PLANT OF THE WEEK – CANDY APPLE HYDRANGEA

Everyone loves a pretty hydrangea bush. Right? We certainly do, and nothing excites us as much as a new variety.  Candy Apple is just that plant. If you’re familiar with Limelight, then you’ll love Candy Apple. It has the same stunning lime green clusters that you see on Limelight, but with a much more compact form.

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Cool as a Cucumber

Do you know where the expression “cool as a cucumber comes from? It’s because cucumbers are typically 10 to 20 degrees cooler than the temperature around them. Try inserting a thermometer into one if you need a little proof. Not only do cucumbers have a cool temperature, but they’re also the key ingredient to some of the summer’s best cool down recipes.  There was a time when we only knew two main types of cucumbers – slicing and pickling. But things have changed and there is now a large variety of cucumber types available to gardeners and shoppers. They include Armenian, Diva, English Telegraph, Burpless, Persian, Lemon, Parisian Gherkins, Dasher, Sweet Success and Calypso varieties.

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Add More May Peas to Your May: Creamed May Peas and New Potatoes

One of our favorite vegetables, if not our very favorite, is May peas. I always look forward to the arrival of May and one of the biggest reasons is for the May peas. There are lots of great ways to fix them, but this is an all time favorite. We like to use the multi-colored fingerling potatoes because they had such an interesting element to the dish. But whatever potatoes you choose to use, the dish may become one of your favorites, too.

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Color to Make Your Summer Scream

Everyone loves the color that summer flowers bring to their yard. Whether you plant in the ground, in containers or in hanging baskets, it’s the color that brings the excitement. Who doesn’t love a day spent at the nursery discovering new plants or remembering old favorites. We spent the past couple of weekends visiting a few of our favorite nurseries and these are the plants that caught our eye.

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Spring is Almost Here…

And with it, come lots of new plant varieties to excite you about the upcoming planting season. Since the start of the year, we’ve been looking to all of our favorite growers and have found more than a few that we’ve quickly fallen in love with. Since pictures are worth a thousand words and pictures of flowers are worth a million words, we’ve decided to share photos of those that captured our hearts. Kismet Raspberry Echinacea                   Double Martini Sedum                   Rosy Returns Daylily                  

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Decks…More Than Wood and Rails

It’s almost March. The perfect time to start thinking about your exterior projects. If a new deck or deck renovation is on your list, then you need to consider what your needs entail and how you can best maximize your budget in order to meet those needs. Since a new deck is a valuable investment for your home, you want to take the time to look at the options that will serve you best from both an aesthetic viewpoint and functional aspect. People understand that decks have the ability to extend your home’s living space during all the season of the year, and have become increasingly interested in ways to utilize that space to its highest optimization.

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It’s the Perfect Time to Get A New Fence

February is a perfect time to get that new fence or replace your old rotting fence. There are several reasons why this month is the most opportune time to think about your fencing. For one reason,  it’s not the growing season which means it will be much easier to install a fence when weed growth and landscaping are pretty much dormant. This means there will be less labor to install your fence, and a quicker turn around time.

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Low Maintenance Plantings Make Life a Little Easier

No one can deny that having a yard that looks admirable, enviable or approachable requires some level of maintenance. Often way more maintenance than you may be interested in investing. One way to cut back on the amount of time you need to spend on your landscape each week is to choose low maintenance plants for your landscaping. A favorite for both color and smell is lavender. It’s silvery leaves and purple blooms make it a lovely addition for any style garden, but it’s also extremely hardy and requires minimal attendance during the growing season. There are several varieties to choose from, some more compact than others.  Munstead is a compact shrub with mounding silver foliage and an abundance of blooms that create a border that’s a blanket of purple. Hidcote is another attractive variety.                  

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Who Says You Can’t Enjoy Your Outdoor Living Space in the Cold?

Yes, it’s C-O-L-D, but that shouldn’t keep you from enjoying the outdoors. There are plenty of ways to extend the season of your outdoor living space. From fire pits and fireplaces to outdoor heaters to blankets, you can stay warm and enjoy those starlit nights even in January. A wood burning fire pit serves as a great gathering spot for those who enjoy sitting close to the heat source. It’s easy to circle around the pit with a cup of hot chocolate, a glass of wine or a good sipping bourbon. Even if most of your group is inside, once they see that fire lit, they will gravitate to the outdoors. Options are enormous and there’s something for every style and taste.                                 

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