Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Tulip Fix

March is here- and spring is not.  Well, at least not yet.  I recently did a segment for WFSB's Better Connecticut show on how to select the best cut Tulips, arranging tips and how to keep them fresh.  You can see that segment by clicking HERE

While not the first flower to emerge, Tulips to me are a true symbol of spring and the end of winter.  Here is a photo shoot of the Tulips that I used on Better Connecticut.  The Tulips are now sprinkled around my house bringing plenty of spring joy!

Get your Tulip fix below:













And I will leave you with a recent pic of my husband and myself
at a benefit party for Knox Parks, Carnival Style!
We had THE best time supporting the terrific work they do in Hartford! You can see more pics from the event by clicking HERE 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

What's Missing?


There are thousands and thousands of books about gardening, plants and design on the market and probably lots on your bookshelves at home. 
 
But what's missing?   
 
What don't you like about the gardening books out there?
 
What do you like?
Want to learn simple tricks to designing with annuals?
 
Not sure how to control pests in the garden?
I would love, love, love to hear your thoughts!  Please take a minute and give this some thought, or just send me your knee-jerk reaction.  I want to know what's missing from your bookshelf.
Looking to visit beautiful places with awesome plants and design? 
Please, don't NOT hit reply to this email- I will never see it.  Here is how to get in touch with me:

Go to my web site and fill out the contact form HERE .

Or you can send me an email directly to: jsh.naturalelegance@gmail.com

Many, many thanks in advance. I look forward to hearing from you!

XOXO Julie


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Greening Up the Greenhouse

Think it's too early to start planting annuals in Connecticut? You're right, unless you have a greenhouse! I went to visit The Garden Barn in Vernon and was excited to see a lot of green and feel the warm temps of their greenhouses! Check out the video I did for WFSB's Better CT show by clicking HERE.  Spring is around the corner for sure!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Air Plants

From the mouth of Scot Haney, "Air plants for air heads".  I would say the perfect plant for those plagued by a brown thumb.  Still the greenest of thumbs will adore the unique shapes, textures and joy of growing air plants, so really they are for all of us!

Click HERE to see the segment I did for WFSB's Better CT show about these nifty plants. 
Air plants or Tillandsia do not grow in soil, require only moderate light and a soak in water once a week.  In the wild they only use roots to an object and pull all of their water and nutrients from the air or rain.  You can keep them in anything but my favorite container are clear glass orbs that allow you to appreciate the beauty of each individual air plant. 
So to recap:
1. Display your air plant in anything (but soil)
2. Give it moderate light
3. Soak in water about once a week for 2-3 hours
The kind (and very creative) folks at Kestrel in Northampton Massachusetts gave me three plants to use of WFSB's Better CT today. The thicker, fuzzy one is a Caput-Medusae, the teeny wispy one is an Argentea and the tall thin variety with a flower bud is a Juncea. Click HERE to check them out!
All of the pictures in this post were taken at Kestrel.  It's a seriously cool shop for anyone who likes to decorate their home with plants and d├ęcor by local artisans. Kestrel is located at 22 Masonic Street, Northampton MA.


Saturday, January 25, 2014

January Dreaming


"Anyone who thinks gardening begins in the spring and ends in the fall is missing the best part of the whole year; for gardening begins in January with the dream."      -  Josephine Nuese



Friday, January 24, 2014

Cabbage Hemp Salad



Some things are just too good not to share.  So I will deviate from the norm of plants, gardening and design to share a really yummy and healthy recipe with you: Cabbage Hemp SaladPopSugar shared it with me and I want to pass along the deliciousness! It's described as a detox salad which is all the rage right now.  Not sure what it's supposed to be detoxing but my family and I can't get enough of it.  Try this recipe and you will understand why. 
Known as a rule breaker in the garden world, I also break them in the kitchen.
I didn't have any Hemp oil so I subbed Grapeseed Oil:  Delish!
The first time I made this we had lemons, not limes and: It worked!  (but limes are better, I found the second time.) 
Besides the hemp seeds, I added some chia seeds into the mix as well.

Cabbage Hemp Salad

3 cups cabbage (mix of purple and green), finely shredded
1/4 cup red and yellow peppers, diced
1 1/2 avocados, diced with pit removed
3 tablespoons hemp oil
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
1/4 cup hemp seeds
3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
 
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Massage and mix with your hands to tenderize the cabbage and cream the avocado, and serve.
     

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Pantone's Color of 2014 is...

Radiant Orchid!

Seriously, what is not to love about this? The color, Radiant Orchid is the perfect blend of purple, fuchsia and pink.  It is both easy to look at and also easy to grow with.  Pantone's declaration of the 2014 color of the year should not leave Radiant Orchid on the fashion runways of Paris- it fits just as well in the garden.  Radiant Orchid is a color that, according to Pantone, "Emanates great joy, love and health."

I will take that in all aspects of my life including my garden!  

from Better Homes and Gardens
1. An old standby that I remember from Grandmother's garden: Ageratum.  This plant pretty much nails Radiant Orchid down to the color code of 18-3224. (For those of you who need to match it exactly)
2. As the name implies, Phalaenopsis Orchid.
from Better Homes and Gardens
3. Chinese Astilbe- a shade loving perennial.
A garden designed by Natural Elegance Design in 2013 using shades of Radiant Orchid
4. Check out more plants to use in the garden from Houzz.

Lastly, check out the segment I did with Kara Sundlun and Scot Haney on WFSB-TV's Better Connecticut by clicking HERE.