Category Archives: Garden Dispatch

07 Oct

Weekly Magazine: Garden Dispatch # 10

Welcome to the latest issue of Garden Dispatch. The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of landscape and garden design resources. In this issue, explore:

How to Grow Figs in Your Home Garden

Besides its delicious and nutritious fruit,  I like the Fig tree for its unusual and attractive foliage. The large green leaves of the fig tree make it a nice accent plant for gardens.  The tree does not require much maintenance except annual pruning to keep it in shape and size. For tips on growing your own fig tree, follow this complete guide on growing figs by Debbie Wolfe.

Plant of the Week: Senecio rowleyanus

Senecio rowleyanus (Buy online) is a beautiful trailing succulent that can be grown both indoors and outdoors. Commonly known as String of Pearls, this lovely  succulent grows fast and can be multiplied easily from cuttings. When provided with moderate watering and a sunny spot, Senecio rowleyanus flourishes very well in an ordinary cactus mix. See these useful tips on growing Senecio rowleyanus by Nell Foster.

Senecio rowleyanus

Image via flickr by Clatiek

Halloween Inspired Garden Designs

It’s time of the year… and there are so many inspiring examples of Halloween inspired garden designs to follow.

Halloween garden


16 Jun

Weekly Magazine: Garden Dispatch # 9

Welcome to the latest issue of Garden Dispatch.

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of landscape and garden design resources. In this issue, explore:

5 Tips: How to Make Most of Small Garden Spaces

Small Space Garden Design Tips

Growing all of your favorite plants in a small space is challenging but with a little planning and creativity, you can turn your small space garden into a dream garden. Brook Klausing shares his five tips for making most of small spaces.

  1. Pick the spot with the best view, where you’d want to sit, and build your garden retreat from there.
  2. Wall off the outside world with vine-covered trellises or thin, sculpted trees such as hornbeams.
  3. Use a fountain or firebowl to create a focal point—and offer distraction.
  4. Plant scented flowers or herbs such as lavender or thyme for added distraction.
  5. Keep furniture to a minimum—try a picnic benches, for example, instead of multiple chairs.

Also See: 9 Examples of Beautiful, Small Space Gardens

Plant of the Week: Stipa ichru

Stipa ichru

I am a big fan of ornamental grasses. They are versatile and come in all sizes, colors and textures. Most ornamental grasses are hardy and can grow under tough conditions. You can also put them to many uses. They are good ground covers, they can fill empty landscape spaces, some of them make nice accent plants, and some can be mixed with other plants to add a unique texture and color. The ornamental grass featured today is Stipa ichur. See details here.

Also See: 9 Ornamental Grasses for Your Garden Landscape Design

How To: Get High Yield from Your Kitchen Garden

High Yield Vegetable Garden

If you grow your own vegetables, this is a must read. Stephanie Rose shares her secret of getting high yield from a small vegetable garden. See details here.

Father’s Day Gift Ideas: Gifts for Green Thumb Dads

Father's Day Gift Idea

It is time of the year. If your dad is into gardening, here is a nice selection of plants you can buy him on this Father’s Day.

Home & Garden Decor: How to Decorate Your Home with Container Gardens

Decorating with Container Garden

Another great article by Stephanie Rose on decorating your home with container garden. You will love these wonderful ideas.

Garden Visits: Highlights from Chelsea Flower Show 2016

Chelsea Flower Show 2016

One of my favorite garden shows. If you have not been there, here are highlights from this year’s show.

27 Jan

Garden Dispatch # 7

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

Growing vegetables in a small space garden

Growing Vegetables in a Small Garden

You do not really have to have a sprawling backyard to grow your own vegetables. You can get an impressive yield from your small space garden, all you have to do is selecting using the right techniques and selecting suitable plants. Here is a list of 9 best vegetables to grow in your small space garden.


How to rescue and repair a flooded garden

How to Rescue and Repair a Flooded Garden

Weather your garden is waterlogged or completely flooded, there are ways to rescue your garden. Start with removing silt and debris, clean up dead plants and rotting material,  condition your soil, help surviving plants thrive and then start planting new ones. See Kate Wall’s step-by-step guide on rescuing and repairing a flooded garden.

