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An invitation from our garden to yours…

Every month, we will feature a garden from one of our subscribers. Send us your pictures, along with a brief description of yourself, your garden and the particular plants or areas that you would like to highlight to information@costafarms.com.

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The December 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Reed’s Garden Ramblings and author Reed Pugh, a professional landscape designer who works and gardens in the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts. His blog posts draw on both professional knowledge and personal experience. Some of his posts chronicle what is currently happening in his garden; others provide portraits of favorite plants, including trees.

His post on Some of My Perennial BFFs is a great way to get to know both him and his garden. What we appreciate most about this blog, however, is Reed’s talent for explaining basic garden science in a clear and engaging way. We would recommend his post on mulch (Mulch? This Is Not Mulch!) to anyone with questions or confusion about that topic, and we also found his explanation of Garden Degree Days (in Ticks, bugs and disease, Oh my!), a concept that was both useful and intriguing. Only a few days after we first found our way to Reed’s Garden Ramblings, this blog has become a go-to source for garden information that we enjoy.

November 2012
Garden of the Month | November 2012
The November 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Charlie B from the southwest area of Michigan. Charlie loves gardening in her backyard flower bed. Throughout the month of September, her backyard flower bed bloomed but grew a little lopsided due to volunteer plants that she didn''t pull or transplant. With the drought, her zinnia seedlings were chewed off so many times Charlie had given up hope. But amazingly a lot of them came back and are flowering. Some perennials, like phlox and liatris, had also stunted growth due to the drought.

In her main bed she is growing: Sedum, Cosmos, Campanula, Allysum, Primrose, Marigolds, California Poppy, Woodworm, Irises, Daylilies, Calendula, Oriental Poppies, Zinnias, Liatris, Salvias, Russian Sage, Ox Eye Daisy, Euphorbia, Veronica Spike Speedwell, Gaillardia Burgundy, Malva, Balloon Flowers, Batchelor Buttons, Phlox, Heliopsis, Monarda, Asiatic Lilies, Statice. Shrubs and Grasses: Flowering Quince, Viburnum, Goldflame Spirea (in back), Forsythia, Miscanthus ''Morning Light'' and Pampas grasses.

Charlie is also quite the explorer and enjoys documenting how her vegetables and squash gardens did throughout the summer of 2012. The squash area was new this year and she experimented there by using large cardboard boxes. Pretty neat!

October 2012
Garden of the Month | October 2012
The October 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Carol M. from Indiana (Zone 6b). Carol has a degree in Horticulture Production from Purdue University and is an avid gardener. In addition to writing for her own blog, Carol writes Indy Garden Sense, a seasonal gardening column published in The Southside Times, a weekly newspaper distributed in south suburban Indianapolis. She has also contributed to Horticulture and regularly writes for Indiana Gardening.

Her hoe collection is real as is her passion for plants and her ability to relate almost everything in life to gardening. To Carol, anything less than passionate would be an understatement. She is a self proclaimed ‘eccentric gardening geek’ who believes divides her laundry up into loads of lights, darks, and gardening before she washes it. Surprise to none is her largest pile is gardening.

Early fall 2012 has been the new spring in Carol’s garden. After three months of the hottest, driest days she’d ever experienced as a gardener, Carol finally had some good rains, thus her Dianthus is blooming. Phlox ''David'' had a good run in July and didn''t last long, but it has made a triumphant come back now in the fall. Elsewhere in the garden, some Bird''s Nest Spruces (Picea sp.) decided to bud out again just like spring and some Hosta that died back almost completely are sending up some new shoots, as is a Clematis vine that she innocently planted in May not realizing that it would be the hottest, driest three months of her gardening life.

September 2012
Garden of the Month | September 2012
The September 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Pat and Jim from Strongsville, Ohio (Zone 5b). When the duo moved from Chicago to the Cleveland area, their blog and house came with trees and an overgrown landscape that hadn''t been tended to in 15 years, so Pat the experienced gardener, worked on the look and feel to make it their own. To customize their landscape, they removed 12 trees and 40 dead bushes and added some of their favorites, including Hosta, ligularia and sedum.

