The Best Flowers for Wet Soil

Turn a wet, poorly drained spot in your yard into a colorful landscape feature with these perennial flowers and ornamental grasses.

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Fall Veggies to Plant Now

Grow these cool-season vegetables and herbs to extend your garden's harvests in spring and fall. This list of vegetables includes seasonal vegetables, green vegetables, non-starchy vegetables, winter vegetables, green leafy vegetables, fall vegetables and more.

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Improve Poor Drainage

Follow these tips to transform a poorly drained area into an easy-care garden.

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Tips and Tricks to Keep Plants Blooming

Deadheading is a popular practice ¿ but do you know all the ways to keep flowers on your plants longer? Follow these easy tips for keeping your favorite shrubs and flowers blooming longer.

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Top Plant Picks for Late-Summer Color

Keep the color coming on strong through the end of the growing season with these easy-care, reliable annuals and perennials.

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Plan for a Gorgeous Fall Landscape

See how two great gardeners -- one on the East Coast and one on the West -- created knock-your-socks-off fall yards -- and learn how you can do the same.

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Best Plants for Rock Gardens

Transforming an unsightly slope or mound in your backyard into a colorful rock garden is easy when you chose the right plants. These amazing, low-maintenance ground huggers don't mind poor soil but do need good drainage to survive. Here's a list of our top plants for rock gardens.

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Popular in Gardening

Family-Style Backyard Garden Design

This landscape plan was designed to address the needs of an active family with children.

This landscape plan turns a modest-sized backyard into a garden with something for every member of the family.

Assessing Your Family's Landscape Needs

Key Features

  • Patio. The brick patio area provides a solid footing for tables and chairs, and allows a view of the entire yard.
  • Formal bed and fountain. This small garden is designed to be viewed from inside the house. Additionally, the fountain's sound helps mask noise from the surrounding yards and streets.
  • Lawn. A small panel of grass invites children's play. It is small enough to be easily resodded when worn out, and provides a visual break from structures and plants. A circular walkway provides a neat transition between lawn and planting beds, and offers a path to stroll year round.
  • Decorative arbor. Helping to soften the corner of the yard, this simple structure provides a shady refuge. Paving stones below the arbor eliminate mowing.
  • Play area. Bordered by sunken logs for sitting or hopping on, the shaded play area provides hours of entertainment and activity for children. The triangular sandbox is especially inviting to younger kids.
  • Vegetable garden. Separated from the play areas by a low fence, the vegetable garden is also protected from pets.

Patio Planning, Step-by-Step

Legend

(A) Yew (Taxus x media 'Densiformis'); Zones 4-7. (B) Hydrangea 'Annabelle'; Zones 4-9. (C) Astilbe 'Sprite'; Zones 4-8. (N) Hosta 'Fragrant Bouquet'; Zones 3-9. (D) Coralbells (Heuchera 'Pewter Moon'); Zones 4-8. (E) Anemone 'Robustissima'; Zones 5-8. (F) Ajuga 'Bronze'; Zones 3-9. (G) Hosta 'Patriot'; Zones 3-9. (H) Northern sea oats (Chasmanthium latifolium); Zones 5-9. (I) Astilbe 'Ostrich Plume'; Zones 4-9. (K) Serviceberry (Amelachier x grandiflora); Zones 5-8. (P) Catmint (Nepeta x faassenii); Zones 4-8.

Best Flowering Trees and Shrubs

Legend

(G) Hosta 'Patriot'; Zones 3-9. (M) Rhododendron 'Aglo'; Zones 4-8. (O) Boxwood (Buxus microphylla); Zones 6-9. (N) Hosta 'Fragrant Bouquet'; Zones 3-9. (P) Catmint (Nepeta x faassenii); Zones 4-8. (R) Salvia 'May Night'; Zones 5-9. (H) Northern sea oats (Chasmanthium latifolium); Zones 5-9. (W) Russian sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia); Zones 5-9. (U) Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida); Zones 4-9. (T) Rose (Rosa 'The Fairy'); Zones 5-9. (V) Phlox 'David'; Zones 4-8. (Q) Sedum 'Vera Jameson'; Zones 4-9. (X) Geranium 'Biokovo'; Zones 5-8. (Y) Pussy willow (Salix caprea); Zones 6-8.

Legend

(B) Hydrangea 'Annabelle'; Zones 4-9. (FF) Willow (Salix 'Prairie Cascade'); Zones 2-5. (BB) Miscanthus 'Silver Arrow'; Zones 4-9. (CC) Salvia 'Purple Rain'; Zones 6-8. (AA) Sunflower (Helianthus annuus); Annual. (Z) Nasturtium (Tropaeolum spp.); Annual. (DD) Semidwarf apple (Malus 'Honeygold'); Zones 5-8. (EE) Summersweet (Clethra 'Ruby Spice'); Zones 3-9.

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