Posted in gardening, The Southern Garden

A garden to tell us about you?

Driving around, I find sharp contrast to the landscapes in our area…

          front with croton     OR      smweb2014 habbambo


I find it amazing how much the landscaping plantings reflect our personalities. From the well-manicured lawn to the Shabby Chic Garden, each one says something about the person who lives in the house that the landscape surrounds.

It was interesting to see that the business man with a well-manicured lawn and shrubs, perfectly trimmed. And yet on the other side of the spectrum, the naturalist we met with later was a throwback from another era. Her garden had no rhyme or reason to it, but everything had its place and looked well together.

Often landscaping not only reflects our personality, but it also reflects our needs for more practical applications. We may need privacy and plant plants will give us that, screening out the properties around us. Shade is an important element in any landscape, so planting tall trees with overlapping canopies become a necessity. Then there magnificent views to show off and enjoyed to the fullest. The landscaping around this area is used frame in the view and show it off to it’s full of potential.

7159637 - bird and squirrel
7159637 – bird and squirrel


And don’t forget the nature lovers who invite the birds and squirrels and any other little critters who want to make their home into their garden. They plant specifically to attract these type of animals; butterfly gardens are all the rage right now, and when you plant a butterfly garden you’ll find other birds as well.

So what kind of landscape do you have? Does it reflect your personality? Is your garden manicured and immaculate? Or are you more of a free-flowing nature-loving gardener? Maybe you a little bit of both.



Take a look outside your window to see what’s out there.

Is  your landscape true to your personality?


Posted in Uncategorized

Garden Critters

Some Things Just Go Hand-In-Hand.
I’ve been providing horticultural services for over 30 years, and I can say with confidence that there are certain types of people who have a true love of plants. From the simple exotic Orchid to the complex landscape design, there are people out there who have made plants an important part of their life. Obviously, I am one of them.
New plantings in beds or containers are planned with meticulous attention to detail, parties and special events use plants and flowers as an intricate part of the decorating, often using plants from our gardens. New plants or flowers added to the interior bring a feeling of joy. There is a special feeling of contentment felt when we can spend a day working in the garden.

Yet, there is something else I’ve noticed about plant lovers; most are also ANIMAL lovers!

There are days that I go from account to account, and I am tripping over dogs. Puppies looking for attention, adolescent dogs looking to play and mature dogs content to just say hello and then continue their nap. It’s hard to concentrate on the job instead of spending time with all these loving dogs! The only downfall to this part of my job is that when I got home, my dog was jealous of all those doggy smells on me. So it’s a quick shower before I could give him the love he deserves from me.


And then there are those wonderful cats. They act indifferent to your presence, but they are right there to inspect your water bucket and tools. There are a few who will follow me from plant to plant, just to make sure I’m doing my job right. And there are a few that will try to steal the tie tape out of my tools, or play hide-&-seek in the plants. There is even one that jumps up to play in the water as I fill my bucket or water the plants. Funny, my cats do that too.


Of course, other animals are also pets for us plant lovers. Birds, Guinea Pigs, Reptiles of many kinds, and even Pot-Bellied Pigs. I’ve seen all of these on my accounts, and each homeowner has a place in their heart for their special pet. And many include their pets in their gardening enjoyment.


But I have to say that dogs and cats will always be my favorite!

Posted in Uncategorized

Testing the Winds

The wind and your landscape go hand in hand.

Without the wind, landscaping will not grow to its highest potential. The flowers need the wind for pollination. Cooling from the heat from sun’s rays beating down on the foliage of the plants happens as the wind passes over your plants. Blowing away the dust and pollutants that settle on the plants all the pores on the plants surface to be unobstructed. These are benefits of a strong wind you may not notice.
But the wind can also be a double-edged sword. As cooling as it can be in the summer, in the winter that same wind can be brutal. Personally, I think the wind can do more damage than anything else to the landscape.


That’s why it’s so important the plants you pick are right for their location. For instance, the wind coming off the sea contains amounts of salt crystals in it. Even though you may not think your plants are in direct line of being hit by the salt from the waves, the wind can carry that salt just a few feet farther, dropping the salt on the plants. It goes without saying; the plants living in these conditions will need to be tough.
The wind can do more damage during cold weather than the drop in temperature. The air temperatures might not get down to freezing, but the constant wind and chill factor can quickly burn the leaves and damage plant cells. You might not see all the damage right away. The first sign of damage might be turning the foliage a reddish brown or distorted. Other damage may not show up until the air temperatures warm back up. Then you will see the leaves yellow and drop. One of the most tender plants in our area are the many varieties of Hibiscus.

The wind can do heavy damage by drying the foliage out of the plant as well. Even though the soil may feel slightly damp, the constant blowing of a strong or warm wind blowing against the leaves will pull moisture out of the plant faster than the roots can pull it out of the ground. This why it is important to know what part of your landscape faces the strongest, potentially damaging winds. These are the areas where you’re going to want to plant sturdy plants. You might even want to plant hardy plants to buffer more delicate flowers or lacy ferns.
We can’t control the way the winds blow, nor the temperature of the wind. But we can plant smartly, using native plants where possible, and provide protection to the more delicate plants.

The point is to enjoy our gardens.

Knowing the environmental factors of your space and using the proper plants will help you achieve this.