Jim is quite the funny guy and often remarks about his yard as the ‘house of clay’. “Our yard is clay. Clay, clay and more clay. Clay all the way to the center of the earth. The people at the conservation district told us that ‘we're at the wrong end of the glacier’."

In recent weeks, their garden has had a good amount of rain and is keeping the garden in remarkable shape. Their hibiscus plants (or is it hibisci) and all the various rudbeckia have never been bigger and their backyard is always a buzz with all kinds of bees and butterflies. They literally cover the marsh milkweed and ligularia. Both Pat and Jim remark that you can ‘hear them flying around the yard’. 

August 2012
Garden of the Month | August 2012
The August 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Jean, a professional sociologist and an amateur gardener who loves flowering perennials. She is fortunate to have two gardens to call her own, one in East Poland, Maine (USDA zone 5a/4b) and a smaller garden in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania (USDA zone 6b) where she teaches and lives part time. 

In this blog, Jean draws on her gardening experience as she reflects on her own garden, makes observations about gardens she visits, and reviews garden books and garden blogs. Occasionally, she uses the lens of her sociological training to consider the social meaning of gardening and to observe the community of garden bloggers.

Currently, Jean likes to blog (http://jeansgarden.wordpress.com/) about the 20 of the more than 40 daylily varieties blooming in almost every part of her garden. Daylilies are providing a strong yellow presence in the Blue and Yellow Border of her garden, where five varieties are blooming and four more are still to come. The early rebloomer ‘Boothbay Harbor Gold’ was the first to bloom here and is now starting to slow down. ‘Alna Pride’ is a favorite of hers because of its wonderful vanilla fragrance. Other yellow daylilies currently blooming in this flower bed are ‘Mary Todd’ and ‘Treasure Room.’ Blue accents are provided by several fading delphinium blooms (these plants did not do well this year), Linum perenne, hardy geraniums, and a few last tradescantia flowers. As a special treat, the Siberian iris ‘White Swirl,’ that finished blooming several weeks ago, has opened a new flower.



July 2012
Garden of the Month | July 2012
The July 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Barbie and Christine, life-long friends with two very different gardens in Cape Town, South Africa. Both ladies consider themselves to be novice gardeners and through their blog, The Gardening Blog (http://www.thegardeningblog.co.za/), they share their experiences with each other and anyone who cares to join them in their series “watching our gardens grow”.

Barbie and Christine share similar life experiences, thus their friendship and kinship is shown through their words, posts and images of their gardens growing. Young mothers in their late teens / early twenties, “corporate types” throughout their 30's and then business owners in their 40's, gardening is a new passion for both. Both ladies embody the idea of country living and cherish their time in their gardens. They showcase their true green thumbs and spirit of the earth.

Barbie’s garden is filled with vegetables, fruit trees, herbs and chickens roaming free while Christine’s garden is dominated by large trees on a medium sized shaded property. With no “full sun” areas, Christine plants plenty of shade and partial shade loving plants. She enjoys using shrubs and flowers, including camellias and azaleas, but roses and irises are her favorite.
June 2012
Garden of the Month | June 2012
The June 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Jess, a garden blogger from Charleston, South Carolina who spends her days renovating her historic double porch style home and dreaming about her Lowcountry, USDA Zone 9a garden.

Jess loves lilies and recently came home from a business trip to what she calls a “Welcome” sight – LILIES! In her 2012 spring garden, which surrounds her home and walkways, Jess has gardenias and the oleander that are currently outdoing themselves. She also added some plumbago just so that she gets to walk past it each day on her way to work.  
Her garden aspirations currently include a nicely smelling garden, where a passerby would recognize exactly where you were by scent alone if you were blindfolded, bound and gagged (LOL!). Her top 10 with bloom times include :

10) Oriental Lilies (May-June)
9) Pittosporum (March)
8) Wisteria (Late Feb-early March)
7) Honeysuckle (May-Sept)
6) Ligustrum (April)
5) Gardenia (May)
4) Brugmansia (June-Sept)
3) Moon Vine (June-Sept)
2) Confederate Jasmine (Late March-April)
1) Night Blooming Jasmine (May-Aug)
May 2012
Garden of the Month | May 2012
The May 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Mary G, a freelance garden designer and coach from the Burke, Virginia area. That’s a suburb of Washington DC.

