challenge

When little becomes big – Avoiding the headache.

By |2018-02-20T20:40:47+00:00June 16th, 2017|

  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 [...]

Big Dreams, Small Garden

By |2018-02-20T20:40:51+00:00February 15th, 2017|

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 [...]

Mid-Atlantic Gardening – Not for The Faint of Heart

By |2018-02-20T20:41:04+00:00July 1st, 2016|

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 [...]

‘Easy’ Is a Matter of Perspective

By |2018-02-20T20:41:08+00:00February 9th, 2016|

With millions of innovative gardeners on this planet, differences of opinion and horticultural hair-pulling sessions are bound to erupt. Most of us look forward to a little good-natured thrust and parry – particularly in February when we’re all getting tired of endless conversations about how this winter stacks up to the last. Well this [...]

Digging Into Cuttings

By |2018-02-20T20:41:08+00:00February 4th, 2016|

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 [...]

Notepads and Jackets

By |2018-02-20T20:41:08+00:00January 21st, 2016|

Have you been walking through your garden? I hope so. At this time of year we are as clearheaded as we will ever be. Winter may not afford us congenial temperatures, but what it lacks in warmth, it more than makes up for in perspective. Any issues due to poor spacing stand naked before the [...]

When Everyone Is Watching: Garden Design for Non-Designers

By |2018-02-20T20:41:10+00:00November 19th, 2015|

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, [...]