Advice for sticky clay and stakes that stay, with lots of
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This week, six back issues were
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Perhaps most timely among those,
Coming Up #86, the Master Guide to Pruning Shrubs!
It's everything-needs-doing-at-once week. It's exhilarating and
exhausting to try to keep up with Ma Nature's rush. We help you
prioritize, so you also have time to simply enjoy the
What's coming up this week
Top stories of plants and procedures.
When it's time to turn the soil
Have a care with shovel and tiller in spring to avoid ruining
the soil's condition. If the soil will ball in your hand but then
crumble when you poke it, it's perfect. Yet even if it's too early,
too wet you can advance your garden's cause. Read
What's this? Did I plant this?
It's not you, it's all of us -- we don't recognize in spring
what we planted last year. To make matters worse, weeds with an
attitude are doing their best to convince us they belong. We hope
you'll post the photos of your mysteries on the Forum so others can
help you answer. Meanwhile, here are two mysteries you can
solve with a click.
What's going on in Janet & Steven's gardens
Quick to-do list
Stakes from sticks
We're hurrying to cut down and plants are rushing to come up.
Clippings from one can support the other. Twigs, sprigs and other
stake those floppy plants unobtrusively at low cost.
Green thumbs up and down
Being a tough cut
Applauding the brave cuts, boo-hissing the diseases that
debilitate older stems of woody plants. Lots of photos to guide you in
cutting hard for healthy, beautiful evergreen herbs and roses.
What's of special interest on the Forum
Spotlight, all light, on seedlings
Starting flowers and vegetables indoors?
Get lights and snug 'em right down on the seedlings.
Prune a privet yet maintain privacy
When the hedge is top heavy, hard pruning brings the foliage
back down to where it's needed. But oh, it's hard to give up that
screen, even briefly and thin though it may be! Look at this
in-progress cut to keep the privacy while renewing the privet.
Forsooth, forsythia's color is intense
When color comes early, you may wonder if that forsythia's
glowing more golden, quince redder, redbud more fluorescent. You
aren't seeing things. It's a fact of chemistry. Cool weather can
make spring color more saturated... and can also dull a few summer
Cut clematis comes back
It looks like a bad dream in its straw-like tangle yet we're
afraid to cut it lest we lose the bloom. Fortify yourself with
photos of what comes next so you can refresh your clematis'
look and renew its vigor.
Designers translate Tuscany
the Mediterranean look? Here's an interesting, ongoing
discussion about capturing those plants and designs for the
Rose of Sharon will rise from stubs
Have no fear, these shrubs grow like weeds and bloom on new wood
so cut quick to take advantage of the spring surge of growth.
Look at the cut.
Our Mentors say...
We are never alone in the garden, for the gardening advice that
came to us from a parent, neighbor or other veteran gardener grows
Scatter seeds, quietly
Seed and a gardener wield the power of surprise.
The 45 mph garden
It's catching driver's eyes and raising questions this week.
Speedy shrubs on tour
When it happens so fast we miss some of the show. Steven takes you on
tour, you set the speed!
Aiming for answers: Hit or Miss
"What happened next" from previous articles. Celebrating the
hits, updating the misses.
A Hit: Willow's twisted roots
To help you in your decision to move a new plant that's not
doing so well, here's a look back and report forward on a tree 10
years in a bad place, its much needed replanting, and full
A Hit: Houseplant's spring rush
We told you to resume fertilizing houseplants in March, and
start then to cut back and repot because that's when they resume
growing. A reader says "Wow, you weren't kidding!"
Laughing together to salve problems that have no solution.
Confident weeds vs. tentative gardener
It's more than a visual thing. Weeds play mind games, too, giving off
mental waves that say, "Certainly I belong here." Tips to help you
beat these cunning interlopers.
Where did that article go? Gang way, we're spring cleaning!
Looking for something you saw a week ago in our What's
Up news? It's still on the site but may have moved when we
stashed the winter topics from Issues 167 - 173 to make way for
spring. Do a Search for a key word or go to Ensemble
Weekly Editions, select Winter or Late
Winter and click from the index of any issue.
All feedback always appreciated
Drop us an email or give us a call to tell us what worked and
what didn't in this newsletter or in our gardening advice. You
won't hurt our feelings. We aim to grow and that means we celebrate
the highs but also remember to learn from the lows.