This summer, my garden became 32 years old.
Did I celebrate by rushing to the nearest plant emporium to buy a dozen or so varieties of my favorite fall and winter flowering plants?
I did not.
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I don't have room in my garden for more plants. What with the no freeze winter zone in my yard in January and February, the flowering plants I bought in the fall of 2014 are still alive and still flowering. Plus, there was a bonus: there are volunteers.
I'm not talking about a few flowering plants here and there. I'm talking about drifts of plants that have taken a liking to my garden and are spreading out. What with the wonderfully mild September with just the right amount of sun and rain; you may find that pruning is your main garden chore this month.
As to species, I am now the proud owner of two varieties of flowering plants that have volunteered their tall, ever-blooming showy selves along the driveway. The Monarchs are in butterfly heaven. I think that one plant variety is in the milkweed family; I'm working on an ID for the other.
YOU ASKED FOR IT
QUESTION: I've heard it's good to plant butterfly weed (asclepias) because that helps endangered Monarch butterflies. But it feels strange to buy seeds for a weed. Is it true my few butterfly weeds can help butterflies?
ANSWER: Yes indeed and also wasps, bees and other insects. In addition to the common name of butterfly weed, this member of the family asclepias, is also called pleurisy root and chigger flower.
Q. Last fall you wrote about spring flowering bulbs and printed a short list of daffodil varieties that do well here. I've lost the list, could you please repeat it?
A. Glad to. These are my favorites: Avalanche, Grand Primo. Campernelle, Early Pearl, and Thalia. They are available at Old House Gardens Nursery: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sixty-year master gardener and environmentalist Betsy Jukofsky has spent three decades on Hilton Head Island learning the peculiarities of coastal Lowcountry gardening.