Easy Growing Orchids

6 Easiest Orchid to Grow in Your Garden

Follow this informative conversation on growing some of the easiest-growing orchids in your garden.


Growing Hepaticas for Early Spring Blossoms

Want to try something new this year? Try Hepaticas. Known for their pink, purple, blue, and white flowers, Hepaticas make excellent early spring bloomers. Though not widely cultivates in gardens, growing these lovely bloomers is rewarding when you want to try something new in your garden. See: How to grow Hepaticas.

10 Aug

Garden Dispatch # 6

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

How to Design, Start and Maintain a Rooftop Garden

Being an urbanite, I have been gardening on my rooftop for many years. I have grown a variety of plants in my rooftop garden ranging from large ornamental plants to miniature succulents. If you are thinking about turning your rooftop in to a garden, follow Marianne Cannon as she talks with landscape designer Christopher Owen about how you plan a rooftop garden in all sorts of locations, from a large garden on top of an apartment block to a small garage rooftop.

How to Use Epsom Salt for Better Foliage

Gardeners have been using Epsom Salt in many different ways to improve health and foliage of plants. Epsom Salt is a natural source of magnesium and sulphur – two important elements  that encourage growth of healthy foliage. Read more on using Epsom Salt for growing healthier roses, vegetables and ornamental plants.

How to Grow Turk’s Cap

Malvaviscus arboreus var. mexicanus

Malvaviscus arboreus, commonly known as Turk’s Cap, is a beautiful flowering shrub from the family of hibiscus and hollyhock. Recognized by its bright-red flower, Turk’s cap makes an excellent plant for tropical and sub-tropical climates under sunny as well as shaded spots. Read these useful tips by Pam Penick on growing Turk’s Cap.

Product of the Week: Solar Powered LED Landscape Light

InnoGear Solar LED Light

If you are looking for a budget landscape lighting solution, check out InnoGear 2-in-1 solar powered LED landscape light. This tool-free installation light easily sticks into the ground. You can also use the mounting kit (included) to fix it on the wall. With automatic on/off and 2-levels of brightness, this adjustable LED light suffices almost all landscape lighting requirements. The InnoGear 2-in-1 solar light is water and heat proof. The built-in lithium battery can be easily recharged when the sun in shy.

How to Prepare Your Own After-Sun Lotion

After Sun Lotion

Ingredients (makes 2 oz.)

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil infused with calendula
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa butter
  • 1 teaspoon Shea butter
  • 1 tablespoon grated beeswax
  • 15 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 tablespoons aloe vera gel

See details on Garden Therapy by Stephanie

Also see,


18 Feb

Garden Dispatch # 5

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

How to pick the healthiest plants at a nursery

Plants sale

Image by Susie Nishio

The best tip that I can give to someone who is purchasing plants at a nursery is: ‘Look beyond the obvious’. Plenty of flowers or shiny foliage does not necessarily mean that the plant is healthy and free from pests and diseases. There are many other factors that determine the health and quality of a plant – formation, color and texture of foliage, root system, time of the year, age of the plant etc. Dr. Holly Scoggins, associate professor of horticulture, shares a couple of useful tip for finding the best plants at a nursery.

Designing landscape? Do not make these mistakes (again)!

So you are planning to design or remodel your landscape design. There are plenty of beautiful landscape design inspirations but every landscape is unqiue. What works in my landscape layout may not work for you. You have to balance all the elements (size, colors, form, climate, personal preferences, maintenance requirements etc.) of landscape design to make a harmonized effect. But there are some fundamental principals that apply to every landscape design project and you should not breach those principles. Here is a list of 11 common mistakes landscape designers make. Make sure you do not.

