May 4, 2013
New in What's Up
Green Thumbs up, Green Thumbs down:
• To cold hardy volunteers: What to
do at spring start-up.
• To overlooking proof of life:
How to tell that a plant's alive and lively.
Mentors send A spring chorus of wise
words for immediate application:
• Cut weak wood hard: We cut roses and
blue Hydrangea to explain this lesson.
• Clippers are better than saw:
Why an early clipper cut beats a bigger saw later.
• Hard cuts are less work: When
pruning harder means less cutting overall.
• Yews' slow comeback is worth a look:
A reality show for overweight shrubs.
• Bad luck to say "Thanks" for a
plant: Time for thinking rather than thanking.
• Weeding out running
perennials: Strategies to win that war.
• Useful Proof of gardening at a
conifer clip: A good idea to delay bagging your clippings.
• Use all water given to you:
Rain garden primer and plants list.
Click a title to read these 11 new articles illustrated with 99
new images .
Currently, we're digging into proof of life as well as proof of
gardening: Which plants should we give up to the compost, for which
wait longer? How can we prove we've been working and who needs to
These are neat tricks in a late spring. When winter decided to
hang around, it wrote 'can't do' all over our to-do list. Once the
weather broke, the backlog was so nerve-wracking that we took to
chanting our own step-by-steps as we worked, for focus and to
Yet that's what spring is all about. If it wasn't this kind of
craziness it would be another. As we start this 31st year as
professional gardeners, we still feel the wonder and we're
determined to keep on growing.
That's been easy to do lately, given youngsters who share their
eyes with us. (The reporters in our new Kids View
Department; and our granddaughter, now 14 months old.) Revelations
pop from every bud that opens and rise from every hole we dig. If
you ever lose your spark, invite a child to your garden.
We are grateful for the help and support you gave us this
winter. We inadvertently made a cartload of extra work for
ourselves by setting you-all a deadline. However, now we have a
manageable mailing list and have started getting back to the fun
stuff -- talking gardens on the Forum and posting the most timely
topics on the website and newsletter.
Who are Janet & Steven?
Entertaining answers in About Us
Please support this effort to help the gardening community
Sponsor us, order our
books, photos and other good stuff at our Market
Where to see us.
Details in About
Us: Where we're appearing:
May 18 & 19 in Howell, Michigan, Being Smart About
May 19 at the Detroit Zoo for hands-on designing and
May 30 in Holland, Michigan, Gardening Smarter
June 1 in Alpena, Michigan,Designing the Small Flower
June 2 at the Detroit Zoo for hands-on deadheading, pest
identification and planting
June 3 in Clarkston, Michigan, Favorite Plants
June 8 at Chicago Botanic Garden, Designing and Tending a
Mixed Border, and Gardening on Difficult Sites
New in the library called Ensemble Weekly
We shift current articles into this season-based library
throughout the year, but we also keep adding to this department
from our archives. Thanks to your Sponsorships, we've made many
posts there in the past two months. We'll include a complete list
as soon as we can catch our breath. Meanwhile, we're featuring
those articles per plan, linking them to current news to add depth
without repetition. For instance, this issue's Cut weak wood
hard is bolstered by our best-ever Clematis pruning
pictures, now on site in Growing Concerns 511.
Some additions to this library are made by specific request -- a
Sponsor asks us to cover that topic. Others come per our schedule,
or we accelerate that schedule when a Sponsor says, "You choose for
me." Each requested and specially chosen article bears its
Sponsor's name, often with that reader's message or chosen
There are now more than 950 articles in the
library. To use them:
- Choose a season and scan key word titles.
- Or use Search on our site with your own keywords. It's better
than any index.
For instance, for more about that queen of vines,
Clematis, go to GardenAtoZ.com, type its name into the
Search field and in just over one second you'll have links to 43
more Clematis articles.
We post as much or more news as archived material each week,
plus we have literally thousands of photos to add to articles from
our text-only pre-digital days. Despite all that, we have not yet
reached the 50% mark in posting from our archives. So join us any
day to click from the Home page on Check the newest...
Click here to read it. We hope we can all keep growing
right into a bountiful year!
Please Sponsor us. It's easy to do. Just email
us from our Sponsor page.