Northern & Central Midwest
Texas A&M Horticulture
Designing the Country Cottage Garden is a good, no-nonsense how-to article. Henry Flowers gives solid, clear advice about design principles and plant choices.
Favorite or New Plant
Swiss Chard 'Bright Lights'
I love Swiss chard in almost any form, and the lovely 'Bright Lights' variety gives a bounty of tender tasty greens while also providing a breathtakingly beautiful accent to the garden. The stems are all shades and hues -- kelly green, golden amber, bright yellow, chartreuse, violet, pink, deep maroon -- all from one packet of seeds! Swiss chard is easy to grow in average garden soil and full sun to partial shade. It withstands light frost, so it provides greens through November and doesn't bolt until the second season if it survives the winter.