Looking for more ways to enjoy your garden while at the same time protecting the environment? Texas A&M University has developed Earth-Kind Landscaping, which uses research-proven techniques that combine the best of organic and traditional gardening and landscaping principles to create a horticultural system based on real-world effectiveness and environmental responsibility. At their website, Earthkind, you can learn about low-input roses for sustainable landscapes; tips and ideas on creating a sustainable landscape; search for plants with the best drought, heat, and pest tolerance; find information on how to create an Earth-Kind Landscape; learn about Integrated Pest Management techniques to manage landscape pests; and listen to pod casts on sustainable landscape principles and practices.
Favorite or New Plant
Just when your perennial border needs an extra jolt of summer color along comes 'Lucifer' crocosmia, with its brilliant red-orange blooms. The slender, spiky foliage resembles that of gladiolas, while the 1- to 2-inch flowers are borne on thin stems rising above the leaves. Try planting crocosmias among daylilies, coreopsis, and some of the amber-colored shrub roses. A native of South Africa, crocosmias are hardy in Zones 6 to 10. They grow best in fertile, well-drained, humus-rich soil. Vigorous growers, they bloom best when dug and divided in spring every three or four years.