Mary is a graduate of the Landscape Design Program at George Washington University, and loves to write about almost as much as she loves to garden. Her blog, Black Walnut Dispatch, was inspired by the half dozen or so Black Walnut trees that grow in or adjacent to her garden. Mary says that Black Walnut trees are difficult to garden under, but are also very beautiful. Her blog motivation is to share her thoughts about gardens, landscape, and design, and to connect with other gardening souls around the world.

We thoroughly enjoyed her Soil is Haunted post. Her humor with regards to gardening is something so unique that we keep coming back to her site! Another favorite is: Better Homes and Gardens Than Yours.

April 2012
Garden of the Month | April 2012
The April 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Michelle P., a talented writer, Master Gardener, and the author of The Complete SAVing Source Catalog: A Guide to Saving the Earth and Money.

Michelle’s blog, The Sage Butterfly, is a creative reflection of the beauty and wisdom of nature. She believes the butterfly carries the wisdom of nature through its beauty and transformation and survival, thus her blog’s name was chosen as a symbol of nature''s unquestionable steadfastness and knowledge.

What we like best about Michelle’s blog and garden is her natural approach to gardening. Her Zone 7A garden is a place for her, her blooms and tons of wildlife to showcase itself. As for what’s blooming to date in her garden, the list goes on and on, but she’s currently enjoying daffodils, blackberry lilies (Belamcanda chinensis), hydrangeas, hellebore, Gelsemium sempervirens (Carolina Jasmine), Cornus florida (Pink Dogwood), Knockout Roses and Yarrow.

March 2012
Garden of the Month | March 2012
The March 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Debra, a passionate gardener, plant whisperer, freelance garden writer, gardening coach, occasional photographer, wild bird groupie and DIY diva.

Debra’s known for her fresh ideas and creative approach and has been a gardener and landscaper for more than 20 years, creating garden designs for installation in Michigan’s USDA Zone-6a climate. In addition to her blog, Gardens Inspired, she writes and publishes weekly industry-related articles in support of independent garden centers in the Midwest.

What we like best about Debra’s blog and garden is her creative approach to color. Her blog is a place for her, her friends, her stunning garden and others. As for what’s bloomed for her, the list goes on and on. Debra loves color and uses iris, Asiatic lily, roses, lavender, hydrangeas, daisies and peonies throughout her garden and pathways.

February 2012
Garden of the Month | February 2012
The February 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Margaret, an avid gardener and writer, who was the garden editor at Newsday (one of the country’s largest dailies) and then for Martha Stewart, where she was the first garden editor of “Living” and later editorial director of the magazines, books and internet.

Margaret “retired” from Martha Stewart Living on the last day of 2007 to tend to her 2.3-acre garden, bordering on the Berkshires of Massachusetts. She walked away from a fancy job and “success” to explore personal creativity on her blog, A Way to Garden, as well as write a book.

What we like best about Margarte’s blog and garden is that she clearly loves what she’s doing: building a habitat. Her blog is a place for her, her friends, her stunning garden and for birds and bugs. As for what’s been blooming in her garden or what’s to come, Margaret loves HOT colors. She’s recently been expanding her palette of sunny-colored annuals, including a very sexy new-ish petunia called ‘Potunia Papaya,’ from German breeder Dummen-Red Fox.

January 2012
Garden of the Month | January 2012
The January 2012 Garden of the Month belongs to Brooke, an avid gardener and collector of vintage roses and cottage style flowers from southern Indiana. Brooke loves to share her garden at my Creative Country Mom and recently started a new blog is called Never Enough Flowers. It’s a garden-themed inspiration board of ideas and things she’s found on the web.

