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Dawn Marie Carlson – Business, Marketing, & P.R. Consultant for Entrepreneurs and Authors and more!

Tag: spring blooms (Page 1 of 2)

Elegant Azaleas

Elegant Azaleas

Delicate blossoms.


Elegant azaleas can add a stunning impact in your garden. This azalea is gorgeous with prolific blooms from the bottom of the plant to the end of every branch. The color is a blush of faint pink with darker markings on the petal edges.

I bought this last spring and transplanted it this winter into a larger container where it busted out in a plethora of new growth filled with blossoms for the spring fashion show, the only thing missing is fragrance. The good news: azaleas can bloom for several weeks.

Two years ago, I planted a Red Bird Azalea that expanded and I had to transplant it after it doubled in size in one year. Some varieties are smaller and more compact and it is good to choose the correct size for your garden area (photos from the first year, last spring).

When I was young, we lived in Chamblee, Georgia near Atlanta. At our new house, my Dad planted several azaleas in the front yard and they looked grand with their cranberry blossoms each spring. The azaleas grew well under the pine and dogwood trees in the right environment, in the shade with acidic soil.

Elegant Azaleas 004

Blooming forth!

This spring, I added eight new azaleas for containers throughout my front and backyard. Azaleas prefer shade or tree cover with acidic soil either in the ground or containers. I have them in containers on the side of the house, on the front porch, on the deck, and on the patio. As long as they have some shade, they develop profusely.

Azaleas are either evergreen or deciduous plants; my plants are evergreen, providing green serenity in between numerous flowering plants in my garden.

During planting, I add soil amendments prepared specifically for azaleas, organic acidic azalea food, seaweed organic fertilizer, rainwater. These organic planting methods ensure healthy soil, healthy leaves and roots, prolific blooms, and sturdy growth.

Prune the plants soon after they bloom to avoid reducing next year’s buds. You can prune some of the branches every other year to ensure buds for the next spring. Mulch your plants two to three inches deep with pine straw, leaves or bark.

By providing azaleas with their favorite environment, your plants can produce abundant blossoms and healthy foliage for you to enjoy in your garden setting throughout the year. As a shrub, azaleas provide formal foliage throughout the year or you can prune them in a more casual, branching style.

Last night, I transplanted this azalea into a larger container with additional room for next year’s growth.

Elegant Azaleas - night blooming IMG_2001

Night blooming azalea.

Perhaps I can help you with your garden design or container gardening to make an impact at your entranceway, porch, or deck. For your commercial business or residential property, I will prepare a plan for your microclimate to make your entrance more inviting with a sense of place and beauty. Please visit my website page for more information: Dawn to Dusk Garden Design Services. Contact me today and let’s get started. How can I help you? Let’s plant some elegant azaleas; they can make a stunning impact in your garden.

“Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.”
–Thomas Alva Edison

Move the World

Move the World

Mister Lincoln Rose


Move the world. “Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.”

Enjoy this fragrant Mister Lincoln rose; the first crop this season. Roses nurtured and photographed by Dawn Marie Carlson @DawnToDuskPhotos.

The Act of Giving

Fragrant Rosemary

Fragrant Rosemary

The Act of Giving

“Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” –Robert Collier.

This spring, I am transplanting most of the new perennials I planted last spring and summer. A daunting task.

The nurtured plants grew to their next stage – success! I need to transplant this Trailing Rosemary plant already after it outgrew this container after one year.

The Rosemary leaves release a sweet fragrance when brushed, then I use the dried leaves and make sachets. I will add dried Lavender leaves for another sachet, and share them as special gifts for my family and friends.

I nurtured and grew the Rosemary and Lavender plants over time and now I am giving them away as special sachet gifts. Success, the act of giving.


Action is the Real Measure of Intelligence

pink geranium gracing the rain barrel

pink geranium gracing the rain barrel

Action is the Real Measure of Intelligence

“Action is the real measure of intelligence.”
–Napoleon Hill.

Yesterday, I took quick action while the late afternoon light was perfect for photos of my garden flowers. I always document the garden and flowers so I know what is working well or not and to remember their beauty on a dreary winter day. This ordinary pink geranium looks bold and glamorous high on top of the rain barrel with the arched stucco wall as a frame behind it. Photo by Dawn Marie Carlson.

Fuzzy and Romeo Adventures - The Mysterious IntruderHave you read the reader’s comments page on the “Fuzzy and Romeo Adventures – The Mysterious Intruder eBook?”

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cyclamen, stock and pansies

cyclamen, stock and pansies


“Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused.”

