Latest articles


Getting to know the Senecio plant family

It’s a large one with approximately 100 succulent types in the genus

Sometimes I come across an unfamiliar plant and become so intrigued by it that I go home and research it. This happened last fall when I saw a display of Fishhooks Plant in a local garden centre. Fishhooks Plant is its common name; its botanical name is Senecio radicans. It belongs to a huge plant […] Read more


Tired of winter? Looking for a challenging gardening project?

Try growing a zebra plant — not the easiest to care for but well worth the effort

Like many gardeners I heave a sigh of relief when February arrives, knowing that we are past the midway mark through winter. At this point we are also pretty tired of the season and looking for something to perk us up as we wait for spring. For some that may mean a warm holiday get-away, […] Read more



Dreaming of gardens to come

Now is a good time to plan and dream about the 2019 garden

At this time of year we begin to dream about the summer gardens, and as seed catalogues arrive in the mail, we study them, looking with interest at the new varieties. Many horticultural organizations publish annual plant pick lists, the Perennial Plant Association being one of them. For 2019 it has chosen a perennial commonly […] Read more


Looking for a low-maintenance indoor plant?

Succulents have the ability to hold large amounts of water in their tissues

Several of my gardening friends are very knowledgeable about plant classification and their Latin names and can identify the family name. This doesn’t interest me much but I do use this information quite frequently such as when researching a plant such as a succulent. Succulent is a term applied to plants which have the ability […] Read more



Taking care of the winter birds

Providing the right conditions will help to attract them to your yard

It has been a few years since my wife and I have stayed in Manitoba for the winter but this year we are staying home. One result of this decision is that we will be able to enjoy the birds that frequent the feeders in our front yard. Winter birds are a real treat to […] Read more


Jasmine is a high-maintenance plant but really worth the effort

When the perfume of the scented flowers fills the room you’ll be glad you gave it all that TLC

Many flowering houseplants don’t bloom much during the winter, so finding one that does is a great discovery, even if the plant is rather high maintenance. Jasmine is one such plant. The type most commonly used as a houseplant is Jasmine polyanthus — a perennial vine. Plants that have buds are usually available in garden […] Read more



‘Silver Queen’ is often called Chinese evergreen

Foliage of rich-green leaves with silver patches is main attraction of this easy-care plant

Last month I wrote about houseplants with metal in their name, such as copper, iron, or aluminum. Here’s one with silver in its name — Aglaonema “Silver Queen.” Aglaonema plants are often referred to as Chinese evergreens since they originated in Asia. There are dozens of cultivars but my favourite is “Silver Queen” which has […] Read more


‘Metal’ houseplants with mettle

Here’s some tough plants that will thrive even under less-than-ideal growing conditions

Some of the most resilient and tough houseplants have a lot of mettle — they can endure inhospitable conditions and will thrive even when somewhat neglected. Is it any wonder that some of these plants have the names of metals in them? I call them “metal plants with mettle!” Aspidistra Elatior (cast iron plant) Probably […] Read more



Displaying trailing plants indoors

This can be a challenge as they take up a lot of space but there are ways to do it

It can be difficult to display trailing plants indoors as they can take up a lot of space and are hard to position so that they look like they are part of the interior landscape. There are many attractive trailing plants that are ideal for use indoors because they demand relatively low light levels. Heart-leafed […] Read more


Propagating a polka-dot plant

They do have a short lifespan but it is possible to get new plants from cuttings

Last spring I bought a lovely pink polka-dot plant, big and bushy and about 20 cm tall. The single plant filled a six-inch pot, and I think it had either been kept over for the winter or else grown from seed planted months earlier. I was fascinated by the speckled leaves and the plant’s tidy […] Read more