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The Garden Awakens

Anise 'Woodland Red' ( Illicium floridanum ) A few weeks ago, I thought spring would never arrive, but now the change is astonishing. The nights are still cold (40s and sometimes even 30s) so planting tender annuals and vegetables is unwise although I have already succumbed, but covering and uncovering things gets old quickly. Someone made a wise comment last week and I must agree with them - "Don't plant anything tender until after May 1". Several plants are blooming like never before. One is the Anise shrub (above and below). I don't know if the recent tree pruning, which is allowing more sun into the woodland path, is affecting it or perhaps it is just age, but I've never seen so many blooms. Michael refers to this as "the stinky fish shrub" and I have to admit to smell of the flowers is quite unpleasant. It is so beautiful that I can overlook that. The old pink dogwood tree, which was already here, shades our woodland path and it too is prett

Hardy Orange

The Hardy Orange (Poncirus trifoliate) is loaded with fruit this year!

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. We have been harvesting Meyer Lemons now for about a month, and we do have a Washington Orange Tree (in a pot) but the fruit may not ripen as our nights are now down in the 40's.
    PS: best of luck on the sale of your home.

  2. How cool! I can't imagine being able to pick oranges from my own yard. But the apple trees are doing well this year; I'm hoping last night's winds brought more of them down so I don't have to get out a ladder to pick them:)

  3. Nice! I should give those a try here at some point; they might just be hardy.

  4. And, it's beautiful!~~Dee

  5. Wow! Looks awesome.

    Do you use them for anything edible (I've heard that Poncirus oranges are 'technically' edible but hella seedy and sour) or just for ornamental value?

  6. I keep having to prune mine. The weight of the fruit makes the branches bend down towards the sidewalk, where its thorns threaten to blind someone.


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