Spring

Building Habitat Nests for Wildlife…and For Me

By |2021-04-30T12:49:49+00:00April 30th, 2021|

Over the last two winters, I’ve been engaged in a curious pursuit which has baffled some visitors but thrilled others – precisely the way I love to garden.  I’m building habitat nests – and it’s one of the most satisfying and artistically fulfilling projects I’ve worked on in some time. The newest nest (still [...]

Where’s Your Book? and Other Difficult Questions

By |2021-04-01T20:53:28+00:00April 1st, 2021|

“What’s up with your book?” I’ve fielded this question from many readers lately. If you pre-ordered Tropical Plants and How To Love Them because you either read this post, or this article, or listened to this interview, or found out the book was ranked as Amazon’s number one new release in cool-climate gardening for many [...]

The Bees are Dead, The Goldfish Are Not, and It’s Okay.

By |2021-03-20T15:48:17+00:00March 20th, 2021|

It’s the first day of spring and the bees are dead. After a long yesterday assessing the winter garden hangover – the deer-nibbled evergreens, the chicken-uprooted polygonatum, the muddy mess that will someday house new garden beds, but currently looks like the Somme in 1916 – this news hit me the hardest. Give me [...]

Gardener, Know Thyself

By |2020-05-12T16:00:55+00:00May 11th, 2020|

On the way to the chickens this morning I placed my coffee mug on the ground in order to tidy the fading blooms of a primrose. I can clearly see now that setting down the mug was the point at which I lost control of the situation. A one-handed tidy performed indifferently from the walking [...]

Vegetable Gardening on a Smaller Scale

By |2020-04-29T21:24:11+00:00March 25th, 2020|

Are you one of many people right now thinking about supplementing your grocery budget with a vegetable garden, but trying to figure out how to grow vegetables with limited space? Worldwide, gardeners and would-be gardeners are living with increasingly smaller yards, or finding themselves with only a balcony or patio at their disposal. It's easy [...]

Hie Thee To a Garden!

By |2019-07-11T17:17:16+00:00May 12th, 2019|

May is here. Whether you’re a gardener or merely a part-time forest-bather, those words have got to get your heart pumping.  This year I admit to feeling that we haven’t quite earned it (the winter being so mild), but I will accept the gift nonetheless.  It is my favorite month of the year, and ironically [...]

The Carefree Magic of Zinnia

By |2019-03-27T19:40:14+00:00March 29th, 2019|

Sometimes we need an easy win.     We need a riot of color that looks like we planned it, even if we didn’t. We need ‘low maintenance’ and ‘average soils.’ We need something along the lines of ‘direct sow’ and ‘blooms from summer ‘till frost.’ And while we’re at it, we’ll take ‘deer resistant,’ [...]

The Charms of a Few Chicks

By |2019-03-27T18:22:42+00:00March 27th, 2019|

My subconscious was working overtime last week. At about the same time I was throwing up my hands up at the cruel and unusual punishment that is parenting today’s American teenager, I decided to pick up ten random balls of fluffy, need-me-desperately adoration. And, within the space of six days and a half a bag [...]

First, Do No Harm

By |2019-03-14T19:21:48+00:00March 15th, 2019|

I intended yesterday to have a little walk around the place, observing what was and what wasn’t coming up. And I did. But these things always evolve (some would argue, devolve) into a large scale something or other, and before I knew it, I had taken the serpentine bed almightily in hand.  A strong, sexy [...]

Electric Scooters: Efficient Transport. Ridiculous Fun.

By |2019-02-10T15:36:00+00:00February 10th, 2019|

Three weeks ago while attending the Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show (MANTS) in Baltimore and walking the streets of that city in between meetings and meet-ups, I noticed that teenagers were being careless and leaving electric scooters on sidewalks for responsible pedestrians like myself to trip over. After my fifth encounter, I peered a little closer [...]

Planting For Pollinators? Let the Neighborhood Know!

By |2018-08-09T16:11:31+00:00August 10th, 2018|

  Gardeners are proud of their gardens for a host of different reasons. Some gardeners spend a great deal of time blending or contrasting color schemes.  Others love creating secret rooms or impressive hardscaping. But if you’re a gardener that spends just as much time watching the creatures that pollinate your garden as planting the [...]

Plant Propagation: With Great Cuttings Comes Great Responsibility

By |2018-08-02T21:04:50+00:00August 3rd, 2018|

When I give you a cutting, it’s more than likely I’m going to remember. It’s not that I’m obsessed, controlling or critical (that’s a different conversation held when I’m not around), it’s simply that I love my plants. If someone expresses an interest that goes beyond “Hey that’s pretty.” I jump on it, usually offer [...]

A Super Hero in Disguise

By |2018-06-22T23:45:42+00:00June 23rd, 2018|

  A flower is the culmination of a seed’s story. And while there are as many stories out there as flowers, every once and awhile one of those stories stands out from the rest and deserves to be told. Sometimes it deserves to be shouted. Such is the story of one man, his family’s seed [...]

Nursery Spotlight: Music, Inspiration and Retail Therapy at Surreybrooke

By |2018-06-22T13:19:23+00:00June 22nd, 2018|

Join me in this series as I visit some of Frederick County, Maryland’s finest independent garden centers to find out what makes them unique. Finding and buying plants that you love is often much more pleasurable than figuring out how to successfully incorporate them into your landscape once you get home.  We all struggle with [...]