Brooke also often shares country home ideas and tidbits about living off the beaten path. She enjoys planting things from seed and has several unusual vintage perennials and annuals, including vintage hollyhocks and hydrangeas. The Midwesterner also collects heirloom and reblooming irises and has over 25 varieties of old fashioned hollyhocks to date.

Brooke lives on almost 7 acres on a 48 acre lake in southern Indiana and is most proud of her ever expanding garden.She also attends garden events and tours and plans on starting her Master Gardener classes.
December 2011
Garden of the Month | December 2011
The December 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Lisa, a giddy gardener and foodie from Iowa (Zone 5). Lisa has a passion for growing anything green and finds nothing more exciting than watching a wee little seed turn into a jungle of foliage and fresh food. She loves sharing her gardening experiences includingthe ups, the downs and the tasty!

As for her garden, Lisa grows everything from flowers to veggies to weeds and anything you could think of in between. She also comes from a family of gardeners and Lisa has many fond memories of snapping green beans,her father’s salsa cooking on the stove and helping her mother plant impatiens in the front yard.She didn’t really realize the extent of her passion for it until she had my own place…and it only continues to grow (um yea…no pun intended).

You can read more about Lisa’s garden experiences on her blog, Life in Green. Some of her most notable posts include the ones about her recently expanded veggie garden.

November 2011
Garden of the Month | November 2011
The November 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Lara, a gardening extraordinaire who has tended a garden for 30+ years in various parts of the country, and completed a master gardening course about 10 years. Despite the many years under her belt, Lara doesn’t consider herself an expert gardener. In fact, every day she realizes how much she doesn’t know.

Her husband refers to her style of gardening as “free form jazz” which she feels is pretty accurate. And when you visit Lara’s blog, Hedgerow Rose, you will see her ever resilient plants.

Lara’s garden is very simple, consisting of seven, small, cultivated beds and one container garden on an average sized lot. When she moved her family to Central Pennsylvania 2 1/2 years ago, she found these beds filed with mostly of hostas, bleeding heart, a few peonies, ferns, a few well-established shrubs, a big pile of coreopsis and loads of weeds. In her first summer, Lara spent most of that time weeding out each bed and seeing what was there. In her second summer, she went hog wild and added many, many more perennials. And now, as her third summer wrapped up, Lara established a container garden and is indulging in her love of roses (she is currently growing over 50 varieties, mostly in pots).

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October 2011
Garden of the Month | October 2011
The October 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Benjamin, a true green thumb who enjoys poetry, creative nonfiction writing and has lived in a number of states throughout the Midwest, as well as in England. When you visit Benjamin’s blog, The Deep Middle, you will see his dedication to photography, gardening and life as he sees it.

Benjamin began his garden (Zone 5a) in July of 2007. The main back garden is roughly 1,500 square feet on the southeast corner, with an additional foundation of beds along the back of the house, as well as the front. He enjoys using native plants and to date has roughly 75% of his garden featuring natives to either the Great Plains or the eastern U.S. Benjamin also enjoys very tall plants, 6-14' herbaceous perennials, and only uses organic fertilizer.

Benjamin says gardening is something he got from spending time with his mother in her garden growing up. He says his mother’s gardening habits are a way to reconcile her past and present, the darkness and light, to work through good and bad, a place that has defined her since a child needing to escape her life. So when he moved into a townhome, his first place, Benjamin’s mother made sure they put in a small bed near the patio.

September 2011
Garden of the Month | September 2011
The September 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Jo, a wife, survivor and gardener who enjoys her true ‘Jersey Girl’ roots. When you visit Jo’s blog, Diggin Around, you will see her dedication to gardening and photography, as her images are just stunning.

Jo calls 2010 ‘her worst gardening year ever, due in part to incapacitation, 100°+ heat wave for the summer and 2+ months of drought’. 2011 though has been great thus far for the eclectic, creative and happily married 30 something who happens to be disabled with Seronegative Arthritis and Fibromyalgia.

