Salvia coccinea Coral Nymph

Coral Nymph Salvia

I like salvias. I like any and all salvias; from the delicious, culinary sages to the nectar-rich, super smellerific and sticky sweet types that aren’t hardy in my region. I even like the ones that aren’t edible or aromatic. I’m not sure what it is about this genus. Is it their drought tolerance? Their snapdragon-like

dianthus vodka

Dianthus Infused Vodka

Among the recipes in my book, “Easy Growing: Herbs and Edible Flowers from Small Spaces” are three herb and edible flower infused spirits that I make each year from ingredients grown in my garden. Were more space available, I could have written an entire chapter on this exciting subject — narrowing it down to just

Fame flower in a pot, photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Fame Flower: A Colourful and Tough Succulent that is Perfect in Pots

Colourful flowers that sway and jitter on wiry stems, Fame flower (Talinum calcycinum) is another example of a rough and tumble, easy-grow plant that is disguised as delicate and fragile. Rather, it is a hardy (zones 4ish-9) succulent that is native to the North American prairies. Related to the common edible weed purslane (Portulaca oleracea),

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Bright Pink Nerine ‘Isabel’

Every once and a while I go into an old folder of photographs and randomly choose an image to post about. Today it is this Guernsey Lily (Nerine bowdenii) ‘Isabel’ that bloomed in my garden this past fall. I originally bought the bulb in a late-season clearance bin in 2011, planted it in the sandy

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Soft Pink Bells

It’s not like me to hone in on the flowers and disregard the plant, but it happens. It certainly did the other day when I took this picture of beautiful bell-like flowers on a tour of a local community greenhouse (a post with photos is forthcoming). I could have sworn they belonged to a succulent

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Fall Blooming Colchicum

Behold a colourful mass of naked ladies emerging from a tangle of periwinkle that I happened upon on an afternoon walk. I highly recommend planting colchicum corms in any-sized garden, even if you are a beginner. [How to grow info is here.]

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Sinningia ‘Kevin Garnett’

I’m bringing back the Daily Botanical feature. Since I stopped doing them regularly I have sorely neglected to write about the new and interesting plants that I am growing or run into in my travels. It feels like the right time to bring them back. The Sinningia you see in bloom here was the topic

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Cyclamen Coum

I can feel it in the air. Just today I noticed that a few more green bits had forced their way above the soil surface outside. Spring will be here soon and for some of you it has already arrived. In the meantime, these flowers have been helping me through. Their colourful, long lasting blooms

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

A Pleasing Combination: False Roselle and Double Cosmos

I wrote about the cosmos recently when the flowers were just starting to open. Well, they’re coming up full force now and I’m loving them even more. The soft, double blooms have begun to poke through a false roselle (Hibiscus acetosella) plant that is growing alongside — it has proven to be an unexpected combination

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Pretty, Pretty Cosmos

The cosmos are sizing up now. Their stalks are thick and strong — it must be the duck manure that I worked into our sandy soil this spring. The seeds were started late this year since we didn’t have a garden at the time that I should have been direct sowing them. Better late than

Photo by Gayla Trail: All Rights Reserved

Chance Xeriscaping

This image functions as a good demonstration of just how dry gardening is in Denver without the benefit of a hose. This landscape is nothing more than a random scattering of common mullein (Verbascum thapsus) with a few hot pink-flowered hollyhocks and dry land grasses thrown in. I’m not even sure it qualifies as a

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