Spring

Start Seeing Monarchs the First Saturday in May

Colorful Monarch Butterflies

The first Saturday in May is marked as the day to Start Seeing Monarchs. What an appropriate national day for this time of the year!  Have you seen any monarch butterflies in your yard this year?  I’ve been seeing them in my garden for a few weeks This day was chosen to raise people’s awareness…

Astilbe Companion Plants – What to Grow with Astilbe

Companion plants for astilbe

Astilbe is a gorgeous perennial that is right at home in a shady moist garden.  You can grow it alone, but a well designed garden looks better with more than just one type of plant. These astilbe companion plants like the same moisture and light conditions and will make a beautifully coordinated garden bed. Selecting companion…

How to Grow Astilbe – Perfect for Shade

The perfect plant for shady spots - Astilbe

One of the stars of a shady garden bed is astilbe.  It has a feathery leaf structure and gorgeous flower plumes that sit above the plant majestically. These tips will show you how to grow astilbe and bring color to your shady perennial garden beds.My mother had a lovely garden set up until she died.…

Natural Ant Killer Remedies

Effective, Natural Ant Killer Remedies

I am so looking forward to the return of warm weather. With the sunny days come flowers, gardening and time spent outdoors.  Unfortunately, with the warm weather also come ants!  These natural ant killer remedies will help to control the ants in your home in a non toxic way. It is fun for kids to…

Rope Wrapped Eggs – Cottage Chic Decor Project

I love pretty home decor projects that can be used for an upcoming holiday but aren’t TOO seasonal. These Rope Wrapped Eggs have a pretty cottage chic rustic look that is perfect for both spring and Easter. This project came after a trip to my local Dollar Store to pick a package of their over…

Spring Table Centerpiece – Quick and Easy Decor Project

Spring table centerpiece

It’s time for a change out of my table centerpiece.  I love this type of project – gather a few supplies, poke them into the floral foam and voila – a pretty Spring Table centerpiece. My husband made me a centerpiece box to use for Thanksgiving.  It graced my dining room table for Thanksgiving and…

Easter Grapevine Door Swag – Butterflies Bunnies and Eggs!

The Easter Grapevine Door Swag is a pretty way to welcome guests

My front door is one of the few places that always gets a holiday make over.  When Jess was younger, I used to decorate the whole house for each holiday, but those days have long gone. Now, I make a door swag and a centerpiece for my dining room table and call that good enough!…

Spring Blooming Plants – My Favorite 20 Picks for an Early Bloom

My 20 favorite spring blooming plants

After a long and cold winter, most gardeners are really looking forward to the first signs of spring in their garden.  Growing perennial plants and bulbs is a great way to get that color without extra work in the spring. Thankfully, Mother Nature does not disappoint us. There a many Spring Blooming Plants that arrive…

Tips for Growing Forsythia Bushes

Forsythia bush

Nothing screams spring in your garden quite like Forsythia. With their vibrant yellow color, these perennials are one of the first bushes to flower in the spring. The shrub is very hardy, and relatively easy to grow.  These tips for growing forsythia bushes will make sure that your garden is a delight to behold in early…

St. Patrick’s Day Door Swag Welcomes The Luck of the Irish!

St. Patrick's Day Door Swag

My front door is one place that I decorate pretty much year round. Even when I don’t decorate inside the house, I still like to welcome guests in a pretty way on my entry.  This cute St. Patrick’s Day Door Swag is whimsical and welcomes both my guests and spring with the pretty yellow and…

Build an Easter Basket with Clues

Easter Egg Hunt with Clues

  This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser, MARS Incorporated. All opinions are mine alone. #SpringMoments #CollectiveBias It’s time to build an Easter Basket with Clues! When my daughter was a little girl, we always had a normal Easter egg hunt for her, but as she got older, and she…

Leprechaun Hat Centerpiece

Leprechaun Hat Centerpiece

I don’t do much to decorate for St. Patrick’s Day, but I do like a touch of the color green here and there. Two places in my home always seem to get some sort of holiday decor look – my front door and my dining room table. This Leprechaun Hat Centerpiece gives me a chance…

Cold Hardy Vegetables Give you a head Start on Spring

Cold hardy vegetable

The weather here in NC is unseasonably warm right now, so it has my head spinning thinking of all the fun to come in my garden. But, alas, I know that no matter how Mother Nature looks today, there will still be plenty of cold days ahead. Even so, it’s never too early to plan ahead…