Currently showcasing in her garden are Autumn Joy Sedum, Knockout Rosa ''Radcon,'' Weeks ''Mardi Gras'' floribunda and other Butterfly Bushes. In late Spring/early Summer, she had two flash floods within a week, which ruined her Parsley, Basil, Zinnia, all but one Mammoth Sunflower, as well as some of the Morning Glory & Green Bean vines. But as of late August, she harvested round two of ''Early Girl'' tomatos as well as her first Green Beans. It''s also been an incredible year for Jo’s roses & many other blooms in my garden.

August 2011
Garden of the Month | August 2011
The August 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Cherie, a gardener who dabbles in growing butterfly friendly plants. When you visit Cherie’s blog, Heart and Soul Reflections, you will see her dedication to perpetuating knowledge about all things growing in her gardens and particularly the planting and care of her butterfly garden.

Cherie has gardened for many years quite casually and just recently became more serious about education and a goal with her gardening.Just this spring, her garden was certified as a North American Butterfly Garden and she’s added many plantings to accommodate her winged friends.

Cherie has the privilege of gardening in both shade and sun and loves them both! Her garden provides great subject matter for my second love, photography and she thoroughly enjoys spending hours on end in her Illinois garden.

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July 2011
Garden of the Month | July 2011
The July 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Teresa, an avid rose gardener who dabbles in growing other plants. When you visit Teresa’s blog, A Garden Diary, you will see her dedication to perpetuating knowledge about all things growing in her gardens and particularly the planting and care of her roses. She is a perfect example of taking gardening to the next level by adding a ‘safe haven’ via her vertical growth structures and greenhouse in her lush garden and landscape.

Whether on an arbor, a fence or other structure, Teresa feels growing vertically is a great way to utilize space and add interest to gardening. Currently in her garden, she has a number of vertically grown favorites, including roses (Favorite: New Dawn), clematis (Favorites: Etoile Violette, Henryi & Jackmani), honeysuckle (Favorite: Major Wheeler/Resistant to Powdery Mildew), morning glories (Favorite: Heavenly Blue) and pole beans (Favorite: McCaslins).

If you look around Teresa’s home, you will find yourself surrounded by roses in intriguing containers and other plants potted up in metal pitchers. She is a natural cultivator of numerous rose species and valiantly attempts to do her part to expand the general interest and knowledge of the beautiful gift we have in plants.

June 2011
Garden of the Month | June 2011
The June 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Chris from Helena, Alabama (Zone 7b). Chris has been growing roses for years, and about4 years ago, joined a local Rose Society to learn a “more excellent” way to cultivate our nation’s “National Floral Emblem”.

Folks ask Chris all the time why he grows roses and his answer is that growing is ‘just the natural progression of things’. Also know as the RedneckRosarian, this southern gentleman comes from a family that finds its roots firmly planted in the Deep South and all its awesome traditions. During civil war times, women gathered at cemeteries to decorate the graves of “our glorious dead” with blankets of spring roses. They wept and celebrated the lives of those who so bravely “fought the good fight”. Even today families gather for “Decoration Day” to decorate the graves and celebrate and remember.

Roses permeate so many facets of our lives, and Chris embodies that sentiment. When you visit his website at RedneckRosarian you will see his dedication to perpetuating knowledge about all types of roses and particularly the planting and care of rose gardens. If you look around his home, you will find yourself surrounded roses. They appear on dishes, photographs, upholstery, clothes, shoes, wallpaper and paintings. Chris valiantly attempts to do his part to expand the general interest and knowledge of the beautiful gift we have in the rose and to date, he has 73 roses under cultivation, representing over 60 varieties.

May 2011
Garden of the Month | May 2011
The May 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Susan from Plano, Texas (Zone 8). Susan, also know as Gaga, is an avid horticulturist holding national awards for growing prize winning roses and award winning gardens. A true master in the art of rose growing and garden design.

