Newsletter

February 2021 Edition of The Scoop Newsletter Print

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Calendar of Events

March 3 - East Piedmont District Meeting (Zoom)

March 10 - East Low Country District Meeting (Zoom) 

March 11 - Coastal District Meeting (Zoom) 

March 16 - West Sandhills District Meeting (LIVE)

March 20 - South Atlantic Region Meeting (Zoom)

March 25 - East Sandhills District Meeting (Zoom) 

April 22-24 - GCSC 90th Convention (Zoom) 

GCSC CLASSROOM on YouTube

Fun Facts About Native Ferns and Allies 

 

 

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President's Message

February, the month where you can really tell the upstate gardeners from the low country gardener! While gardeners above the coastal ridge are shoveling snow and hoping for a break in the ice storms, sandhill and low country gardeners are already weeding, prepping and planting their spring crops. 

In our Charleston garden, we clear the winter beds in early February, prune and fertilize the roses and shrubs around Valentines Day and set the spring crops by the third week. While most of the clearing is a joy, (and easy if I let Ethel the chicken do the work) it's sometimes difficult to know exactly when to let go of a good plant. After all, the collards and turnip greens have been going strong for months and continue to provide some daily food for us and the chickens. 

Our solution? Intercropping. Whenever we just can't let go of a row of collards, we'll set in garlic, onions, or later season starts in between. This allows the greens to flower for the pollinators and gives us a head start on the late spring garden harvest. When the collards set seed in late spring, we'll simply cut them back to the ground to give the next crop room to grow. 

Since we use a no-till technique, cutting the old plants to the ground doesn't disturb the soil or the fungal networks that have formed over the winter. This also keeps weeds at bay. 

Happy Gardening Peeps!

 

 

 

 

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From the Field.... Club and Council news

Columbia council to rebuild headquarters at Maxcy Gregg Park 

For 80 years, the Garden Club Council of Greater Columbia and its predecessor have undertaken many projects and partnered with many local groups for the beautification and improvement of the midlands' environment and supported area garden clubs and GCSC.

The Council building, familiar to many of you, was built in 1970 and destroyed by fire of unknown origin in 2018. Its loss has affected so many of us who used it for meetings, classes and flower shows.

Plans for a new building have been finalized, but insurance money is insufficient given code changes and increased cost of building materials.

Fundraising efforts are underway. Support for our new home would be welcome and appreciated. 

Donations to GCCGC can be mailed to PO Box 90134, Columbia, SC 29290.

Jean Arrants, Iris Garden Club 

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Plant for Spring Color

After a series of late winter rain storms, this year, I imagine that many of us gardeners are desperate for sunshine and color. We envision great waves of color all over our landscapes and stare longingly out our window at the areas where color would make us happy. We pore through web images and garden catalogues in search of the perfect model to emulate. 

Most of these pictures are completely untenable, of course, but we tell ourselves we'll simply work a little harder this year. Wink wink. As a result of all of this longing, I anticipate that I will fall hopelessly vunerable on the first sunny day in the garden section. Maybe you will too.

Like moths to a flame, most of us are magnetically drawn to anything in fully manic color in spring. We gobble them up like an all you can eat buffet of possibilities and pack them into our cars at odd angles just to make them fit. There's nothing finer that spring shopping in the garden store. 

Of course, if you're like me, halfway home you regain your wits and wrinkle your brow as you consider just where everything is going to fit? Oh well, too late now. Let's find some room. 

Fortunately, most of us are generous in spirit and freely share the extras,  which feeds our other addiction - free plants. Who can possibly turn down a free baby plant. Heaven forbid it's on the side of the road. Now it becomes an all out rescue mission. 

One thing we can do prior to that first sunny day spree is to plan ahead with color in mind. Setting a color scheme is an easy way to focus your purchase energy and create harmony in the combinations. 

In her book, Color in Your Garden, Penelope Hobhouse recommends you first examine the greens and browns, for these will "become the textured tapestry frame in which [sic] themes of color are embroiled." Once these are to your liking, plant color becomes a tool that can be added for many purposes. Color can create a deeper dimension, set a mood, or to draw the eye in or past the area.

We asked our writers for their best recommendations by color. Here's what they had to say....

