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Colour in the garden

red and violet colours
red and green colours
red and white flowers
red and orange flowers

Taste in fashion combines our experience (and genetics / instincts, probably) with historical trends to determine what is attractive. In designing gardens, factors to be considered include the growing and dormant season colour, and the demands of Calgary’s growing conditions. We can choose colours that contrast greatly with one another, or colours that are similar - or we can contrast plant colour with adjacent house, fence, hedge or path colour, and the surrounding relaxing green of foliage.

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Fruit Tree Care

fall apple leaves & fern
good pruning cut on apple tree
old apple, new blossom buds
norland apple tree, pear tree in fall

March is a good time for pruning fruit trees – the trees are dormant, the leaves have been
put to use in compost piles or bins, apples have been eaten, canned, given away or left for
squirrels, so for these reasons we can now see if any branches should be removed. The
main question is … do I need to prune?
The normal rules of pruning apply – the three “D”s: branches should be removed if they
are dead, diseased, or damaged, and preferably never remove more than 20% of the

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More ideas from the west coast

box shrub
Christmas Rose
electric transformer
yew with grasses

Vancouver is different from Calgary in so many ways: from the gardening perspective
even a short visit illustrates this – wandering recently (in the snow and rain) around the
west end near Stanley Park I was struck by the lack of weeds. This is not due to a
widespread use of landscape fabric – quite the opposite in fact - I only saw one piece of
fabric. Although that area is largely apartment complexes, all gardens were well tended.
One reason for the lack of weeds was the widespread living ground cover, which gives

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Raised beds – a different approach

Dwarf apples in raised beds
Espaliered apple
Physalis
Young fruit trees

Raised beds – a different approach

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Carrots and their friends, and nasty relations

parsely & carrots
herbs, potted
november rose
sweet cecily

Carrots are survivors: in this November they are still growing and tasty. Yes, I know this is the longest fall we have had for years, but in other years carrots have been harvested at this time. The recent popularity of non-orange carrots is a reminder that centuries ago, carrots in Europe and Asia had various colours and an assumption is that purple carrots came from around Afghanistan.

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Caterpillars – friend or foe?

The Scarboro Garden Scene

Caterpillars – friend or foe?

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The Scarboro Garden Scene

The Scarboro Garden Scene – less work, more play.

2014

The Scarboro Garden Scene
Marjorie Harris and Thomas Hobbs, and in-door plants

2015

Lawns: love ’em or leave ’em
Lawns can have an important part to play in garden design and they have a long-standing feature of our landscape architecture. The idea developed over centuries in Europe as a status symbol … deer roaming in tree-dotted parklands … but that does not negate its attractiveness. However, with our increasing awareness of climate change, we are more concerned with the balance between our desires and our environment, certainly it is easier to find a good caretaker for our lawns than it is to find time or gain expertise in managing other types of vegetation.

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