Home & Gardens

05/04/2016 - 10:42am
The month of May, jam-packed with proms and Mothers’ Day celebrations, is synonymous with roses.  Whether we grow our own, or buy stems at Eastern Market, the rose remains the most loved flower of all for many of us. Many do not know that the rose is the official flower of DC.   ‘American Beauty’ became the District’s flower in 1925, when it was the most cultivated rose in the US.  This hybrid rose originated in France, and its individual stems... >>more
05/04/2016 - 10:12am
There are many perks to living in DC, but did you know that as a DC resident or business you also qualify for rebates for purchasing energy-saving appliances, cooling and heating systems, and lighting – regardless of your income bracket? The District of Columbia Sustainable Energy Utility (DCSEU) offers discounts and rebates to help residents and businesses use less energy and save moneythrough energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. This is a resource that every DC resident or... >>more
05/04/2016 - 9:42am
What can I plant to hide the old leaves of daffodils? And, when my Virginia bluebells die back to nothing, as they do – and my white bleeding heart also disappears from view, as always – what should I put in their space that will not interfere with the bulbs and the Dicentra roots? You are right to allow spent tulips and daffodils to keep their leaves, thus replenishing their bulbs. Mask the spent leaves with any sun-loving perennial or annual, from lady’s mantle to Rudbekia... >>more
04/06/2016 - 12:11pm
In 2016 the Washington Youth Garden, a program of the Friends of the National Arboretum, is celebrating 45 years of teaching children the joys of gardening, food, and healthy living. Literally thousands of DC kids have learned about the birds and bees through this successful program that calls the National Arboretum home. Like a garden that is always changing, the Washington Youth Garden (WYG) is constantly evolving to meet the needs of urban children. Kids Get Dirty The Washington Youth Garden... >>more
04/06/2016 - 11:42am
I have already hardened off some kale and broccoli seedlings. I planted them in pots and planters outside. They are thriving. But snow is forecast for the weekend. Should I bring the pots inside? I believe that kale and broccoli can survive through a lot of cold. If these seedlings were mine I probably would cover them with a sheet or a wide strip of plastic fastened down somehow. If you choose plastic remember to remove it before sun shines on it so your seedlings will not “cook.... >>more
03/04/2016 - 1:00am
The peak bloom date is defined as the day when 70% of the Yoshino Cherry (Prunus x yedoensis) blossoms are open. Peak bloom (this year March 31 to April 3) varies annually depending on weather conditions. The most likely time to reach peak bloom is between the last week of March and the first week of April. Extraordinary warm or cool temperatures have resulted in peak bloom as early as March 15 (1990) and as late as April 18 (1958).   The Yoshino trees typically bloom for a period of... >>more
03/01/2016 - 10:42am
Most Hill blocks experience changes as leaders, local and national, come and go. The comings and goings of a knight errant appear to be unique to one such block. For close to eight years now, a knight has been steering conversation and directions on the 100 block of 14th Street SE. He was once declared “lawn ornament of the day” by a local blog. But to his nearest neighbors the knight has come to mean far more. He arrived, nameless and rusty, in 2008, rescued by Warren and Shannon... >>more
02/29/2016 - 12:12pm
My lovely hydrangea should be pruned, it’s a thicket. But I’m so afraid of losing flowers because I don’t know what kind of hydrangea it is, and I’ve heard that if it blooms on so-called old wood I should have pruned it after it bloomed last year. How can I tell whether it blooms on old or new wood just by looking at it closely? You can’t, that’s the problem here. You pretty well need to know your plant’s name! Find the label it came with if at all... >>more
02/29/2016 - 12:12pm
It’s March, and while it’s been a winter of extreme temperature fluctuations, it’s high time to think about this year’s garden. Limits of time and space can provide challenges to Capitol Hill homes when it comes to gardening. Community gardens can provide a practical and neighborly option. Community Gardens 101 Capitol Hill has 11 or so active community gardens, some on land ownedby DC Parks and Recreation and others on land owned by the gardens themselves. The number of... >>more