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Archived Blog Posts

Best roses for the Pacific Northwest

Roses are popular shrubs in Pacific Northwest gardens, despite the challenges of growing them in our damp climate. If you would like to increase your success with roses, check out our blog posts on Tips for growing roses in western Washington and Choosing and growing roses in western Washington. They are among our most popular […]

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Reading the Signs

Let’s be honest — navigating the plant selection at Swansons is, at times, bewildering, with the astounding array of plants that circulate here. We continually strive to get up-to-date plant information to you so you make the best choices for your garden. Over the last 25 years we have created informational; signs for as many […]

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Habitat Champion: Black Twinberry

The underrated Black Twinberry is a habitat champion when it comes to birds. I hope you can fit one into your yard! Black Twinberry (Lonicera involucrata) is a fast-growing deciduous shrub that grows to about 9’. In the sun, it grows full and fat; in mostly shade, taller and lanky. It thrives in moist to […]

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These Aren’t Your Granny’s Rhodies

Rhododendrons are by far one of the most spectacular blooming shrubs for northwest gardens. They come in many colors and sizes, are usually evergreen, and for the most part are easy to grow. With proper selection, a person could actually have a rhodie blooming in their garden from February through June….

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What’s a Rootstock? Grafted Fruit Tree Basics

Most of the fruit trees we sell at Sky are grafted, meaning that they are actually a combination of at least two trees! This goes not only for our “combination” trees that grow more than one kind of fruit, but even for those that only produce a single variety. Grafting is what keeps dwarf trees… […]

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How to Garden in Planter Boxes

Spring gardening is in full swing and we’ve teamed up with our friends at Dunn Lumber to bring you a great DIY building and gardening project you can do at home – no backyard needed! Kirsten will teach you how to make two wooden planter boxes. I’ll help you decide what to plant in them […]

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How to manage chafer beetles: what to do in March

The chafer beetle invasion The European chafer beetle is a serious lawn pest that is spreading and causing lots of problems throughout the Seattle area. The beetle was first spotted in Washington in 2008. “It’s just been exploding since we first found it,” Todd Murray, director of Washington State University’s Puyallup Research and Extension Center, […]

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It’s Time To Prune The Hydrangeas

Of all the classes that we offer here at the nursery, pruning is always the most popular. And, of all the different types of plants that need to be pruned, hydrangeas are probably the most confusing. Hopefully, I can help clear the air on how to properly prune these extremely popular shrubs….

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Natural Slug & Snail Management

Ah, springtime in the garden. Bulbs are blooming, bumblebees are buzzing, and mollusks are slowly stirring beneath the mulch. Wait…. what? Slugs and snails — land-based cousins of marine mollusks like clams — are very much part of our garden ecosystems. Like most of the small animals that call our gardens home, they spend the… […]

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Starting a Vegetable Garden

No matter whether this is your first-ever vegetable garden or just the first time planting this year, if you take a little time to prepare before you plant, everything will go more smoothly and you’ll be more successful. Here are a few simple things to consider when starting a vegetable garden this spring.

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