Category Archives: Favorite Flowers

Gloriosa Daisy

What praise can I give these Tiger Eye Gold gloriosa daisies (also known as black-eyed Susans)? They’re beautiful, easy to care for, and even inspire poetry of sorts. As that ubiquitous writer Anonymous once said: “I used to love my … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A New Zest for Zinnias

I don’t think I’ve appreciated zinnias enough. When I was young, they seemed so ordinary—simple to grow from seed, simple to care for, and so abundant that they felt commonplace. With their headstrong colors, they lacked the delicacy or subtlety … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Angelonia

This summer has brought me many wonderful plants, among them angelonia (also known as summer snapdragon). It requires remarkably little care. Deadheading? You can forget about it. Just keep them watered, and they’ll reward you with flowers all summer long. … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Mosquito Plants

Marketing is everything—in gardens as in the rest of the economy. Consider this spiky little plant. I would never have given it a second glance in the garden center if not for the fabulous label. But when I spotted the … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers, Flavors and Scents | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

My Grandmother’s Peonies

Quick, what do the following have in common? Moonstone, hot chocolate, eskimo pie, John Harvard, and Madame Butterfly? If you guessed that they’re all varieties of peonies, you’d be correct. They come in a range of hues (John Harvard being … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Spring for Pansies

I am too eager. In my haste for summer and its abundance of flowers, herbs, and vegetables, I tend to put out my basil and eggplant seedlings in April—only to have them stunted by cold snaps. When will I learn? … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged | Leave a comment

Bare Roots Roses

My new rose bushes have arrived—sort of. Last year I bought Knock Out roses, which were touted as everything I thought I was looking for. They were disease resistant, heat tolerant, long blooming, and even “self-cleaning,” meaning that you don’t … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Sweet Amaryllis

The polar vortex continues to blast the country with single-digit temperatures and sub-zero winds–colder than anything I remember from the winter I spent in Moscow as a student, when it literally snowed every day. It’s more frigid than the week … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The Last Rose of Summer

Last month I walked past one of the statelier houses on Hudson Street in Hoboken, NJ, my hometown, and was touched by the sight of one last rose in the garden, where the rose bushes had been thick with blossoms … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Azaleas–The New Fall Flowers?

Denial. That’s the official term for refusing to believe what is perfectly obvious—that fall has arrived, and winter is on its way. That’s also a partial explanation for why there are still spring flowers on my stoop—azaleas, pansies, dianthus. Never … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Mohonk Mountain Magic

Admittedly, it hardly qualifies as “urban gardening” when you have hundreds of acres to plant in the crisp, clear setting of New York’s Shawangunk Mountains. But the gardens at Mohonk Mountain House are always spectacular. This year was no exception–and … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rhapsody in Pink

My mandevilla last year was so spectacular that this year I bought four! The prize winner among them is this beauty. It’s a giant variety called Sun Parasol, with these large showy flowers and glossy leaves, which grow in pairs … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Requiem for the Riegers

I have known for months that my lovely Rieger begonias would not last. I first bought them in April, thinking that these “winter-flowering” begonias, which require cool temperatures and short days, would serve merely as stop-gap flowers to tide me … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged | Leave a comment

Arugula Gone Wild

In my opinion, salad greens should be deep green, not some pale imitation thereof. So on my first trip to the garden store this spring, I bought a large pot of dark emerald-green seedlings labelled “mesclun mix.” The pot contained … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers, Most popular posts | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Rite of Spring

My husband was right. As usual. In March, I declared that I wasn’t going to start my container garden until Memorial Day weekend, when I return from a trip to Spain. He said I would never be able to hold … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Winter Berries

The shortest day of the year has come and gone—and with it, the predictions of Mayan doom. The world still turns, the holidays still beckon. And in my garden, the euonymus bushes continue in their evergreen splendor, just as the … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers, Most popular posts | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Roses and Dahlias

The impressionist painter Claude Monet may be known for his water lilies. But according to the Monet show at the New York Botanical Garden, he also loved roses and dahlias. When I saw these at my local market today, I … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

They Call It “Confetti Blazing Maple”

All summer, my container garden brought me so much joy. Instead of fretting about work from the moment I awoke, I would walk out onto the stoop where it grows and examine all the changes that had occurred overnight—the new … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Pansies–Not Just for Spring Anymore

Move over, chrysanthemums! There’s a new fall flower in town—pansies—or so my neighbor Jane informed me a few weeks ago. I have always adored pansies with their cheery faces. When I was a child, we had an entire flower bed … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers, Most popular posts | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

8 Things I Love About My Container Garden

1. A Stoop With a View. As I was sitting on my front steps last Saturday morning, a dad with two kids and a dog walked by. “I love what you’ve done with these flowers,” he said. “This space used … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Please Don’t Eat the Petunias

After the untimely death of a colleague many years ago, his widow wrote a note to the staff: “Please don’t send flowers. Harry thought all flowers were petunias.” While it’s hard for me to imagine such willful ignorance of blooming … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged | 1 Comment

I Walk the Vine

Some people have pets. I have plants. True, they don’t come wagging their tails to me in the morning. But I now firmly believe that plants have observable behavior. Most fascinating for me are vines, like my mandevilla. When I … Continue reading

Posted in Favorite Flowers | Tagged , , | Leave a comment