Plant of the Week: Monarda fistulosa

Monarda fistulosa

Monarda fistulosa / Image by Joshua Mayer

Commonly known as Wild Bergamot, Monarda fistulosa is a drought-tolerant perennial that grows well in landscapes and rock gardens. The plant is known for its aromatic leaves and attractive flowers. Monarda fistulosa can grow up to 4 feet and tends to form clumps of erect branches. Flowers of white or lavender shades appear in summer and continue to bloom through the season.

Monarda fistulosa grows in dry or slightly moist soil under full to partial sun.

Links of Interest

08 Dec

Garden Dispatch # 4

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

Guide to Safe Plastic Products for Gardening

I like plastic pots for my plants and there are many reasons for it. They are lightweight, they retain moisture and they are available in a variety of shapes, colors and textures. Besides plastic pots, today gardeners use a number of plastic-made tools in their garden (such as hydroponic equipment). However most gardeners do not realize that not all plastics are safe for plants. If you are using tools, equipment or pots made of plastic, I would recommend that you go through this informative article: Which Plastics are Safe for Gardening.

How to Prepare Your Garden for Winter

Winter is just around the coroner and now is the time to prepare your garden for the coming months of frost and freeze. Before the seasons actually sets in, there are a couple of things you can do to keep your garden tidy, organized and free from trouble during winter. Dr. Leonard Perry, Extension Professor University of Vermont, has shared some useful tips for winterizing your garden.

DIY Project: Make your own Grow Light System


Grow Light System

When you are short of gardening space (you live in a high-rise building) or you do not get sufficient light or appropriate climate for growing your favorite plants, an indoor grow light system can be really useful. And it does not cost much to make your own grow light system. Rachel of has shared a step-by-step guide to making your own grow light system. Check it out.

Visit to the Geelong Botanic Garden

Geelong Botanic Garden

The Geelong Botanic Garden is a heritage garden in Victoria, Australia. It covers an area of 200 acres and hosts a number of rare trees along with iconic Australian species and other exotics. Alexander Krasovskis has recently been to the Geelong Botanic Garden and has shared some beautiful pictures from there. Click here to view full story.

Other Interesting Articles

13 Nov

Garden Dispatch # 3

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

The 101 of Growing Hedges for Big & Small Gardens

No matter what the size of your gardens is, hedges make a good choice when it comes to mark borders of your heaven. Hedges have many benefits when compared to stock fence panels. Hedges are beautiful and environmental-friendly. They attract birds by providing them safe perching places. They also act as wind barriers and crime-deterrents. Check out this comprehensive guide on growing and maintaining evergreen hedges.

Featured Plants: Yucca rostrata, Washingtonia filifera,  Pellaea mucronata

Yucca rostrata is a drought-tolerant and low-maintenance plant suitable for xeriscaping projects. The plant is characterized by spiky blue-grey leaves that form a nice symmetrical rosette.

Washingtonia filifera is an evergreen palm tree and is known for its beautiful large fronds. This drought-tolerant plant makes a nice specimen tree in gardens and landscapes.

Pellaea mucronata makes a good low-growing plant that can be used in garden landscapes as filler as well as attractive foliage plant. Pellaea is equally good for hanging baskets because of its delicate stems that are usually covered with small and fresh-green leaves.

Pellaea Mucronata

Pellaea mucronata

Article: Mulch or No Mulch

To mulch or not to mulch – Read this interesting article on pros and cons of mulching.

How to…

How to make clay containers

Brittni Mehlhoff gives step-by-step guide to making your own clay pots and containers to hold small plants.

DIY Clay Planter

DIY Clay Planter

How to make moss checkerboard

Follow these simple tips on making a nice moss checkerboard by Janell Hobart.

How to grow moisture loving plants in a dry climate

If you are living in a region where summer is long, hot and dry, growing moisture loving plants like ferns or air plants can be a bit tricky. However, there are several quick and easy ways to maintain appropriate level of humidity for your plants and keep them healthy and happy in hot and dry summer. Discover some simple and practical tips for growing moisture-loving plants in a dry climate.

