Q: Hi: Just read the article in September issue about cypress vine. These are my questions: I live in Nashville. Can I purchase the plant in this area or do I have to order seeds from the sites you provided? What type of exposure does the vine need; I have a lot of shade/part shade in my yard. Any other pearls would be helpful. Thanks for your advice in advance.

A: Hi Karen, I've never seen cypress vine sold in a garden center or as a plant through the mail. However, it's extremely easy to start from seed (and because it reseeds readily, once you have it, you'll have it forever). Your best bet at this point is to either order seeds through the mail or buy seeds at the garden center next spring. It's too late in the year to sow them now and get anything, however, so sow them next spring after the last frost. Seedlings will grow very quickly and bloom all through summer, before dying with the frost.

Cypress vine likes full sun and good drainage. It won't bloom well in full shade. Soak the seeds in water overnight before planting.

Sorry, but given our current economic downturn, the Grump can't afford pearls. How about a string of brightly colored jelly beans? Grumpy