The Scarboro Garden Scene – Growing Grape Vines

A cross-country ski trip to the Larch Hills, near Salmon Arm, included a visit to what might be the highest and most northerly vineyard in B.C. The grapes there include species and varieties that thrive in the sweet white wine areas of Germany, some of which were new to me, such as the Ortega, derived…

 

The Scarboro Garden Scene – Lily Beetle Warfare

  Just when you have found the perfect plant for August, you find it has an arch enemy: over the last decade or so, Asiatic and Oriental Lilies have become readily available in a huge range of colours, and are wonderful to behold. Also very striking is the beetle you may find with them, but…

 

Beware Of Friends Bearing Gifts

Beware of friends bearing gifts. The Greater Celandine Poppy, Chelidonium majus, that’s maybe where it started. A friend had this successful yellow-flowering plant with “cool” leaves – and said I could have some. He seemed to be able to maintain a flourishing garden most of our growing season, so I happily accepted his offer. After…

 

The Scarboro Garden Scene – Flower power

Masses of flowers of one colour make a grand statement – quite dramatic for a suburban garden, but variety too has its reward: do we want plant colour and form and flowers to harmonize with the background, or to jump out and say “look at me, see me, smell me, feel me!” The blooms currently…

 

PIMO – Pollarding, In My Opinion.

Opinion piece for MGAA Pollarding: the good, the bad, and the ugly. Are Albertans the only people not in love with pollarding? Pity! Elsewhere public and private trees have been attacked (or preserved) this way for centuries, particularly in Europe. I understand some of the reasons – some trees are pollarded to restrict their height…

 

Scarboro Garden Scene – that cabin on the lake

The Scarboro Garden Scene – that cabin on the lake Controlling a Jurassic Park-like forest or growing veggies on the dry Alberta Prairies: both can take a huge amount of effort while you are there – best to plan ahead. Know the probable extremes of rainfall (protect with trees, add manure) or summer drought (protect…

 

Scarboro Garden Scene, April Issue ~ Winter Survivors

The Scarboro Garden Scene – winter survivors Hopefully we are example of survivors too! A year ago many of us moaned about the harshness of the Calgary winter and the resultant death of or damage to low or “horizontal”, junipers, but this winter was good for many plants because of the almost continuous snow cover.…

 

The Scarboro Garden Scene – the charm of Lilies

Seductive spring magazines and planting catalogues are here now, and I see a huge variety of perennials just begging to be ordered ! Lilies for instance can be ordered until early May, but they are never completely dormant so if for some reason you are unable to plant your bulbs when you get them, then…

 

Biodiversity: A Global, Albertan, and Calgary perspective

Global biodiversity Returning our gardens and farmland to native plants: is that what biodiversity means? To some people, yes, but others are focussed on making their surroundings increasingly friendly to all wildlife by broadening their plant selection. Biodiversity is almost always positive – until new pests arrive! The term “biodiversity” refers to the complex and…

 
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