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Summertime Blooms

We gardeners love our perennials – they’re versatile and dependable, act as a superb backdrop for plantings of annuals and bring a feeling of permanence to flower borders. Whether you garden on half an acre or the smallest of yards,

Gorgeous Grasses

Grasses in terra-cotta pots depict summer with sun-loving ease and tousled nonchalance. The three ornamental grasses shown on the cover require little attention. On the left is blue oat grass (Helictotrichon sempervirens, also shown in above photo). Its glaucous...

Voices in the Garden

It’s a sunny Sunday, and I am absently scuffling strawberries when a voice calls from behind the compost box, “Chi-ca-go! Chi-ca-go!” As I turn to look, he hops up onto the fence. His bobbing topknot quickly identifies him as a...

Broadleaf Stonecrop

Some of the most stunning plants grow under the most trying conditions. Breathtaking waterlilies (Nymphaea spp.), for example, thrive with most of their mass submerged below water. Lovely bulbs hail from lands with searing summers. And many rock-garden plants cling...

Fruit-Tree Frenzy

After last year’s rush on fruit trees, you'll want to decide now what to plant this spring.

Fascinating Lilium

Many years ago, when I was starting to garden in earnest, I determined that, of all flowers, I had to grow lilies, and species ones at that. I bought various books on the subject, read as much as I could...

Gloriosa Superba ‘Rothschildiana’

Give your conservatory or sunroom a lift this summer with this bright beauty. The gloriosa lily is a tuberous perennial climber that can take more than one season to bloom, but the reward is worth the wait. Its brilliant crimped...

Manchurian Pipe Vine

The curious flowers of the Manchurian pipe vine (Aristolochia manshuriensis) hold a special appeal for tiny flies and gnats. The flowers have the ability to warm up, releasing an aroma of decomposing meat. Curious, insect visitors climb into the opening...

Rhododendrons: A Labour of Love

Each time Dora Kreiss takes me through her quiet woodland garden overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca, I come away revitalized, for I am reminded of how rewarding retirement years can be. Home to well over 400 rhododendrons,

The Emergent Water Garden

Spring is just around the corner and we just can’t wait to get our hands dirty – and wet, at least I can’t! Included among my gardens are quite a few ponds, both formal and informal, casual, sun, and...

Native Plants For Every Garden

“Appraise your site and adapt to it; then you’re home free,” says Frank Skelton. He and wife Erin recommend the following natives for B.C. gardens: (The following plants should be hardy to the zone number indicated. Frank Skelton cautions...

Container Vegetable Garden

No matter how petite your patio, you can create a decorative kitchen garden, known by the French as a potager. The secret? Just plant in containers. Soon you’ll harvest some fine foods sans chemicals, not to mention delight in creating...

Early Blooming Perennials

Is your springtime flower border less than inspiring? Even veteran gardeners find it daunting to choose the best plants for their borders from the hundreds available. If you’re plagued with doubts, remember that a sensational flower border is not created...

Cardiocrinum giganteum

Mysterious and aloof, Cardiocrinum giganteum (zones 7-9) reaches a height of up to three metres in the woodland garden. There, in dappled sunlight, it bears enormous trumpet-shaped, lily-like flowers. Each heavily scented flower is cream with a maroon blotch...

Garden Edible

Johanna Pakendorf’s zest for the outdoors began on Bowen Island 10 years ago with the simple goal of keeping herself in shape. “I could have taken up running in the woods to keep my figure, but the garden also gave...

Troubleshooting with Conway Lum

When purchased in its original container, rooting hormone has an indefinite shelf life, but one should take steps to protect it from becoming contaminated. Plant cuttings, especially taken late in the season, inevitably become contaminated with fungal spores upon the...

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