garden thugs

Happy Holidays

Looking back to 2013, its been a year of crazy weather and rapacious weeds.  It sems like "crazy weather" may be the "new normal".  If next summer is anything like this past one, invest in brown paper leaf bags - there will be lots of garden clean-up to be done.  And here's hoping that we didn't allow some of the thugs to set seed.

Speaking of thugs, my advice is don't plant goldenrod in your small or small-ish perennial garden.  It is quite the spreader and you'll be hard-pressed to get rid of it after a couple of seasons, but you'll want to because it will obliterate your "design".  If you have an area you want to "fill" with something native, or have a wild garden or an edge habitat with the right conditions, plant it there.  It tolerates clay-ey soil, wet soil, and even some shade, and it's deer-resistant.  Before you know it you'll have a nice patch of yellow flowers in fall.  But figure out what it looks like before it flowers and remove self-seeded plants from your perennial border and/or keep it in check.  You can always give a divison to your friends ..... but please forewarn them! 

Solidago rugosa 'Fireworks'

Solidago rugosa 'Fireworks' just before flowering - learn to recognize perennials before they flower so that you can effectively manage them

As winter comes, enjoy the snow-covered "bones" of your garden.  Maybe even decorate one of your outdoor evergreens for the season.