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Native plants make good hedges—usually

Monday, October 12, 2015

Good fences make good neighbors, and so indeed do good hedges. But what makes a good hedge? While no plant is perfect, many types of plants can be grown and shaped into a properly dense and attractive hedge.

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Get to know your friendly neighborhood lizard

Monday, October 12, 2015

As a gardener, you undoubtedly encounter many lizard visitors in your yard. Knowing a little about who they are will enrich your outdoor experience, and possibly increase your appreciation of these little dinosaurs.

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A World without Monarch Butterflies

Monday, October 12, 2015

Monarch butterflies are plentiful and seem to be everywhere, so we take it for granted that they will always be here. But soon they could be hanging out with the passenger pigeon and the dodo. Precipitous declines in monarch populations have been reported. We need to look deeper into what’s going on and what we can do about it so we don’t lose this beautiful, iconic animal.

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What to do with holiday rescue plants

Monday, October 12, 2015

All those sad-looking plants that no one bought—now is the time for you to swoop in and rescue them at bargain prices. Holiday gift plants can provide you with beauty long past the winter celebrations. Here are some I recommend you take home from the hardware store sale area.

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The humble gumbo limbo

Monday, October 12, 2015

Gumbo limbo, though a common tree in most South Florida neighborhoods, is one of the most important members of our hammock ecosystem.

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Growing annatto

Monday, October 12, 2015

Answer this plant riddle.

What small tree:

A) is not found in a home improvement store or even in many nurseries;
B) is pretty rare in landscaping, but common commercially;
C) can probably be found in your own kitchen.

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Cucumbers fit for a dollhouse

Friday, September 25, 2015

A short-lived perennial vine called creeping cucumber can be found spreading over hedges and fences this time of year. It produces essentially wild, but very tiny, cucumbers.

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Slime molds are no garden threat

Friday, August 28, 2015

Ever wander outside to find what looks like a shredded kitchen sponge — an alarming, shocking, bile yellow — roiling its way over your mulch? Is it an animal, plant, fungus or maybe some unholy combination? You may be cohabitating with slime mold.

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The reviled roach has a role in the garden

Friday, July 24, 2015

When I lived in New York, I was plagued by what we called waterbugs. They are what Floridians call palmetto bugs. Nearly universally despised, roaches play a necessary garden role as recyclers. Why do we hate them so?

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What’s that weed? Edible purslane

Friday, July 3, 2015

Don’t you wish growing edibles was like growing weeds? It can be. What is a weed, really, but a plant growing where we don’t want it to grow? Many weeds, it turns out, are indeed edible. Here’s a weed you can eat, is fairly attractive, and has an interesting history: Purslane (Portulaca oleracea).

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