In the spring of 2019 I planted 5 plugs of Golden Groundsel (Packera aurea, also known by the less appealing common name of Golden Ragwort) in our shady Back Garden. Some two years later, Judy and I are happy with the results.

It’s easy to love the woodland spring ephemeral flowers – the Bluebells, Bloodroots, Bluets, and Trilliums. But what about plants that persist in the shade after the ephemerals are gone?

How can you not love Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica)? They are coming into their own in our garden right now. The clusters of soft blue tubular flowers are fantastic, especially combined with the pink and purple buds.

If you are thinking about adding Coneflowers (Echinacea sp. and cvs.) to your garden this spring, you might want to look at a recent report put out by the Mt. Cuba Center in Delaware. The Center has done extensive research with an eye to promoting the use of native plant varieties in American home gardens. …

So I thought I was doing a good thing when I planted a purple-leaved Chokecherry (Prunus virginiana ‘Schubert’) in the back garden, and another along the east side of the house. Chokecherry is a small North American tree with great wildlife value. I was looking forward to the flowers, the fruits (small and very sour, …

It’s been about 3 weeks since my last post. As most of you know, I’ve been grappling with chemotherapy during this time, and will continue to do so in the coming weeks. Chemotherapy doesn’t leave a lot of energy for other things. Nevertheless, I wanted to get in another short post, this one about Aromatic …

If you walk in front of our house these days you’re likely to be impressed by the masses of Aster flowers, most notably those of Short’s Aster (Symphyotrichum shortii). Short’s Aster is a particularly floriferous Aster, sporting clouds of light blue flowers with golden centers. Honestly, I don’t understand why this particular Aster isn’t more …

Late summer and fall are the time when Brown-Eyed Susans, Black-Eyed Susans, and other members of the genus Rudbeckia come into their own. This year has given us a chance to consider how some of these species perform in a year of moderate drought and with no supplemental water provided. Let me be up front …

It has been my ambition to have red fruits adding to our garden’s fall and winter appeal, particularly in the shade garden in back. My main plant for achieving this goal was supposed to be Cranberrybush Viburnum (Viburnum trilobum). On this score, the effort was a complete failure, mainly because squirrels eat all the fruit …

Most people, I suspect, think of Goldenrod as a big, rangy plant. Canada Goldenrod (S. canadensis), is probably considered by many to be the typical Goldenrod. People imagine it running rampant over open fields with 6′ stems and mopheads of yellow flowers. In our garden, however, we have mainly little Goldenrods, growing not much more …