Steve Smith

Hydrangea and rose

July checklist for Snohomish County gardeners

After a slow start to summer, things should take off this month. So keep planting and nurturing.

 

close-up of gardener's hands planting a tomato seedling in the vegetable garden

This summer, it’s smart to go big or go home at the nursery

When buying annuals, vegetables or perennials, go for the 1-gallon pots. And don’t skimp on the soil amendments and plant food.

 

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Celebrate national pollination week

This year, the week of June 20-26 is National Pollination Week and…

 

Coping with the weather

There is an old expression that goes like this: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” I would add that when Mother Nature give us… Continue reading

rosy teacup dogwood

Dogwoods: June standouts in the maritime Northwest garden

Now’s the time for Korean dogwoods and their hybrids to bloom. Here are some choices for your garden.

rosy teacup dogwood
Close up Beautiful pink Rhododendron

Last chance to prune spring flowering shrubs and perennials

If you wait and prune these spring bloomers in the fall or winter, you will cut off all of next year’s flower buds.

Close up Beautiful pink Rhododendron
Closeup of beautiful Indian paintbrush against purple lupine wildflowers at Mt. Rainier National Park in Washington state

Lupines deserve a place of honor in the Northwest garden

Their spiky flowers are familiar sights along freeways. Here are four varieties worth planting.

Closeup of beautiful Indian paintbrush against purple lupine wildflowers at Mt. Rainier National Park in Washington state
Shower in the garden. Downpour, pouring rain in the summer Getty Images

Why is the Whistling Gardener still wearing a turtleneck?

A cool, rainy May is making life difficult and frustrating for the Northwest gardener.

Shower in the garden. Downpour, pouring rain in the summer Getty Images
Central focus on a group of brightly colored Primroses

May is the time to plant fun, colorful and enjoyable annuals

Pay no attention to the anti-annuals dogmatists. Annuals are the accents and drama that tie gardens together.

Central focus on a group of brightly colored Primroses
Green Japanese maple tree with rain drops on the leaves in the spring

Oh, the exhilaration of shiny, happy new spring growth

The amazing array of new foliage emerging this time of year rivals the blooming of flowers.

Green Japanese maple tree with rain drops on the leaves in the spring

All hail the lowly ‘pigsqueak,’ the Bergenia from Great Britain

This plant will literally grow anywhere in the garden, and looks breathtaking this time of year.

Orange Vireya Rhododendron Flowers Blooming

Believe it or not, rhodies can be yellow and orange, too

Most of the plants have blue, purple, pink and red flowers, but here are eight recommended yellow-ish rhodies

Orange Vireya Rhododendron Flowers Blooming

‘Ruby Gold’ bleeding heart is a plant that will steal your heart

Its yellow foliage has a golden-orange hue that projects summer warmth in spring.

Steve Smith wears a funny hat.

The Wonder Shrub blossomed on April Fool’s Day 2004

Customers clamored for this ballyhooed — and entirely mythical — plant after it was featured in a nursery’s April 1 advertising.

Steve Smith wears a funny hat.
Waterfall with Spring Flowers in a woodland Scene--Gibson County Indiana

Vernal equinox triggers a case of spring fever in the garden

After a long dark winter, it’s now time to go outside and immerse yourself in the glory of the spring garden.

Waterfall with Spring Flowers in a woodland Scene--Gibson County Indiana
Ripe tomatoes growing on the branches - cultivated in the garden

Follow these tips for a successful vegetable garden this year

Make sure you have good soil that is well-fed. A plot of land under full sun also is critical, especially for tomatoes.

Ripe tomatoes growing on the branches - cultivated in the garden
pink flower of a rose frost with hoarfrost close up

Disaster in the garden has an upside: Choosing new plants

Gardens are always in flux, and hard freezes give us a chance to change things and create new compositions.

pink flower of a rose frost with hoarfrost close up
Sunbeams through Willow Tree in morning fog. Beautiful spring

Some undeniable signs that we’re on the road to spring

Buds are swelling, bulbs are up and blooming and the frogs are croaking. Winter’s almost over!

Sunbeams through Willow Tree in morning fog. Beautiful spring
aaxasxasxsaxs

Garden tasks to tackle during Prunuary — er, February

Sharpen those pruning tools and get to work — spring is just around the corner.

aaxasxasxsaxs
Red Rose

Want to plant a rose for Valentine’s Day? You have options

There is a reason roses are considered the queen of flowers. And now is the time to plant them.

Red Rose