Maryland’s New Lawn Fertilizer Law: It Affects You

lawn-fertilizer-spreaderWhether you tend to your own lawn or hire a professional to take care of it, you should become aware of Maryland’s new “Lawn Fertilizer Act” that goes into effect October 1st.  This new law was designed to protect the Chesapeake Bay and Maryland’s other waterways from excessive nutrients that flow into them from sources such as lawn fertilizers that contain nitrogen and phosphorus.  ...

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$ $ Landscaping Adds Property Value $ $

People typically embark on home renovation projects with a mind towards increasing the value of their home for resale purposes.  There are different rules of thumb for the expected recoup value of various home improvements.  Landscaping, however, is the only improvement that increases in value over time, whereas changes to the structure depreciate through the years.

The initial cost of installing plant material is directly proportional to the ...

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Fall is for Planting

The searing heat of summer not only makes gardening less than pleasant, but it can be damaging to newly planted or otherwise delicate plants.  The early fall cooling temperatures make this an ideal time for most gardening tasks.  The spring soil is usually quite wet from the winter moisture and spring showers.  Planting in the wet spring can cause plant rot, and tramping around in the wet soil ...

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Pretty in Pink – Plants Flowering in Early June

DSC02742Every day in June brings out new blooms.  Here is a selection of flowering plants blooming in the color pink in early June in Maryland. The light pink mass of carnation-like blooms held above powder-blue grass-like foliage, which happens to be evergreen, is Dianthus gratianopolitanus ‘Mountain Mist’, otherwise known as Cheddar Pinks (‘pinks’ for the pinking sheared look of the carnation-like ...

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Snow in May? No, Just White Flowering Plants

DSC02668   May of 2013 brought some very strange weather — sometimes temperatures fluctuating by 30 or 40  degrees within 24 hour periods.  Heat in the morning; air conditioning in the afternoon.  New plants in bloom each day, and the sometimes frigid nighttime temperatures,  made one think of snow.  Pictured here are some trees and shrubs covered with white blooms this May that are reminiscent of snow gracing the branches.  ...

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Multi-colored Knock Out Rose!

DSC02856  Knock Out roses have been the sensation for many years now due to their repeat flowering from spring through fall, and their supposed resistance to some of the diseases that typically plague roses.  I’ve been growing the light pink (‘blushing’) version for years, and often will see one or more flowers appearing in a different color — namely red (‘Radrazz’), ...

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Spring Flowers in Silver Spring, MD

DSC02617  This Carol Mackie Daphne (Daphne burkwoodii ‘Carol Mackie’) graces the front entry way and provides breathtaking fragrance to passersby.  It is in full bloom several weeks later this year than is customary, and as always it is a welcome treat.  This shrub began blooming several weeks ago, appearing covered with white cotton balls, which have begun turning pink; and now ...

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Mother’s Day Gift for Gardeners

Garden Makeover Company   A unique and practical Mother’s Day gift for the gardening afficionado, or anyone who could use a hand in the garden.  Garden Makeover Company offers gift certificates in any denomination, tailored to the sender’s request — e.g., for a garden consultation or coaching session, or for any hands-on gardening service.  It can be used to purchase a nice floral gift item, such as hanging baskets or ...

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Spring Gardening in the Snow in Silver Spring, Maryland

DSC02388  March 25th, 2013, 8 a.m., 4 inches of snow in Silver Spring, and it keeps falling.  Those plants that need the cold dormancy period, are certainly getting it this year, and insect problems will begin occurring later than last year.  Key gardening chore for today:  sweep heavy snow off of evergreen branches if it does not melt soon.  ...

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Winter Flowers: Montgomery County, MD Landscaping

DSC02316 As the winter cold seems to be relentless here in upper Montgomery County, Maryland, it is exciting to go out into the garden each morning to see some new flowers coming into bloom. This adds some nice color to the chilly gray days that we are experiencing. Colorful flowers can be found on each plane of the landscape – from small trees/shrubs, to perennials, to emerging bulbs. Here ...

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