For his debut show as Dior's creative director, designer Raf Simons stitched together a setting reminiscent of the fashion house's founding themes—femininity, romance, and flowers. Once again, the house of Dior was a house of flowers.
Glass gem corn was bred years ago by a part-Cherokee farmer and master seed-saver. Yes, it's real, and, as an heirloom, its seeds will grow true. Today, glass gem corn seeds are saved at Seeds Trust, who anticipate more available next month. Glass gem is an extreme iteration of corn's natural tendency towards different-colored kernels, as each kernel has its unique genetic set for color and size.
One of 22 varieties in the Celebrette Series, ‘Coral Light’ has a kickin’ combination of large coral flowers hovering over dark-edged foliage midstriped with a blaze of more coral. Needs some shade, but laughs at heat and humidity. Grows 8 to 10 inches tall and 10 to 12 inches wide. Annual. simplybeautifulgardens.com
A bit quirky but totally cute, the ruffled, often semidouble flowers of Viola Angel Amber Kiss are very un-viola-like. Ruddy orange with a yellow center and rose-colored reverse on the wings. Each flower seems to have its own personality. Plants are 6 to 8 inches across; flowers are about an inch wide.
Roses are the most popular flower for Valentine's Day, but did you know that different hues and varieties of roses have different meanings? If you're wondering how to best convey your passionate love, your chaste yearning, or alternatively, your disappointment in your relationship, there's a rose for you.
“We don’t call them ‘controlled burns,’” says Steve Glass at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum, “because you can’t really control a fire, only contain it.” Fire can be a boon for meadows and prairies, improving soil quality and growing conditions for native grasses and forbs. We take a look at Longwood Gardens and a prairie managed by the U.S. Army at Fort Lewis in Washington State and why they welcome fire on their lands.
Up in Cape Cod, the rhododendrons are in full bloom at the annual Heritage Museums & Gardens Rhododendrons Festival. Home to two noted hybridizers—Charles Owen Dexter and Jack Cowles—the garden is a great place to see the many new varieties in bloom. A new and dramatic water element—the Flume Fountain—and a new children's garden are also worth visiting for their unusual landcaping.
A weed-covered lot in Southern California, owned by Caltrans, is completely redone by a couple who live adjacent to the garden, complete with native varieties, a citrus grove, and hundreds of new plants, creating a Mediterranean idyll.