Blue                                                                                   

by Laurie Churchill

Blue is a tricky color in nature. True blue pigment doesn’t exist in any plant. Instead, plants we think of as blue are actually a blue toned purple, lavender or a cool toned red. Fortunately though, pollinators, especially bees, don’t see color the same way we do and are attracted to “blue” flowers more than any other! Having blue flowering plants, planted in masses rather than individually, throughout the garden, will attract bees and other pollinators. For our gardens here in South Carolina, we can have blue flowers as early as February.

One of the earliest bloomers is ‘Blue Giant’ glory-of-the-show (Chionodoxa forbedii). These bulbs are a great rock garden plant and can be grown under deciduous trees too. They will slowly naturalize in drifts, are deer resistant and will be a welcome source of nectar for the first bumblebees to emerge.

‘Blue Pearl’ crocus (Crocus chrysanthus) are the first crocus to bloom in the Spring. They flower at about the same time that mason bees are emerging, so these blooms will get them off to a good start.

Bachelor’s button (Centaurea cyanus) blooms for about 10 weeks starting in mid-Spring, but deadheading can extend their bloom time even farther. Butterflies and bees will flock to these flowers, so avoid spraying them (or any other plants in your garden for that matter) with any pesticides, including organic ones.

An often overlooked plant with blue flowers is borage (Borago officinalis). Covered in flowers that quickly replenish their nectar, these plants are magnets for all types of pollinators. Since they have hollow stems, they can snap in high winds, so overcrowding them will help them self-support and also will bring them more attention from pollinators looking for masses of color. Borage is a great companion plant for strawberries, cabbage, squash and tomatoes and is associated with a reduction in leaf-eating caterpillars like tomato hornworms and cabbage worms. Slugs are also attracted to the scent of borage, but they can’t digest the plant and it will kill them. Its leaves, flowers and stalks are edible, it is deer resistant and at the end of the season, the plants can be tilled into the garden to add a boost of nitrogen to the soil.

Don’t stop with Spring-blooming blue flowers. Keeping masses of blue flowering plants through the Fall is essential for pollinators. Having ‘Gentian sage’ (salvia paten), ‘Black and Blue’ salvia (Salvia quaranitica), ‘First Choice’ bluebeard (Caryopteris x clandonensis) and  ‘Adonis Blue’ butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii) along with the Spring-blooming plants mentioned above, will give you blue flowered, pollinator billboards for 3 seasons!

Yellow Announces Spring                                         

by Bonnie Disney

Yellow flowers in our gardens herald the coming of spring.  Just as the color yellow gives us feelings of joy, friendship and hope, yellow blooms on vines, shrubs, bulbs, perennials, and annuals boost our spirits as spring bursts forth with new growth after the long winter months.

Carolina Jessamine is the official flower of South Carolina as well as one of the first indigenous vines to bear delicate gold-yellow flowers in South Carolina’s Coastal Plain woodlands. Not only are the blooms beautiful, but they are also fragrant. Carolina Jessamine flowers provide pollen for several pollinators, but sources warn that all parts of the plant are poisonous if eaten by humans.  Another true harbinger of spring, the forsythia with its bright yellow blooms, is one of the first shrub spring bloomers in our gardens. Bees and other pollinators who venture out in cooler temperatures find the pollen in the blooms covering the forsythia’s long, arching branches. 

Certain evidence of the arrival of spring in Southern gardens are yellow daffodils (narcissus), jonquils, tulips, gladiolas and crocus. The older gardens may even have areas where daffodils have naturalized and formed a sea of waving yellow blooms.  Crocuses attract pollinators but the blooms of most commercial bulbs mentioned above will not have pollen due to the modern breeding processes to produce the perfect blooms buyers want. In addition, Yellow Flag, Louisiana, Bearded and other yellow irises also announce spring.   Some bees can access the iris pollen and do so.

In winter and early spring, gardeners study seed catalogs looking for the perfect flower seeds for their beds and often yellow is the perfect, cheery color to illuminate a section of their gardens.  Additionally, in early spring garden centers begin receiving young flower annuals for clients who are eager to plant an instant flower bed.  In both cases, yellow is often a popular color that can announce the arrival of spring in a cheerful way. 

The Color Purple                                                                                       

by Karen Galloway

All flowers and foliage bring interest to a garden but in the heat of our Southern summers, the color purple provides a sense of coolness.  The variation of shades creates a respite and provides calmness on the hottest days. Included in this segment are plants with differing tones of purple, textures and sizes to consider planting this spring to attract pollinators throughout the summer.

American Beautyberry (Callicarpa americana) is a native plant with lavender blossoms that turn to purple berries in late summer. Songbirds usually don’t eat the berries until late fall so you can enjoy to blooms and berries from spring until winter.

