all is dormant and brown outdoors, moss can be very much
alive and green.
around moist spots in your yard or nearby woods and you
will likely find a patch of bright green moss.
lift some of that pretty patch and transplant pieces
into a shallow bowl filled with a layer of coarse grain
sand and fine potting soil. Ideally, a drainage hole in
your container is best, but you can go without one if
you sparingly water the moss. Gently wash soil and
debris away from the tops of your moss pieces before
placing them in the bowl, and don’t be afraid to tease
them apart with your fingers because they will soon
attach and grow into one magnificent mound.
plain pottery pot or even a cute coffee cup can be the
container for this bonsai look. Moss is often used
around the base of bonsai trees, but moss on its own
brings its own beauty to a windowsill or tabletop with
no direct sun.
an upcoming Home Gardener Day, in Newport News, Va.,
there’s a workshop about bonsai, its history and how
to select, arrange and care for wild grasses and flowers
planted in unique pots.
speakers also can shed light on various aspects of home
Peter Hatch, aka Mr. Monticello. A professional
gardener, he was responsible for the maintenance,
interpretation and restoration of the 2,400-acre
landscape at Monticello from 1977 to 2012, and initiated
the Thomas Jefferson Center for Historic Plants, a
nursery you can shop online or at the estate —
talk, "Thomas Jefferson’s Revolutionary Garden at
Monticello" focuses on how the former president
loved his vegetable garden and wrote that he ate meat
only as a "condiment" to his meals, vegetables
being the main staple of his diet.
Jefferson wrote that ‘the greatest service which can
be rendered any country is to add a useful plant to its
1,000-foot-long, terraced vegetable garden became an
experimental laboratory, an Ellis Island of new and
unusual vegetable novelties from the around the globe,
growing over 330 vegetable and 170 fruit varieties.
Jefferson was also a pioneer in supporting farmer’s
markets and promoting vegetable cookery."
Lane, power of plants. A gardener in the same spot for
31 years and lecturer emeritus Department of
Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University,
Lane discusses "Joy of Gardening and Power of
Plants to Free Your Spirit."
has the ability to change the way we look at life,
death, history, art and love," he says.
connects us to nature and the environment, to family and
friends. Gardening helps us pay attention — to the
whole, and to the details of life."
McDowell, meet Beatrix Potter. An author and a landscape
history and horticulture instructor at New York Botanic
Garden, McDowell talks about the "Gardening
Triumphs of Beatrix Potter, a successful farmer who
fought to preserve her beloved countryside — not just
blue-jacketed bunnies and fuzzy friends.
talk explores her botanical art, the flora and
horticulture that appeared in her stories and sprouted
from the gardens she knew," she says.
Potter was smitten with the study of botany —
specifically mycology/mushrooms — before she became a
children’s book author/illustrator. As a gardener,
Beatrix Potter was a late bloomer. She didn’t have a
garden of her own until she was almost 40 years old,
meaning it’s never too late to start.
went native in England’s Lake District, becoming a
farmer of a heritage breed of sheep and, when she died,
leaving 4,000 acres of preserved farmland to the
Akin, lover of worms and bees. A garden ambassador for
Tagawa Gardens in Centennial, Co., she embraces topics
that engage young and old on the wonders of gardening
and how to enjoy worms, compost and bees. She also
encourages diversity in the garden for personal success
and Mother Nature’s benefit, which she addresses in
her program, "Free for All: Earth and Pet-Happy
plant a lot of the same thing," she says.
"Monocultures make it easy for insects and diseases
to take over. Rather than damaging a patch of something,
the invaders can take out entire beds.
plants that bugs don’t like – lavender, sage,
artemisia and penstemmon all have pungent leaves – so
bugs and four-legged critters usually don’t find them
Potter, buzzing about. A professor of entomology at the
University of Kentucky, Potter is concerned about the
global decline of honey bee colonies and other
pollinators in landscapes, and will explore the
opportunities for bee-friendly lawns and landscapes in
his talk, "Freedom to Bee: Safeguarding and
Conserving Pollinators in Lawns and Landscapes."
are bees declining? Vampire mites, diseases, jet lag,
junk food, habitat loss, and pesticide misapplications
— it’s not easy being a bee these days," he