The most interesting plants in the Herb Garden right now are the Garlic Chives (Allium tuberosum) and the ‘Italian White’ Sunflower (Helianthus annuus).

The garden’s butterfly population seems to be reaching its peak, especially with the migrating monarchs. I can’t leave or return home without wanting to grab the camera, or at the very least lose myself in watching these magical creatures. A couple of… Read More

There are so many fruits on ourĀ  ‘Donald Wyman’ Crabapple that the branches are bending under the weight.

I always get excited when a new butterfly makes its first appearance in the garden. This happened a few days ago. At first I thought it was a Black Swallowtail, but then realized it didn’t have a “tail” and that the color… Read More

Lately the Front Garden has had so many little creatures flying about that it’s almost impossible to make it to or from the front door without getting hopelessly distracted. Let’s have a review of some of the creatures who been doing the… Read More

Hoary Vervain (Verbena stricta) is an attractive but not a showy plant. But it has great value from a wildlife perspective. First, let’s deal with the name. “Hoary” does not mean what some of you think it means (don’t bother to deny… Read More

Trying Something New

I’m trying something new this year: Bush’s Poppy Mallow (Callirhoe bushii). This is a close relative of Wine Cups (C. involucrata), in fact it used to be considered a variety of that species. My understanding is that Wine Cups will spread out… Read More

A single Goatsbeard (Aruncus dioicus) goes a long way. It’s a big plant – ours grows about 5 feet tall with a 4 foot spread. It’s a perennial but looks more like a small shrub. But if you have the space in… Read More

Thanks a Million

A few days ago the Chicago Tribune ran a story about how 14,000 Chicago gardens had been registered with the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge, contributing to the total of 1,040,000 gardens registered since 2015 when the challenge was launched. Actually, the press… Read More

Which Native Milkweeds Are Best For Monarch Butterflies?

Monarch Butterflies need Milkweeds (Asclepias sp.), right? Because Monarchs lay their eggs on Milkweeds and only Milkweeds. But when it comes to attracting and supporting Monarchs, are some Milkweeds better than others?