Bee balm (Monarda didyma) comes in scarlet, pink and purple attracting busy bees, hummingbirds and butterflies. One advantage of this long blooming perennial is repeat blooming throughout the summer season.

Blazing star (Liatris spicata) is a spikey bottlebrush of a plant with flowers attracting all pollinators.  Once established this plant takes care of itself except when it needs staking.

Lavender (Lavendula species) is deer resistant and sun loving.  Cutting and drying the stems provides delightful fragrance for your linen closets.

Coral Bells (Heuchera species) has purple foliage not purple flowers and recommended varieties are ‘Plum Pudding’ and ‘Dark Secret’. These are especially attractive with lime green coleus.

German Bearded Iris (Iris germanica) brings a soft violet hue to your Spring bulb garden highlighting the daffodils and narcissus. 

Phlox (Phlox paniculate) attracts the interesting hummingbird moth.  This unusual moth will visit the garden at dusk.  A recommended variety is ‘Blue Paradise’.

Another favorite in the garden is Vervain (Verbena stricta), a native plant, and deer will not bother this colorful addition.

Spike speedwill (Veronica spicata) is a hardy plant and a recommended variety is ‘Royal Candles’ to avoid powdery mildew. This plant compliments the orange marigolds around the vegetable garden.

Finally, Tatarian aster (Aster tataricus) is an excellent addition as it is a magnet for migrating monarchs. As we are faced with the diminishing numbers of monarchs, this addition will allow us to enjoy the pollinators while offering a food source for the species.

All colors are beautiful in your garden, but remember to include the cooler shades of purples this year. You will be well pleased with the results to attract the bees, birds and butterflies along less common pollinators.

One interesting tidbit about purple flowers  involves Empress Josephine and Napoleon Bonaparte. It seems Josephine was so fond of violets she carried them at her wedding. She won a promise early on that Napoleon would bring them to her each year on their anniversary. And he did!  

Gorgeous Coral and Peach                                                                     

by Gina Ginther

Gladiolus is a flowering perennial that grows from corms, which are bulb-like structures. Part of the iris family, the name gladiolus refers to the entire genus of 260 species that originated from tropical Africa, South Africa, Asia and Mediterranean Europe. The long, lovely gladiolus is the flower of August birthdays and 40th wedding anniversaries. Gladiolus comes from the Latin diminutive of gladius, which means “a little sword”. It refers to the sword-like shape and appearance of the plant’s leaves and flower spikes. Also, because of its look, the gladiolus flowers are sometimes called sword lilies. Historically, in Rome, gladioli were associated with gladiators. Some writings say that the gladiators wore gladiolus corms around their necks during battles to give them strength. Because of their association with gladiators, the gladiolus flower symbolizes strength and integrity. They also symbolize infatuation. By giving a gladiolus to someone, the giver sends the message “you pierce my heart” to the receiver because of the flower’s pointed shape. Another gladiolus meaning is remembrance, making it a frequent floral choice for memorial services.  

Depending on species, the plants range in size from two to five feet tall with elegant trumpet-shape blossoms that grow in a double row along the stem. Gladiolus flowers can be found in four types: miniature, small, medium and large. Thanks to widespread hybridization that began in the 1800’s, with the exception of blue, you can find gladiolus flowers in virtually every color, including peaches and coral tones. Varieties come in solid, bi-color, streaked, ruffled and double forms. In addition, there are a number of unusual gladiolus varieties like the “Peacock Orchid” and the Nanus group. 

Bulbs, and corms that are designed to be planted in the autumn can be planted in USDA growing zone 8 anytime between October and December. The corms need the cool weather of autumn and winter to become active and to begin to grow roots. In mid to late winter, the corms should show growth above ground, and flowers should appear in late winter to early spring.

For the best flowers, plant in full sun. Gladioli like well-drained soil that’s moderately fertile. They will not do well in heavy, soggy soil. Ready your garden by loosening the soil to about 12 to 15 inches deep. After loosening the soil, mix in a 2 to 4-inch layer of compost or aged manure. Set the corm in the hole about 4 inches deep, pointed end facing up. Cover with soil and press firmly. Space the corms 6 to 8 inches apart.