Featured Garden: Garden of Designer Chris Moss

Designer Chris Moss has used his own garden in Stockwell, south London, as a mood board. A dark and bright combination works so well here that he shows clients round to persuade them of the logic of black. Have a look at Chris’s garden.

chris moss garden

Beautiful combination of black and green

09 Sep

Garden Dispatch # 2

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

3 Practical Tips for Fall Pruning

Fall is around the corner and it is time to prune your shrubs and trees for the next season. Though not all plants require regular or seasonal pruning, but it is advisable to prune your plants, whenever required, to keep them in desired size and shape. So here are 3 practical tips for fall pruning by Jim Lounsbery.

Special Merit Plant: Impatiens hawkeri

Commonly known as New Guinea impatience, Impatiens hawkeri is a lovely annual that grows up to 4 feet serves as a nice border plant. Also suitable for flower beds,  Impatiens hawkeri produces flowers of many hues ranging from pink, coral, orange, salmon, red, lilac, lavender and white. See more information on growing Impatiens hawkeri in your garden.

Impatiens hawkeri

Impatiens hawkeri / Image by Tom Potterfield

Free Smart Phone App: Garden Insects Guide

The Garden Insect Guide is a free smartphone app for gardeners. Available for iPhone/ iPad and Android phones, this free smartphone app serves as a quick reference when you are in the field – hunting for nasty bugs. You can use this smartphone app to identify good as well as bad bugs and get information about getting rid of bad bugs.

Garden Insects Guide

The application has three guided sections:

  • Identify common pests: This section helps you identify bugs by the kind of threat that they pose to your plants.
  • Spot insect friends: This section introduces friendly bugs that keep the bad bugs away.
  • Keep pests away: This section provides detailed information on getting rid of infesting bugs and preventing their attack in future.

How to Grow Roses

“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”. So true! You will hardly meet a gardener who is not a fan of roses. They are attractive, sweet, colorful and regal. If you are new to growing roses, this comprehensive guide on growing roses could be handy.

How to grow rose

Growing Vegetable in a Window Garden

Growing your own grub can be an existing and satisfactory experience. Fortunately, you do not have to have a large piece of land to grow your own vegetable (unless you are trying to grow pumpkins 😀 ). You can utilize small spaces such as windowsills to grow herbs and vegetables. Follow this link to find step-by-step guide on  utilizing your windowsill to grow your own vegetables.

Windowsill garden


14 Jul

Garden Dispatch # 1

The Garden Dispatch is a weekly compilation of useful and interesting resources for gardeners and landscape designers.

How to turn empty spaces into a beautiful meadow

With a little planning and selection of the right species, it is not difficult to transform woodland into a beautiful meadow. Read more on making a beautiful meadow out of an empty landscape.

Meadow Design

Geranium palmatum

Looking for something new to try in your perennial garden? Try Geranium palmatum; it is not fussy about growing conditions and produces lovely flowers in later spring or early summer. Read: How to grow Geranium palmatum.
Geranium palmatum

A Garden Makeover

Follow this link to see how a nondescript front yard can be transformed into a remarkable garden.

Frontyard Design

How to grow Safrron

Corcus sativus, is a beautiful autumn-flowering perennial known primarily for the production of precious Saffron. Saffron is widely used in Indian, Persian, European, Arab, and Turkish cuisines and is sold for $4.00 and $17.00 per gram. Besides its commercial and culinary usage, Corcus sativus has its horticultural value too. The plant produces brilliantly hued flowers of pastel shade that range from lilac to mauve. These lovely flowers have a sweet aroma that is reminiscent of honey and grassy or hay-like notes. Read more about growing Saffron in your own garden. Read more on growing Saffron in your garden.


How to prune groundcovers and grasses

Read these useful tips on pruning groundcovers and grasses to keep your garden neat and attractive.

Prunning tips

DIY: Grow a small herb garden in your apartment

Living in apartments and high-rise buildings should not subdue your passion for gardening. There is a lot that you can grow under limited light, humidity and temperature conditions. Here is an interesting article on growing a small herb garden in your apartment by Erin Boyle

Herbs garden