planting

Order Bulbs for The Spring Garden (Before Everyone Else Has)

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Few things motivate a gardener the way that getting a plant ahead of another gardener does;  and by the end of August we need motivation more than we need food and water. To that end, I would like to draw your attention to the random assortment of bulb catalogs that started showing up two months [...]

When little becomes big – Avoiding the headache.

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  It’s disconcerting to realize your plants are bigger.  A lot bigger. When a tree or shrub finally grips the earth with a committed heart and gets down to the business of seriously growing, the gardener can instinctively feel the change.  And it’s frightening.   This Edgeworthia chrysantha doesn't look like much its second [...]

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 [...]

Planning For…The Winter Garden?

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When the holiday buzz was blissfully over, you probably looked around your decorated surroundings with a calm eye and thought: “I’d like to find an [insert x] for next year” or, “An x sitting in that corner would sure look fabulous” or, “Did you see the beautifully lit x on their house this year?  Gorgeous!” [...]

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 [...]

Nothing To Lose: Planting LATE

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“So what are we growing right now?” was the question asked of me last week as I escaped hearth and home for a little day-after-Christmas retail therapy.  The questioner: a reader and gardener and beautifully turned out shopper who recognized me in spite of wild hair and two coats.  I made a mental note to [...]

Raised Beds – Not Blood Pressure

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Definitely not taking his measuring duties seriously. I have been in a discussion this week with a friend who has just bought a new (old) house and is about to claim a bit of the brushy, overgrown seven acres for a small vegetable garden. The conversation began with matters of tilling: Did I [...]

Digging Into Cuttings

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Winter is a time for research, and not just of the deeper contents of one’s drinks cabinet. Are there techniques that you’ve been wanting to know a little bit more about? Perhaps you want to familiarize yourself with some of the great garden essayists, or prepare yourself to visit a few of the big name [...]

An Exhausting Autumn

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A warm wet autumn means lots of mushroom foraging. Here oyster mushrooms & wood ears, destined for a stir fry. Boy we’ve had it good this season. A fall season that doesn’t just tempt, but delivers on a promise is a rare and precious thing, and I have wrung every bit of loveliness [...]

When Everyone Is Watching: Garden Design for Non-Designers

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A front-and-center garden puts artwork on display and invites accolades or criticism. I've got nothing but accolades for this Oregon homeowner. Designing a garden is a humbling experience, period. But when your design is instantly on display because you are planting an entrance or a driveway, it’s a worrying experience. And, [...]