Category Archives: Features


Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 24 — Asiatic and Oriental Lilies

There are nine classes of lilies, according to the North American Lily Society, and all of them are lovely. But, for northern gardeners, the two most commonly planted classes are…

wild ginger

Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 23 — Groundcovers

Today is Black Friday — so take a break from the insanity and the materialism, and think about a lush carpet of fragrant thyme beneath your feet, a bright patch…


Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 21 — Crab Apple Trees

Whether you grow them for the stunning spring flower display or the tart fruits or the architectural interest they add to a yard, flowering crab apple trees (Malus spp.) are…

balloon flower

Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 20 — Balloon Flower

While many plants are regarded as perennials, there are some that are decidedly more “perennial” than others. Balloon flower (Platycodon grandiflorous) is one that is truly worthy of the designation….


Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 19 — Cardinal Flower

Last summer, I was visiting a friend whose backyard garden slopes down to meet the reedy shore of a small lake. Not far from the water’s edge were large, nearly…

oak leaves in fall

Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 18 — Northern Pin Oak

Every landscape needs a significant tree. Many urban gardeners seek to find trees that are smaller and more suited to small spaces, but if you have a property that is…

purple dome aster

Great Plants for Northern Gardens: Day 17 — Asters

We’ve written a lot in this series about plants for shade, such as foamflower, giant fleece flower and martagon lilies. But what if your garden is in blazing sun and…

bleeding heart

Great Plants for Northern Gardens, Day 16 — Bleeding Heart

If you garden with children, bleeding heart is one of the plants for northern gardens that is an absolute must. What child would not be fascinated — even awed —…