Plants have minds of their own

I am convinced that many of my plants are shy. They have “minds” of their own. Some even jump to locations in my garden where they can hardly be seen. In my garden I see this happening repeatedly, so I have to be cautious when weeding a baby plant.

I am not just talking about plants that close their flowers in the heat of the sun as if coyly shutting their eyes. If you come to my garden in the morning, you will see lots of Tradescantia virginiana-spiderwort flowers of all colors open and pretty. This thug of a plant that is taking over my garden, is extremely colorful in the morning when just about every color- white, pink, blue, and purple flowers are open, But come after 11:30am on a hot sunny day when I usually get visitors and there is nary a Tradescantia flower open. My garden looks like a weed pile. Then I am tempted to compost every Tradescantia plant that is lying down. But come the next morning and once again I am charmed with a spectacular show.

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Mt. Cuba Center is Giving A Free Course on Ferns

mt cuba gardens and woodlands by paladinsf

One of the most fantastic gardens filled with native plants is Mt. Cuba in Delaware.   See here.  The approximately 600 acre park is dedicated to the study, conservation, and appreciation of plants native to the Appalachian Piedmont Region.  Not only is this a wonderful place to visit, but Mt. Cuba has an excellent website that is a wealth of information about their native plants.

And to top it off, Mt. Cuba is now offering a FREE course about Ferns on line for those who wish to sign up. All they ask in return for this free course is that you fill out a short survey at the end.

Ferns are a tricky plant to identify, so if you want to learn about ferns or just interested in ferns for you garden, this is a course you will find worthwhile.

But you had better sign up for this course before Nov. 14th.  After Nov. 14th there will be a fee. You will then have to pay $40 to take the course. So sign up immediately!

Below is the letter TheGardenLady received telling about this program.

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Creating a Meditation Garden – Part III – Adding Color

MeditationGardensPond by Complete Wermos Guide
MeditationGardensPond by Complete Wermo's Guide

This is the third post in a three part series on creating a meditation garden.  You can see the first post about creating a meditation garden here, where I discussed some questions you need to answer first before you start building a meditation garden.  In the second post on meditation gardens, I talked about creating a green meditation garden by using hosta lily plants.   In this post, I will discuss some other meditation garden ideas.

To add to the green meditation garden, consider interspersing the garden with ferns. There are numerous ferns for sites like you describe. Fern leaves flow so nicely in the breeze and some stay green in the winter when the hostas die back. Taller varieties would look lovely. A fern and hosta website is here.

If a monochromatic garden with just green does not appeal, consider planting a Japanese maple. But be sure to get the ones that do not grow too tall. Japanese maples give 3 seasons of color. Some turn a different shade in the fall.   See here.

Another tree that would look lovely if you have the space is the dogwood. But I would not consider the native dogwood, as much as TheGardenLady loves it, because it might not be hardy enough. I suggest the Korean dogwood, Cornus kousa.  See here.  I have only seen a white flower on it. But it has one of the most interesting fruits which makes it of interest for two seasons.

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Taking Care of Ferns


TheGardenLady received this question from Johnathan:

My girlfriend just bought me a fern plant.  I never grew or even had
plants, but I just got my  own apartment. I need to know how to take
care of them and how to get them to grow up to 10ft.

TheGardenLady wrote the Dec.3rd post How You Can Better Help TheGardenLady so She Can Better Help you because letters like this do not give enough details.

There are so many ferns that grow to 10ft tall, how can anyone give you the perfect care for the one you were given unless you give the name of the plant or at the very least, a good, clear photo of the plant? What might be good care for one type of fern may not be the best way to care for a different type of fern.

Two websites that have photos of ferns are here and here:

Google places relevant and excellent ads on TheGardenLady blog. TheGardenLady does not choose any of the ads, she just writes the columns. But one ad on TheGardenLady blog that might have a photo of your fern is the company Paradise Palms.  On TheGardenLady site it is listed as Lady Palm Ferns and when it is clicked the company has photos of numerous different ferns.

Each of the fern nurseries has a phone number where you can call to ask your question about your particular fern. But remember, you have to give the nursery people more information than you gave TheGardenLady. At the least they will want to know the name of the fern you were given.

Or if you do not have a name of the plant, but do have a good photo, resend your question to TheGardenLady with the added information.  Or if your apartment is in the States, take the entire plant to your local extension office.

Good luck. I really do wish I could help. Even if you get the information you want from someone else, TheGardenLady would like to know what kind of fern you were given.