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Plants provide chocolate for all the senses

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Here in South Florida, even outdoors, it is possible to grow the tropical tree from which chocolate derives. But you’ll need an awful lot of cacao trees to harvest enough fruit to actually make chocolate. Don’t despair, though, as there are other botanical opportunities for bringing chocolate into your life.

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Cranberry hibiscus

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Cranberry hibiscus possesses a rare combination of beauty, utility and edibility. Once established, this tropical hibiscus requires little to no tending or irrigation, is a landscaping standout, and is edible.

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The prolific, terrific rain lily

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Gardeners often call a plant a volunteer if it shows up on its own in the garden. More often than not, it’s an unwanted weed. But sometimes it’s a gem.

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Avoiding the irritations of gardening

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Ah the wonders of gardening! The health benefits of being outdoors, growing your own food, breathing in all that good mood-elevating Mycobacterium vaccae soil bacterium or just contemplating the natural beauty of it all! So why do I come in from the yard scraped, red and swollen?

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Maintaining garden tools

Thursday, October 22, 2015

I love tools! While I don’t have many gardening tools, I try to make them last. A little maintenance keeps even the inexpensive tools happy, easier and safer to use, and will save you money in the long run.

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It’s fall — let’s grow some herbs!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

As gardening in most of the country slows down for fall, South Florida is waking up. Now we can plant some of the temperate herbs our northern friends and family have enjoyed all summer long. Here’s how to get started, whether you have a big garden or like to keep things small by sticking to containers.

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Native plants make good hedges—usually

Monday, October 12, 2015

Good fences make good neighbors, and so indeed do good hedges. But what makes a good hedge? While no plant is perfect, many types of plants can be grown and shaped into a properly dense and attractive hedge.

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Get to know your friendly neighborhood lizard

Monday, October 12, 2015

As a gardener, you undoubtedly encounter many lizard visitors in your yard. Knowing a little about who they are will enrich your outdoor experience, and possibly increase your appreciation of these little dinosaurs.

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A World without Monarch Butterflies

Monday, October 12, 2015

Monarch butterflies are plentiful and seem to be everywhere, so we take it for granted that they will always be here. But soon they could be hanging out with the passenger pigeon and the dodo. Precipitous declines in monarch populations have been reported. We need to look deeper into what’s going on and what we can do about it so we don’t lose this beautiful, iconic animal.

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What to do with holiday rescue plants

Monday, October 12, 2015

All those sad-looking plants that no one bought—now is the time for you to swoop in and rescue them at bargain prices. Holiday gift plants can provide you with beauty long past the winter celebrations. Here are some I recommend you take home from the hardware store sale area.

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