Getting Serious About Photography at the San Francisco Botanical Garden

Everybody's got a fancy camera.  But we still take shitty pictures of the garden. I'm not talking about those beguiling close-ups of the dew on a rose that we can all grab with our macro lenses.  And I'm not talking about decent, straightforward, representational photos of beautiful places. I'm talking about photos that communicate the […]

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Posted by on September 15, 2010 at 5:01 am   This post has 15 responses.

Couldn’t resist

Oh, I suppose it is possible to go too far with this stuff. Though an element of awe creeps in when the idea is taken to its limits. Our guest ranter inspired me to once again post my very favorite gnome image (above, from the Motherland—Dunster, GB), as well...

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Posted by on September 9, 2010 at 7:36 pm   This post has 18 responses.

A gardener’s art project

Browsing the LATimes yesterday, I found Deborah Netburn’s article on Botanical Serigraphs: The Gene Bauer Collection. Gene Bauer is a California gardener and naturalist who planted almost a million daffodil bulbs behind her property and was the native flora chairwoman of California Garden Clubs, Inc. during the 70s. As chair, her...

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Posted by on February 23, 2010 at 4:59 am   This post has 10 responses.

How to pet your toad

Via a site you are all probably familiar with, Icanhazcheezburger. I have always longed for a toad and maybe a couple of newts for my pond area, but they don't seem to hang out here naturally, and if I bought them from the pet store, then I would have...

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Posted by on January 26, 2010 at 5:26 am   This post has 12 responses.

A Cover Is Born

I love this behind-the-scenes post about the process of choosing a cover for Debra Lee Baldwin's new book. Check it out at Gardening Gone Wild, and while you're there, have a look at Saxon Holt's beautiful images of bare branches against a winter sky.

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Posted by on January 20, 2010 at 6:11 am   This post has one response.

The Best Cover of 2009?

Wow.  Wicked Plants is up for Amazon.com's Best Cover of the Year.  After an initial round of voting, it's made its way into the top ten.  If you've got a minute, I'd appreciate your vote–and tell your friends! Go here to vote.

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Posted by on December 9, 2009 at 8:02 am   This post has 7 responses.

Some of the best holiday lighting isn’t about the holidays at all

My favorite holiday-season light displays are the ones put on by our great public gardens. Longwood comes to mind, and Lewis Ginter in Virginia.  And here in Maryland it feels like magic in the Brookside Gardens' Garden of Lights with its 940,000 (mostly LED) lights and tons of imagination. ...

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Posted by on November 26, 2009 at 4:29 am   This post has 10 responses.

Garden Photographers Get Creative

In response to my post about garden photographers bringing in some extra cash by selling their art as notecards or in some other artsy format, I heard from Jeff Friesen, who offers prints of his work for sale through his Etsy shop. It's lovely work, priced at only $30...

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Posted by on November 25, 2009 at 10:11 am   This post has 6 responses.

Leaf Art. Why not?

By illustrator Christoph Niemann, in today's NY Times.

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Posted by on November 18, 2009 at 4:24 am   This post has 4 responses.

What’s a Garden Photographer To Do?

This story that ran in the San Francisco Chronicle a couple months ago got me thinking about the fate of garden photographers in the digital age. Used to be that a photographer could spend a lifetime shooting plants and gardens, keep them filed and organized and cataloged according to...

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Posted by on November 5, 2009 at 12:43 pm   This post has 19 responses.

An icon to suit every taste

It’s always best to tread lightly when discussing garden statuary that doesn’t totally suck, but I was intrigued by some emails I received discussing a trend toward “spiritual” rather than “religious” imagery for the garden (especially among genX gardeners). The difference between the two words for me has always been...

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Posted by on November 3, 2009 at 12:06 pm   This post has 15 responses.

Fordhook Farm has sculpture, too

Another photo array two Sundays in a row?  Let’s call it a GardenRant tradition!  This bunch is from my visit last May to the home of W. Atlee Burpee and his family for 100+ years – the Fordhook Farm in Doylestown, PA. For more,  here’s their photo set on...

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Posted by on October 25, 2009 at 4:36 am   This post has 12 responses.

Sculpture in the Garden

Images from the North Carolina Botanical Garden.        That last one’s for Amy.

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Posted by on October 18, 2009 at 5:32 am   This post has 22 responses.

Artists’ gardens

In today’s New York Times. Check it out. I think I like the Sonnier property the best, judging by the limited slide show.  Though the Blell garden is magnificent in a way, I can’t imagine trying to relax around all that severely clipped shrubbery. The grass and pavement checkerboard...

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Posted by on August 21, 2009 at 11:23 am   This post has 8 responses.

Gardening on wheels

  Ingredients: Donated punk Shopping Carts Burlap coffee bean bags for liners Best soil I can get Compost Ground up coconut shells leftover from local hydroponic farming Organic seeds Caretaker/gardeners Faith —Stella Marrs, artist and creator of shopping cart victory gardens  Abandoned shopping carts are a well-known feature of...

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Posted by on August 18, 2009 at 5:04 am   This post has 13 responses.

How about this garden ornament?
An original Chagall

Georgetown resident Evelyn Nef and her husband were friends with Marc Chagall, so he naturally brought them a hostess gift for one of his visits – a mural for their walled back garden. It's still there, and I'd sure love to get inside those walls and see it in...

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Posted by on July 26, 2009 at 5:35 am   This post has 7 responses.

A Good Ornament Is Hard to Find

The demise of Smith & Hawken, which actually sold some ornaments that weren't too dinky or ugly for a self-respecting garden, is really unfortunate for everybody who likes their natural mixed with the artificial.  Here is some incredible garden ornament from Congress Park in Saratoga Springs. This is one...

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Posted by on July 22, 2009 at 4:40 am   This post has 22 responses.

These kids today

This speaks for itself, I think. Billy Goodnick, Owen Dell and friends present “Taking Out the Grass is a Gas”

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Posted by on June 25, 2009 at 10:47 am   This post has 10 responses.

Stickwork “Summer Palace” at the Morris Arboretum

One of the wonders of the Morris Arboretum (at the U. of Penn. in Philly) is their newly created "Summer Palace" sculpture by North Carolina artist Patrick Dougherty.  Made entirely of natural materials locally acquired and no nails or hardware of any kind, this three-story Russian-themed structure was built...

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Posted by on May 25, 2009 at 4:28 am   This post has 12 responses.

The Roses and Lollipops Experiment

Tree roses in containers (R.I.P.) and strawberries circa 1996 Though I am personally rather natural and unkempt, my taste in ornamental gardens runs to the super-formal and intensely artificial.  Filoli, which employs an army of smart young gardeners and has been the training ground for several Friends of Rant,...

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Posted by on April 15, 2009 at 1:46 am   This post has 3 responses.
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