Plant Profiles

Heirloom plant profiles. Categories include edible, fiber, medicinal and ornamental.

Medicinal and Culinary Uses for the Shy Violet

By Dawn Combs

While violets’ delicate blossoms are a treat only for the observant, the plant has enjoyed a long history of medicinal and culinary use.


Family Heirlooms: Roses, Peonies, and More

By Heirloom Gardener Editors

Heirloom Gardener readers share their stories of treasured family plants that have been passed down for generations.


A Celebration of Lilacs

By Samantha Johnson

One of nature’s long-lived symbols of spring, lilacs bring fragrance, beauty, and nostalgia to every landscape they adorn.


The White Willow Tree

By Jonathan Drori

Despite being associated with sadness in literature and language, the willow is a resilient tree with a rich history.


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The Wild Apple Tree

By Jonathan Drori

Kazakhstan's wild apple tree holds an insight to apple ancestry and a rooted hope for renewed genetic diversity in apple propagation.


The Leyland Cypress

By Jonathan Drori

Frequently used as a natural fence between neighbors, the Leyland Cypress has become a point of contention and a status of class in suburban England.


Yaupon Tree

By Jonathan Drori

Used to make a signature black tea by Native Americans, yaupon’s appeal as a caffeinated drink rose and fell due to an unfortunate name given to it by Europeans.


Dragon’s Blood Tree

By Jonathan Drori

An island off the Horn of Africa holds root to a tree with an ominous crown and vein-like branches that trickle a dark-red resin. The Dracaena cinnabari had bled a name for itself in history with legends of dragons and magic.



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