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Our blog is meant to help gardeners grow healthy and beautiful plants. The posts come from our great community of garden enthusiasts, writers, and bloggers!

  • How do I choose shrubs for the landscape?

    How do I choose shrubs for the landscape?"How do I choose shrubs for the landscape?" This is a great question that we get asked all the time here at Nature Hills. People want to have a beautiful yard and want to make sure that they're spending their money on the right thing. We get it. In the end, the plants you pick are a personal choice of course. Some people love roses and their yard wouldn't be complete without them. Other people hate the upkeep and scent. Some people want one of everything they see in the garden center. Some people only want three types of plants in their whole landscape for a 'clean' look. To each his own.

    Here are a few suggestions, though, to get you pointed in the right direction:


    1) For year-round interest or an ornamental and creative attraction, combine deciduous and evergreen species,  shrubs that bloom at different seasons, or add flowering perennial shrubs to a typically green border.
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  • Planting Asters to Attract Butterflies

    Butterflies And AstersIn the fall, gardens are full of both asters and butterflies.  There are lots of the white cabbage-type butterflies that have been around since early spring, monarchs preparing for their long journey south, yellow sulphurs doing their swirling dance in the air and scads of tiny brownish-orange butterflies whose names I don't even know.  About once a day a red admiral or two pops through, flying quickly and never stopping anywhere very long.

    The butterflies land on the few flowerheads left on the butterfly bushes, then move on to the hundreds of small, daisy-like blossoms adorning the various asters.  The colorful flyers seem especially partial to the taller aster varieties...maybe because those statuesque plants are closer to the sky?  The lower growing asters, like those of the Woods series (Woods Blue, Woods Pink, etc.), also see their fair share of butterflies, skippers and pollinating insects.
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  • Pussy Willow Growth Rate

    Pussy Willow GrowthPussy Willow Growth

    Soon pussy willows, with their soft, touchable gray catkins, will be returning to the grocery stores and florists' shops. In my cold winter climate, those catkins won't show up outside for many, many weeks, but they are growing somewhere and merchandisers will be stocking up shortly to give us all a taste of spring.

    Whenever I see them, I wish once again for my own pussy willow bush. Having such a plant would not only provide me with armfuls of pussy willows for my own house, but give me the satisfaction of not having to pay for them.
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  • Creating A Patio Garden Is A Fun And Rewarding Project

    Creating A Patio Garden

    Creating A Patio Garden Is A Fun And Rewarding ProjectCreating a patio garden can transform your patio into a celebration of the senses with beauty, fragrance, texture and color.  From unique dwarf trees like a Meyer Lemon, bushes in tree form, to colorful shrubs, seasonal perennials, even evergreens to create some privacy.  You are only limited by your space & your imagination.

    Here are some top tips from our Nursery Manager at Nature Hills Nursery.

    Utilize trees in pots.

    Small trees in big pots are great for patios that lack much ground for planting. A Windmill Palm, Juniper or Arborvitae evergreen will help block unattractive views and even create more privacy. Many Tree Forms offer a unique & compelling display with color & fragrances.  Knockout Rose Trees will bring you months of colorful blooms.  The Lilac Tree Forms offer color and amazing fragrance. Continue reading

  • Pine Tree Problem Area Landscaping Tips

    Pine Tree Problem Area Landscaping Tips

    The landscaping or grass under Pine Trees can have a tough time growing properly. This video explains what causes such problem areas under Pine Trees and offers tips on how to best handle the shaded, acidic area under pine trees.

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  • Privet Hedge Pruning

    Side_view_of_Privet_HedgesWhen someone thinks of Privet hedges, one of the first things that come to mind is the University of Georgia's "Between the Hedges" in Sanford Stadium.  So what better source to learn how to care for Privet than the world experts?  We interviewed UGA's very own Kellie Baxter, who is in charge of caring for the Privet hedges in the stadium.

    First, a little background from Kellie about the hedges themselves.  In 1929, after the completion of our new stadium, it was decided that hedges would make the field look nice. After deciding that roses would not do well, Privet was agreed upon. Ever since that day our Privet hedges have been the stuff of legends. We here at Georgia consider them quite holy and the games that go on between these hedges even more so. Continue reading

  • Can I Plant A Sweet Pomegranate Tree In A Container?

    Pomegranate in a barrel planterSweet Pomegranate Tree
    is suitable for a large container and is somewhat smaller than other varieties.  It grows to about 12 feet and has orange-red flowers in late spring, producing beautiful pink fruits in the fall.  The Sweet Pomegranate tree is a large fruit with light pink flesh, and the taste is sweet and juicy.

    This ornamental tree has glossy, leathery leaves that are narrow and lance-shaped.  The “Sweet” Pomegranate is self-pollinated, as well as cross-pollinated by insects.  Cross-pollination with another pomegranate will increase the fruit set.  It will produce fruit in 3-5 years.

    Pomegranates should be placed in the sunniest, warmest part of the yard or orchard for the best fruit, although they will grow and flower in part shade on a deck or patio area.  It does best in well-drained ordinary soil, but also thrives on calcareous or acidic loam. The attractive foliage, flowers and fruits of this pomegranate, as well as its smallish size, make it an excellent container or landscaping plant.

  • Preparing your Lawn for Fall & Winter

    Preparing your lawn properly lawn care maintenance for the fall and winter months takes planing. Learn proper lawn care maintenance for the fall and winter months. This video shares landscaping tips that help you care for your lawn to ensure your lawn grass is prepared for the Fall and Winter.

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  • Pruning Blueberry Bushes - How and When To

    Peach Sorbet BlueberryBlueberry bushes are enjoying a little renaissance in home gardening. You can readily find them in garden centers and with so many varieties these days, the probability of finding one that grows in your climate is pretty good. They are easy to grow and are so delicious when they're fresh!

    Pruning blueberry bushes is necessary to maintain their health.  However, you must be careful as pruning can directly effect the fruit production of your plant.  Pruning is best done when the bush is dormant, either in the late fall or the early spring.  Spring is often the preferred time because you will be able to see which (if any) branches were damaged through the winter and need to be trimmed.
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  • Planting & Pruning Peach Trees For Larger Fruit

    PeachesDo you grow your own peaches or nectarines at home? If not you should give them a try. They are an easy and (pardon the pun) fruitful tree to grow. Peach trees are native of China and belong to the Prunus species. The peach trees that are being grown in orchards today have a long history. Today orchard grown peaches are divided into two groups, clingstones and freestones. If the peach flesh sticks to the pit, it is a clingstone. Conversely, if the flesh falls away from the pit easily, it is freestone. Peach fruit has varying levels of acidity, and generally, the white fleshed peach is the least acidic. Yellow fleshed peaches tend to be more tangy and acidic. Fertilization or soil types do not affect skin colors of either the peach or the nectarine.

    Peach fruit and nectarine fruit are often thought of as totally unique fruits. In fact, the nectarine is closely related to the peach. The main difference is the lack of fuzz on the nectarine skin. The nectarine can be used in the same way as a peach. The nectarine tends to be a little smaller fruit than a peach, and it displays more red color on the skin.
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