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Do you ever look out at your garden and wish you had a fairy godmother (or at least her magic wand) to whisk away your planting pains? Espoma isn’t magic, but its products have an astounding effectiveness which is as close to bibbity-bobbity-boo as we’ve ever experienced. They’re a trusted name for a reason and now it’s time to see why.

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A Garden by Firelight

A Garden by Firelight


Posted on Oct 27, 2016 | 0 comments

Autumn means the nights are longer and chillier, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be filled with light. Don’t shoo your garden parties inside when you can enjoy the crisp fall evening by the warm brightness of firelight.

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Winter may be months away, but that won’t stop us from eagerly planning our cold season gardens. At the top of our wishlist this year is a fresh face on the botanical scene:  Ice N’ Roses – the newest member of the Helleborus Gold Collection® that’s taking the nation by storm.

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Why Bareroot?

Why Bareroot?


Posted on May 7, 2014 | 0 comments

Comparison of Bareroot Hibiscus (left) and 1 Quart Monarda (right).

Comparison of Bareroot Hibiscus (left) and 1 Quart Monarda (right).

The dry, sparse appearance of bareroot perennials can be alarming to the novice gardener, but in reality ordering bare root is often the smarter choice. Foliage and blooms can be seductive, but the health and long-term potential of a plant truly lies in its roots. Bareroot plants have several advantages over plants in containers—bare roots are less expensive to ship, they are less likely to be harmed in the shipping process, their timing is easier to control, and they are field-grown for larger, healthier root systems. This is why Wayside Gardens has had great success with bare root plants, and you can too!

Shipping plants bare root makes more economic sense for several reasons. Container plants are costlier because the nursery has to supply a pot and soil as well as a large box and lots of inserts and packaging to protect the plant’s foliage. These larger, heavier boxes are significantly more expensive to ship.

Additionally, it is safer to ship plants in bareroot form because there is no risk in harming new growth, and therefore the plant actually has a better chance of making it safely into the customer’s garden.

And thanks to refrigerated storage, the timing of bareroot perennials can be precisely controlled. “(Bareroot perennials) are dormant,” explains JPPA Lead Horticulturist Benjamin Chester, “But as soon as they leave the refrigerated storage they’ll begin breaking dormancy.” And once the plant ‘wakes up’, it is ready to begin the growing season in earnest, which means it will quickly catch up to the level of container plants.

The most important benefit of bareroot perennials is that they can be field grown rather than confined to containers. The bareroot Cherry Cheesecake Hibiscus pictured here perfectly illustrates the difference between a field-grown perennial and a containerized one. Wayside Gardens used to offer this variety in a quart container, like the Monarda next to it. But the Hibiscus was simply too cramped in that space, so Wayside switched to growing it in the earth and selling it bare root. The result is a thick, fibrous mass of roots that used to fill up several cubic feet of soil and which, even in its bare, pruned form would be too large to fit back into the 1 Quart container. What a difference a little space makes! While small and slow-growing cultivars can start well in containers, large and vigorous cultivars like Cherry Cheesecake need more room to stretch out and develop a solid root system.

For more information on planting and caring for perennials, visit waysidegardens.com or contact us directly by calling our public relations department at 1-864-941-4521.

Happy gardening!

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The stunning white Epidmedium ogisui took the cover of this year's Wayside Gardens Collector's Edition catalog
We are absolutely ecstatic to announce that this year’s Wayside Gardens Collector’s Edition is now available on our website.  Unfortunately, we no longer have any copies of this publication. We’ll keep you up to date throughout 2014 for any new additions. We got to work with the amazing Ken Druse (I listen to his podcast, Real Dirt, every Saturday, and so should you), which was a tremendous honor and pleasure for everyone at Wayside Gardens.  The collection includes some of the most amazing plants I’ve ever seen, both woody and herbaceous.  Some of these plants are truly unique, and beautiful beyond almost anything currently in my garden (I’ll be including some of this new collection in my garden this year, you can be sure of that).  With this great collection finally being released, I can’t help but take the chance to write about a few of my favorites.  Making the cover of our Collector’s Edition catalog this year is the Epimedium Ogisui.  It’s a stunning flower that, as a great bonus, will throw out those elegant blooms very early in the season.

The Clematis haku ookan, one of the Ken Druse selections for our 2008 Collector's Edition
It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of flowering vines, or that Clematis is one of my favorite flowers.  It should be no surprise, then, that the flower that excites me the most in our new collection is the Clematis ‘Haku Ookan.’  Besides producing blooms of an amazing purple reminiscent of the popular Clematis Bourbon, it is one of the most prolific bloomers we’ve ever seen.  It also has two blooming seasons, which is something that I can rarely resist.  Once a vine has stopped blooming in mid-summer, I almost never remember that it will start blooming again later in the year, making the second season a fantastic surprise.

With more and more gardeners becoming deeply concerned with the effects that their gardening have on the environment, planting native flowers is a great option for nearly everyone.  We are offering as part of this collection one of my favorite native the Trillium erecta is a native flower to the Eastern United States and Canada, and performs beautifully in the shade
plants, Trillium erecta.  This flower’s stunning color and unique blooms make it a great accent perennial.  It could even hold its own as the centerpiece of most gardens.  It is actually a red flower with pale green sepals that make it seem like a distinctly two-color bloom.  It is native to woodland areas up and down the Eastern US, all the way from Georgia to Ontario, and I have often encountered these while hiking in the hills of Georgia and Tennessee.  I wondered for years what these great flowers were, and this year I’ll be planting some of my own.

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Fruit trees can be a fun addition to your home, whether you are adding them to your garden outside or growing them in containers. Having a gorgeous citrus tree full of fruit on your patio or a cute blueberry bush in your garden full of colorful berries is really rewarding. However, many people forget to consider amount of time it takes for a young plant to produce fruit.

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Washington Navel Orange Tree is one of Waysides amazing fruit trees!

In truth, you must wait patiently. Most fruit trees will not fruit until they mature, which usually takes about three years. Fortunately, many of the trees we sell have grafted rootstock that decreases this time somewhat. But the key is patience and to take proper care of your tree while you wait.

If you are desperate, and your tree has long matured but is still not producing fruit, here is one way that you can force a tree to fruit. We do not recommend this method to the novice gardener because there is a very strong possibility that the tree will die. So, try this method at your own risk.

In spring, after the tree has budded, tie a wire tightly around the trunk. This will trap the sugars in the tree and force them into the buds. You will start to see a bulge above the wire in the tree. If it works, there will be fruit. If not, you might have to call someone to remove a stump. Like we said, it is quite the risk and should only be used as a last resort. As they say, ‘Nothing ventured, nothing gained!’

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