If you are growing gladioli primarily for cut flowers, plant them in rows. It’s easier to tend the plants and harvest the flowers. If planted with other flowers in borders or annual beds, plant the corms in groups of 7 or more for the best effect. Water the corms at planting. If you are planting tall varieties, be sure to stake them at planting time taking care not to damage the corms with the stakes. Mulch to maintain moisture and prevent weeds. If you get less than 1 inch of rain a week, water regularly throughout the summer, otherwise, water moderately when in growth to keep the soil moist. Once all of the flowers on a stalk are gone, cut the stock off at about 2 to 3-inches above the soil. Be sure to leave the plant intack so it can mature and grow the corms for the next season. Gladiolus will not flower more than once in a season however, to enjoy continuous gladiolus blooms throughout the summer, gardeners can stagger plantings.

Offering the eye a visual cacophony of shapes and rainbows,

Representing the victorious gladiators who defeated all foes,

A jewel of this earth, August’s birth flower

Charismatic, brilliant and beauteous

Oh! Gladiolus, you are truly glorious!

Final verse from the poem Glorious Gladiolus by Apramita

 

Monarch's Delight - Red            Pink                                                         

by Anna Sheets

Imagine you are one of thousands of Monarch butterflies making your yearly migration from Central Mexico to Canada and passing through the West Low Country in South Carolina. The scenery is drab, grey, brown, some evergreens and not much else until you spot the red/pink flowers in a field. Zooming in to the color, they are petals on the milkweed- Asclepias tuberosa or incantata. Plants developed petal color to distinguish from green stem and leaves to help pollinators find the flower for pollination. You would think red/pink being so vibrant, would be most common, #1. white, #2. Yellow, #3. Blue and #4. Red/pink. Blanket flower (Gaillardia pulchella) and Salvia coccinae (scarlet sage), Bee balm (Monarda) show up in early spring and are red, also. Carolina Phlox and muhly grasses provide lighter shades of pink to attract these pollinators.

In addition to the butterflies, migratory hummingbirds are on the lookout for coral vine honeysuckle (Antigonon leptopus), eastern Columbine (Aqueligia), one of the first spring wildflowers to emerge, and scarlet sage (Salvia splendens). The redbud trees attract the bees as do the sweet pepper bush, the red buckeye and the Mountain laurel, Kalamia lattifolia, and other rhododendrons. Providing nectar to refuel pollinators on their journey and places to lay eggs and provide food for the larvae, these harbingers of spring bring color to our gardens and support our pollinator populations from extinction. 

 

 

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Month by Month Gardening

February, the month for Hearts and Flowers

by Gail Watkins Ford 

Plant:

  • Sow larkspur and poppy seeds into the dirt and rake in seeds.
  • Sow seeds for cool weather vegetables in the ground.
  • Sow seeds inside for summer vegetables, and herbs for planting outside after the last frost, usually April 15.  Plant and/or move shrubs, roses and trees in containers and bare-root while dormant.
  • Plant nasturtiums around Valentine’s Day.

  

Fertilize:

  • Feed Iris with bone meal and top with wood ash if available.
  • Fertilize pansies and other spring flowering plants every 10 to 14 days.
  • Feed summer blooming shrubs toward the end of the month.  Feed hydrangeas if not fertilized in the fall.
  • Circle herbs with lime.
  • Fertilizer early blooming camellias with a hand full of camellia fertilizer for each foot of height.
  • Feed boxwood with Cotton seed meal or superphosphate.

 

Prune:

  • Prune roses near Valentine’s Day.
  • Cut back border and ornamental grasses.
  • Prune buddleia to about 6 inches as it blooms on new growth.
  • Trim damage from evergreen ferns and aspidistra.
  • Do not prune Hydrangea Macrophylla- many bloom on last year’s growth.
  • Trim old leaves from hellebores.

 

Suggestions: 

  • Force branches of spring flowering trees and shrubs to enjoy inside.
  • A famous gardener extraordinaire from Sumter, Grady Locklear, advocates pruning all clematis to 3 inches from the ground, expose roots and apply Blooming EZ (an organic compost made in SC and available at some Ace Hardware Stores) or any cow manure, then cover with soil and mulch. His clematis are show stopping!

 

 

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Pollinator of the Month

While some bees colonize, a much larger percentage of our native bees are solitary species, living the majority of their lives as single mothers who keep to themselves and create families over the course of the year. Many lay their eggs inside the stems of plants and trees. Others create nests in brush areas just below the surface and disguise their entrance with great care. 

