Flowers

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…

Growing Sunflowers – How to Grow and Care for Sunflower Plants

Sunflowers come in many colors

Growing Sunflowers is one of the really fun parts of summer time gardening.  These big annuals are very easy to grow, which makes them a very popular plant to introduce children to gardening.  Sunflowers (Helianthus annuus) are a member of the Aster family. The sunflower is the state flower of Kansas.  It is native to…

Chocolate Cosmos – One of the Rarest Flowers

Chocolate cosmos flower buds

There are many chocolate colored flowers available, but Chocolate Cosmos gets a special boost.  I give it this rating because, not only does it have a lovely dark chocolate fragrance, but it is also one of the top 10 rarest flowers in the world. The plant is a perennial and is easy to grow and…

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…

Seed Types: Open Pollinated, Heirloom and Hybrid.

Types of seeds

The vegetable and flower growing season is getting closer with each passing day. Here in NC, we have had unseasonably warm weather.  It SEEMS that spring has sprung but I still don’t dare really get gardening in full steam in case we get a bit of a cold snap.  Are you an avid gardener? If…

Flower Pins – Great Gifts for Garden Lovers

Yellow and green enamel lily flower pin

If you have an avid gardener in your life, (or you are one!)you will know that they think about gardening most of the time. When the weather is cold like it is right now, and gardeners are not able to tend to their gardens, all is not lost. These flower pins make the perfect gift…

Astilbe Colors – The Stars of a Shade Garden

Astilbe colors photo gallery

Astilbe is one of my favorite perennials for a shade garden.  There are not many plants that really like the shade that also flower beautifully, but Astilbe is one of them. Astilbe colors could even be called the stars of a shady garden. Astilbe makes a wonderful border edging plant for a large garden bed.…

African Violets – Tips for the Care of this Popular Indoor Plant

If you go to the big box hardware stores around the holidays and during the winter months, you will most likely find African Violets for sale in a lovely variety of flower colors. Even though African Violets can be somewhat picky about care, they are still one of the most popular indoor plants grown.   If you love…

Osiria Rose Photo Gallery of This Hard to Find Hybrid Tea Rose

Osiria Rose is a hard to grow and VERY hard to find rose. I have started an Osiria Rose Photo Gallery on my site. If you have grown the rose, please share you photo for my readers.

Osiria Rose is a hybrid tea rose that was first hybridized in Germany by Mr. Reimer Kordes of Germany in 1978.  The rose was introduced in France by Willemse France under the name ‘Osiria’.  Photos of the rose that have made their way around the internet are highly photo shopped. Several of my readers have grown the rose…

Biltmore Estate Gardens Tour

My husband and I recently spent several days in the mountains of North Carolina with our daughter.  The highlight of the trip was a tour of Biltmore Estate. We enjoyed the tour of the estate, for sure, but what really impressed me was the perennial gardens and conservatory.  I thought my readers would enjoy reading a…

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…

My Favorite Daylilies – A Garden Tour

Banana Boogiebait Daylily

When it comes to versatility, blossoms and easy of care, very few perennials can match daylilies.   They give a magnificent show of flowers, sometimes more than once during the summer season, can be managed by inexperienced gardeners and multiply like crazy to give more plants as the seasons progress. I thought it would be…

The White Garden – Raleigh Botanical Gardens

This white gazebo is a perfect place to sit and admire the white garden in Raleigh

The JC Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh is a wonderful place to spend a day.   We recently had visitors from the UK who are gardeners, so we took them for a visit. One of my favorite parts of the gardens is The White Garden.  It has a plethora of white annuals, perennials and bulbs growing.  There is…

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 a whole slew of new perennial garden plants without the…

Teddy Bear Sunflowers – A Cuddly Giant Flower

How to grow Teddy Bear Sunflowers

I love all sorts of sunflowers.  They are my daughter’s favorite flower and I plant them in all of my garden beds each year.  I have some in my test garden that are about 7 feet tall right now and still not opened.  I plant the large yellow type and rust colored ones too, but…

DIY Newspaper Seed Pots

DIY newspaper seed pots

Starting seeds indoors in the late winter and early spring really increases the time that you can enjoy your vegetable garden in the growing season.  Doing this gives you earlier vegetables and flowers and is such a fun project to do with kids. You don’t even need to invest in expensive seed starting containers.  There…

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…

Osiria Rose Care – How to Take Care of Osiria Rose Bushes

Osiria roses are heavily photo shopped on the internet. This rose is a photo from one of my readers and shows the actual color. See my tips for Osiria Rose care. the gardeningcook.com

Photos of this hybrid tea rose with a lovely white center,& trimmed leaf edges took the internet by storm. When planting Osiria rose bushes, you might end up disappointed that your plant doesn’t look like the photos. Find out why you might have trouble with this pretty rose, and check out these Osiria Rose care…

My North Carolina Winter Garden

Sun peeking through the frozen trees in North Carolina

My North Carolina winter garden is a wonderland this week. Winter storm Jonas has been all in the news this week.  It left a blanket of snow and ice from the South in the US right up the corridor to New England.  My North Carolina winter garden is a sight to behold. Winter storm Jonas…

Cyclamens and Christmas Cactus – 2 Favorite Seasonal Plants

Cyclamens and Christmas Cactus

During the festive season, there are many different seasonal plants on offer at most garden centers.  They add a lovely touch to your seasonal decorating theme and can be carried over as houseplants from year to year.  Two seasonal plants that I love are cyclamens and Christmas cactus.  Both of these make fabulous indoor plants and…

DIY No Carve Sunflower Pumpkin

No Carve Sun Flower Pumpkin

Here is another idea for those of you who do not like the mess of a carved pumpkin. It’s also one that gardeners will love!  This no carve sunflower pumpkin uses the heads of sunflowers or any other colorful daisy like flower to cover the outside of the pumpkin. Silk flowers make the decoration last…

17 Tips for Creating a Cottage Garden

Cottage garden

I love a cottage garden.  I am not a rule follower by nature, especially when it comes to gardens, and I love the way a cottage garden throws caution to the wind in the rule department.   Do you like lots of flowers, flowing lines and a not so formal look? Then  a cottage garden might…

14 Tips for a Successful Garden Make Over

14 tips to a successful garden makeover

This post brought to you by Gilmour. The content and opinions expressed below are that of The Gardening Cook. Get A Successful Garden Make Over With 14 Easy Tips. It’s that time again. Time to transform one of my garden beds that just won’t seem to keep to a single design. I call it my…

Fresh Herbs – Annual, Perennial or Biennial – Which is Yours?

Is your herb Annual, biennial or perennial?

There is nothing quite like the flavor of fresh herbs for cooking.  Growing herbs is something that many cooks try their hand at, to have them on hand all the time.Do you know whether the one you are growing is an annual,  perennial or biennial? This can sometimes be confusing and the answer is not always…

Plant of the Day – Coreopsis Star Cluster

Coreopsis Star Cluster

I like any plant that has a daisy like flower, so Coreopsis is a natural for me.  This pretty perennial is today’s plant of the day. It is called Coreopsis Star Cluster.  It is easy to see where the plant gets its name.  The lovely yellow center radiates out in a star pattern with a…