Wild Blue Indigo and Bumblebees

June is a blue month in our garden. And perhaps my favorite blue flower for June is the Wild Blue Indigo (Baptisia australis). This is such a great plant: it’s beautiful, tough, and low-maintenance. Give it time and it will create a… Read More

Golden Alexander in Retreat

Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea) is in bloom right now, and one thing I’ve noticed is that it’s not where it used to be.  

Thoughts About Wild Columbine

The Wild Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) is at its peak in our garden right now. Judy took some pictures on Sunday that are much better than the ones I took and used in my Bloom Day post. So mostly I just wanted an… Read More

I Love Flowering Crabapples

When it comes to small flowering trees, is there anything better than the Crabapple (Malus sp.)? Of course not – I’m glad you agree. And my ‘Donald Wyman’ flowering crab is especially lovable this year. I don’t think I’ve ever seen this tree… Read More

Spicebush and Forsythia

Spicebush (Lindera benzoin) and Forsythia, two shrubs that burst into yellow flowers in early spring. They seem to exemplify two different styles in the garden.

Ecological Gardening Still Fashionable in Chicago

Millenium Park, which includes the Lurie Garden, has displaced Navy Pier as the top tourist attraction in the American Midwest (both are in Chicago). Today’s Chicago Tribune tells us that Millenium Park was visited by nearly 13 million people in the second… Read More

A New Tool for Wildlife Gardeners

Native Plant Finder is an online resource for people who want to attract more wildlife to their gardens. The website is sponsored by the National Wildlife Federation, with support from the University of Delaware and the US Forest Service. It draws on… Read More

An Unexpected Pocket of Urban Nature

This past weekend was uncannily mild and sunny. Judy and I decided to visit the West Ridge Nature Preserve, a chunk of land recently detached from Rosehill Cemetery. We had been hearing about this place, but had never been there. 

A Pollinator Paradise

Rhonda Fleming Hayes is the author of Pollinator Friendly Gardening, and we were able to visit her Minneapolis garden on the first morning of the fling.

Book Review: Gardening for Butterflies

Having just watched the second presidential debate, let me say this: let’s talk about butterflies! I mean, who doesn’t want more butterflies around? They add not just movement and beauty, but really a kind of magic to the garden.