In a gardenFORlife garden, we respect that process and do what we can to allow it to happen in due course. The easiest way to do that is to let nature take its course without you interrupting the timeline. Therefore, plants are allowed to experience the recycling process naturally which, in turn, allows bees to complete their nesting cycle completely. 

Follow along as two gardeners make this discovery in their own gardens. 

Toronto, June 2019: Home sweet home! Stephen Humphrey and Sarah Peebles in the garden with small carpenter bees (genus Ceratina) nesting in old rose stems and similar. Talking a bit about their life cycles. I tailor my garden to include lots of dead stems cut/broken and left as-is for native bees.

Tag along as Peter, a biologist explores a bee's nest found inside a pine limb. 

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Pollinator Habitat Gardening

February is a perfect month to freshen up your pollinator garden beds. While snapdragons and pansies are still going strong, most of the remaining plants are hibernation stations for overwintering adult butterflies, moths and lightning bugs and incubators for baby bees. Chances are your pollinator bed is chock full of life that remains hidden inside the stalks of the stems or tucked underneath your 6" layer of fallen leaves and mulch. 

While most of us are tempted to simply cut everything down to the nub and rake the area clean, I would caution you to treat it more gently, taking into consideration that many of the plants are hosting eggs, larva and pollinators just waiting to pop out at any minute. What to do? Proceed with caution.

If you can leave the seedheads and stems on perennials, gently remove any dead leaves and run your fingers through the base of the plant the same way you'd toss a child's hair. This will loosen the remaining leaves, providing much needed air flow where plants will put on new growth. 

Annuals like bidens, winter greens and spent fall annuals can be completely removed at this point...to your wildpile that is. Try to resist the urge to bag up everything as you may literally be throwing the babies out with the proverbial bathwater. 

If you have flowering shrubs like forsythia, winter jasmine or camellias anywhere near your pollinator beds, remove all fallen flowers as these will simply invite unwanted fungal diseases and viruses. These should be placed in your hot compost pile or bagged for county recycling. 

Cut back passionflower, bignonia, trumpter creeper, and native honeysuckle anytime from Valentines until Easter. Again, use caution not to remove overwintered chrysalids, especially if you live anywhere below Columbia as these zones may still harbor live morphs ready to eclose. 

Organically grown roses can also be trimmed back this month. For more information on how to trim these properly, check out this great link . 

Once you remove all detritus, gently pull back the mulch around plants that are starting to peak out so they can benefit from the sun warming the soil. Don't leave it completely exposed as we expect some late chills this spring.

By the end of this month, you can sow and transplant your new powerhouse plants. If you haven't already watched our Plant with Purpose Video, you can find it on our YOUTUBE CHANNEL, GCSC CLASSROOM 

If you just want a great list of proven winner plants, our list can be found here. 

 

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Camellias, the Queen of the Winter Garden

Camellias floating in a crystal bowl  - Bonnie Disney 

by Anna Sheets

  With over 200 different species, 48,340 different varieties listed in the International Camellia Register and close to 4000 registered camellias in the American Camellia Society records, this plant called “camellia” is a varied and diverse group. Yet what distinguishes a camellia from a rose or a milkweed? Camellias are evergreen shrubs that originated in Asia , China, Japan and were imported to Europe and then the United States in the late 1800’s. They are long lived,  noninvasive, cold hardy plants that bloom in the wintertime when most other plants are dormant. Records in China tell of camellias that are thousands of years old, revered by their Samurai War lords and cared for by monks in temples.

Here, in the West Low Country, we would be less hospitable and thirstier without the sweet tea we all drink which is made from the dried leaf of a camellia species called Camellia sinensis. Originating from China, India, and other parts of Asia, tea is the most popular liquid consumed by humans other than water. With its small, creamy white flowers, it hardly makes a statement as an ornamental  specimen in your garden but, it might be fun to make your own tea from the leaves of this camellia.     

The four most numerous species of camellias include the sasanquas, japonicas, reticulatas and hybrids. The sasanquas open the camellia season from October to December. This camellia species is defined by its smaller dark green serrated leaves, its prolific mass of blooms, its fragrant scent, it’s ability to withstand full sun, and be a multiuse planting in the garden. Forming hedges, espaliered on a wall, as an understory shrub, pruned into a graceful tree form are all ways sasanquas blend harmoniously with other shrubs. Their smaller blooms tend to shatter easily and can be difficult to use in creating a floral arrangement. One of the most popular sasanquas is called Sparkling Burgundy, a 1957 Louisiana  cultivar. This prolific bloomer is a deep pink color with purple undertones that produces peony like flowers from fall to winter.

