Fragrant plants

I am so glad I took a few minutes to add a handful of tulip bulbs to my large container last fall – I am rewarded with a beautiful spring arrangement!

After removing the spent summer annuals and leaving the Teardrop Ivy in place, I placed  the bulbs down about 6″ and then planted Kaleidescope & Redbor Kales, Violas, (I think they perform better than Pansies) along with pink and white Dianthus.

Next fall, (Gardeners are always planning ahead!) I may try some daffodils and even a hyacinth or two!!

Happy Gardening,


Early June here in Atlanta has been wonderful weather for gardens – low humidity & cool evenings!  Going through the garden with my clippers rewarded me with  plenty of blossoms and foliage to fill my milk glass vase.  Ferns, Solomon’s Seal, June Hostas and Threadleaf Cypress branches set up a perfect base of foliage to support the Perennials.  I then cut Yarrows, Aster (early blooming this year), Route 66 Coreopsis, Daisies, Coneflowers, Mullein Pinks, as well as Hydrangeas and a couple Lantana stems to fill it out.

I’m looking forward to the Phlox and Black-Eyed Susans to bloom in the next couple weeks to add to my vases!

Happy Gardening!

Althea Griffin

This is such a busy, but wonderful time in the garden – everything is coming up so early this spring!  The attached photo features a few of early bloomers that send out blooms on and off throughout the season along with attractive foliage.

Starting at the left foreground  is the perennial Plumbago Ceratosigma, a late summer bloomer; Chrysogonum Green and Gold; Yellow Corydalis; middle area is the wonderful all season bloomer Fringed Bleeding Heart:  background is the vibrant Japanese Painted Fern under the Nikko blue Hydrangea.  all these plants work well in morning sun followed by afternoon shade.

Look for more information on most of these Perennials in my book,  ’Perennials…What you need to know!’

Happy Gardening!

The late fall garden here in Atlanta still has a few Perennials to catch your eye.  One of these is the Powis Castle variety of Artemisia, a plant with soft grey foliage and a nice aroma.  Mine has done very well this year, mainly due to the pruning tip I picked up at the Atlanta Botanical Garden.  Every few weeks during the growing season, snip off 2-3″ from the tips of the branches.  This practice keeps the plant more compact, preventing it from becoming leggy, opening up in the center and flopping over.  Just remember to plant in a well drained area to prevent root rot.

Speaking of the Atlanta Botanical Garden – visit their wonderful Gift Shop,  they feature copies of my book!!

Althea Griffin

Allium tuberosum, Garlic Chives, is such an interesting plants to have blooming in the fall garden.  They look very much like Onion Chives when they are young, but as they mature (2′ tall) the leaves become broad and flat and the flavour is much milder than bulb garlic.  The star-like white clusters begin to bloom in late summer at the top of long round stems which are strong and tough, not suitable for eating.  Theseed pods that follow will be the start of many new plants, so trim off if volunteer plants are not your thing!  Transplanting in the spring is a simple chore, just add some compost to the planting hole. 

When gathering chives, it is best to pick off the leaves at the base with your fingers instead of cutting with scissors, as this  causes them to die back slightly leaving a brown edge.

Althea Griffin


‘Sum and Substance’ (large Hosta) and ‘June’ are 2 of my favorite Hostas.  They both are holding up very well in the summer heat and occasional dry conditions.  Hostas will also add a pretty fall foliage color to the garden.  Take stock of your garden now, even take some pictures, to find a spot thatcould use some beautiful foliage to complement the flowering part-shade loving flowers. 

Althea Griffin