Sunday, July 24, 2016

How to Make a Succulent Container Garden


All of the hot weather we've been experiencing has made me grateful for the succulents in my garden.  They can handle the heat, and don't need a lot of water.  They also come in a variety of shapes, colors, textures, and sizes.

Succulents are easy to grow in containers.  Here's how to do it:

1.  Choose the succulents you wish to use.  Two to four different types work nicely.  Here are some possibilities:  Hens and chickens, aloe vera, jade plants, and donkey's tail.

2.  Select a container.  Shallow bowls with good drainage work well. I use the same kind that I use for planting my container lettuce garden.

3.  Design your garden.  Do this with the plants still in the pots.  Place them in such a way to create interesting texture and color combinations.

4.  Use cactus potting mix when you're ready to plant them.  You can also use sand and small pebbles around them to create an interesting effect.  I think black river stones look nice, too.

5.  Place in a location that gets a few hours of direct sun, and a good amount of indirect sunlight.  Too much direct sunlight isn't good.  It'll burn the leaves.

6.  Keep the soil moist, but not wet.  In the winter, when the plants are dormant, water less frequently.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

The Viceroy's Palace Garden





The Viceroy's Palace Garden, located in New Delhi, India is considered one of the most beautiful in the world.  It is part of the property of Rashtrapati Bhavan, the official residence of the President of India

The garden covers 13 acres.  It was designed in the late 1920s by Edwin Lutyens.  There are beautiful ornamental fountains, walls, gazebos, flowering trees, gorgeous flowers, and shrubs.  Indians call it "God's own Heaven." 


                                               

The gardens are open to the public only two weeks out of the year, in late February and early March.  Expect security to be tight, but it is certainly well-worth the visit!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Ault Park







Ault Park, located in Cincinnati, Ohio, is a little gem that was very close to where I used to live in Cincinnati .  It's a 224 acre park in the Hyde Park/Mount Lookout area of Cincinnati.

 The gardens were designed by renowned landscape architect, Albert D. Taylor, and named after Levi and Ida Ault who played a big roll in developing Cincinnati parks.  They  were opened to the public on May 30, 1930.  The gardens have changed quite a bit through the years.  Today, the main attractions are a dahlia garden, and the Hilda Rothchilde Memorial Old Fashioned Rose Garden.



 There is also an Italian-style Pavilion located on the grounds, which is a popular site for weddings. 


The gardens are open year round from 6 AM to 10 PM.  Admission is free.




Before I go, I'd like to share a promo video that I did for the upcoming anthology, The Thing That Turned Me. Release date will be the end of August. (It's been moved from the original date.) I this video, I share a little about myself and the piece I wrote for the anthology.


Monday, June 20, 2016

Fellows Riverside Gardens







Fellows Riverside Gardens is a free public garden located in Youngstown, Ohio's Mill Creek Park.  It covers 12 acres, and includes an assortment of gardens.  It is probably best known for its variety of roses. Three of its gardens are dedicated to roses:  The Formal Rose Garden, Climbing Rose Allee, and the Rose Garden Terrace.  If you wish to see these gardens in full bloom, the best time to go is in June.

  

Other gardens include the Blue Garden, the shade garden, and the perenial border walk.

If you visit the gardens in the spring, you'll absolutely love all of the spring flowers.  The grounds are planted with 40,000 spring bulbs.  You'll see crocus, tulips, narcissus, and other colorful blooms.

The gardens are open year-round from dawn to dusk.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Green Bay Botanical Gardens









Opened in 1996, the Green Bay Botanical Gardens in Greenbay, Wisconsin, contain forty-seven acres of gardens and natural areas that showcase Wisconsin's seasonal beauty.



   
Within these forty-seven acres is the Gertrude B. Nielson Children's Garden.  It covers only a half an acre, but there are so many neat things for kids to do.  Some of the fun features include a tree house, a slide, a vine maze, a re-circulating pond, and a giant sundial.



 There are seven gardens within the children's garden where kids can explore natural wonders.  These include the Einstein Garden, Peter Rabbit Garden, Sensory Garden, and Frog Bridge.  
The gardens are open Monday through Saturday from 9-4.  Admission is $7.00 per adult and $2.00 for children.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens







Stan Hywet Hall and gardens, located in Akron, Ohio, is one of my favorite places to visit.  It was originally the vast estate of the Seiberling family, founders of the Good Year Tire Company.  The estate originally covered more than 3,000 acres.  Now it covers 70 acres.
 
The gardens were designed between 1912  and 1915 by the famous American landscape architect, Warren Manning.  The gardens are divided into ten sections:  The English Garden (Gertrude Seiberling's favorite), Birch Allee Vista, The Dell, Grape Arbor, Great Meadow, Japanese Garden, Lagoon, West Terrace, the Great Garden, and the Breakfast Room Garden.  My personal favorite is the Breakfast Room Garden.  With its blue, white, and gold color scheme and lovely fountain, it compliments the Breakfast room of the manor perfectly.

  


 The gardens open April 1st and remain open through December.  Hours are Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am - 6 pm.  Admission for non-members is $8.00 per person.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Jerusalem Botanical Gardens





The Jerusalem Botanical Gardens are located on the campus of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel.  Plans for the gardens began in 1931, when  Alexander Elg, chairman of the Botany Department at the university decided to create gardens featuring plants native to the area.
 

The gardens were opened to the public in 1985, and they've expanded to include flora and fauna from all over the world.  The gardens feature sections of Australian plants, Mediterranean plants, African, and European plants.  There's also a Bonsai Japanese garden.  In addition, there's a tropical house, an herb garden, and a Bible patch, featuring 70 species of plants mentioned in the Bible.

If you visit, be sure to see the 2000 year old burial cave located on the grounds that were discovered in 1902.  The cave has the inscription, "Bones of Nicanor of Alexandria."



 The gardens are open daily from 7:00 AM to sunset.  Admission is 20 ILS for children, and 35 ILS for adults.