Support National Pollinator Week: Plant a Tree

sweet bay magnolia blooms in summer

This week is National Pollinator Week. It is amazing that something as small as a bee is vitally important to our food supply. As pollinators, bees transfer pollen thus ensuring that plants and crops develop fruit and seeds for us to consume. But bees are not the only keystone species that we depend on, we also need other pollinators such as butterflies, moths, beetles, flies, and birds, including hummingbirds. Continue reading

Subscribe to Free Newsletter About Gardening in the DC Metro Area

Enter your e-mail here to subscribe to Pegplant’s Post, an e-newsletter about gardening in the Washington DC metropolitan area. This free monthly communication lists local gardening events, recently published gardening books, articles, and tips specific to this area. Each issue also features the opportunity to win a free plant or gardening-related product. For the upcoming July 2020 Pegplant’s Post, the first subscriber to e-mail will receive a hat with attached netting to prevent mosquitoes. Designed by Bugbaffler, the one-size-fits-all hat has a green camouflage design and built in netting that can be rolled up or down.

Bugbaffler is an online company that produces insect protective clothing. In 1988, the owners experienced the “buggiest spring on record” and created the first shirt to provide an effective deterrent to bug bites that did not involve insect repellents. Since then, they have expanded their line to include netting for pants, ankle guards, ponchos, hats, maternity and children sizes, and pet products. They design and make the products in their New Hampshire factory.

 

You Got Gardening Questions? Ask These Experts

cucumberSummer is here and by now your Victory garden is planted. Dreams of fresh red tomatoes and lush green cucumbers are dancing in your head. But wait, what are those green caterpillars? What are those brown spots? Answers to these gardening questions and more are available from your local Master Gardeners and county extension agents. Even during this pandemic, they are standing by to help you with your gardening issues. Best of all, this is a free service for the public. Continue reading

Cutting Celery: A Kitchen Staple Growing in the Garden

cutting celery foliage

Foliage of first year’s growth of cutting celery

Cutting celery is a great culinary herb to have in your garden. Unlike stalk celery from a grocery store, cutting celery is full of flavor, reminiscent of black pepper. Cutting celery (Apium graveolens var. secalinum) looks more like parsley than stalk celery (Apium graveolens var. dulce). This foot-tall, bushy plant has short, hollow stems and green, finely serrated leaves about one-inch wide. Continue reading

Chervil: A Culinary Herb with Ephemeral Grace

Chervil is ephemeral grace. Its finely cut, green leaves emerge during cool spring months, dissipating quickly with summer’s heat. Chervil (Anthriscus cerefolium) is a very old European herb, one of the components of fines herbs of French cuisine. Continue reading

Upcoming Events from Gardens ‘n Plants Podcast: Episode 10

If you listened to the latest episode of the Gardens ‘n Plants, we mentioned several upcoming events. These are not all events but just new items for the upcoming weeks. I also share events on my Facebook pegplant page. Tune into the next episode of Gardens ‘n Plants on June 8 to hear about more gardening events or check out my Facebook page. Continue reading

Multiply Shrubs in Your Garden with Stem Cuttings

Weigela shrub, ready for stem cuttings

Plant propagation is just a fancy word for making more plants from what you have. I love to propagate the plants in my garden. To me it is magical that an entire shrub can be created from cutting six inches off the stem. Taking stem cuttings is an easy way to make more shrubs to fill in gaps in the garden or to share plants with gardening friends. Continue reading

There’s More to Basil Plants Than Pesto

Pesto Perpetuo basil

I cannot imagine a garden without basil plants. Basil is the essence of summer. I don’t limit myself to just one — I grow lemon, lime, sweet, Thai, holy, and cinnamon, just to name a few. It seems that most people only know sweet basil and only one use for it: pesto.  Granted sweet basil has become the poster child, but there are many different types of basil plants to explore.  Continue reading

Upcoming Events from Gardens ‘n Plants Podcast: Episode 9

Before COVID-19, every month I would list local gardening events in the Washington DC metro area on my website. These were in-person lectures, workshops, and garden tours. Now of course, I am not able to list in-person events but there is still plenty happening virtually. During the Gardens ‘n Plants podcast show, I highlight several events in the upcoming 2 weeks (the podcast is biweekly). Continue reading

Making Composting Easy

keeping eggshells for the compost bin

container for produce scraps and eggshells, lined with plastic bag

This week is International Composting Awareness Week. Each day I will post composting information on my website or my social media accounts. For me, the trick to composting is to figure out how to make it work for you so it becomes easy. If it is easy, you will compost. In my suburban garden, I have two Geobins in the backyard. Continue reading