The power of critical blogging

Freebies and samples come with rules in the blogging world. We must disclose that the products we are sent by companies came free of charge. More important, we have to review those products honestly. I’m not much of a tool person, so I tend to  give it to someone else to test. But other, more tool-savvy […]

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Posted by on June 25, 2010 at 5:03 am   This post has 39 responses.

Pearl Fryar, in Person

If you haven't seen the documentary A Man Named Pearl, it's worth subscribing to Netflix for because it's "the inspiring story of self-taught topiary artist Pearl Fryar….It offers an upbeat message that speaks to respect for both self and others, and shows what one person can achieve when he...

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Posted by on May 1, 2010 at 4:57 am   This post has 15 responses.

10 Great Things about Gardening for a Lifetime

WE HAVE A WINNER: Congratulations to Cindy P! Sydney Eddison is my kind of garden writer, now passing along wisdom acquired from gardening for 50 years.  No BS, no rhetoric.  Trust this writer; she knows what she's talking about. Eddison's sixth book, Gardening for a Lifetime, is timely for...

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Posted by on April 22, 2010 at 3:42 am   This post has 45 responses.

In Defense of TV Gardening Clothes

photo:  Fine Gardening magazine, June 2010 I enjoy a good rant about how gardens and gardeners are depicted in the media as much as anybody.  As you know, we are all about real, grubby, dirty and disheveled. But the talk about P. Allen Smith's clothes in last week's guest...

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Posted by on March 31, 2010 at 11:14 am   This post has 31 responses.

The NYT Answers Your Questions on How to Grow Plants!

Wow!  Continuing its groundbreaking and award-winning coverage of all things horticultural, the New York Times' City Room will be answering your questions about–growing plants indoors!  At last, answers to the questions that have been hounding you for years about this vexing problem. Get over there now and submit your...

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Posted by on March 28, 2010 at 10:38 am   This post has 9 responses.

Oh, Canada Blooms

CB display garden (detail) And oh garden shows. I get more pleasure looking at the first spring ephemerals emerging in my front yard than I do from most garden shows, but Canada Blooms in Toronto is always a temptation. Measured by attendance, CB is one of the big ones,...

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Posted by on March 21, 2010 at 6:55 am   This post has 5 responses.

Review of Dr. T’s How to Keep a Naturalist’s Notebook

UPDATE:  Our winner is Lochlanina of Pieceful Slumber Guest Blogger Doug Jones reviews for us this lovely book by frequent Rant commenter Susan Tomlinson "Why is it so important that I draw?” I asked after looking through the table of contents of How to Keep a Naturalist’s Notebook and...

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Posted by on March 15, 2010 at 3:56 am   This post has 31 responses.

Garden Bouquets with Suzy Bales:
Review and Giveaway

THE WINNER, randomly chosen, is Katie at The Garden of Words, who predicted she’d probably have to buy the book. Well, guess not. First, some photos from Garden Bouquets and Beyond by Suzy Bales of arrangements I might actually achieve. Hakonechloa grass looks great with blue or purple, including...

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Posted by on February 22, 2010 at 4:34 am   This post has 44 responses.

Is This the 21-st Century Version of a WPA Project, or the Silliest-Looking Thing Ever?

The General Services Administration building in Portland is getting itself a — well, a — one of these.  You know, one of those 200 foot-tall green shag carpet things that you put on one side of your building and grow plants on. Those things. It's part of the stimulus...

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Posted by on February 3, 2010 at 5:27 am   This post has 20 responses.

2009: the year in gardening

UPDATE: CONGRATULATIONS to Ginny Stibolt, randomly chosen to receive the Flowerdew book—which is a really cool big illustrated volume from Mitchell Beasley, the company that did the Pavord bulb book. And thanks again to those who helped me with these picks.  Overall, it was a good year, with an...

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Posted by on December 31, 2009 at 5:00 am   This post has 17 responses.

Martha Stewart gets fact-checked by hort professor

Look out, Martha, coz none other than award-winning hort professor Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott is watching you – and correcting your mistakes.  Take this interview you did for NPR.  Here's some of what Linda has this to say about it on her team blog. She's a proponent of organic food...

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Posted by on December 27, 2009 at 6:45 am   This post has 24 responses.

“The World According to Monsanto”

You won't be surprised to hear that a documentary about the maker of PCBs, Agent Orange and Roundup has lots of shocking bits.  Monsanto falsely claimed that Roundup is biodegradable and a French court made them stop. In a more criminal move, Monsanto tried to bribe a Canadian health...

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Posted by on December 12, 2009 at 5:04 am   This post has 9 responses.

Not even close

Personally, I couldn't care less whether there's a blue rose or not, but please don't try to pawn this off as one. Bleh!

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Posted by on November 24, 2009 at 11:00 am   This post has 18 responses.

David Perry: “Somebody get that slug!”

Garden photographer David Perry takes us up-close and slimy as he entices slugs to give him their very best poses.  It's hilarious and I see potential here for a spin-off for David – anybody else?     It's here on Shirley's Garden World Report. 

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Posted by on November 16, 2009 at 12:37 pm   This post has 6 responses.

Win the awesome book Flora Mirabilis

UPDATE:  Our winner is John, who grows all these plants from seed, among other feats of plant-geekdom.  Congrats! Great news! The folks at the National Geographic have teamed up with world-famous Missouri Botanic Garden and published a treasure for plant lovers of all types.  It's Flora Mirabilis: An Illustrated...

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Posted by on November 2, 2009 at 5:13 am   This post has 34 responses.

New Magazine Urban Farm is Awesome

Definitely a sign of the times, Urban Farm is on the stands and it's incredibly well done. Using my time-tested dog-ear test for magazines, let's see what what pages I turned down in hopes that I'll remember to go back and read the article: "Sustainable living". Chicks and goats...

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Posted by on October 3, 2009 at 5:14 am   This post has 7 responses.

Hard Truths of Gardening from Sunset

We all know that great gardening information is regional, except when it's not.  For example, one of my favorite blogs is Sunset Magazine's Fresh Dirt, and I totally GET its Hard Truths of Gardening, despite living nowhere near the climate they write about. First, Sharon Cohoon's list of Hard...

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Posted by on August 22, 2009 at 5:19 am   This post has 8 responses.

Garden vs. the beach

  A nice dune planting on Topsail Island How could I do it? How could I leave trumpet lilies ready to unfold, an amazingly early second budding of roses, the unknown promise of dark purple hosta blossoms, and the unfailingly brazen flowers of Mme. Julia Correvon?   The necessity...

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Posted by on July 14, 2009 at 5:00 am   This post has 21 responses.

Movie “No Impact Man” is Saved by the Wife

You may remember the No Impact Man blog, by a Manhattan-dwelling writer taking on the daunting task of living, with his reluctant wife and happy 2-year-old, as close to off-the-grid as possible for a year.  That means giving up toilet paper, air conditioning and the refrigerator, among other horrors. ...

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Posted by on June 22, 2009 at 4:38 am   This post has 13 responses.

Introducing my official Rant product tester

THANKS FOR PLAYING, EVERYONE: Claire Splan is the randomly chosen winner Proxies come in handy sometimes. At first I loved the idea of receiving equipment to test from companies like Troy-Bilt. I’d never done it before and, besides, it was free stuff. But while I know just what to...

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Posted by on June 9, 2009 at 5:00 am   This post has 51 responses.
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