perspective

The Beauty and Balance of a Small Garden

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As is usual at this time of year, I am touring other people’s gardens one day only to spend the next 48 hours in mine, rethinking everything from plant choices to maintenance plans. It’s one of the best ways I know of re-charging the batteries during a season that doesn’t stop for stragglers, but it [...]

Standing on The Edge of a New Season

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Wednesday night’s after-school activities (and I suppose one could argue, after-life activities) consist of a long drive to a neighboring community where my daughter attends her confirmation class, and I hunt for a quiet chair, an electrical outlet and an unemployed Muse to come and sit with me awhile. If the garden has seen much [...]

Garden Book SPRING GIVEAWAY!

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It’s the first day of SPRING and in celebration I’ll be giving away a copy of my new book 'Big Dreams, Small Garden' each month of the growing season ahead! If you’re struggling with a tough space or budget and need a bit of guidance/inspiration/commiseration and a ton of gorgeous photos to get you excited [...]

The 2017 PHS Flower Show – “Holland” is So Much More Than Bulbs

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Choosing a theme like “Holland: Flowering the World” gives the Philadelphia Flower Show a great opportunity to surprise and delight the public.  After all, attendees already think they know what they’ll see when they walk through that bank of doors and onto the show floor of the Convention Center:     Bulbs, and lots of [...]

Navigating an Early Season in The Garden

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Well, it certainly feels as if we’ve thwarted the groundhog. Yet I have thought this many times during my life on the East Coast and ended up with two inch green stubs to harvest for an evening’s Caesar salad. Winter will bite back before it is all done, and neither we nor our plants will [...]

Big Dreams, Small Garden

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Over the last eight years, I have written many columns encouraging people to face the space in which they find themselves and to create the garden that lives within them. Particularly in the midst of the difficult economic period of the last decade. Disturbingly, one of the things that I often heard when I initially [...]

A Tropical Response to Humidity

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Humidity. It’s separating the men from the boys right now.   Only last weekend I was forced to deride guests for scuttling back inside during a deck party. The key word I was trying to impress upon them was of course ‘deck’ – but this did nothing to shame them into compliance. For that matter, [...]

Mid-Atlantic Gardening – Not for The Faint of Heart

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I can’t remember which of the many gardening books I was reading the day I jubilantly came across the statement, “If you can garden in the Mid-Atlantic you can garden anywhere.” My self-satisfied smirk widened further when I realized that the author wasn’t even a Mid-Atlantic gardener himself.  This gave his words great gobs of [...]

Let the Garden Soften the Journey

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  We'd had a bad day, he and I. Not together mind you, but each in our separate lanes, navigating the daily demons that divert us all from enjoying the precious days we are granted on this Earth. Broken water lines, missed deadlines and a pointless conversation with a computerized banker featured heavily in that [...]

This isn’t your grandmother’s Show: Philly rocks it with “Explore America”

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I cannot say I was optimistic this morning, heading north and wondering how on Earth the Philadelphia Horticultural Society was going to pull off a show dedicated to the immense grandeur of America's National Parks. They did more than pull it off.  Spring is on display in Philadelphia. And boy is it on display.  As [...]