Life in the soil

Yes! There is life down there! It is so complex, even soil scientists have yet to plumb the depth and breadth of all the species and interactions that make the soil work like one living organism. For gardeners, it's important to know that a lively soil feeds your plants. Feeding the life in the soil … Continue reading Life in the soil

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 … Continue reading Why do these weeds keep coming back?!

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 … Continue reading A New Art Form: Brush Piles

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 … Continue reading The sunniest wildflower

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 … Continue reading More Natives in Bloom for Spring Pollinators

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 … Continue reading Perennially good pruning advice

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 | … Continue reading Botanical Rambles Blog Discusses Native Plants for Covering Ground

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 … Continue reading This Book Helps You Build It So They Will Come