A New Art Form: Brush Piles

If a brush pile sounds like an unfinished project waiting to be cleaned up, think again! Brush is a resource for making your yard, garden, or acreage into a shelter for wildlife. If you have some prunings, old tree limbs, logs or storm debris, or blackberry canes, use them in the way nature intended. Make […]


Didn’t I Say? Soil – It’s the Foundation…

Update: This video about soil and atmospheric CO2 reduction is well made and summarizes many important principles in an easy-to-understand story. SO encouraging and important! Hot off the presses in the NY Times today… Scientists using new analytical techniques over the last decade have found that the world’s ocean of soil is one of our largest […]

Long-lasting deep yellow composite flowers offer nectar and a landing pad for pollinators

The sunniest wildflower

My top pick for an accommodating Pacific Northwest native wildflower (west of the Cascades) is OREGON SUNSHINE, the happiest flower of late spring/early summer. Here are the reasons why it is so superior: Easily germinated. Frequently, it is the only plant that comes up when I broadcast seed in the fall. Its gray leaves seem […]

Follow Taylor Gardens’ Pinterest Boards

Dwarrf Perovskia. Photo credit: T&L Nursery

Perennially good pruning advice

This just in from Oregon State University Extension agent Neil Bell via an article in a local paper: Pruning is a good thing, if you do it properly and at the right time. What is that time?? Each plant has it’s own blooming schedule. The perceptive gardener can learn what that is by doing a […]


Safe pest control for the azalea lace bug from Oregon’s Metro

You may not have seen this pest. It is tiny, but the damage is very evident. Unfortunately it’s likely you won’t notice it until the pest numbers have reached epic proportions. It is hard to find advice that does not involve using a lot of toxic chemicals, so this is a welcome article on Safe […]

Flicker Corliss 3.11.14

This Book Helps You Build It So They Will Come

Gardening For The Birds How to Create a Bird-Friendly Backyard By George Adams Timber Press 2013 A growing unease about our relationship to the natural world and our impact on planetary processes has led to increased interest in gardening with native plants. Gardening may seem like a less-than-effective tool to turn the tide of environmental […]


Native Plants: Are they ornamental enough??

There are lots of reasons to grow native plants among ornamental and edible plants in your garden. Natives are: the best food and habitat for native insects that support native birds and other wildlife important food and nectar sources for charismatic insects like butterflies and their larvae (a little chewing can indicate that you are […]

rain beetle 2011

They call these BENEFICIAL insects??

I’m always going on about how great beneficial insects are, and how to protect and encourage them. But if you’re one of them, it’s a horrific life! The horrifying side of beneficials – this is fun!! http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/compound-eye/2013/10/31/13-horrifying-ways-to-die-if-youre-an-arthropod/?WT_mc_id=SA_WR_20131107

Artcycled birdbth

Garden-Worthy Artwork

A birdbath is a nice addition to the garden, a fixture in many. Properly cleaned and cared for they can provide hours of enjoyment for you and birds and beneficial insects. Like birdfeeders, they need to be cleaned frequently and thoroughly to prevent the spread of disease among your bird visitors. I am showcasing this […]

pollinating fly on goatsbeard

Happy Customers – You Could Be One Too!

Here are a few comments from Taylor Gardens clients. If you have a project or a question, need plants, tools, or inspiration, have Jeanie over for a consult! I am available for consultations on plant choice, pruning, seed saving and propagation, native plant use and identification. I can provide tutorials on starting mushroom logs, hedgerows, […]

Daphne laureola (spurge laurel)

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

I see this plant in so many gardens  – do you know what it is? This plant is  possibly the most cryptic and devious noxious weed we have in western Oregon and Washington. I looks so deceptively like it belongs wherever it happens to be – even at the base of a big tree (which […]

Assorted weeds including English ivy, and blackberries (previously Himalayan, now Armenian - same plant)

Why do these weeds keep coming back?!

“I weeded – but they came back…I can’t get rid of those weeds…I took out the blackberries, but then I had morning glory everywhere…” Sound familiar? We’ve all done it – we tackle a huge bed of weeds, liberate the garden plants and exhausted, pile up the weeds and breathe a sigh. Then, before you […]


Ecology For Gardeners

I just purchased this book from the Washington Native Plant Society Opening to a random page, we read about seeds, long-lived seeds in particular: The seeds of may weeds can survive in the soil, while waiting for favorable conditions. [I might add that this is true of many wild seeds, weed or not]…there has been […]


So many books…

So many books…so little time I thought I would do one of those post-a-day things where I put something up each day on a particular subject. There is no shortage of garden or plant books, and of course I have a bunch. So I’m going through my bookshelf and doing a little post on some […]

Garden services

Native Plants 101: Protecting Your Native Fauna

Native Plants 101: Protecting Your Native Fauna

Native plants evolved with a gigantic number of associated microbes, fungi, bacteria, herbivores, and insects. It follows that plants don’t exist by themselves – they need the organisms that helped them adapt and change over the ages. For home gardeners, insect assistants are one of the easiest and most interesting class of partners to manage […]

gardening advice Washington and Oregon

More Natives in Bloom for Spring Pollinators

More Natives in Bloom for Spring Pollinators

A beautiful day in Yamhill County on April 9, and we headed out to find some spring flowers and birds, stopping by Farm Fest at the Yamhill Co Heritage Center on the way.  The draft horses and mules showed differing amounts of training and gentleness. Some were still practicing, and for the driver the task […]

Gardening for Wildlife

Botanical Rambles Blog Discusses Native Plants for Covering Ground

We all like to fill in the spaces in the garden. Some of us have more space than others. Some natives cover more ground, and faster than others. Here’s a link to a few tips. See the sidebar for my handouts with more info about the characteristics of natives in the garden! Botanical Rambles | […]


Late Winter Bloomers

Cornelian cherry, Cornus mas is not a cherry, although it has cherry-like fruits. The common name comes from the term “cornel” used in the UK to describe the wood, fruit and plant. According to its Wikipedia entry,  “Cornus mas, ‘Male’ Cornel, was named so to distinguish it from the true Dogberry, the ‘Female’ Cornel, C. […]

native plants

Fall Is THE Time To Plant!

There is no better time than right now to plant perennials and trees in the Pacific Northwest – and of course bulbs and cover crops. Whether you get your plants through Taylor Gardens, or go to a local plant sale, take advantage of the cool and reasonably dry weather to get some planting done now. […]

Pacific Northwest Gardening

Beneficial of the Week 4

It’s fungi season in the Pacific Northwest! Although we will be fighting mildew and other fungal invasions for the next eight months or so, the benefits of fungi are so numerous, it’s hard to know where to start. Some fun facts from Ecology for Gardeners by Carroll and Salt (2004), and Life in the Soil […]