When you visit her website at Gaga’s Garden you will see her dedication to perpetuating knowledge about all things growing in her gardens and particularly the planting and care of rose gardens. She is a perfect example of taking gardening to the next level by adding a ‘safe haven’ via her greenhouse in her beautiful garden and landscape.’

Gaga's expertise includes one year as recording secretary for the Dallas Rose Society and five years as treasurer for the Northeastern Illinois Rose Society. During her tenure as treasurer of the Northeastern Illinois Rose Society, her society was instrumental in having the rose named as the national flower by the President of the United States at the time President Ronald Reagan.
April 2011
Garden of the Month | April 2011
The April 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Tara from Long Island, New York (Zone 7). As a trained horticulturist, Tara has been gardening for just under 10 years. Her love of the great outdoors, however, has been a constant since she was child. Though she has designed landscaping and implemented her vision for many gardens, her favorite place to work is on her own personal canvas: her backyard. With over an acre of property, Tara spends most of the growing season digging in the dirt with her three children. Whether she’s harvesting fresh berries with her daughters, kayaking in their self designed lake with her son, or planning her next green endeavor with her husband, Tara brings a bit of green everywhere she goes.

Tara believes that the combination of many types of plants is the key to a healthy and beautiful landscape. That is why she has brought together, perennial, biennials, ornamental shrubs, trees, fruits and vegetables creating a yard of sections. Featured plant’s her yard consist of, Iris, lily, coreopsis, Shasta daisy, kniphofia, obedient plant, phlox, sedum, sage, chives, primrose, rudbeckia, ornamental grasses, the list goes on and on. She also has lilac, tardiva hydrangea, butterfly bush, burning bush, forsythia, rose Sharon, rhododendron, azalea, to name a few shrubs. There is a large fruit section bathed in blue berries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, kiwi vine, sugar snap peas, and peach, pear, and apple trees. As well as an endless amount of pond plants such as water lily, water iris, cat tails, grasses, and reeds to name a few. The work she does in her yard is all worth it when her children come to her with huge smiles, hands full of flowers, and bellies full of fresh fruit and vegetables.

After years of urging from family and friends, Tara decided to take her knowledge and sense of humor to the world. Tara’s blog is chock full of useful information. From kid friendly gardening activities to entomology, Tara’s blog approaches gardening with warmth, gentle instruction and often times, humor.

March 2011
Garden of the Month | March 2011

The March 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to J. Paul Moore from Nashville, Tennessee (Zone 7). Paul is a freelance photographer by trait and enjoys photographing all types of gardens, including his woodland shade garden, currently filled with Tennessee native plants.

Gardening was never a dream of young Paul, but after helping his parents establish Moore and Moore Garden Center in 1980, he discovered a natural aptitude for plants. Paul’s contribution to the gardening community brought him national attention in 1997 when he received the Garden Communications Award from the American Association of Nurserymen. After opening Moore and Moore, he began work on a native plant garden at his home.

Nestled on a hilltop on the outskirts of town, the garden matured with his children and grew with his enthusiasm for nature. Now, 25 years later, Paul’s garden is a showcase for Tennessee native plants and is a frequent stopover for many garden tours. It also provides him with a limitless source of images for his stock photo library.

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February 2011
Garden of the Month | February 2011
The February 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Glenda from Alberta, Canada (Zone 3). Glenda, also known in her gardening circle as Tootsie, is a mother of three and self taught gardener. Despite her lack of formal training, the gardening guru loves to grow ‘what works for her’, including various color items in the spring.

Tootsie has been growing in her greenhouse for about nine years and loves every minute of it.She grows all her own annual flowers from seeds each year and dreams of the day she can own a greenhouse large enough to make a living growing for others.

As another side project, she updates her blog, Tootsie Time, with daily rants about current blooms and things of that sort. While Tootsie is by all means a gardener by trial and error, she is most proud of the fact that her greenhouse and gardens have gotten her through many rough times.

