Forest Bathing For Healthy Living

Forest Bathing is Today Where Yoga was 30 Years Ago

Just be with trees. No hiking, no counting steps on a Fitbit. You can sit or meander, but the point is to relax rather than accomplish anything.

Data from field experiments conducted in 24 forests across Japan found that subjects who participated in forest bathing had lower blood pressure, heart rate, and concentrations of salivary cortisol — a stress hormone.  This practice also improves mood, accelerates recovery from surgery or illness, improves sleep and increases the ability to focus.


This is due to various essential oils, generally called phytoncide, found in wood, plants, and some fruit and vegetables, which trees emit to protect themselves from germs and insects. Forest air doesn’t just feel fresher and better—inhaling phytoncide seems to actually improve immune system function.

We are fortunate here in Northumberland to have easy access to the Ganaraska and Northumberland forests. Try some forest bathing at these wellness hotspots.

Northumberland Forest

Ganaraska Forest

Peter's Woods

Garden Seeds And Grass Seeds

Seeds are the basis for all plant life on earth. For millennia, mankind has worked to continually improve the seeds we use to grow crops that feed and nourish our communities and improve our lives.

Food security begins in your backyard. When you choose to grow from seed, you know that your food has not been genetically modified or engineered. You can also believe that your harvest has not been grown with chemicals.

Flowers from Seed ??

Very often we think only of growing vegetables from seed, but flower seeds are just as easy to start and you'll have a greater choice of variety and color, if you are willing to start your own.

Now is a good time for sowing grass seed.

With seed, one has a larger selection of species available. Different mixes are available for sun or shade, disease resistance and soil type.  Turf develops in the environment in which it will live, and the cost compared to sod is much lower.

Winter Gardening

When you choose a tree, shrub, or perennial for your garden, you want to pick one that offers more than one season of interest. It is always worth bearing in mind what it will look like in the middle of winter.

Here are a few suggestions of shrubs and trees that you will be able to admire on cold days from the warmth of your home:

Burning Bush is famous for its exuberant red colour from late August through fall.  Its red berries attract birds and brighten the winter landscape.


Hydrangeas may not bloom in winter, but their big, gorgeous bunches of flowers can be left on all winter like outdoor dried flower bouquets.

Yucca of all things, this desert plant is one of the best for providing interest in the depth of winter.  Not only is it evergreen, but its spiky blue-grey leaves are tall enough to convey their dramatic character through all but the deepest snowfall.

Boxwood is a deciduous evergreen that has the ability to be shaped or hedged which catches the snow and provide special form and structure.

Red Osier Dogwood may be what you’re looking for! A beautiful sight of red branches emerging from the snow.

Often these branches can be clipped and used in your holiday decorations and displays.


On The Waterfront

Whether you have a balcony, a small urban space or a sprawling country property, incorporating a water feature takes very little effort and brings a sense of serenity to a garden.  The natural sound of water is mesmerizing, and the movement and reflectivity are enchanting.  It is a well-known stress reliever and its relaxing effect can transport you to a different place. Feel the cares of the world slip from your shoulders as you experience your personal vacation every day of the week!

Aquatic plants are truly the “emerald” jewels of the gardening world.  Add natural beauty to your water garden with the top-performing varieties. Water plants succeed under the most trying conditions, as they are not affected by severe heat or drought.  At Baltimore Valley, we have Marginal Plants, Floating Plants, Submerged Plants and Oxygenating Plants.

Our floating water hyacinths


See wildlife up close!  Water is the number one requirement for attracting and keeping wildlife in the garden.  Adding a pond or water garden to your yard not only adds beauty to your yard, but it also supports the indigenous wildlife in your neighborhood. Ponds attract and create a haven for beautiful fish, dragonflies, frogs and birds.


Educate our children.  Maintaining a backyard pond is one of the best ways to educate children and get them interested in biology, sustainability and habits.  It can also help them understand the responsibility we all have for caring for our environment, which can ignite their interest in creating a better future for our planet.


So, what kind of water garden would you like!


Consider a decorative water feature which includes beautiful container water gardens, refreshing fountains, bubbling urns, and patio ponds.

Or, an ecosystem pond that is designed to be low maintenance, allowing you more time to relax and enjoy your beautiful water feature with friends and family.

What about a pondless waterfall, a simple re-circulating waterfall or stream without the presence of a pond in your garden.


Invite the idea of a water garden into your mind and your own backyard. Get ready to perch in your favourite chair and close your eyes, listening to the sound of the water and the smell of the plants.

