Heat-tolerant Plants

As St. Louis and much of the surrounding area experience another round of triple-digit temperatures, the plants around us are feeling it too. Hot, sunny weather will dry out soils quickly. With less water available for the roots to absorb, leaves and stems may start to wilt and flag. An occasional deep, slow watering should…

Plant Profile: St. John’s Wort

As interest grows in native plants, some gardeners may be wondering what kinds of options are available to add to their own backyards. From our experts at the William T. Kemper Home Gardening Center comes a suggestion for a native, flowering shrub with an eye-catching bark: Hypericum prolificum, or St. John’s wort. The unique, layered bark…

Honeysuckles Explained

Most gardeners cringe at the word “honeysuckle” these days. But not all species of honeysuckle are bad. Here, the William T. Kemper Home Gardening Center explains which native species you should plant in your garden to attract pollinators and which invasive species you should eradicate wherever possible.

2022 Plants of Merit

Every year since 1998, the Missouri Botanical Garden has partnered with other regional horticultural institutions to select Plants of Merit. Plants of Merit are chosen for outstanding quality and dependable performance in Missouri, southern and central Illinois, and the Kansas City metro area. To qualify as a Plant of Merit, the plants must be easy to…

Controlling Common Insect Pests in Your Garden

Spring means new life and new beginnings, not only for plants but also for the insects that have evolved to eat them. Dealing with insect pests is best done when populations are small and before infestations get out of hand. As we here at the William T. Kemper Home Gardening Center look ahead to a busy growing season, we…

Chemical-Free Weed Control

Spring is upon us, and the signs of the changing seasons are all around: tulip leaves poking out of the soil, blooming magnolias, and weeds appearing in garden beds. This early in the season, these weeds seem innocuous enough, but soon they will be blooming and forming seed. Here are our tips for controlling unwanted…

Purple Martins Resume Seasonal Residence at the Garden

Perhaps you have seen them while visiting the Missouri Botanical Garden’s William T. Kemper Center for Home Gardening — large white, multi-compartment birdhouses on poles about 14 feet high. In spring and summer, the housing is fully occupied by purple martins (Progne subis), a swallow species. St. Louis today is possibly home to the largest…

The Perks of Plants

Whether you’re quarantined or just following the “stay at home” order, many of you are spending more time inside right now than you’re used to. All the time in your home may have you reconsidering decor, or looking to add something new. Might we humbly suggest houseplants? Houseplants come in all shapes, sizes, and colors,…

Planning Your Garden

Being stuck inside may have you dreaming of planting your summer garden in the warm sunshine. We’re still a few weeks away from the prime planting season — the best time to start is after Mother’s Day — but now is the best time to plan your garden. Planning your garden is a crucial first…

Getting Your Orchid to Rebloom

Our Orchid Show features hundreds of vibrant, blooming orchids that provide a colorful escape from a cold winter’s day. But perhaps what’s most impressive about the show is the fact that all of the orchids come from the Garden’s permanent collection of more than 6,000 orchids. All the orchids you see in the show are…