants take top priority after all! But as the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” so let’s review some warm-weather gardening safety: 

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The Hum of the Hummingbird

By Carly Hatfield

The beloved Ruby-Throated Hummingbird will be back very soon to capture our attention for  yet another season. This small bird is a wonderful guest in any garden. Migrating to the south from October through April to escape the harsh winters, this bird is always a sign that favorable weather is on its way. One can provide a reliable food source and shelter for these small wonders with just a few steps.

Ruby-Throated Hummingbird

Ruby-Throated Hummingbird

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My First Peeks at the Woodland Garden

By Karen Fraizer

This winter I was assigned the task of taking care of the Woodland Garden here at Kingwood Center. We had a long-time gardener retire, that had been taking care of the Woodland Garden for many years. This gardener left me with a plant inventory, garden maps, and very detailed notes for this garden (Thanks Glenna). This winter and early spring, with everything covered in snow, it was difficult to get a vision of the garden. With spring slowly emerging I am surprised everyday by something new. First, it was just the outline of the walkways and the beds. Second, it was the benches and the stepping stones throughout the beds. Now, with spring officially here (fingers crossed), it has been so exciting to watch the spring bulbs popping up. The daffodils that are scattered throughout the garden mix well with the blooms of the hellebores.

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Upcoming Garden Trends

By Holly Van Keuren

It is very interesting what becomes trendy or popular, and why.  I am excited to work within an industry that has so much to offer to so many, and I truly feel that we humans benefit from our interactions with plants.  Looking ahead at the upcoming gardening season, I begin to wonder some if I will ever even get outside again, as winter drags on here in Ohio.  But as for trends, I have plenty of time to wonder about them from inside…what will this season bring?

Trend 1

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