spring garden

Creation vs. Maintenance: A Balancing Act

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One of the most popular talks I've been giving lately deals with maintenance and balancing one’s life with one’s garden – more specifically, not taking on a project that creates six new maintenance projects in the foreseeable hereafter when the lifeboat is already taking on water. And to those watching me bounce around the podium, [...]

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 [...]

Work or Pleasure? Well, that’s complicated.

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Last week, an audience member at a lecture asked me how I take time to enjoy my garden.  She liked to sit down, she said, and had benches everywhere to that end, but the minute she actually relaxed into one of them, her eyes would see a weed, or a wilting flower, or one of [...]

Don’t Break Your Back at The Beginning

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We launch right in, don’t we?  Even before the stores have had a chance to discretely remove the de-icing supplies and replace them with citronella buckets, we have moved mountains out there. Some of us, quite literally. The chores in the spring garden are too numerous to list and we wouldn’t have time to refer [...]

Let the Cutting Back Begin

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By the beginning of April, seed starting has been featuring heavily on the gardener’s weekend to-do list, claiming what little time we have between catch-up laundry and filing the dreaded 1040.  By the time we finally draw breath and look around at the new life perhaps springing out of hedgerow and front walkway, it has [...]

How to Make the Seed Packet Chaos Easier

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  If you prefer to grow much of your garden from seed, the process of starting it can be a chaotic mess that will plague you from February till the growing season finally comes to an end in autumn.  You’ll have two months off and then before you know it, you’ll be starting the process [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

The What, Where & How of Seed Starting

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Thanks to a snowy day there is order where once was chaos. There is a certain kind of panic at this time of year when the winter starts to draw to a close and I calculate how many tasks I need to finish before the last piece of wood is thrown into a [...]