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Rooftop trumpet vines?

Dear Expert (Carrie, Bob or Susan) We have a client who’s property is situated on the 16th floor with a rooftop garden in downtown Seattle. The terraced garden faces south and southeast. The 4 trumpet vines are each in their own containers that are 24″ square x 26″ deep along with Algerian Ivy, trailing Rosemary. […]


I would like to plant some beesia at the top of a shady ravine.  I am concerned about the moisture level, though.  The area is dry shade, although I could run a line from my drip system along there.  Even though  I’ve read that beesia prefers moist soil, can it do OK with drier conditions? […]

What is this?

The plant you’re inquiring about is Cardamine trifolia, commonly know as lady’s smock or 3-leaved cuckooflower. This is an attractive, well-behaved evergreen ground cover, about six-inches tall and covering up to twenty-four inches across. The dark green leaves with a purple reverse are three-parted. The white flowers are borne in early spring. Flowering is brief […]

What’s the deal with hellebores? Should the leaves be removed from all hellebores?

Remove the leaves of H. orientalis to the ground in January and February, being careful not to damage the stems of the emerging flowers. This is done to prevent disease from spreading and so you can see the flowers better. We usually leave the plant alone for the first two years. H. niger is a […]

Why don’t I ever see the flowers on my epimediums?

Well, we hope you’re cleaning up your herbaceous epimediums (E. alpinum, E. grandiflorum, E. youngianum, and their kin) as they die back. Cut the stems of the evergreen and semi-evergreen ones to the ground in January. This should only be done once your clumps are established, in about three years. Why do we do this? […]