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Bringing a garden to life

Building a garden takes a lot of hard work, and I don’t mean just the physical labor. Some people make gardening look easy, but a lot of forethought and planning must occur before the plants go into the ground.

In last week’s column, I discussed some basic needs for developing a new garden bed or border. Garden location and size, sun and shade, water source, soil pH and quality, and physical restrictions must be examined before actual planting can begin. I spend a lot of time researching articles in gardening books, magazines, and online, not to mention the publications of Cooperative Extension programs across the country. Over the years, I have discovered that articles from different sources offer varying levels of gardening information from pretty color photos of perfect flower gardens to long dissertations that expound on art theory written by landscape architects. All sources have their place, of course; their value to us depends on what we are trying to achieve.

Most of us ...

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