January 2011
Garden of the Month | January 2011
A new year, a new garden of the month… The January 2011 Garden of the Month belongs to Brenda from Bowling Green, Ohio (Zone 5). Brenda is a passionate artist who loves growing things. She doesn’t consider herself a gardener, but would rather be called 'someone who enjoys growing!' She has been teaching or studying the art of growing for over 30 years and has had her photography featured in many garden magazines and local publications. She also works with commercial garden companies and photographs plants for The Garden World Report.
Brenda, who hosts #gardenchat on Twitter, specializes in using a combination of blooms and foliage in the landscape. She also loves to grow year-round in a 10'x12' greenhouse. During the growing months outdoors, she also harvests from a garden that is 40'x60' and filled with blooms and veggies. As another side project, Brenda updates her blog, BGgarden.com, with daily ravs about current blooms and things of that sort. While Brenda is by all means a garden enthusiast, she also enjoys the little things that educate her, including her facebook fan page comments, #gardenchat and Friend Friday on Twitter.
December 2010
Garden of the Month | December 2010

The December Garden of the Month belongs to Kylee from Haviland, OH (Zone 5). Kylee specializes in using blooms, including Sun Rose, Chives, False Indigo and Bugleweed, in the landscape. Some of her favorite plants to use are Mountain Bluet, Tree Peony, Iris siberica 'Chilled Wine' and Shooting Star for color.

She also loves her Silver Bells (Ornithogalum nutans), which are very dainty looking, but quite appealing to the eye. Kylee posted these particular pictures back in May on her blog and devoted a whole page to the many beauties flourishing in her garden. She has also updated her blog, OurLittleAcre.blogspot.com, with daily ravs about current blooms and things of that sort. While Kylee is by all means a garden enthusiast, she also enjoys the little that educate her, including Garden Blogger's Bloom Day, #gardenchat and Friend Friday on Twitter.  

November 2010
Garden of the Month | November 2010
The November Garden of the Month belongs to Teresa from Upstate New York (Zone 5). Teresa specializes in using blooming shrubs and cold hardy plants outside in the landscape, either overwintering them outdoors or bringing them in. Her favorite plants to use are Montauk Daisies, roses and climatis for color.

She also loves her nasturtium, which are still very large and luscious in her garden. She recently posted a blog entry on blog.gardenshoesonline.com in reference to her foxglove, which made a last hurrah before the winter wonderland that is New York. Throughout the fall, Teresa has been proud to show off her sedum and mums, especially with pumpkins and gourds on her porch during the many Halloween festivities she hosted.

October 2010
Garden of the Month | October 2010

The October Garden of the Month belongs to Steve from Jacksonville, Florida (Zone 9). Steve specializes in using tropicals and houseplants outside in the landscape, either overwintering them outdoors or bringing them in. His favorite plants to use are bromeliads, ti plants (also known as ti or Hawaiian good-luck-plant), alocasias, palms and gingers, with evergreen natives thrown in for protection, wildlife and shade.

His garden gets to about 20 degrees in winter, so it’s been an experiment in what plants can be grown outdoors, such as (surprisingly) Christmas cactus and Monstera Deliciosa. He likes to use a light covering of pine straw in winter to help his plants from frost.

The most innovative aspect of Steve’s garden is his newly installed rain garden! He used a groundcover of liriope ‘big blue’ (the big clumping kind) and liriope spicata (the short and spreading kind) to create a patchwork of different heights. Cordyline australis ‘red star’ and ‘dark star’ rise out of the liriope at alternating heights, and dyckia ‘red planet’ sits on the edge of the rocks.

The rain garden is the driest and sunniest part of the yard, and Steve grew tired of water runoff running down his sidewalk and driveway, doing his garden no good. His thought was: If wasting water wasn't bad enough, fertilizer and pesticides wash away with the rainwater too, polluting our rivers and contributing to deadly algal blooms in the St. Johns River. A rain garden is just what the doctor ordered here. Thus the rain garden got its start. To read more about it, check out Steve’s blog.

