A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a column that listed some helpful Web
sites, hosted by the USDA, for gardeners and landscapers. A number of
readers have contacted me and asked if I know of any more Internet
resources. You bet I do!
Here are a few more Web sites that are definitely worth bookmarking so
you can refer to them when you are suddenly faced with a specific
question or problem. And as always, I'm happy to try and help you
personally if you send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of these sites have long and complex Web addresses. When you've
finished reading here, you might find it easier to go to my Web site
www.landsteward.org and find this column under the Plant Man header
where you can simply click on hot links to every site mentioned here.
If you're looking for a fancy Website with a lot of flash and bling,
this isn't it. But if you need to investigate just about any plant
you can imagine, this is an excellent no-frills database. For example,
go to the very first listing (Abelia) and you'll find a concise
description and a bunch of links to close-up photographs with titles
such as plant habit, leaves, flowering branches, etc, etc.
In fact the data base is so large that it spreads across three Web
sites. The link above is to part one (plants A through E) with the
other two sites covering the rest of the alphabet.
Have you ever wondered how you could save water, reduce pollution and
help wildlife all at the same time? The author of this Audubon article
figured out that 24,000 gallons of rain water cascades off her roof
every year, and she decided to create her own mini-wetland; what she
describes as a rain garden.
The site describes how to channel roof run-off to create your own rain
garden, and includes suggested plants for each geographic region of the
If you can think of it, however specific, there's probably at least
one Web site devoted to it! For everything you could ever possibly want
to know about blueberries, this site hosted by Oregon State University
is the "go-to" resource.
You'll find scores of articles on every aspect of successful
blueberry plant growing, from site selection and mulching to
propagation, pollination and harvesting. Plenty of related topic links,
Grownative.org. The name pretty much tells you what this site is all
about. Here you'll find guides that help you put native plants to
work in your landscape. Although focused mainly on Missouri, this is a
helpful resource for anyone interested in developing conservation
awareness of native plants and their effective use.
If you enjoy cooking, then you know that nothing beats using your own
home-grown herbs, snipped fresh from your own garden. Here, you'll
find an exhaustive guide to selecting, planting, growing and harvesting
There's also a description with line drawings of hundreds of herbs,
both popular and obscure with specific instruction for successfully
growing and using each of them. Bon appetit!
If your lawn is more weed than grass, or if you just want to browse
ideas and expert advice on how to keep your lawn lush and green, this
is a site you'll want take a look at. A nice feature: click on the
"What to do now" button, type in your zip code and get tips on lawn
care in your specific area updated for each season.
If you'd like to receive an e-mailed copy of my wife Cheryl's
personal "link library" filled with links to many more helpful Web
sites, simply drop me an e-mail request and we'll forward it to you.
The Plant Man is here to help. Send questions about trees, shrubs and
landscaping to email@example.com. For resources and additional
information, or to subscribe to Steve's free weekly e-mailed
newsletter, go to www.landsteward.org