Plant of the year

Every creative area has its own awards: the Oscars, the Junos, and the Grammies are all fun to watch. The PPA Plant of the Year awards aren’t quite as well known, but those of us in the business still tune in to see which plant the Perennial Plant Association will name as the year’s best […]

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Best new practices

Winter is the time when much of the landscape goes dormant, settling under a blanket of snow for a months-long snooze. For landscapers, though, winter looks quite a bit different. In fact, January and February can be extremely busy months at Water’s Edge: it’s the time when we get to dig deep into training, learning […]

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Structure and colour

If you’re coming up to the cottage this holiday season, it’s a good opportunity to do some landscape planning. There’s mounds of fresh, fluffy snow across Muskoka and a well-designed garden looks fantastic in all seasons.  So cast a critical eye across the landscape and ask yourself whether it looks fabulous. If not, let’s start […]

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Taking up winter residence

As we move out for the winter, our neighbours are looking for ways to move in. Mice and other critters are anxious to find a safe home in our cottages. It’s not surprising. Deer mice are the most abundant mammals in the forest: in a good year, with plenty of seeds, there can be ten […]

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Butterfly absence

Have you seen many butterflies this summer? Probably not: the cool, wet summer really knocked butterfly numbers down, and most cottagers have seen very few butterflies this year. But it’s more than just weather that’s causing their numbers to decline. Fortunately, there are things we can do to help. Most of the focus on declining […]

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Landscaping for winter

Everything’s in bloom now, but take a moment to consider how your property looked last winter. A little bland and white, perhaps? Not to worry. There are lots of ways to add elements to the garden that look great in summer and add remarkable visual interest when the snow is deep. The first thing to […]

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Made for the shade

Look for this article in the summer-fall edition of Dockside magazine. It’s midsummer and it’s stinkin’ hot. Sure, you could flee the heat and go indoors. But that’s not what you’re here for. Air conditioning is a refuge, but it’s not a delight, and it’s certainly not why most people own a cottage. Fortunately, there […]

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The glory of colour

You can see this article in the spring-summer edition of Dockside magazine All winter, our world was a sea of white. In spring, it turned to muddy brown with occasional splashes of green. But now it’s beginning to erupt into a sea of glorious colour. And if you think you’re happy to see it, just […]

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Gardening heritage

Gardeners tend to have a strong sense of history. We tend plants that were established by others, and we know that the perennials, shrubs and trees we plant may well be growing long after we’re gone. So when an anniversary like Canada 150 comes along, we’re keen to take part. Last fall, many people happily […]

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Growing Cottage Food in containers

With our shallow soil and our short growing season, gardeners at the cottage have always loved to use containers for big impact planting. Window boxes, planters on the deck, hanging baskets on a deep porch – is there anything more ‘Classic Muskoka’? And while there’s always a place for ornamental plants, an increasing number of […]

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