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The Mighty Gunnera

By Bellevue Botanical Garden, Botany, Gardening, History, Nature One Comment

The Mighty Gunnera By Cecilia Ayres   The Bellevue Botanical Garden is home to several Gunnera tinctoria plants. With their giant, serrated green leaves, thick, spiky stalks, and vibrant red flower spikes, they are easy to spot. The leaves can grow to be four feet across and stand at eight feet tall in the right conditions. These unique features are not only stunning, but characteristics that date back to the Cretaceous Period—yes, gunneras were around in the time of dinosaurs!…

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Putting Your Garden to Bed for Winter

By Gardening No Comments

Putting Your Garden to Bed for Winter By Cynthia Welte Is your garden ready for winter? Work you do now will lay groundwork for your garden next year. Much like returning from vacation to a clean home, starting spring in a prepped garden gives you energy and makes the work more pleasant. (Plus, it’s nice to look out at a tidy garden over the gray winter months.) There are a few simple tasks that you can do now to protect…

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One Corner: Past and Present

By Bellevue Botanical Garden, Gardening, History, Nature No Comments

One Corner: Past and Present By Cynthia Welte Cal and Harriet Shorts’ home was built in 1957. As avid gardeners, they planted many trees and shrubs all around their home, including a Pacific silver fir (Abies amabilis) on the southwest corner of the patio. Sadly, this tree struggled as it aged, and had to be removed in 2002. The tree we planted in its place, Sorbus aria ‘Lutescens’, is a deciduous tree with large silvery leaves. It bears little resemblance…

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Wanted: Garden Escapee, English Ivy

By Adult Education, Gardening, Nature One Comment

Wanted: Garden Escapee, English Ivy By Angela DiLorenzo   English Ivy (Hedera helix) garners oohs and ahhs clinging to the sides of English cottages and adorning arbors. However, in our Northwest coast forests and parklands, it is a menace. Ivy draws us in with its lovely trailing vines and evergreen properties. We eagerly purchase hanging pots and planters full of lovely variegated vines to beautify our homes. Eventually, the annuals die, and perennials over grow their pots. A convenient backyard…

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How Does Your Garden Grow?

By Gardening, Nature, Youth Education One Comment

By Kate Sorensen As I was wandering around the Flower and Garden Festival a couple of years ago, there was a booth for kids to make a plant pot out of newspaper. It was really easy and ingenious! So, I went looking online for directions to share with you. You just need newspaper and a bottle or jar with a concave bottom. Read more here. The Spruce website has some great container garden projects that kids will love. Link includes:…

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Planning – and Planting – for Pollinators

By Adult Education, Gardening, Nature, Resources 2 Comments

Planning – and Planting – for Pollinators By Cynthia Welte Home gardeners can do a lot for pollinator species by providing access to shelter, food, water, and nesting space. The Urban Meadow at the Bellevue Botanical Garden is an example of a pollinator-friendly planting. Next time you walk at the Garden, look at the plants and layout for ideas for your garden. Urban and suburban gardens are not too small to create habitat! Many pollinators have a small range, so…

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Rose Love

By Gardening, Nature, Resources 4 Comments

Words and Photo by Nita-Jo Rountree Roses are beginning to show us why they’re called the “Queen of Flowers.” The lovely, newly emerging foliage fills us with great anticipation for the scented floral beauty that will soon follow. This is a perfect time to plant containerized roses, and the nurseries are brimming with choices. The other day at Wells Medina Nursery, I saw a man unloading a cart full of roses and compost into his SUV. “You’re going to have…

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Spring Tips for Gardeners

By Gardening, Nature, Resources 4 Comments

By Daniel Sparler This article is a reprint from the spring issue of The Buzz – a 16-page quarterly newsletter that is mailed to all BBGS members. Enjoy this and several other member benefits by becoming a BBGS member! We’re all practicing social distancing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t work in your own garden! With the arrival of April and daylight saving time, this is the perfect time to get outside on these ever-lengthening, light-drenched afternoons and tackle a…

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