'Tiger Eyes' Staghorn Sumac, Rhus typhina

Tiger Eyes™, offers a long season of interest with deeply-cut, almost lacy leaves that start yellow and turn orange in fall. Learn more about Tiger Eyes™ sumac in this article…

Winecups, Callirhoe involucrata

Brilliant magenta cup-shaped flowers festoon the rambling stems of winecups all summer long. This native prairie plant comes from dry, rocky areas, but tolerates many types of soil. It combines particularly well with other plants that have pink flowers or blue to gray foliage. Learn more about Callirhoe involucrata in this article…

Hummingbird Moth, Hemaris thysbe

Have you noticed something visiting your flowers, but you aren’t quite sure whether it’s a bee, or a small hummingbird, or a fat butterfly? It’s likely what you saw was a hummingbird clearwing, Hemaris thysbe. It is just one of a number of moths commonly referred to as hummingbird moths. Read this article to learn more…

Nierembergia

Nierembergia is not a common plant in the upper Midwest. This perennial in the potato family is only hardy to zone 7, so in colder climates it is grown as an annual. It loves hot, dry weather, so is good for edging along pavement or flagstone, in rock gardens and in containers. To learn more about this plant that flowers in white or purple, read this article…

Fireflies (Lampyridae)

“Lightening bug” and “firefly” are common names for a number of insects that are neither bugs nor flies. These insects that produce light at night are actually beetles, and are often overlooked during the day as they rest on foliage. Another thing most people don’t know about these insects is that the immature stage is a beneficial predator. To learn more about fireflies, read this article…

Wild Ginger, Asarum spp.

There are several species of perennial foliage plants in the genus Asarum that make great ground covers for shady sites. European wild ginger and the North American wild ginger are the most commonly used as landscape plants. Both have interesting, but inconspicuous, dark-colored flowers. Learn more about wild ginger in this article…

Campanula carpatica ‘Blue Clips’ & ‘White Clips’

Campanula carpatica is a low growing herbaceous perennial from the Carpathian Mountains of southeastern Europe. One of the best selections of this species is the ‘Clips’ series. These plants form neat mounds of light green foliage about a foot wide and 6-8 inches tall and remain in clumps that spread only slowly. To learn more about these attractive perennials, read this article…

Amur Cherry, Prunus maackii

Amur cherry is a small tree from the Far East that has cinnamon-brown exfoliating bark that is most prominent in winter, when the leaves have fallen. To learn more about this attractive tree hardy to zone 2, read this article…

Kohlrabi, Brassica olearcea var. gongylodes

Looking somewhat like a space alien, kohlrabi is a member of the cabbage family that has a turnip-like enlargement of the stem above the soil surface. To learn more about this vegetable, read this article…

Hover, Flower or Syrphid Flies (Syrphidae)

Are those insects with striped abdomens really all bees? Take a closer look – if they have only one pair of wings, they’re actually a type of fly. Called by various common names, these hover flies or flower flies or syrphid flies are beneficial insects. The adults feed on flowers, but the larvae are important predators of aphids. To learn more about these insects, read this article…

Lady of the Night Orchid, Brassavola nodosa

With a lovely perfume coming from the flowers in the evening, Lady of the Night orchid is aptly named. This relatively small epiphytic orchid from Central and South America adapts readily to being grown as a houseplant. To learn more about Brassavola nodosa and how to grow it as a pot plant, read this article…

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