Coastal and Tropical South

November, 2013
Regional Report

Favorite or New Plant

White Swamp Spider Lily
If you grow Louisiana iris, you should be growing white spiders (Hymenocallis spp.) right alongside in that boggy garden. Where the iris leaves are upright and a bit skinny, spider lily leaves sprawl robustly for a striking contrast. The iris is a refined flower, with its neat lines that are sometimes the subject of family crests and high art. The white spiders put them in their place, with exuberant pinwheels of dense white centers surrounded by curly petals that fling themselves out ridiculously. They keep up with the LA ladies quite well, and together they're unforgettable.

Clever Gardening Technique

Taller Trellises
Everybody knows to sink posts in concrete to strengthen their profile and prevent rot where wood surfaces touch the dirt. It's not usually practical to pour concrete for every small trellis, however, and all of them could use another inch or two in height. The solution to this dilemma involves two things available at home supply stores, precut 18-inch lengths of rebar and baling wire. Sink the rebar at least a foot into the soil and at the spacing of the trellis legs. Get a friend to hold the trellis in place and wrap wire tightly around the bar and leg at several intervals until secure.

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