Home & Leisure

The Greener View: 2024 All-America Selections Winners

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

One way that I know a plant could work well in my garden is that I look for the red, white and blue logo of All-America Selections on seed packets, on bedding plant tags or in catalogs. Even AAS winners from several years ago are more likely to prove successful than nonwinners.

The AAS testing program is an independent nonprofit organization ...Read more

The Greener View: Valentine Flowers

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

I have a few questions about Valentine's Day, and maybe you do too. Why do they sell "I only love you" cards in a 10-pack? What is Galentine's Day? I can't answer the first question, but Galentine's Day is the day before Valentine's Day, and it is the day ladies celebrate their girlfriends.

No matter if you celebrate one or both days, flowers ...Read more

The Greener View: Are Cicadas Going To Be a Problem This Year?

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: We were planning on planting several new trees this spring, but we were told by some friends that this summer, cicadas are coming, and they could kill small trees. Do you think is it worth the effort to plant trees this year, or should we wait?

A: I say plant away. Trees are not made in a factory when you want one. The tree you want to plant...Read more

The Greener View: American Garden Rose Selection 2024 Winners

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

The American Garden Rose Selections (AGRS) judges have announced the newest roses to be selected in their testing program. This year there are three new winners.

The All America Rose Selection program ran from 1940 until 2013. The AGRS program began in 2016. Roses that have been selected in either program are the best ones for gardeners to try....Read more

The Greener View: Attracting Cardinals to My Bird Feeder

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: I started feeding birds back when I was forced to stay home. I do get several species of birds daily but not cardinals. They come maybe once a week. I am wondering: What can be done to attract them more often?

A: Cardinals, like all animals, need food, water and shelter. They also don't live everywhere, and in the areas they do live, they ...Read more

The Greener View: Cats Versus Flowerpots

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: We have a new rescue cat. For reasons we don't know, it has been digging the soil out of the tops of all the house plants. It is using the litter box just fine, so it isn't that. We tried several home remedies and sprays that didn't work. I just want to put a barrier on the soil, but I am afraid of harming the plants and I don't want to make ...Read more

The Greener View: Garden Resolutions

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Do you ever wonder why some of the plants you were taking care of died? Usually, for me, it is my fault for not putting the plant in the proper growing conditions for it to thrive. Want to learn more about growing plants in the proper location?

Make a New Year's resolution to learn more about gardening. Resolve to take a gardening class with ...Read more

The Greener View: Gardening Winter To-Do List

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Let's look ahead to gardening in the new year, even though winter may have only officially started last week. The El Nino weather pattern has given us lots of warm weather in the northern half of the U.S. and lots of rain in the southern and eastern parts, so it hasn't felt much like winter yet.

For Northerners, winter is a good time to plan ...Read more

The Greener View: Last-Minute Garden Gift Ideas

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

OK, this is your last chance to get a Christmas gift for your gardener or outdoor naturalist. Here are some quick but nice options.

I have a "glove" affair with gloves. Leather gloves are great, and insulated leather gloves are even better for cold weather chores. On the other hand, I really like the cloth gloves that have been dipped in rubber...Read more

The Greener View: Three Great Garden Books

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Still looking for gifts for your gardener? The three books in today's article cover hot topics in gardening. Many gardeners are trying to reduce the amount of lawn they have to maintain, growing food while still having a pretty garden in the city can be hard to do, and gardeners are starting to really focus on using less water in the landscape. ...Read more

The Greener View: Gift Books for Your Gardener

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

It is that time of year again, time to think about gifts for the gardener in your family who already has all the tools and gadgets. Gardening books are a great way to pass the winter away while learning new things about plants and gardens.

Over the past few decades of telling gardeners about new books, the places where books are purchased have ...Read more

The Greener View: Indoor Vegetable Growing

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Q: The house we just moved to has a huge sunroom. I have had a small veggie garden in the past, but this sunroom seems to have so much potential for growing vegetables over the winter in pots. I have never had much success with houseplants and have never tried a vegetable indoors. What tips can you give me?

A: Since it sounds like this is a new...Read more

The Greener View: New Hardiness Zone Map

Gardening / Jeff Rugg /

Last week the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a new plant-hardiness zone map for the United States. Does the new USDA map offer proof that the climate is warming? No, it does not. Do temperatures shift warmer and colder over time? Of course they do. The temperatures over large regions fluctuate and hopefully always will. ...Read more



Non Sequitur Get Fuzzy Adam Zyglis Wallace The Brave Pedro X. Molina Bob Englehart