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On the Down the Garden Path Radio Show and Podcast, landscape designers Joanne Shaw and Matthew Dressing discuss down-to-earth tips and advice for your plants, gardens, and landscapes.

Joanne and Matthew believe it's important and possible to have great gardens that are low maintenance.

Each week, they educate their listeners on how to seasonally manage their gardens and landscapes. Joanne and Matt learn right along with their listeners, from each other, from their research, and from the many guests who join them on their show. 

Listen live at on Monday’s at 7 pm ET or subscribe to download this show and past episodes from your favourite podcast app. 

Check out the website for even more garden tips and tricks.

Jul 19, 2022

This month on the Down the Garden Path podcast, landscape designers Matthew Dressing and Joanne Shaw discuss the wide assortment of shrubs available for your gardens and landscapes. With so many wonderful new and tried-and-true shrubs on the market, they believe there are a few that deserve more attention. So, in this episode, they share some of the hidden gems you can find at your local independent garden centre.

Join Joanne and Matt as they discuss hidden gems you can find at your local garden centre.

Here are some of the questions and topics covered in this episode:

  • How do Matt and Joanne define a hidden gem?
  • Joanne's favourites:
    • Microbiota or Russian Cypress, Microbiota decussata – zone 3-7, 6”-18” tall by 36” wide, evergreen, full sun to partial shade, burgundy bronze fall colour.
    • Carol Mackie Daphne, Daphne × burkwoodii 'Carol Mackie' – zones 4-8, 2-3’ tall by 3-4’ wide, semi-evergreen, partial shade, fragrant pale pink flowers in May.
    • Cutleaf Gold Elderberry, Sambucus racemosa ‘Lemony Lace’ – zones 3-7, 3-5’ tall by 4-6’ wide, deciduous, full sun to part shade, fragrant white flowers in May and June. Berries are sour but edible.
  • Matt's favourites:
    • Low Scape series Chokeberry, Aronia melanocarpa cultivars from Proven Winners – zones 3-9, 1-5’ tall by 2-5’ wide, deciduous, white flowers in mid spring, edible dark purple berries and orange-red fall foliage. Berries are edible.
    • Tint Tuff Stuff Ah-ha Mountain Hydrangea, Hydrangea serrata ‘SMNHSDD’ – zones 5-9, 3’ tall and wide, deciduous, pink or blue lace cap flowers from summer through fall, with red fall colour.
    • Caryopteris or Bluebeard, Caryopteris cultivars – zones 5-9, 2-3’ feet tall and wide, deciduous, true blue flowers in late summer to fall.

Down the Garden Path Podcast

Each week on Down The Garden Path, professional landscape designers Joanne Shaw and Matthew Dressing discuss down-to-earth tips and advice for your plants, gardens and landscapes.

As the owner of Down2Earth Landscape Design, Joanne Shaw has been designing beautiful gardens for homeowners east of Toronto for over a decade. A horticulturist and landscape designer, Matthew Dressing owns Natural Affinity Garden Design, a landscape design and garden maintenance firm servicing Toronto and the Eastern GTA. Together, they do their best to bring you interesting, relevant and useful topics to help you keep your garden as low maintenance as possible.

In their new book, Down the Garden Path: A Step-By-Step Guide to Your Ontario Garden, Joanne and Matthew distill their horticultural and design expertise and their combined experiences in helping others create and maintain thriving gardens into one easy-to-read monthly reference guide. It's now available on Amazon.