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Portal:Gardening

The Gardening Portal

A gardener maintaining topiary in Tulcán, Ecuador

Gardening is the practice of growing and cultivating plants as part of horticulture. In gardens, ornamental plants are often grown for their flowers, foliage, or overall appearance; useful plants, such as root vegetables, leaf vegetables, fruits, and herbs, are grown for consumption, for use as dyes, or for medicinal or cosmetic use. Gardening is considered by many people to be a relaxing activity.

Gardening ranges in scale from fruit orchards, to long boulevard plantings with one or more different types of shrubs, trees, and herbaceous plants, to residential back gardens including lawns and foundation plantings, and to container gardens grown inside or outside. Gardening may be very specialized, with only one type of plant grown, or involve a variety of plants in mixed plantings. It involves an active participation in the growing of plants, and tends to be labor-intensive, which differentiates it from farming or forestry.

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Banksia spinulosa dark styles Georges River NP email.jpg

The hairpin banksia (Banksia spinulosa) is a species of woody shrub, of the genus Banksia in the family Proteaceae, native to eastern Australia. Widely distributed, it is found as an understorey plant in open dry forest or heathland from Victoria to northern Queensland, generally on sandstone though sometimes also clay soils. It generally grows as a small shrub to 2 metres (7 ft) in height, though can be a straggly tree to 6 metres (20 ft). It has long narrow leaves with inflorescences which can vary considerably in coloration; while the spikes are gold or less commonly yellowish, the emergent styles may be a wide range of colours – from black, purple, red, orange or yellow.

Banksia spinulosa was named by James Edward Smith in England in 1793, after being collected by John White, most likely in 1792. He gave it the common name prickly-leaved banksia, though this has fallen out of use. With four currently recognised varieties, the species has had a complicated taxonomic history, with two varieties initially described as separate species in the early 19th century. A fourth, from the New England region, has only recently been described. However, there has been disagreement whether one, var. cunninghamii, is distinct enough to once again have specific status. The pre-eminent authority on Banksia, Alex George, concedes there is still more work to be done on the Banksia spinulosa complex. Read more...

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Japanese Garden Pano
Credit: Jjron

Panoramic view from the Symbolic Mountain Lookout at the Japanese Gardens, Cowra, NSW, Australia, 22 September, 2006. Japanese gardens (日本庭園, nihon teien), that is, gardens in the traditional Japanese style, can be found at private homes, in neighborhood or city parks, and at historical landmarks, such as Buddhist temples and old castles. Some of the Japanese gardens most famous in the West, and within Japan as well, are dry gardens or rock gardens, known as karesansui.

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Generally, seed packets labels includes:

  • Common plant name and the botanical name (in parentheses).
  • Space and deep: how deep to place the seeds in the soil, space between plants (from one row to the other one and from one plant to the other one in the same row).
  • Height: approximate height the plant will reach when mature.
  • Soil: type of soil the plant prefers.
  • Water: It can indicate "keep the soil lightly damp", "bottom water the plant", "drench the soil with water", "daily misting of water" and "almost dry out before re-watering".
  • Sun: full direct sunlight, partial sun, diffused sunlight, or grows well in the shade.
  • Door and temperature: if the plant is best suited for growing Indoor, Outdoor or Both.
  • Live: Perennial or annual.
  • Planting, germination and harvest period: a lot of plant are planted in March. This information can be indicated by months or quarters of the year.
  • Special requirements, if necessary.

This information can be represented graphically.

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