Photo of Cyclamen, Pansies and Stock flowers nurtured and photographed by Dawn Marie Carlson. Enjoy the happy, smiling Pansy faces.


Fuzzy and Romeo Adventures - The Mysterious IntruderRelax and read my entertaining eBook: “Fuzzy and Romeo Adventures – The Mysterious Intruder,” a book for children of all ages. Instantly available now. Click on the eBook name or on the book cover to purchase it now.

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Quotation: Walt Disney

2014-11-12 005“If you can dream it, you can do it.”
–Walt Disney.

I added new perennials in my garden last year including salvias, pincushion flowers, milkweed, lantana and several other varieties in the garden.

After providing them with organic soil amendments, organic fertilizer, rain water and organic seaweed fertilizer, they are blooming and becoming strong plants this spring. When I planted the pincushion plants last year, they were small and spindly, while now they are four times as large with so many blooms and responding better than planned.2014-10-25 094

This new salvia is a nice addition near the new orange tree in unison with mini roses, lantana, calendula and pincushion plants. Yes, it has a colorful, confetti design which was the plan. They take turns being the star of the show with their color and sensational blossoms as the seasons meander along.IMG_2775

In addition to merely returning beautifully each year, these plants also provide essential habitat features for pollinators, birds, butterflies and natural pest control. Bonus feature: they are water wise. A worthwhile investment.



Quotation: Abraham Lincoln

IMG_2834“That some achieve great success, is proof to all that others can achieve it as well.”
–Abraham Lincoln.

The first rose to bloom in my garden is my Mister Lincoln, a deeply fragrant, crimson rose. I picked three blossoms last week and last night, three more were ready for a vase. It’s my oldest and most prolific rose plant, which resides in a wine barrel near the driveway and is flooded in sunshine all afternoon.


The reason this Mister Lincoln rose grows abundantly and happily is the nurturing it receives. I give them: organic rose food, rose soil amendments, organic planting mix, organic seaweed fertilizer, rain water, sunshine, and I tell them how beautiful they are! I don’t neglect them.




Your tips of the day: organic soil amendments and fertilizers produce healthier plants in a gentle, time release formula providing the nutrients needed for the root system, leaves and flowers. The leaves are always green without any holes or spots, the blooms are large and the stems are strong and sturdy. Super healthy!

Quotation: Martin Buxbaum

005“Some people, no matter how old they get, never lose their beauty – they merely move it from their faces into their hearts.”
–Martin Buxbaum.

This hydrangea is now budding and ready to bloom like this once again. Dawn Marie Carlson.

Quotation: Napoleon Hill

001“Action is the real measure of intelligence.”
–Napoleon Hill

Take time to enjoy the daisies from our garden – smile, breathe, in any order, then relax for one minute. It works for me!

All photos of Osteospermums nurtured and photographed by Dawn Marie Carlson.

One of my favorite variations of Osteospermum is White Lightening – white petals on the inside with the backside being yellow. When the breeze blows, they shimmer with white and yellow color that is striking like lightening. There is also a beautiful soft, golden-yellow variety that I have that is graceful in the garden called Yellow Symphony.


Next to the fountain in the front garden, I have an old Marguerite Daisy which grows boldly and sends good cheer to the neighbors as they pass by.

This weekend, I transplanted three plants: two with white petals with purple on the backside and a solid purple in between the two white ones below the bird bath. It’s make a nice complimentary color element at the foot of the bird bath and always looks fresh with color and vitality and only needs pruning periodically, ideal landscape plants. The coloring adds a lot of energy to the garden and looks clean and neat at the same time.

Spring Garden April 2009 020Here is another variety of white Osteospermum with a golden center that is very regal. In the front garden, I have a soft autumn rose version blooming now and they splay across the garden with other flowers growing through them which looks nice.IMG_2680

Another version in my garden on the side yard is a soft orange which is nicely complimenting the opposite color, purple daisies nearby. 042  006
This yellow with white inside is a unique version that you don’t find very often. Last summer, I found a bold yellow with a purple center but they didn’t last. IMG_0401



I love these golden flowers with the dark center in this container. Once the plants overstay their welcome in containers, I transplant them in the ground where they can expand and really make a bold statement with their color and texture in the garden. Room to grow!

Quotation: Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

2014-09-22 074“Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.”
–Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Sweetly fragrant Dianthus blooms radiantly, continuously and boldly regardless of prevailing weather conditions. I add these in garden containers as fillers and they can overtake their corner over time. They come in a number of color combinations and I always choose a six-pack variety of colors to add interest in my containers. They are great as flower garden borders too. Now that you know; you must do. Dianthus grown, nurtured and photographed by Dawn Marie Carlson.

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