• Coupons

Join Our Newsletter For More Deals

Valid from: 7/29/2013 Offer: Perennials: By 3 get one free
Expires: 8/4/2013

More Info: The traditional perennial border with a wide variety of perennials (non woody plants that return every year) can be spectacular additions to a landscape. This type of garden can be quite labor intensive with weeding, and management of all the plants. Start small and add size and varieties as you become familiar with their needs and your capacity to get the work done.

Perennials for the most part bloom for 3-4 weeks each year. There are perennials that bloom in the dead of winter like winter heath, to early blooming plants such as Creeping Phlox. Some, like Oxeye daisy (chrysanthemum nipponicum) don't bloom until October. You will find hundreds of varieties that fill every blooming period in between.

A perennial border should be worked up well with compost, a modest amount of low nitrogen fertilizer, and lime. Plants should be set out with plenty of room between to allow for growth. In general I will allow each plant a 3x3 foot space.

Perennials are also very effective as accents between the shrubs and under trees in your landscape. Daylilies, especially the repeat blooming types are great. Grasses, Sedum, Phlox, Black eyed Susan and many others will add structure and color to the summer landscape when the spring blooming shrubs are finished.


Valid from: 8/5/2013 Offer: Herb collection: 5 for $14.50
Expires: 8/11/2013

More Info: Herbs cut fresh from the garden are so much more flavorful that those out of a box or jar it's hard to compare.

Herbs like a sunny place and are best grown near the kitchen door. Herbs that are quick and easy to pick are more likely to be used. Many herbs are easy to grow in containers. Often your patio or deck makes a good spot for a container herb garden.

A few herbs are perennial and are best grown in the ground. Tarragon, sage, winter savory, will winter over. They need to be in the ground to winter dependably. We have noticed that rosemary will winter too if it is on a warm sheltered side of the house. If you do need to grow it in a container winter it in the garage not in the house. Rosemary does best if it is cold enough to stay dormant during the winter. It can get down to 20 degrees and still be fine.

Herbs mostly like lots of sun, good drainage and modest amounts of fertilizer.

Note: While dill is an annual herb, if you let some flowers go to seed they will germinate nicely in the spring if let to fall where they are and left all winter.


Valid from: 8/12/2013

Offer: Conifer sale: 20% off any needled evergreen

Expires: 8/18/2013

More Info: Conifers include plants that don’t make cones like juniper and yew but their reproductive systems are like the more familiar pines and spruce. Gingko trees are conifers even they don’t even have needles.

Most conifers are happiest where they have most of a day of sun. Yew (taxus) will grow quite well in shade but likes the sun as well. Conifers are mostly evergreen and are good solutions for screening, and good looks in every season. Consider dwarf conifers for smaller spaces. Many provide unusual forms or colors for special interest. I particularly enjoy the grace of weeping forms.

Take care to understand the eventual size of the plants you buy. Often gardeners misjudge the mature size of a plant. Most spruce, fir and pines as well as the recently popular Leyland cypress will grow 60 or more feet tall and 30 feet wide. This can overpower many suburban landscapes.

Use a variety of species when creating screens for added interest. The potential for an unknown disease or insect makes it safer to use a variety as well.

Most conifers are quite winter hardy and have cold tolerant root systems. This makes them good subjects for planting in containers for year ‘round appeal. 


Valid from: 8/19/2013

Offer: Holly 20% off

Expires: 8/25/2013

More Info: The name Holly with its evergreen spiny foliage denotes thoughts of Mistletoe, Spiced cider and Holliday Decorations. 

The group of plants known as Hollies (ilex) is much more diverse.

Three native forms exist in our area. They are Ilex glabra (inkberry), Ilex opaca (American Holly) and Ilex verticillata (Winterberry). Most hollies are dioecious, meaning that they come in male and female plants. This is important to understand with varieties that have showy berries. All these plants can have a place in our landscapes.

Inkberry and American Holly are evergreen. American holly has a very nice show of red berries in the winter while inkberry will produce only black berries. American holly and winterberry produce fruit on current the year’s growth. This means that you can prune moderately in the late winter to early spring and not fear that you are removing growth that will produce berries. If you are very aggressive in your pruning it may result in such vigorous growth that it may not produce fruit that year.

While American holly in the landscape may need a male nearby to produce fruit, it is generally not the case for winterberry. Winterberry is a ubiquitous plant in our area and pollination will take place even if you don’t have a male in the yard. On only a few occasions have I found the need to plant a male winterberry for a good berry set.

Japanese hollies are also useful plants in the landscape. Their foliage resembles that of boxwood but is usually darker green. While they are also dioecious their berries are black like the inkberry. Japanese hollies can range from very low and spreading, very narrow to tall pyramidal shapes.

The evergreen hollies are useful in both shade and sun. The winterberry will do best with at least a half a day of direct sunlight. Note that winterberry is a native wetland plant and will be very happy in wet locations. 

Ask The Expert

Plant Directory

Contact Us Today

Please type the letters you see to help us minimize SPAM.


I've been known to visit the Island Garden Shop just for the therapeutic effects of the lush greenhouse. Seriously, it's like a jungle oasis where all of your worries and stresses just melt away.

Portsmouth, RI