One of the most popular succulent plants is the famous aloe vera, well-known for its medicinal properties and almost impossible to kill. But, unfortunately, aloes are also known for being toxic to pets.

Recently, a genus with many similarities to the aloes has gained much attention. Haworthias look a lot like aloes, but the big question is: Is the succulent Haworthia toxic to cats? Do they share the same toxicity?

Haworthia and CatsPin

Is Haworthia Toxic To Cats?

The good news is that Haworthia is non-toxic to cats, dogs, horses, and livestock. But just because they’re non-toxic doesn’t mean your pet should eat them.

Haworthias are succulents hailing from South Africa and neighboring countries. Zebra plants (Haworthia fasciata) are perhaps the most famous species, although there are over 150 accepted species currently.

Because they love bright light but scorch easily, Haworthias are most often used as indoor plants.

The Truth

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Aphids (superfamily Aphidoidea) are some of the most common pests you’ll encounter in the garden or on houseplants. Approximately 5,000 species of aphids are out there, and all of them want to suck your plants dry.

But you might have heard some people describe aphids doing something peculiar. Are the stories of winged aphids true, or is there a mixup with another pest going on?

Flying aphidsPin

Do Aphids Fly?

Well, they do, and they don’t, depending on a few factors. As a general rule, however, aphids don’t fly or have wings.

So When Do Aphids Get Wings?

Some aphid species are capable of developing wings. However, this ability is limited and will only happen when a population grows out of control.

As the infested plant becomes overcrowded and begins to die, the species capable of flight produce eggs that will hatch into alates.

An alate is a winged nymph

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A tree is a big investment, so it is worth taking some time to find exactly the right tree for your garden. Before you begin shopping, it’s a good idea to research the cultural needs of any trees you are considering and think about how well these needs match up with the conditions at your planting site. Is the tree well-suited to your region’s climate? How well will it adapt to the soil and light conditions that are available in the spot where it will be planted?

newly planted autumn moon Japanese maple
Give your new tree a location with good soil and plenty of space to grow. Photo: Carol Collins

Find the right planting site

Finding the right planting site for your new tree is also important. The spot you choose should be at least 3 feet away from pavement and fences, and at least 15 feet from buildings and other trees. Larger trees need

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It’s a universal truth that black and white botanicals will never go out of style. Art trends change from decade to decade but black and white botanicals remain timeless. Think of drawings by Matisse, charcoal and line art, or florals painted in high contrast black and white.

Thankfully appealing artwork is affordable and available from multiple sources. I spied this black and white botanical print at Anthropologie and it’s dramatic but wow is it expensive. There are so many other beautiful alternatives out there for much less. I introduced two new black and white art prints to my my print shop below. I also rounded up more black and white botanical favorites from online retail sources and Etsy shops.

New in my shop:


stem in shadow / bouquet noir


I also have this classic pair that I sketched last year, I love this set framed and displayed together.

leaf sketch

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We’re traveling with Deborah Dorman today, who is taking us to Mendenhall Gardens in Juneau, Alaska.

masses of yellow flowers growing between large rock formationsA flurry of golden bidens flowers (Bidens ferulifolia, Zones 9–11 or as an annual) accentuates the beauty of these rock formations.

close up of blue lobelia flowersBlue lobelia (Lobelia erinus, annual) is a beautiful little plant that thrives best in cooler temperatures, so it is a perfect choice for an Alaskan garden.

display of very lush, floral hanging basketsA spectacular display of hanging baskets is overflowing with petunias (Petunia hybrid, Zones 10–11 or as an annual).

upside down tree planted as a container with overflowing flowersOne of the iconic features of this garden is the upside-down tree planters. These are actual tree stumps, pulled up and flipped over in the ground and then used as planters on the top. What a beautiful and interesting way to use something that otherwise would have just gone into a wood chipper.

close up of waxy red flowerAn abutilon (Abutilon hybrid, Zones 8–10 or as an annual) shows

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