Frog courtesy of Shutterstock

Frogs—the horror!

“I’m petrified of the little creatures,” said Marinaccio, 65. Today’s headline story (online) of the Buffalo News caught my eye. It’s the strangest I’ve seen there for some time. The basis of a landowner’s suit against a local developer and the town of Clarence, N.Y., where he lives, is that most of his 40-acre property […]

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Posted by on April 8, 2013 at 7:23 am   This post has 8 responses.

So, what do we think of “Master Gardeners”?

Recently there was a lively garden-writer discussion on Facebook that began with this question:  “I’m a member of several professional garden groups and a recurring theme that comes up is anti-master gardeners. Why?” Boy-oh-boy, did people have answers.  One opined that Master Gardeners represent a “stale and stagnant status...

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Posted by on March 1, 2013 at 9:09 am   This post has 145 responses.

How to Teach a Town to Garden – Ideas, Please!

The Mission To turn my mostly-lawn community of 1,600 townhouses, some with incredibly large yards, into a place with gardens that benefit the environment and humans, too.   We do have large trees and lots of geometrically shaped hedges, but that’s about it, except for the houses on the perimeter...

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Read related articles in: Lawn Reform, Real Gardens
Posted by on February 22, 2013 at 9:13 am   This post has 39 responses.

In defense of garden cats

As a gardening veterinarian, I feel obligated to defend our feline friends against the recent onslaught of poor publicity directed towards them.  I’m referring of course, to news reports that stem from a January 29, 2013 article by Scott Loss, et al in Nature Communications, titled “The impact of free-ranging...

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Posted by on February 14, 2013 at 8:34 am   This post has 63 responses.

Unsurprising, but still sad

A few years ago, I was offered about ten years worth of Garden Design magazines if I paid for the postage to get them to me. The two boxes came and I put them in a closet, intending at some point to unpack and shelve them somewhere I could...

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Posted by on February 12, 2013 at 7:33 am   This post has 29 responses.

The cat problem

And no, it’s not that there are two many pictures of them on Facebook. (There are, but that’s a discussion for another time.)  My husband and I have owned cats for over twenty years (2 different ones); they’ve always been kept inside, although the first one was briefly allowed...

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Posted by on February 4, 2013 at 8:39 am   This post has 34 responses.

All maples are not created equal—especially when they’re on a $20 bill

As a gardener who has suffered under the shade and roots of three (3) Norway maples planted inextricably in the easeway fronting my house, I can sympathize with those who are distressed about a Norway maple leaf being enshrined forever on the new Canadian currency. It was supposed to...

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Posted by on January 28, 2013 at 8:00 am   This post has 14 responses.

The American Lawn Predates the Civil War

Susan asked in a post whether we should blame Frederick Law Olmsted for the popularity of lawn in the U.S., and we have an answer by guest ranter Thomas Mickey. Recent posts have appeared on this site that blasted the American obsession with the lawn.  I have no problem...

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Posted by on January 15, 2013 at 1:52 pm   This post has 6 responses.

How the rest of the world solves the front-yard problem? No front yard!

Time for a follow-up to my recent criticism of the all-turf American front yard, which we can thank Olmsted for popularizing both in parks and in front of homes.  When commissioned to design a new town, he mandated 30-foot setbacks from the street. Readers here know that front yards...

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Posted by on January 4, 2013 at 9:11 am   This post has 32 responses.

Bringing the green—or not so much?

You might not know we reelected a president last week from reading this site. We try to stick to gardening politics. But presidents do have an effect on environmental policies, conservation, farming and—eventually—gardening. A few years back I posted about the ten greenest presidents in U.S, history, according to...

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Posted by on November 12, 2012 at 8:26 am   This post has 7 responses.

Garden Literature goes Up in Smoke

Dear friends, just as there is no hiding the fact that Professor Roush is a rose nut, there is also no suspense to the revelation that I am an entrenched bibliophile.  My love of printed and bound material stretches far back into my childhood, to that happy time when I was still an only child and...

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Posted by on October 11, 2012 at 9:00 am   This post has 27 responses.

UK gardeners: No peat for you!

“If you love your garden, you really can’t just abstain.” That’s what the delightfully named Brit celeb gardener Bob Flowerdew says about a life without peat moss. As reported in the New York Times yesterday, the public, private, and industrial use of peat in Great Britain could completely disappear...

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Posted by on October 8, 2012 at 7:50 am   This post has 22 responses.

Vegetables Should Taste Good!

The New York Times ran a piece this week about the results of federal legislation mandating healthier school lunches beginning this year. Because of puritanical restrictions on fat and salt, the healthy food has no flavor and many kids are just rejecting it. Monica Eng of the Chicago Tribune...

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Posted by on October 6, 2012 at 2:48 pm   This post has 17 responses.

It’s a Miracle! Scotts backs off You Can Grow That

… grow the YCGT campaign! Happy endings to stories that involve corporations vs. individuals are all too rare, so we’re very pleased to report that garden writer C.L. Fornari will be able to continue her “You Can Grow That” campaign without any opposition from Scotts Miracle-Gro. As she just...

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Posted by on September 19, 2012 at 8:03 pm   This post has 34 responses.

Stanford Organic Study Ignores Variety Differences

Rant readers, please welcome Dr. John Reganold of Washington State University, who has done groundbreaking work demonstrating the value of organic agriculture, including studies that show a correlation between the quality of the soil and the quality of the food it produces. In the wake of the recent furor...

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Posted by on September 14, 2012 at 4:31 pm   This post has 21 responses.

Scotts Miracle-Gro’s Big Fine, and Garden Writers Speaking Up

We reported in January that Scotts Miracle-Gro had entered a guilty plea for knowingly selling bird food they’d poisoned with a pesticide (to prolong its shelf life) and was slapped with a $4.5 million fine.  “Too low!” some critics cried.  Well, turns out it’s $12.5 mil, with more legal...

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Posted by on September 11, 2012 at 8:50 am   This post has 10 responses.

An uproar over organic

As you know, we carry a bunch of feeds from other sites that might be of interest to you all. The ScienceDaily posts are the most frequent, and I usually can’t keep up with them. Their headline about organic food having  “little evidence of health benefits” did grab my attention however. The...

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Posted by on September 10, 2012 at 7:40 am   This post has 46 responses.

Dear Scotts: Just Try, One Time, Not to be So Shitty.

Trademark image from Shutterstock Does anyone remember when we posted about the “You Can Grow That!” campaign started by garden writer C.L. Fornari? Her perfectly nice, well-intentioned idea was to start a social media campaign to encourage non-gardeners to garden, or to encourage all of us to grow new...

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Posted by on September 5, 2012 at 4:36 am   This post has 47 responses.

The High Line backlash

For those of you who haven’t had a chance to visit the High Line yet, I’m sorry to have to tell you that it’s over. Already. At least according to a New York Times op-ed by Jeremiah Moss, in which the writer condemns the West Side elevated park succinctly:...

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Posted by on August 27, 2012 at 7:58 am   This post has 18 responses.

Gas and land

East Pond, at Gateway National Refuge Area. Photo courtesy of NPS. U.S. athletes triumphed during the recent Olympiad—loved watching it! I wish I could say the same about our triumphant leadership in other fields, especially when it comes to breaking away from dependence on fossil fuels. Where I live,...

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Read related articles in: Gardening on the Planet, Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on August 13, 2012 at 9:03 am   This post has 14 responses.
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