Antipasto Platter Tips – Starting Dinner Italian Style

Antipasto Platter with specialty meats and cheeses

One of my favorite ways to start an evening with friends is to serve an antipasto platter. Antipasto, when translated, means “before the meal.” A good antipasto platter is a combination of small bites of tasty food and is usually accompanied by wine. An antipasto platter is meant to stimulate your guest’s appetite before they dig into…

Foxglove Biennial – Digitalis – Poisonous but Gorgeous

Foxglove biennials are a spectacular but poisonous flower

Foxglove biennial plants are spectacular to view.  The term biennial means that the plant will grow for two years and then mainly die off.  Under favorable conditions, they will last a year or two beyond what their normal biennial classification would warrant.  Foxgloves will re-seed themselves easily, so once you have one plant, you garden…

Tips for Growing Heirloom Seeds

Tips for growing heirloom seeds

Thank you EcoFarms for sponsoring this vegetable gardening post. All opinions are mine.  #ecofarmsonline. It’s time to learn about growing heirloom seeds! Heirloom vegetable seeds have so much going for them.  They end up giving you plants that you can’t go to a big box store and buy, they cost less than hybrid vegetables and…

Get into the Gardening Spirit with Plant Something Day

May 19 is Plant something day. Find out what other gardening days are celebrated in the Month of may on thegardeningcook.com #PlantSomething #MrsMeyersInspires #ad

Thank you Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day® for sponsoring this post and for sponsoring Plant Something Day, as Well. #PlantSomething #MrsMeyersInspires AD. It’s time for Pant Something Day! Do you remember those days from years ago when May baskets were added to a friend’s doorway on May Day, the First of May?  I remember those days, fondly,…

25 tips to Get Your Garden Ready for Spring

Garden Tips for Sping

Many areas of the country are still under a blanket of snow, but it won’t be long for most of us to do things to get your garden ready for spring.  Here in NC, depending on how late our winter lasts, that time is almost here!  It is time to start thinking about ways to…

Patriotic Table Decor

Patriotic Table Decor

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #DipintoMeze #CollectiveBias  It’s time for some patriotic table decor. We’ve all had that moment when our friends or parents decide to visit with no notice for an important weekend.  But don’t panic.  Just because you have little warning that you’ll…

Plant Propagation Tips – New Plants for Free

Plant propagation tips - thegardeningcook.com/

If you garden, you will know that the cost of buying new plants can get very expensive over time. But you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a wonderful garden.  Just follow some of these plant propagation tips and you will have both perennial garden plants, as well as indoor plants for…

Mexican Style Stuffed Peppers – a Spicy Dinner Time Recipe

Mexican style stuffed peppers #TexasPete #SaborbyTexasPete #ad

Thank you  ¡Sabor! by Texas Pete® Mexican-Style Hot Sauce for sponsoring this post.  #TexasPete #SaborbyTexasPete  It’s time for some Mexican style stuffed peppers! Liven up the Taste Buds with these Mexican Style Stuffed Peppers. My husband and I often eat out at our favorite Mexican restaurant.  When we do, you can guarantee that at least one of…

Cinco de Mayo Progressive Dinner Party

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a progressive dinner party

Liven up your Cinco de Mayo progressive dinner party with these delicious Recipes. One of my favorite things to do with my fiends when we entertain is to have a progressive dinner party.  We go from one house to the next, with each friend contributing something to the dinner party menu. My blogging friends and…

20 Seed Starting Tips

20 seed starting tips

The holidays have come and gone and most of us are hunkering down for the colder months of the year.  But wait – now is the perfect time to think ahead to spring and even get a head start on it by starting our own seeds indoors.  To help you with this task, I have…

Early Spring Garden Projects

18 tips for early spring gardening

I know that in most parts of the country, the ground is still covered with snow, but as any good gardener will tell you, “it’s never to early to start thinking about spring gardening!”  There are lots of things that you can do to get ready.  These early spring garden projects will get a jump…

Ideas for Decorating a Sun Room

Decorating a sun room for fall

    Bring in the Outdoors with These ideas for Decorating a Sun Room. If you read my blog often, you will know that I have a bit of a passion for garden beds.  I have 11 of them all around my home.  Some of my favorite ones are in my back yard, but the…

Chocolate Raspberry Swirled Mini Cheesecakes

Chocolate raspberry swirled mini cheesecakes

Summer is the time for me to use fresh fruits in many of my cheesecake recipes.  I love the lightness that they give to the dinner menu, and they are perfect to serve when you have a BBQ or grill party. These chocolate raspberry swirled mini cheesecakes are the perfect bite of summertime freshness.  Your…