When I hear the word “mint,” my mind immediately thinks flavor. But when we’re talking plants, the Lamiaceae or mint family is not simply a one-note herb. It encompasses 236 genera and more than 7,000 species, some of which are also edible or medicinal. One of these mint family relatives was introduced to me via a Native Plant of the Month Club: a perennial basil. This new garden addition is native throughout 33 states, as well as from Manitoba to Nova Scotia, which includes my province of Ontario. In this article, I’m going to share growing tips for perennial basil plants, as well as a few other perennial members of the mint family. Some may surprise you!
Snap beans are one of the joys of the summer vegetable garden and one of the easiest crops to grow. They thrive in garden beds and containers reliably producing a heavy crop of tender pods. That said, it’s not uncommon to see green bean leaves turning yellow. There are many potential reasons for yellowing leaves including drought, infertile soil, inadequate light, and plant diseases like blight. Below you’ll learn 7 reasons for green bean leaves turning yellow and what you can do to promote healthy growth from your bush and pole bean plants.
Tired of growing the same old petunias and marigolds every summer? Try growing the toothache plant instead! This odd-looking beauty is also known as the electric daisy, buzz buttons, the eyeball plant, Sichuan buttons, jambu, and even paracress – it has so many common names, it’s enough to make your head spin! But no matter what you call it, the toothache plant is one amazing addition to the garden. In this article, I’ll share some super-cool info about this annual herb, along with tips for growing it. Plus, the toothache plant not only looks amazing but also offers some really unique medicinal properties, too.
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Swiss chard is one of those leafy greens that is so gorgeous it strays into ornamental territory. I love planting “decorative” vegetables and herbs, like lemon thyme and mustard, in the empty spots of the garden where I usually plant annual flowers. With Swiss chard you get a nutritious leafy green, chock-full of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as antioxidants, that is also very ornamental in a garden or container. In this article, I’m going to share some advice on growing Swiss chard—wherever you choose to plant it!
A container water garden is a great way to create a miniature oasis for wildlife and to bring the sound of moving water to your landscape without needing the space, time, or energy required for an in-ground water feature. Containerized water gardens are easy to make and maintain. They are miniature water gardens that host plants, birds, frogs, and insects. You can even place a few small fish in them to add another element of interest. This article offers inspiring ideas for container water gardens, tips for maintaining them, and shares simple instructions for DIYing your own.
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Deciding when to harvest cucumbers can be challenging for a vegetable gardener, particularly a first-time grower. Waiting too long results in over-mature and potentially bitter or spongy cucumbers. Harvesting early doesn’t give the fruits a chance to size up. There are also many types and varieties of cucumbers with fruits in a mix of shapes, sizes, and colors, and that can make it tricky to figure out when to start picking. Keep reading to learn more about how and when to harvest cucumbers.