If you say “camellia”, many are not sure what that is, but mention “japonica” and everyone knows it is the trees their grandmas had in their southern gardens that bloomed in the winter. The japonicas make up the largest group of camellias consisting of the classic, glossy evergreen foliage with winter to spring blooming  flowers. Among japonicas, you will find flowers of every size from miniatures to giants. They come in every flower form and almost every color from purest white to deepest red with naturally striped and variegated colors. Some are even scented faintly.  Leaves can vary in size from sasanqua like to exceptionally large with coarse serration to fine edged leaf margins. Plants vary from compact or upright to slow spreading and weeping forms. And of course, they bloom early (December to February, midseason-February to March and late until  May. With all this diversity, how can one pick a favorite? An 1859 cultivar known by several names over the years, is called Herme. In France it was known as Souvenir d’Henri Guichard, in Japan, Hikarugenji, in America, Jordan’s Pride and in Germany , Herme which seems to be the name consensus today. This medium sized , fragrant, midseason bloom, semidouble in form, dark salmon pink, bordered white and streaked with scarlet, with a central mass of petaloids mixed with gold stamens  creates a  picture of the ideal japonica. Every year it blooms reliably and consistently.

The reticulata are the glamor girls of the camellia world. Their flowers can be dinner plate sized, huge blooms of pink to deepest red with swirled and fluted petals, solid colored or variegated. The plants tend to be more tree like with dark dull green leaves that can be 5 inches long by 3 inches wide with a leathery texture and pronounced network of veining that gives these camellias their species name. Although, retics seem so much hardier, in actuality, they really are finicky to grow. Too much sun, the leaves scorch, too much shade and the flowers are sparse.  They are also more difficult to propagate except by grafting.

But these minor inconveniences have not stopped growers from propagating and exhibiting more splendid varieties every year. Frank Houser exploded on the camellia world in 1989 and has been the most popular member of this species. A red, exceptionally large, semidouble to peony form and its variegated form blooms early to midseason. It consistently is a winner in camellia shows.

This last category of camellias is a catch-all for camellias that do not fit in the other categories. Back in the 1930’s camellia growers discovered they could cross pollenate flowers from one camellia to another and develop new varieties. So, sasanquas were crossed with japonicas, species with japonicas, reticulatas with sasanquas, etc. with an ultimate goal of achieving a particular color, a more fragrant flower, or a certain flower form, often with many cross pollinations involved. Waiting until seed matured, were planted, grown for several years (usually 7 years) and old enough to produce flowers and then bloomed for several seasons and were verified consistent and true, was a time commitment that growers embraced and dedicated their talents.

An example of a hybrid camellia is the 1975 New Zealand cultivar called Taylor’s Perfection. This lovely light pink, large sized, semi-double bloom with occasional petaloids, blooms on an open, airy, upright growing plant usually a mid to late season bloomer.

 

Whatever your personal preference, rest assured there is a camellia out there waiting for you to fall in love and an addiction waiting to be started. Remember you can never have enough camellias.

                          

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Garden FOR Life

Garden Signs spread awareness 

by Rue Lucas  - East Low Country District 

Although a cheezy cliché from the disco era, it certainly got the conversation started!

With a catchy photo and simple slogan, signage in the garden can serve the same purpose; it gets the conversation started.

Those of us who GardenFORLife know that our ultimate goal is to reconnect man with nature and restore the ecosystem, bit by bit. In doing so, we may employ gardening practices that are a little different from the “norm” which may be misunderstood. Letting the lawn grow or leaving the leaves might not be interpreted as an intentional act to benefit wildlife. So how do we get the message across? One way to invite questions is with signage. A sign from an “official” organization can validate our practices, explain in a few short words what we are trying to do and invite questions which we are all too happy to answer.

  • Why do you want your yard to serve as a Certified Wildlife Habitat?
  • Why is it so important to save the Monarchs?
  • What’s all the fuss about pollinators?

 

Questions like these can lead to discussions on the importance of planting native trees and shrubs and building habitats for all kinds of wildlife and, as we know, every little bit helps! ....Read full article here 

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This Month's Contributors

If you enjoy this newsletter, you have the following people to thank:

Trish Bender, Kate Copsey, Laurie Churchill, Bonnie Disney, Gail Watkins Ford, Karen Galloway, Gina Ginther, and Rue Lucas.

In fact, you can read all about them here. 

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