Northern & Central Midwest

May, 2014
Regional Report

Favorite or New Plant

Dichondra micrantha, also called kidneyweed, is a perennial ground cover where it grows in its native New Zealand. A cultivar called 'Silver Falls' is available in garden centers in this country to be grown as an annual and is a great choice for hanging baskets and window boxes. This lovely silver plant has tiny, fan-shaped leaves on long silver stems that cascade about three feet long. It grows best in full sun, although it will tolerate some shade and is generally drought tolerant -- perfect for a container. It makes a beautiful foil to annuals in all shades of yellow, blue, red, and purple.

Clever Gardening Technique

Use Movable Trellises to Make House Maintenance Easier
When it's time to paint your house, do you have a love-hate relationship with trellises permanently attached to the siding? Make it love-love by installing trellises with hinges at the bottom and hooks and eyes at the top to hold the trellis to the siding. When it comes time to paint, simply unhook and lower them, plants and all, gently to the ground. When painting is finished, raise them back up and hook into place. Easy!

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