Gardening By Heart
A plant with a name like Queen Anne's Lace might make you think of a lovely, graceful addition to the garden, but if you knew Daucus carota was considered a weed, it probably wouldn't seem so lovely. The idea that even weeds deserve respect is just one of the topics in this collection of essays by Joyce McGreevey. Gardening by Heart (Sierra Club Books, 2000; $20) is part journal, part memoir. It invites you to explore all aspects of the gardening experience. By staking out and enjoying your own little piece of earth, even if it is only a window box, the author urges you to take time to slow down, sit on the grass, observe the garden with a fresh eye, and smell the roses -- all of which will enhance the appreciation of your own personal Eden.
Favorite or New Plant
You can create an eye-catching sight and cool a south-facing wall at the same time by covering a trellis with a hummingbird or trumpet vine. This hardy and fast-growing vine will cover a trellis in a few growing seasons. By the second year it will be covered with bright orange trumpet flowers that invite the hummingbirds. Plant trumpet vine in a well-drained soil and apply mulch around the base to help retain uniform moisture. The old-fashioned species, Campsis radicans, is perhaps the hardiest.