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Must Grow Leeks

A Gardening Life – January 23 Ok, I realize that as a homegrown vegetable leeks don’t have the same appeal as, say, tomatoes. Their fragrance isn’t as evocative of summer as basil is, and they don’t have quite the broad pick-me-at-five-and-sit-down-to-dinner-at-six as summer squash or green beans. But after harvesting a large crop in January, […]

Calibrachoa Flowering

A Gardening Life – January 10

Some years ago when Calibrachoa (aka “million bells”) annuals were new to the market I tried some in the garden and containers. I don’t remember the particular varieties that I planted that year, but I do recall that they were a disappointment. Once it got hot they stopped flowering.


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 […]

Free to Explore

I spent part of my day culling through the images in my photo library. It’s embarrassing to admit how many not-too-horrible but definitely not useable photographs I’ve held onto. Some of it is the same belief that causes my basement to be filled with stuff: this might be useful someday…

The baskets, floral supplies, […]

Embracing Change

One of the talks I give is about the eight rules for being a successful gardener. Since none of these guidelines concerns soil, watering, planting or fertilizer, they are applicable to most areas of life. One of the rules is to embrace change. Plants are constantly growing, the weather shifts with the seasons and other […]

Some Ideas Work…Others? Not So Much

The path that runs through the entry garden is winding and several Calamintha ‘White Cloud’ spill over the flagstones. When the hose is pulled along the path to water selected garden plants or containers, it usually ends up smashing the Calamintha. I’ve put up with this for four years but this summer it was clearly […]

The Fear of Gardening and Returning Plants

Would you hesitate to buy a puppy or kitten because sometime in the future your pet might die? And if that dog or cat got sick should you be allowed to return it to the breeder and get your money back?

I think that most people would answer “no” to both those questions, don’t you? […]

Try a Tiny Taste…

Garden Reports and Rejoicing – July 30

When people tour my garden for the first time one flower in particular catches their eye. “Oh, what is this?” they ask. It’s interesting that the Emilia javanica ‘Scarlet Magic’ draws them because it’s one of the smallest flowers in my gardens. Not only is it small, but […]

We Can Grow This!

Gardeners learn to be flexible. Hopefully. Please. I am at the Perennial Plant Association meeting and am called upon to be flexible at this moment. I had placed the box of 400 handouts on the dresser in the hotel last night, so that I knew that I couldn’t forget them for my talk today. Unfortunately, […]

Yin and Yang Customers

Garden Reports and Rejoicing – May 9

On Monday I helped some people in the perennial section of the garden center. I’d say they were yin-and-yang-customers…on the one hand they were excited about planting and ready to put something in the ground. I loved their enthusiasm and desire. On the other hand, they were grabbing […]