Edibles with Ease: When to Get Growing from Seeds or from Starts? Read more »
In my side yard which is mostly shade, I have tried a variety of perennials that thrive in a woodland setting. Read more »
Make your garden even more welcoming to birds and butterflies: turn it into a certified wildlife habitat. Read more »
The StaySharp™ Max Reel Mower combines patent-pending technology with superior ergonomics to deliver best-in-class cutting perf... Read more »
Keep your lawn and your shoes clean and free of clippings by adding our innovative, sturdy Grass Catcher to your StaySharp™ Ree... Read more »
The Salsa Rain Barrel System makes it easy to collect up to 58 gallons of water for your garden and lawn. Our rain barrel is ma... Read more »
Make the most of National Craft Month by preparing some craft kits for your children - let them explore color, texture and dif... Read more »
This is the second how-to in a series focused on getting the most out of your basic paper punches. Read more »
Spring brings in the most wonderful colors and here is a fun way to add a touch of color to your gifts! Read more »
Our ProCision™ Rotary Bypass Trimmer features a unique dual-rail system that stabilizes the rotary blade, eliminating wiggle fo... Read more »
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Available online and at your local retailer May 2014 Add distinctive style to craft projects of all kinds with... Read more »
My idea is to show everyone that they can make something cute and fashionable without spending a lot of money. Read more »
Embellishing a plain shirt using a reverse appliqué technique is easy - and your kids will love their personalized outfit! Read more »
This year, it seems like spring is way overdue at our house. Read more »
Perfect for tight, precise cuts, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears sense blade separation and force the blades back togethe... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of sewing and quilting tasks, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears sense blade separation and force t... Read more »
Perfect for users with larger hands or anyone who needs to make long cuts through multiple layers, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabr... Read more »
I always look forward to school being out for the summer (more so than my children, probably!) and the change of pace means we... Read more »
This fun project is a great way to send a little love note to your child. These lunchbox notes can be slipped into a backpack... Read more »
Here is a fun craft for St. Patrick’s Day that is not only adorable, it makes kids stop and think about how lucky they are. Read more »
Children love our Blunt-tip Kids Scissors for the handle that’s shiny, bright and smooth, not “sticky” or “bumpy.” Teachers and... Read more »
Our Big Kids Scissors take the basic design of our teacher-recommended Kids Scissors and enlarge them for kids that are a littl... Read more »
Our Student Scissors are larger than our Kids Scissors but smaller than adult scissors, perfect for those older children who ar... Read more »
Introduced to the world as a quality fabric scissors, the Original Orange-Handled Scissors redefined the standard for cutting p... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear® Super Pruner/Lopper, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented gear... Read more »
Our Comfort Loop Rotary Cutter with a 45 mm blade makes cutting a wide variety of quilting materials comfortable and easy. A cu... Read more »
Whether you train them to grow on structures in the landscape or in containers, annual vines add instant color and height to your garden. I first heard the term verticality years ago when I visited gardener and writer Jane Fishman in Savannah, Georgia. She was challenged to create a garden in a large open field and quickly figured out that she could add instant height by using objects that also served as supports for various vines.
There are many options for structures to grow your vines on, including fences, arbors, bamboo stakes and even other plants. I have grown the moon vine, Ipomoea alba, large white flowers that fill the air with their intoxicating scent, in combination with ‘New Dawn’ rose. While I like the duo, I suggest giving the moon vine its own support, making it easier to maintain and clean up at the end of the season.
On a visit to Chanticleer, a public garden in Wayne, Pennsylvania, a few years ago, I loved the way the brilliant orange flowered Mexican flame vine, Senecio confusus, was encouraged to mix it up (ramble and scramble over) with a large blue-green Agave.
Fast growing, tough and drought tolerant, Mexican flame vine is ideal for instant color and quick cover.
Sometimes space, or rather lack of space, limits what we can add to our gardens. In this case, container gardens are easily transformed with the addition of vines. A simple support made of bamboo stakes is ideal for training a number of different vines, including Mandevilla or Black-Eyed Susan vine, also known as Thunbergia alata. If you combine the climbers with other annuals that are bushy and or trailing, the result is lush pots and months of color.
This year I am planning to add a Cardinal climber, Ipomoeaxmultifida, to my garden. I love the bright red flowers and the promise of the hummingbirds that it may attract. I feel compelled to mention that the seeds are reported to be highly toxic if ingested. (So keep them away from children and pets!)
At the Trial Gardens at the University of Georgia, I was introduced to a tropical beauty, Solanum wendlandii, also known as the potato vine, paradise vine and for reasons not known to me, the divorce vine. I admit to being curious about how it came to have these common names but am more interested in the abundance of flowers it produces, which bloom at a stunning deep blue and eventually fade to lavender.
Some of my other favorite annual vines include the purple hyacinth bean, Dolichos lablab, (what a fun botanical name to say!) with purple flowers, autumn purple pods and a fascinating affiliation with Thomas Jefferson and Monticello. Both the seeds and decorative pods are poisonous, but only if eaten in large amounts. (So don’t try to eat them!)
If you are looking for an annual vine that is edible and ornamental, try scarlet runner beans, Phaseolus coccineus.While the seeds are easy to germinate, the bunnies are quick to eat mine before the plants have a chance to become established. Still, I may try again this year, just for the challenge.