Growing Salvia From Seed

small 4 week old salvia seedlings

There are over 1,000 species of salvia – some annual and some perennial. I started my salvia journey with Salvia Caradonna – an herbaceous perennial with strong vertical purple stems that carry deep violet-blue flowers in early summer and again in late summer if you deadhead. Eventually, I branched out into other perennial varieties, all… Read more »

Growing Gomphrena For Borders and Containers

I grew Gomphrena (globe amaranth) for the first time in 2023 and tested them out both in the landscape (Circle Garden) and in containers. They performed very well, with little pest damage and required little care, although Gomphrena is slow to get going and doesn’t really fill out until mid-summer. The plants in the Circle… Read more »

Growing Dusty Miller – 3 Varieties For Containers

Like almost everyone else on the planet, Dusty Miller, or Senecio cineraria, is my favourite annual silver foliage for containers and garden edges. While buying a small flat is relatively cost-effective, they are easy to grow from seed or cuttings. I grow three varieties now from seed or cuttings.

Growing Cosmos – Still Finding My Favourite

I love the delicate blooms of cosmos, but honestly, there are too many to choose from! I grow cosmos mostly in the Circle Garden, with a few more near the vegetable gardens for the pollinators. This is my personal garden growing guide. I use it to track seed sources, when to start seeds and if… Read more »

Alternanthera Purple Prince For Container Pots

alternanthera starts from cuttings

I’m always looking for new annuals to use in pots and containers that are deer-tolerant. I decided to try Alternanthera and what a beautiful foliage plant. Alternanthera grows quite large although you could clip it as it branches easily. The foliage of Purple Prince is brown-red and best of all showed no signs of pest… Read more »

Growing Zinnia – I Need to Edit Myself!

They say zinnias don’t transplant well, but I still prefer to start mine indoors to control placement and colour in the garden. Having said that, I’m still playing with how many weeks before frost so the new starts are not too leggy and stressed when planted out after risk of frost has passed. My other… Read more »

Growing Alyssum – Some Varieties Need Less Shearing

alyssum crystal lavender in container

My first try with Alyssum was a McKenzie Seeds package picked up on a whim at a big box store – Carpet of Snow. I quickly fell in love, except Carpet of Snow is leggy, so needs frequent shearing if grown in a container. I’ve since switched to shorter varieties which will bloom longer without shearing or cutting back.

Growing Dichondra – Hard to Germinate?

I love Silver Falls Dichondra dripping densely from my containers. Buying 40 or so plants a year is expensive, so I decided to try to germinate from seed in 2023. I tried both Silver Falls and Emerald Falls. I found germination difficult (especially Emerald Falls) and growth slow. I thought about over-wintering a mother-plant, but… Read more »

Sun Begonias Deliver In The Heat

My new favourite annuals are sun begonias. I’ve always liked begonias but with very little shade, and our hot dry and often humid summers, they just don’t do well in my yard. Enter what to me are new sun begonias. I picked these up at a local greenhouse this spring and have not been disappointed.… Read more »

Cupressus macrocarpa Wilma Goldcrest

Attracted by the bright and cheery lime green foliage, I picked up two Monterey Cypress Wilma Goldcrest at my local grocery store just before Christmas 2011. I thought their bright green fern like foliage would look particularly attractive on either side of our mantle, already decked out for Christmas. Wilma Goldcrest was discovered in the… Read more »