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Missouri Native Perennials at Sugar Creek

Do you want to join the native garden movement but don’t know where to start?

We’ve put together this video to help you out. Abby will fill you in on the Missouri native perennials that will keep your garden blooming spring through fall.

Say hello to the most beautiful foxgloves you’ll ever see

For cottage garden lovers and perennial flower enthusiasts, foxgloves ( Digitalis purpurea) have to be at the top of The All-Time Favorite-Flower List.
 
We received delivery at the nursery of the most truly stunning foxgloves I’ve ever seen. They stop people in their tracks! There are three beefy plants in each 3-gallon container and they are in full bloom. Money well-spent at $26.99.
 
With this plant, you get height — sometimes up to 4 feet — and glorious color, beautiful bell-shaped flowers, and simply drama, drama, drama.
 
They like a full-sun exposure, but will tolerate part-shade. Many foxgloves are biennials, meaning they only bloom after two years. (The ‘Camelot’ series, however, bloom right away.) But if you let the plant set seed, it’s likely that you’ll get light re-seeding the following year, resulting in staggered plants and blooming.
 
Or try the true perennial foxglove, Digitalis grandiflora ‘Carillon.’ Its pale yellow flowers are striking in a light-shade area, and it’s a hearty, worry-free plant.
 
I dare you to resist!
 
Kim

There’s a reason Old-Fashioned Bleeding Hearts have been around for more than 150 years

 

The corgis and I ran across the most beautiful display of Old-Fashioned Bleeding Hearts this evening (Dicentra spectabilis). This gorgeous, spring-blooming perennial loves a rich, well-drained soil in partial shade with some protection from the hot afternoon sun. The pink flowers are especially pretty this time of year blooming near Azaleas, Redbuds, and Dogwoods. It’s nature at its color-coordinated best!

Speaking of color, they also come in white (Dicentra spectabalis ‘Alba), and there’s a very showy gold-leafed variety, Dicentra spectabalis ‘Gold Heart.’

Kim

And through the weeds…native plants!

MayapplesI was walking my dogs through the woods near my Webster Groves house, and I couldn’t believe my eyes when I spotted these Mayapple plants poking up. That wooded area is LOADED with invasive bullies — so much honeysuckle, ivy, and euyonymus.
 

I love that Mother Nature can rebound, even in the face of smothering exotics. The Mayapple ( Podophyllum peltatum) is a Missouri native that thrives in the rich organic soil of wooded areas. It goes dormant in the heat of summer, but returns every spring. So if you have a shady, wooded spot, this is one plant that not only would be happy there, but also sooo easy — you can’t beat natives for ease!

Other great Missouri natives that love woodland locations include:

Celandine poppies ( Styllophorum diphyllum)
 

Trillium

Virginia bluebells ( Mertensia virginica)

Wild ginger ( Asarum canadense)

Maidenhair fern ( Adiantum pedatum)

Columbine ( Aquilegia)
…and many more…
 

The yellow of the Celandine poppies and the striking blue/purple bluebells make a great combination, and the wild ginger is a fantastic groundcover. And maidenhair fern is my all-time favorite fern. It even looks great in a container on a shady porch. Read about more Missouri native plants here.

Happy gardening,

Kim

Why St. Louis Gardeners Should Mulch

Mulch framedMy mountain of leaf mulch was delivered yesterday. If my garden was a more manageable size, I would definitely use Cotton Burr Compost as a top dressing (I know some of the gardeners at Sugar Creek do).

Here’s more info about Cotton Burr, straight from the company’s website:

Cotton burrs are rich in carbon and protein. They also contain significant amounts of plant macro and micro nutrients. When composted, cotton burrs are a superior food source for beneficial soil organisms. In Nature, it is those organisms that convert nutrients in soil to a form plants can use, aerate the soil, and keep harmful diseases and organisms in check. In short, Back to Nature Cotton Burr Compost and Blends are unmatched when it comes to conditioning your soil.

Why mulching is important: it helps with weed control, keeps soil from drying out as quickly in the heat of summer, and enriches the soil as it decomposes.

Mulch — your garden will thank you! 

Kim