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Nature is painting for us, day after day, pictures of infinite beauty if only we have the eyes to see them.

~ John Ruskin ~

From the GTG Garden and Greenhouse

April is here and it does not feel like spring in Chattanooga. Just a few days ago we woke up to a light dusting of snow. The winter has been mild but unusually long, our temperatures did not dip into single digits this year. The new coneflowers are growing in the greenhouse and all but the 'Meteor' series have arrived. E. 'Colorburst Orange', E. 'Cinnamon Cupcake', and E. "Leilani' are coming out of dormancy. The Supreme series plants are coming along and they, too, will soon be ready for shipping, to grow and flower in your garden! I'm hoping they will truly turn out to be supreme plants that thrive without fuss, follow us on fb for the latest news from the GTG team.
Mark your calendar: Our spring driveway sale will be the first weekend in May. We'd love to meet you and chat about plants and hear about your garden. If you can't visit in person, visit us on our web site.
Happy spring weeding and planting, Belle
Green Thumbs Galore LLC

Good Plants for Great Gardeners

by Dava Stewart

Since I was in my high school’s ag program, I’ve refused to plant pansies. (We planted so many that I had enough for a lifetime!) I have friends who say things like, “I cannot believe I don’t have any ferns for the front porch yet! I’m so behind on everything!”

Whether due to peer pressure, or a feeling of responsibility, some people feel like they have to plant certain flowers at certain times. To my mind, it’s a bit like having to make up your bed. Sure, you might feel better if you do it, but is it really a necessity?

Then there are those who feel they must follow the trends. Just like clothes, or foods, or anything else, there is a cycle of trendiness for plants.  One of my aunts says the plants in my yard are old-fashioned. Since my house was built in 1929, that makes perfect sense. There are hydrangeas, wild roses, and rose-of-Sharon bushes. I’ve noticed that the same plants grow in the yards of other old houses on my street. Those are the plants that were fashionable in the 1940s and 1950s.

If you walk through the garden departments of big box stores, or visit nurseries in your area, you will likely see lots of the same plants. Those are the ones that are trendy today. There is nothing inherently wrong with them; in fact many are popular due to some attribute like drought-tolerance, or hardiness. If you are looking for something unusual, you may have to travel to specialty nurseries or search the internet. The choices are vast.

As a gardener, your only duty is to grow plants that you like. You are not required to grow anything just because your neighbor does. Grow fruits and vegetables that you enjoy eating, and grow ornamentals that please your eyes or your nose. If, like me, you prefer the old-fashioned plants, seek them out and enjoy them. Mine remind me of my grandmother, who especially loved “snowball bushes” and azaleas. Maybe you like the way your street looks when every house has a bed with brightly-colored annuals growing in it. If that’s the case, buy those flats and fill that bed!

Do you love watching birds? Plant sunflowers and coneflowers! Does it feel like magic when you see butterflies congregating among your flowers? Grow daisies, native grasses and milkweeds. If you enjoy herbal tea, try growing chamomile and mint. What you grow should depend entirely on what you love.

For most of us, time in the garden is limited. Life has so many other obligations, from work to child-rearing to housekeeping, and on and on, that the time we spend gardening is precious. Consider spending it on plants you absolutely love! When you shop at GTG, you can also be assured that our plants are Belle and Dava tested. That means they will be spectacular in some way, tough and likely to survive a occasional dose of benign neglect!

Get Ready!
Our semi-annual driveway plant sale is coming up quick! If you will be near Chattanooga on Saturday, May 4, or Sunday May 5, please make plans to drop in and see us. We love meeting our customers. The driveway sale is always fun and you can get some great deals to fill your garden with plants you love!

Call or check our web site for directions.


April in the Garden:

New Cones for 2012

Echinacea Colorburst Orange

Echinacea Cinnamon Cupcake

Echinacea 'Leilani

Echinacea 'Supreme Cantaloupe'