Longwood Gardens’ Magical Shape Christmas

The indoor and outdoor display at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA ends its six-week run on Jan. 5. The focus is on "Shapes of Christmas" and includes a jaw-dropping 350 foot ribbon made of bending Italian poplar, covered with gilded wallpaper, and edged with crushed walnuts shells and glitter. Magical Conservatories A family tradition …

Updated: Neonic and Pesticide Free Nurseries

After picking out dead honeybees from a honeycomb frame recently, I pledged to use only plants that are neonic free. Neonics or neonicitonoids have been implicated in recent bee declines as well as other factors, such as loss of habitat and the game changer bee parasite- varroa mite. There are a number of studies that …

Poinsettia-Customs & Traditions

No flower says Christmas like the beautiful Poinsettia.  I was amazed to learn that the Poinsettia is the most popular potted plant by far in the U.S. and Canada. Here are some other interesting tidbits: History & Legends The Poinsettia, Euphorbia pulcherrima, means "very beautiful" The showy leaves or petals, called "bracts", are not the actual flower. The …

Birdseed Ornaments for the Bird Lover

Crossing out several names on my Christmas list this year, I was left with a bird lover/watcher who I knew would appreciate homemade bird treat ornaments. Feeding hungry songbirds in winter is a great way for people to interact with nature and help birds get through the tough months of winter. Studies show that bird …

For the Love of Holly-McLean Nursery

On a recent chilly and rainy afternoon I visited McLean Nursery in Parkville, Maryland, to get my annual inspiration for "decking the halls with boughs of holly". Lots of cheerful people (and a dog!)stuffed into a cozy shed full of holiday trimmings was a nice respite from the constant deluge of rain. Busy with working …

Create A Winterthur Inspired Everlasting Christmas Tree

A tour of Henry Francis du Pont's former extraordinary home was my destination this year to enjoy holiday style decorations. An eighteen room dollhouse, fully decorated with Christmas treasures and other handmade pieces was also one of the draws for me. Another was the large fir in the Conservatory decorated with hundreds of multi-hued dried …

Amaryllis-Queen of Bulbs

  If you are a flower lover, you are starved for color right about now. I turn to the big box stores and nurseries to pick up my flower fixes. With grapefruit sized amaryllis bulbs available now, you can have bloom November through February if you start them at different times and use different species. …