Marine veteran Jack Kegley and UW Assistant Professor Jeremy Watson enjoy the new healing garden built by UW students.
KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

A dull empty space outside Puget Sound VA’s emergency room has been transformed into a serene space for sitting.

Flowers generate weak electric fields, and a new study shows that bumblebees can actually sense those electric fields using the tiny hairs on their fuzzy little bodies.

"The bumblebees can feel that hair bend and use that feeling to tell the difference between flowers," says Gregory Sutton, a Royal Society University Research Fellow at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom.

At London's annual Chelsea Flower Show, the flora is fit for a queen: shaped in her likeness and crafted in honor of her 90th birthday. The new princess has her own chrysanthemum too.

But this year's event, which opens Tuesday, kicks off with a warning from the Royal Horticultural Society: Britain has a "lost generation of gardeners."

In Florida, homeowners have a propensity for landscaping. They take great pride in the green carpet of grass in front of their homes. But one Florida man is working on a project that's turning his neighbors' lawns into working farms.

Chris Castro has an obsession — turning the perfectly manicured lawns in his Orlando neighborhood into mini-farms.

"The amount of interest in Orlando is incredibly surprising," Castro says.

A leading brand of home and garden pest-control products says it will stop using a class of pesticides linked to the decline of bees.

Ortho, part of the Miracle-Gro family, says the decision to drop the use of the chemicals — called neonicotinoids, or neonics for short — comes after considering the range of possible threats to bees and other pollinators.

"While agencies in the U.S. are still evaluating the overall impact of neonics on pollinator populations, it's time for Ortho to move on," says Tim Martin, the general manager of the Ortho Brand.

An example of Seattle's Pollinator Pathway.

Sarah Bergmann was working at a New York ad agency when she heard about the decline in honeybee populations. The agency was working on a campaign to raise awareness of the honeybee, Bergmann says.

"The more I read, the more I realized the honeybee is actually a symptom," she says.

Flickr Photo/Alden Chadwick (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks to Edible Seattle editor Tara Austen Weaver about her new memoir, "Orchard House." 

Spring planting season is coming early this year for a lot of home gardeners. And this year some Pacific Northwest nurseries are getting familiar with the flavors of the Caribbean.

A Western Oregon mail order company has begun selling what might become the No. 1 conversation starter of Northwest garden parties this summer.

Everything in Alaska is a little bit bigger — even the produce. A 138-pound cabbage, 65-pound cantaloupe and 35-pound broccoli are just a few of the monsters that have sprung forth from Alaska's soil in recent years.

At the annual Alaska State Fair, which opens Thursday in Palmer, the public will have the chance to gawk at giants like these as they're weighed for competition.

courtesy, the author

The first thing you notice about Marty Wingate’s cozy North Seattle home is the garden. Plants overflow from the steep slope that leads up from the street to her front door. You see blooms of every hue, leaves of every shape, even small trees. The sheer multitude of flora is almost overwhelming.

When searching for ingredients to cook with, Irish chef Darina Allen sometimes has only to make a short trip — to her yard. There, she's sure to find a constellation of bright yellow dandelion flowers.

"Where other people see weeds, I see dinner!" she says.

Allen's the founder of the Ballymaloe Cookery School and an advocate of organic farming. She says that with a quick transplant from the yard to the kitchen, the humble dandelion might shed its bad rap.

Ann Dornfeld / KUOW

Washington farmers can expect longer growing seasons, drier summers and increased risk of disease and pest outbreaks, according to some of the predictions in the National Climate Assessment released Tuesday.

Nate Watters

In dense, concrete-locked urban areas like Seattle space for gardening is hard to come by. After all, this is a city where land is so valuable that people spend an average of $346 per square foot on their homes.

Flickr Photo/sea turtle

Marcie Sillman talks with garden writer Marty Wingate about winter planting.