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Serena Manickam

Serena Manickam is a freelance editor and writer and sustainable market gardener in rural Virginia. She holds a BA in environmental science and runs Fairydiddle Farm, a small market garden in which she grows no-spray produce and herbs to sell at a local farmer’s market.

While grass lawns certainly have their place, such as play spaces for children and pets, they also require upkeep that drains our time and negatively affects the natural environment. How many hours and gallons of gas are spent mowing unused spaces? These low-traffic sections of the yard can be replaced with grass alternatives for lawns …

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Nothing catches the eye in a garden quite like a bright red flower. And while perennials certainly have their benefits, the quickest way to get these show-stopping crimson blooms into your garden is to plant annuals. To help you choose among the many plants available, here is a list of annual red flowers that will …

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Whether they grow in the sun or shade, perennial yellow flowers bring a golden ray of sunshine to the garden. And since they grow back year after year, you don’t have to worry about replanting them every spring to enjoy their beautiful blooms. 1. Tickseed (Coreopsis spp.) The disc-shaped flowers of tickseed typically have eight …

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Growing native plants is a great way to support pollinators like butterflies and bees, as well as songbirds and other wildlife. Even the smallest patio garden can provide much-needed habitat for native creatures. And it doesn’t have to be difficult! Many beautiful native wildflowers are incredibly easy to grow, such as those listed here. 1. …

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Not a common color among flowering plants, blue adds a unique beauty to the garden. Its calming hue invites wanderers to pause and take notice. Bring some cooler hues to your landscape this year with beautiful annual blue flowers. 1. Bachelor’s buttons (Centaurea cyanus) Also called cornflower, bachelor’s buttons can often be seen blooming along …

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Many types of flowers will bring butterflies to the garden, but these beautiful insects find some plants more attractive than others. Fill your planters and beds with beautiful, nectar-rich annual flowers that attract butterflies, and enjoy not only stunning blooms but friendly pollinators as well. 1. Tickseed sunflower (Bidens aristosa) In late summer and into …

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Many flowers are pretty but effervescent, delighting us with their beauty for only a few short weeks each year. While these plants certainly have a place in the garden, sometimes we just want a flower that blooms for a longer period of time. The following long-lasting annual flowers will ensure you have blooms in the …

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Although they play an important role in native ecosystems, muskrats can cause significant damage with their foraging and burrowing. This semi-aquatic rodent looks like a small beaver with brown fur, a thick body, and large, partially webbed hind feet. Adult muskrats average two and a half pounds and two feet long, including their long, black, …

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A drought-tolerant garden doesn’t have to sacrifice beauty; many stunning flowers will thrive with little to no supplemental water. Native wildflowers and plants from the Mediterranean region often do well in dry conditions. To help you get started, here are 10 beautiful and hardy drought-tolerant flowers. 1. Giant hyssop (Agastache spp.) Giant hyssop, or hummingbird …

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Everyone knows that roses are red (and other colors too, of course), but so many other flowers come in crimson shades too! The list below celebrates 11 perennial red flowers that bring vivid color to the garden year after year. 1. Wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) In spring, wild columbine produces unique, drooping flowers on tall …

Read More about 11 Vibrant Perennial Red Flowers Everyone Is Planting This Season