Gardening is art, science and philosophy all wrapped together in one mysterious and sometimes unattainable enterprise. But that has never stopped anyone from pursuing it. A satisfying garden requires a basic knowledge of the science of horticulture in order to meet the physical demands of growing plants; sufficient knowledge of the primary principles of art to combine them harmoniously; plus your personal philosophy of what represents the ideal garden.
INSPIRATION TO HELP YOU SPROUT AN INTEREST IN GARDENING
Ah, spring: The birds are singing, flowers are blooming, and Lowcountry gardeners are getting out their trowels and heading to the yard. Why do we spend countless hours pruning and planting? For some of us, it helps us put down roots in our communities. Others just can’t help themselves. Here, a few famous quotes on gardening to help spark an interest:
CALADIUMS AND CANNAS STAR IN LOWCOUNTRY GARDENS
We’re familiar with the fabled lilies of the field, which neither toil nor spin, yet are arrayed more gloriously than Solomon. But here we’re going to examine something even more... dare it be said? ... gaudy.
Extravagant caladiums and cannas are both showy and satisfying – the former for shade, the latter for sun. These two dependable beauties deserve a place in every Lowcountry landscape.
BRUNO LANDSCAPE AND NURSERY HAS BECOME HILTON HEAD’S FAVORITE GARDENING CLUB.
Let’s face it: it’s been a long, cold winter. That rarest of meteorological occurrences — a Hilton Head Island snowstorm — has left your garden withered and dead. You can bemoan the loss of your begonias, or you can view this as a chance to join one of the island’s most exciting gardening clubs.
There’s no strict membership to this club, nor hard and fast bylaws. Instead, there’s just a place where this club congregates in varying numbers to compare green thumbs. Their home is among the 4 acres of lush greenery on Dillon Road at Bruno Landscape and Nursery.
The golden blossoms of daffodils herald the arrival of spring in the Lowountry, and did you know the flowers also symbolize friendship?
Daffodils belong to the genus Narcissus. The flowers are trumpet-shaped and set against a star-shaped background of petals. Often the trumpet is in a contrasting color from the petals. Daffodils are hardy and easy perennials to grow in coastal South Carolina. Plant the bulbs in autumn and they will bloom in early spring.
As the weather begins to turn warmer, the last thing many homeowners want to think about is prepping the lawn, garden and outdoor living spaces. That being said, take the time to visually inspect your property, taking in the natural scapes to hardscapes. Think spring planting, outdoor entertaining and casual outdoor living. Look for wear and tear on your deck, check your outdoor lighting, walkways and driveway for raised or uneven surfaces, clean your outdoor kitchen and outdoor furniture; inspect the greenery.
BEAUTIFUL YARDS START WITH GREAT DIRT
Dirt, not love, makes the world go round. There is more to good dirt than meets the eye. Although this is not brain surgery, there is a bit of bio-chemistry involved.
In general, soils may be sandy or clay or somewhere in between, but frequently lacking is sufficient organic matter for good tilth. Sandy soil is composed of large particles of mineral material with large spaces between, causing water and nutrients to drain swiftly through (leaching). Clay soils have small, sticky particles that inhibit the flow of water. The result is water logging and stem rot.
Do you know the No. 1 tip for becoming a fruitful vegetable gardener?
Gardening gurus like Laura Lee Rose, the consumer horticulture agent for Beaufort County Clemson Extension and coordinator for the Master Gardener program, will tell you to first consider what you like to eat. “Make a list of your family’s favorite vegetables,” Rose said. “This will help you plot out your garden and ensure you eat what you grow, which is really the fun part.”
It’s not just happenstance that Bluffton and Hilton Head look the way they do. It takes an army of architects, landscapers and gardeners.
There are certain sounds that are undeniably Hilton Head Island and Bluffton. The call of a pileated woodpecker. The cry of a young hawk. The crash of the waves on the beach or the sound of the wind in the trees.
Helpful advice from the Lowcountry’s preeminent plant nerd
Early March is a pretty time to be in the South Carolina Lowcountry, and after some very cold and damaging weather I am ready to be outside digging in the dirt. Sorry, “soil” is the preferred horticultural term for that brown crumbly stuff we grow our flowers, shrubs and vegetables in.