Not sure what certain words mean when reading gardening advice? The 2014 All-Seasons Garden Guide has you covered with common garden terms and their definitions!
A Glossary of Garden Terms
Acidic soil: A soil that has a pH below 7, typical of clay soils.
Balled and burlapped: The roots of the plant have soil attached and are held in place with burlap or some other material.
Bare root: The roots of the plant are bare, with no soil attached.
Biennial: A plant of two seasons’ duration, from germination to maturity and death, usually developing vegetative growth in the first year and flowering, fruiting, and dying in the second year. Biennials need exposure to winter temperatures to trigger flowering or fruit production in the second year.
Corm: A rounded, thick, modified underground stem base bearing membranous or scaly leaves and buds (e.g., gladiolus, crocus).
Crown: The base of the plant, where the stem and root meet.
Deadheading: Removing the dead blossoms. If a plant is termed “self-cleaning,” the blossoms fall off on their own. Deadheading usually extends the blooming season.
Floriferous: Describes a flower-bearing plant that blooms freely.
Herbicide: A chemical used to destroy or inhibit the growth of undesirable plants.
Rhizome: A somewhat elongated, usually horizontal underground plant stem, often thickened by deposits of reserved food material, that produces shoots above and roots below (e.g., bearded iris).
Sucker: An undesirable shoot or stem growing from the roots of a plant.