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Central Midwest Gardening: My 2012 Garden Plans

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Lowe's Central Midwest Regional Contributor Marty Ross outlines the plans for her 2012 garden.

Central Midwest-Marty Ross
Central Midwest-Marty Ross

As my friend Nancy explained to me, a thriving and successful arboretum isn't just a living museum of mature trees--there must be young specimens coming along too. I live in an older neighborhood with many magnificent mature trees, but I keep my garden fresh and youthful by planting new trees and shrubs. The garden is always changing.

This year I hope some young families will move in. I love watching birds in my garden, and I'm putting up nesting boxes for wrens and chickadees. A pair of robins made a nest on the rose arbor last year, and there's always a family of downy woodpeckers somewhere nearby. Cardinals seem to prefer to build their nests in evergreens in a neighbor's garden, but they come to the birdbath in my backyard.

Central Midwest-Marty Ross

There will be new plants this year too, mostly natives to attract birds and butterflies. I'm looking at native azaleas for a dappled spot in the backyard, and in a sunny bed out front, I intend to plant butterfly milkweed. I'll fill the planters on the front porch with violas and lettuce plants in March, and I'm planning to grow cherry tomatoes and lots of herbs in pots this summer.

My big plan this year is to replace the garden gate, put in a new fence down one side of the garden, and invite the neighbors over for a garden party. I'll post some pictures when the time comes.

What are your plans for your garden this year? We would all be delighted to hear about them.