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For My Mother

A Gardening Life – May 12

As I walk around my garden on this Mother’s Day I count my blessings and know that so many of them have come to me from my mother. Some of my abilities are inherited from her and are undoubtedly genetic, but it took the greenhouse of her care […]

March is for Pruning

A Gardening Life – March 17

In the northeast March isn’t the month that beckons us out into the garden. In some states the snow cover remains while in other areas we almost wish that the white stuff was still hiding the brown, dead landscape. On close examination there are signs of spring: buds swell […]


A Gardening Life – March 14

I was speaking at Blithewold yesterday and had the pleasure of connecting with Gail Read, their Gardens Manager. She invited me to stop by the Blithewold greenhouses after my talk. On a cloudy March day, who could say no to a fellow plant person and a greenhouse?

Being surrounded […]

Roseanne Roseannadanna Was Right

It’s always something…

On The Cusp of The Growning Season

A Gardening Life – March 1

For those of you who check into Whole Life Gardening frequently, I apologize. I try to update this blog at least three times a week if not more frequently, but occasionally a longer stretch of time goes by. Despite our best intentions life happens…there are seasons of tremendous growth […]

Quick Start Comfort Cookies

Whenever you need comfort food, you can’t go wrong with a cup of cocoa and my Oatmeal Maple Walnut cookies. Note: This is comfort food, not health food. Besides, the oatmeal and the butter cancel each other out.

1 and ½ sticks of butter 1 cup light brown sugar ½ cup granulated sugar 2 Tablespoons […]

Attracting Hummingbirds

A Gardening Life – January 9

I got an email yesterday from someone who wants plants that attract hummingbirds to his garden. He specifically asked for perennials, “something easy to grow,” that would bloom the first year.

In my reply I went over the possibilities and tried to steer him to a few perennials […]

Winter Plant Support Has to be Ugly

Another popular misconception…

I have a ‘Sky Pencil’ Japanese Holly near my kitchen door that is starting to approach basketball player status in height. If it could jump the NBA would have an exciting new player…all those branches to dribble with! Since this shrub is firmly rooted to the ground, however, it remains outside my […]

Garden Graphics

One thing I love about winter is being able to see the skeletons of trees. Their framework is endlessly interesting, informative and entertaining. Some trees are filled with tiny twigs while others are sparer or even sleek. One tree sprawls horizontally while another has branches that reach straight upward into the sky.

The bones of […]

Respite and Rejuvenation

Winter is the definition of the word respite: a brief interval of rest. Even the plants in my veggie garden that I’m still harvesting for dinner aren’t actively growing. I cut the chard, lettuce, cilantro and pak choi knowing that they aren’t likely to regrow. Shrubs, perennials and trees that keep their foliage or semi-evergreen […]