• Red maple tree in November
    This Month in Gardening

    This Month in Gardening – November

    All is not over for gardening in November, particularly in zone 7. Maintenance and clean up is the name of the game. Now is as good a time as any to clean out your outdoor pots. Store the soil in plastic garbage bags for later use, use the soil around the garden, put it in the compost, or use it in indoor pots. Rinse the pots out, and place the pots upside down to dry. Then store them inside after they are dry unless you are using them to plant bulbs in. If you are interested, bulbs are easy to grow in containers and look great! A few examples: Tulips…

  • Beautiful display for the fall Middle Tennessee Plant Swap

    Middle Tennessee Plant Swap – Fall 2018

    I read about Facebook groups for houseplant swaps from Stamen and Stem Blog a few months back, and so I searched for a similar group on Facebook. I came across The Middle Tennessee Plant Swap Facebook group in my searches and joined immediately. While not a houseplant swap group, it was even better! I learned that they hold a twice yearly plant swap at Henry Horton State Park, and in the time between, discuss what’s blooming in their garden, identify plants, share extras from their gardens, and share deals on garden items they see in the area. Gourds galore! I just missed out on the spring swap, so I was…

  • Pumpkin arches for Cheekwood Harvest
    Garden Visits

    Cheekwood Harvest

    Jordan (@lipstickletters_ on Instagram) and I went to visit Cheekwood for Cheekwood Harvest a few weeks ago after work, and I have to say, that was one of the best times to go. We met up around 3:45, and even though they close at 5, we had plenty of time. We got to walk and talk while taking in the beautiful surroundings. I am a member at Cheekwood, so sometimes I just go there to walk around and look at the different plants. Some of the best days to go are when it is overcast. People love clear skies in Nashville, so if you want to have the place to…

  • Azalea 'Autumn Ruby'
    My Garden

    Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – October 2018

    Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is a monthly blog post started by May Dreams Gardens over a decade ago where bloggers share what is blooming in their gardens on the 15th of each month. I love seeing ideas for flowers for each season. Even though my garden is kind of a mess right now due to redoing the layout and transplanting some existing plants, I still have a few blooms to show off. The feature (first) image for this post is Azalea Kimono™ ‘Canzonetta’. I wasn’t expecting it to bloom until spring, so that was a pleasant surprise. I also have purchased some new plants, so that will extend the seasons…

  • This month in gardening - October - plant bulbs
    This Month in Gardening

    This Month in Gardening – October

    I am excited to continue this monthly installment of This Month in Gardening. I am perhaps most excited about planting all the spring flowering bulbs I bought – narcissus, crocus, anemone, leucojum. Just a reminder – I live in Nashville, Tennessee, which is zone 7 hardiness zone. Perennials For perennials – now is the time to start planting “fall planted bulbs”. This includes narcissus, hyacinths, tulips, crocus, anemone, amongst others. I have purchased from Longfield Gardens and Dutch Grown and am planting them this month. Annuals Some of the most popular annuals for this time of year include mums and pansies. If you want mums to last a little longer,…

  • Yellow dahlia for Garden Bloggers' Bloom day September
    My Garden

    Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – September 2018

    Most of the flowers I have in the garden are starting to fade, but I have a few still going! For this Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day in September 2018, I’m happy that some of the flowers I’ve planted have very long bloom times. The crepe myrtles, hydrangeas, and dahlias are still going strong; the lantanas were a good choice for late summer color; and the coreopsis have had a surprise rebloom.  Hardy lantanas provide beautiful, fragrant flowersHydrangeas are just now starting to turn brownA few coreopsis blooms still happeningBlack-eyed Susans are on their last legsThe coreopsis making a surprise reappearanceKniphofia ‘Ember Glow’ should hopefully provide some flowers through fall I…

  • Begin with the end in mind when planting
    My Garden

    Begin with the End in Mind

    “Begin with the end in mind” is a favorite phrase in education circles. Think about where you want students to be at the end of the year, semester, nine weeks, unit, or lesson, and then plan accordingly. In other words, make your unit test first, and then plan your lessons such that students learn the material they need to known for the test. Sounds sensible, right? I wish I could say that I always followed this in my classes because the result when I don’t is usually some last minute scrambling to try and cover everything. Or, I have to change the assessment to fit what I have taught, which…

  • Hardy hibiscus - this month in gardening
    This Month in Gardening

    This Month in Gardening – September

    I want to start a new feature on my blog called “This Month in Gardening.” Each month, I will write about what gardening activities should be done in order to prepare or maintain your yard and garden. I am writing from zone 7A in Nashville, Tennessee, so most of these suggestions will pertain to Tennessee and Kentucky, or other similar climates. Eventually, I hope to include other zones, but feel free to chime in with what you are doing in your zone at the moment! Perennials Order fall planted bulbs soon, as many online sites start to sell out of the popular varieties quickly. Fall planted bulbs include: tulips, daffodils,…

  • Crescent Bend gardens
    Garden Visits

    Crescent Bend House and Garden

    I love exploring historic homes and their accompanying gardens, so when I went to visit my parents one time last summer, my Dad suggested finding some historic homes in Knoxville. We settled on Crescent Bend House and Garden near the University of Tennessee. When we arrived, we weren’t entirely sure it was open because we didn’t see anyone else around. However, we rang the doorbell (or knocked…not quite sure) and someone came to invite us in. They were setting up for a wedding, but a member of the staff was able to give us a tour of the house, its rooms, and the beautiful furnishings. Several items are original to…

  • Houseplants in kitchen window

    Aunt Linda’s Garden – Houseplants and Advice

    I hope you had a chance to read the first half of my interview with Aunt Linda, my mom’s sister. In this installment, we’re talking about gardening mistakes, favorite plants, houseplants, and advice for gardeners. Shelly: Are there any plants you’ve tried and thought, Never doing that again, or wish you hadn’t? Aunt Linda: Let me think. Oh yeah, I’ve got a bluebell out there now – I think that’s what it’s called – and I’m trying to get rid of it. Because it sends out these tiny little roots, and it’s taking over everything. This spring I got out and dug out a bunch of it. The problem is,…