It is possible to create a low-maintenance, watery paradise in your backyard.Baltimore Valley is proud to provide you with all of the elements you need to plan and create a water feature for your outdoor space.

Let us show you how…


Retail Distributer of AquaScape

Order And Harmony

Create your own French Parterre.


A parterre is a site made up of planting beds separated by walkways and edged with small shrubbery that is kept well-trimmed.

Traditionally, the patterns are defined by dwarf hedges which became all the rage in Elizabethan knot gardens, intricate affairs that the French adopted, simplified, and called parterres. One of the earliest and most famous examples is at the Palace of Versailles, a living embroidery of swirling miniature hedges.

You too can create your own Parterre…or just a single French style bed.


You don’t need to have a huge yard the size of the one at Versailles Palace to create this look. The same balance and eye appeal are easy to achieve, by creating an interesting geometric design and making the most of the space you have to work with.

Design the planting beds.  French style is a study in geometry. Decide on the shapes you want for the planting beds, and then make sure they’re clearly defined.

Make a hedge border. Making a hedge border is like making a frame for a garden.  Excellent choices for hedging are boxwood, euonymus, clipped cedars and yews, or the aromatic foliage of lavender. A living masterpiece is enhanced when surrounded by an elegant border.  Boxwood and emerald cedars are now on sale!

Fill the garden bed.  Inside the border garden, you can use flowering shrubs, annuals, perennials, herbs, bulbs and even vegetables if you want. Use a decorative focus element in your garden for the final touch.   Statues, urns, planters, and water features are all elements of French garden design.

By incorporating old-world features and luxuriant plant growth, you can adapt any landscape into a French vision.

Whatever your vision, we can help you reach your dream garden.

Tree's For Bee's

Pollinators play an essential role in maintaining healthy ecosystems.  They provide the service of pollinating our crops and plants, which in turn increases crop yield and biodiversity in the natural environment.  They are responsible for pollinating over 30% of the foods we eat.


We all have childhood memories of the first time we noticed honey bees.  Perhaps it was seeing them working a patch of white clover on a warm spring day. Maybe, it was on those first dandelions of early spring. Possibly, that first memory was of an apple tree in full bloom and the buzz of hundreds of bees working the flowers.  The truth is, large mature trees are an important food source for our bees.

You don’t need a meadow full of flowers to help the honeybee; planting one or two of the top pollen and nectar-bearing trees also benefits this little insect.

The next time you choose a tree to plant in your yard, at a school, or in a park, consider planting a native flowering tree that bees will love to visit.


Here are the top 7 trees for bees in Ontario:


1. Serviceberry is one of the first trees to bloom in the spring. Bees love the serviceberry’s white flowers, while birds love its berries.


2. Catalpa blooms in late spring and early summer covering itself in large nectar filled blooms. This striking majestic tree is a real show stopper.


3. Basswood, or linden, is a favorite of beekeepers, because its nectar is irresistible to honey bees. Observe a basswood in bloom, and you’ll see bumblebees, sweat bees, and even nectar-loving flies and wasps visiting its flowers. Linden, also known as Basswood, flowers heavily in late June and early July sending bees into a nectar gathering frenzy. This is a large tree with tremendous numbers of flowers.


4. Redbud boasts unusual magenta blooms that arise from buds along twigs, branches, and even the trunk.  Its flowers attract bees in early to mid-spring.


5. Crabapple tree, how can you go wrong? Crabapples bloom in white, pink, or red, and attract all kinds of interesting pollinators, like orchard mason bees.


6. Locust has value to foraging bees. A hardy choice for tough environments, like urban areas. Honey bees love it, as do many native pollen bees. Late spring bloomer.



7. Tulip Tree, offers springtime nectar to all kinds of pollinators.


Honeybees are tremendous foragers. They do their best work with concentrated food sources and trees provide such a source. An acre of trees can produce many pounds of honey and hives filled with healthy happy bees.

Here at Baltimore Valley, we are happy to offer our customers the trees, shrubs and plants you need to get your garden buzzing.

Hydrangeas: A Gardeners Go-To

One group of plants that has a near universal appeal among gardeners is the Hydrangea.  A symbol of summer, hydrangeas burst into bloom around July, making them a classic choice for foundations, flowering hedges, cut flower arrangements and billowy borders. But why stop there! Hydrangeas come in so many forms, heights and flower shapes that they’re one of the most useful plants with which to design all around the garden.


The 5 most common

Varieties are:


1. Hydrangea arborescens like the famous Annabelle - Annabelle is a hardy stunning white hydrangea; often producing heads over 10” in diameter.


