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…

Critically Endangered Agave pelona Blooms in Garden Greenhouses

It was late January when Jared Chauncey, Senior Horticulturist and arid plant expert at the Missouri Botanical Garden, noticed that something extraordinary was about to happen: an Agave pelona was sending up a flowering stalk. It was about to bloom. These plants live for decades before sending up the only bloom of their lifetime—they are…

Bioculture: Plants and People Interacting

People and plants have been sharing the planet for a very long time, and, through the ages, a great number of plants have become important to human culture. The Garden’s William L. Brown Center is thrilled to present a free talk series that focuses on that relationship. The series, called Bioculture: Plants and People Interacting,…

Virtual Orchid Show

Most years, the Missouri Botanical Garden Orchid Show offers visitors the chance to see the Garden’s expansive orchid collection while it is at its most dazzling—right now is the time of year that many orchids bloom. This year, the Orchid Show is on hold while construction of the new Jack C. Taylor Visitor Center is…

Pawpaws: America’s Forgotten Fruit

The arrival of September brings the beginning of apple-picking season, but apples aren’t the only fall fruit that’s ripening at this time of year. Here in Missouri, there’s a lesser-known seasonal treat that’s well-loved by those who have encountered it: the pawpaw fruit. The Pawpaw is Native to Missouri Asimina triloba, or pawpaw, is a…

A Visitor’s Guide to Japanese Festival

After a year off due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we couldn’t be more excited for Japanese Festival to return. Celebrating the history, culture, and people of Japan, the Japanese Festival at the Missouri Botanical Garden is one of the largest and oldest festivals of its kind in the United States. Since 1977, the Garden has…

Colocasia and Alocasia

Colocasia and Alocasia are two closely-related genera of herbaceous plants in the Araceae—or aroid—family native to the tropical rainforests of Southeast Asia. Commonly called “elephant ears,” these plants are cultivated around the world as ornamentals for their large, showy leaves, and some species are also grown for their edible, bulb-like corms. Colocasia and Alocasia in…