September 2010
Garden of the Month | September 2010

The September Garden of the Month belongs to Chris T. from Champaign, IL. The patio garden is one of the latest additions to Chris’ quarter-acre suburban yard. Before the project, this site was a landscape nightmare. Chris was never able to decide which plants would fit the site. Years ago, when friends gave his son a 'North Star' cherry tree, Chris placed it at a focal point on the corner of the patio, but never developed the surrounding bed.

Last October, Chris decided to build a raised bed planter to bring the plants up to the level of the patio seating to create a more delineated border around the patio. After building the planter, Chris planted bulbs (Tulipa 'Dynasty'), two Blue Rug Junipers, and a creeping Sedum to hold over until spring.

This spring and summer, Chris filled the patio garden with a variety of tropicals, annuals and foliage plants in a variety of colors and textures. The plants used include Caladium, Coleus ('Trailing Dark Heart' and 'Religious Radish'), Lantana, Melampodium 'Showstar', New Guinea Impatiens, 'Little Prince' Banana, Pennisetum 'Purple Baron', Carex 'Red Rooster'.

Chris says he has been so pleased with this garden this summer that he plans to expand it by building a second tier that extends out far from the patio area and joins the surrounding landscape borders. Chris plans to fill both with a variety of tropical and temperate foliage plants, as well as some annual and perennial flowers to give splashes of color.

Every month, we will feature a garden from one of our subscribers. Send your best garden pictures to information@costafarms.com, along with a brief description of yourself, your garden and the particular plants or areas that you would like to highlight.

August 2010
Garden of the Month | August 2010

The August Garden of the Month belongs to Rita, B. from Orlando, FL. Her garden started out as a few mismatched, languishing plants, or as Mrs. B likes to call it, "Not a thing of beauty."

She was yearning for something peaceful and tranquil, as her patio is an important focal point of her home. So she decided to bring the inside out with regards to her garden. She added bold, warm colors and textures that mirror the exquisite modern decor of her home.She outfitted her patio with all Costa Farms’ plants, combining oranges and pinks with every hue of green imaginable. The movement of the glass sculptures inside her home is reflected by the shape of the leaves of the Philodendrons, Fiddler's Fig and White Bird of Paradise.She added color through the Hibiscus, Philodendron and Anthurium. She spent hours arranging the plants. At the conclusion of the project, Mrs. B. ended up witha beautiful canvas, full of life and harmony.

For spring/summer interest: Hibiscus
For color: Hibiscus, Philodendron and Anthurium
For pattern: Alocasia
For privacy screening & to blend with the natural landscaping: Fiddler's Fig and White Bird of Paradise
Every month, we will feature a garden from one of our subscribers. Send your best garden pictures to information@costafarms.com, along with a brief description of yourself, your garden and the particular plants or areas that you would like to highlight.

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July 2010
Costa Farms - Spring Trial Garden
Costa Farms' Spring Trial Garden
19995 SW 194 Avenue | Miami, FL 33187

Garden Specs:
The Trial Garden is directed by Dr. Kate Santos, who joined Costa Farms from the University of Florida in late 2009. The spring trials were planted in November and plants withstood an unseasonably cold winter in January.

The spring trials included genera from 16 different companies (Aris, Ball, Benary, Bethel Farms, Classic Caladiums, Dummen, Ecke Farms, Fides, Foremost Co., GroLink, McGregor Plants, Michells, Proven Winners, Sakata, Suntory, and Syngenta), as well as new introductions for 2011 and 2012.

Types of Plants:
Hybrid Geranium, Impatiens, Marigold, Petunias, Salvia and Viola.
'O2 for You' on GMA
The Organic Mechanic, Mark Highland, stopped by the “Good Morning America” show to explain how indoor houseplants improve air quality in your home or office.
Costa Farms needs your best practices, shortcuts, and tips. All tips submitted will be considered for publication on the Tip of the Month page. Your tip might even be featured as the top tip!
More Garden Tips
2290 SW 162nd Avenue Miami, Florida 33170 TF: 800-327-7074 Contact Us
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