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Rough Blazing Star in Snow

Name This Plant

Since many of you are on vacation this week, I’ve made up a fun quiz to take for those of us who are at home. In winter, our plants become black silhouettes against a stark white snow, changing their dimensions and character.  How many of these can you name?  Genus-species, please:Latin or English. The prize?  […]

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More Winter Scene

I am so thrilled with the all the reader participation in my blog that added new information about persistent winter leaves. That makes this a truly interactive site. So, please, please, keep it coming. And I have one more participant–Jack Shouba, botanist, instructor at Morton Arboretum, and photographer sent this stunning photograph of Hop Hornbeam(Ostrya […]

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Illinois Rose in Winter 2

Winter Berries

Then heigh-ho! the holly! This life is most jolly. William Shakespeare Winter Berry Displays Shakespeare’s holly doesn’t grow in the Midwest; indeed, no evergreen hollies thrive in our harsh climate. But if you can provide compatible cultural conditions, Winterberry or Michigan Holly (Ilex verticillata) will put on a ravishing berry display in fall and winter. […]

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White Oak in Winter

Winter Scene

Winter Scene This is not the typical picture one would see on a Christmas card or December calendar page, yet I think it is ravishing! It is more typical of the Midwest landscape than the evergreens and red berries of England and New England. I do have to explain the tree, though. For many years […]

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House with Snow

Celebrate Winter

The night is freezing fast, Tomorrow comes December; K. E. Housman Celebrate Winter The final leaves of autumn have fallen and while winter does not officially begin until December 21, everyone knows that winter begins the day after Thanksgiving. But instead of turning our backs on winter, hoping only that it will be short, let’s […]

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