2. Hydrangea macrophylla, such as the Forever series - This series of Hydrangea is sure to enthuse those who appreciate rich floral displays.  These varieties offer new forms of outstanding double flowers, large rounded and prolific.


3. Hydrangea quercifolia, an oakleaf variety such as Ruby Slippers.  A profusion of exceptionally large, white blooms in summer quickly age to deep pink.

Robust blooms remain upright even after heavy rains.


4. Hydrangea paniculata, such as Limelight offer huge, football-shaped flowers that open in an elegant celadon green that looks fresh and clean in summer’s heat. The blooms age to an array of pink, red, and burgundy. Hydrangea petiolaris, a Cadillac of vines, feature large, fragrant clusters of white flowers that bloom in late spring and summer against a backdrop of dark green, heart-shaped foliage.


Hydrangeas are not only easy to grow but are also quite hardy and resistant to most pests and diseases, making it even easier to care for them.

At Baltimore Valley we are pleased to offer over 25 varieties of Hydrangeas.  With so many to choose from, you’re certain to find one that’s right for you!

Bare root tree's: 4 reasons why

Every Year, at the beginning of the season, all Bareroot trees are 30% off!


Planting Bare Root trees is a fun and economical way to have lush green trees on your property without the higher cost of buying trees that we’ve potted.


4 Reasons to buy “Bare Root”


1. Affordability - Bare Root trees are less expensive to buy.  The cost savings occurs because you’re skipping the labor required for potting and maintaining a containerized tree.


2. Better establishment -Bare Root trees have up to 200% more mass root than a container tree.  This is because when the bare root plants are harvested, the machinery digs a much larger root system than the tree spade used for container digging.


3. Exact planting depth - There is no chance of planting the tree too deep as the root flare of bare root trees is obvious and the proper planting depth is easy to determine.


4. Better performance – Bare Root trees frequently take off more quickly than containerized ones because roots aren’t transitioning from container soil to local soil. Bare root trees are planted during dormancy, which gives them weeks of root growth that spring-planted container trees lack.


Once you get comfortable with bare-root planting, you won’t miss lugging around that heavy root-ball!

Veggie gardens: 5 reasons why we love them

Plant It, Grow it, Eat It!

Those who have tasted a summer tomato sun-sweetened on the vine or a crisp cucumber plucked from under the leaves that nourished it know the intense flavor of fresh-picked produce is unrivaled by anything found in a supermarket

Here are some reasons to inspire and encourage you to try your hand at growing your own food.

1. Health

You know exactly what you are eating! You are reducing the risk of eating vegetables that contain harmful chemicals. Eating vegetables from your own garden are higher in nutrients than the ones that have traveled several thousands miles to get to your grocery store.Their vitamin content will be a their highest levels as you bite into them straight from the garden.

2. Taste

Homegrown fruits and vegetables simply taste better than produce that’s been allowed to ripen in trucks during transport and sit on store shelves before you’re ready to eat it.

3. Savings

Your grocery bill will shrink as you begin to stock your pantry with fresh produce from your backyard

4. Education

Children learn where vegetables come from, how they grow and what they look like. Growing vegetables with your children is likely to encourage them to eat more vegetables. They learn how to prepare vegetables for eating from scratch.

5. Personal satisfaction

When it comes to self-sufficiency, there is nothing more elemental than being able to feed oneself and there is nothing more local than food grown in your own backyard.

Nothing can give you a better sense of accomplishment than growing your own vegetables. To know that you have placed a seed or a plant in the soil, and cared for it throughout its growth, can be a very gratifying experience.

At Baltimore Valley we take pride in the selection and quality of vegetables we offer to our customers. We do our very best to keep a constant supply of vegetable plants in stock, including a wide variety of seed potatoes. Let us help you discover the fun and satisfaction of growing your own food.

Why we love annuals

Annuals are all-stars in the garden! They use their limited time wisely by filling it with vigorous growth and outstanding blooms. They are incredibly versatile plants, suitable for containers, window boxes, climbing on a structure, and in flowerbeds.

Consider the following when planting annuals in your garden:


1. Annuals show themselves best when planted in groups, so try to plant a minimum of 3 plants together so that each group overlaps with the one beside it creating a unified flow.

2. Use annuals to fill in sparse spots for a lush mature look when perennials are not yet in bloom or shrubs are just filling in.

3. Annuals are an important source of food for bees and butterflies.

4. Use annuals for fresh or dried flower arrangements.


At Baltimore Valley, we have an extraordinary selection of annuals to choose from, including planted hanging baskets of various sizes, planted containers and window boxes. We have experienced staff that can help you with starting your new plant palette this year.