Two Great Events You Can Attend

On June 29 the Slow Flower Summit is happening in Washington, D.C.! The website tells us: Developed and produced by Debra Prinzing and Slow Flowers LLC, this one-day event is designed to celebrate American Flowers Week and bring together creatives, thought leaders and change agents with a lecture series featuring leading voices in the progressive American-grown floral community. The Summit began […]

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Posted by on May 23, 2018 at 2:44 pm   This post has 2 responses.

Kentucky’s Secret Gardens

Looking for inspiration and information? Catch a glimpse of Kentucky’s Secret Gardens. Author Tavia Cathcart Brown hosts the documentary, sponsored by Kentucky Education Television (KET). I was flattered to be included in a small piece of the first round of Kentucky’s Secret Gardens, and I enjoyed the show more...

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Posted by on May 19, 2018 at 8:03 am   This post has no responses.

Perennial Fun in Raleigh This Summer

I love the Perennial Plant Association’s (PPA) summer meetings. I’ve only missed a handful over thirty-five year. The PPA will meet this summer in Raleigh, NC from July 30th—August 3rd.  Fergus Garret, Head Gardener at Great Dixter will be a keynote speaker. He’s good. If you don’t believe me,...

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Posted by on May 11, 2018 at 4:35 pm   This post has 3 responses.

Fantasy Forest

  Every neighborhood needs a microforest. The ingredients require a passionate, knowledgeable conductor, committed volunteers and a patch of land. Curious children, nurtured by good teachers and mentors, will come running. Connie May is the Fantasy Forest conductor. Connie was the wildflower propagator at the beloved (former) Shooting Star...

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Posted by on May 9, 2018 at 7:46 am   This post has 8 responses.

Daffodil Doodah

Scott Pruitt was scolded recently for flying first class at taxpayers’ expense. The Administrator of the EPA was sent back to coach class for punishment. Do me a favor if you’re squeezed in next to Mr. Pruitt, waiting for your tiny bag of pretzels. Ask him if he has...

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Posted by on March 14, 2018 at 8:37 am   This post has 16 responses.

Stranded at the Philly Flower Show, plus Hits, Misses and Fun Facts

What with snow and some winds from hell, it wasn’t a great year for the Philadelphia Flower Show, dependent as it is on decent weather to bring in the crowds that fund the PHS’s many worthy projects. But let’s get to how the weather affected ME, shall we? I thought...

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Posted by on March 8, 2018 at 9:39 am   This post has 21 responses.

Obama with Flowers

I’d seen the new Obama portraits all over the media, so yesterday I subwayed down to the National Portrait Gallery to see them in person. The president’s portrait, on the second floor in the president’s gallery, I found so real, so intense, so HIM, it was hard to pull...

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Posted by on February 15, 2018 at 7:09 pm   This post has 5 responses.

Hanauma Bay to Petropolis

Sorry to be late with winter coping tips, but I’ve got two ideas that might be worth mentioning. If you’re at your wit’s end of winter, try to find a sunny and warm place to snorkel (preferably in the tropics), or go to a local tropical fish store. My...

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Posted by on February 7, 2018 at 9:08 am   This post has 8 responses.

Taropy

Two weeks ago I stood in the checkout line at Louisville’s Whole Foods. Sleet, freezing rain and snow were predicted for the next day. (I knew ahead of time that I would have to pay a price for spending ten warm and sun-drenched days in tropical Hawaii.) The forecast...

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Posted by on January 24, 2018 at 8:01 am   This post has 2 responses.

Possible Trump Bump for HGTV

A Twitter-following friend alerted me to the hashtag “WatchHGTVinstead” started by a David Hoffman. The purpose is to deny Trump high ratings for his State of the Union performance in the most effective way possible – by tuning in to another channel, especially one in particular. Responders argued over how...

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Posted by on January 19, 2018 at 9:05 am   This post has 13 responses.

Best Gardening Event of Winter? MANTS!

Yesterday I made my yearly pilgrimage to Baltimore to attend MANTS.  the largest nursery trade show in the East – by far. This year there were 900+ vendors in 1,200 booths, and over 10,000 pre-registered attendees. It was a blast for me – getting to see dozens of garden-world...

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Posted by on January 12, 2018 at 11:14 am   This post has 2 responses.

The Little Greenhouse That Could

My first greenhouse was neither big nor fancy. Built in 1980, the 14’ X 32’ hoop house—small by commercial greenhouse standards—became my plant propagation house for the next 15 years. I spent a lot of time in the little greenhouse at Holbrook Farm and Nursery near Mills River, NC....

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Posted by on January 11, 2018 at 9:25 am   This post has 6 responses.

The Best Seed Company in the World

It is time to say good-bye to the wonderful and versatile Jelitto Perennial Seeds—at least in one sense. I’ll be clocking out, for the last time, at the end of the year. I am grateful to my friend Klaus Jelitto for giving me a job 22 years ago. There...

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Posted by on December 13, 2017 at 7:54 am   This post has 26 responses.

How one Garden Club is Changing with the Times

Who’s old enough to have belonged to a garden club back when they were known as cliques for privileged white women? (The Savannah Garden Club made famous in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil comes to mind – the boozy lunches, the expelling of members for getting...

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Posted by on December 1, 2017 at 9:25 am   This post has 6 responses.

Perennial Royalty: It’s Inbred

There are few families in American horticulture with four generations of successful nursery crops. There are even fewer nursery legends with a story so well remembered as that of Jack Schultz, the 88-year-old Schultz family patriarch and founder of Springbrook Gardens, wholesale perennials growers, in Mentor, Ohio. Jack’s dad,...

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Posted by on November 29, 2017 at 7:56 am   This post has 2 responses.

Are Images of Gardeners in the Media Finally Improving?

My recent rant about stereotypes of gardeners in a new play got me thinking about the images of gardeners used in advertising and elsewhere. The garden-club-competing gardeners in the play typify the demographic so often used to portray us – white and elderly.   More of the same can...

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Posted by on November 3, 2017 at 8:55 am   This post has 10 responses.

Waiting for Camus

Albert Camus nearly got it right when he wrote: “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is in flower.” The French philosopher didn’t clutter a good line with what really blossoms in autumn for many gardeners. In practical terms, with cooler temperatures, the weeds wind down. This year,...

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Posted by on October 25, 2017 at 7:47 am   This post has Comments Off on Waiting for Camus.

Ask Your Budtender First

  I went to a legal pot dispensary in Denver this summer. Marijuana, you’ve no doubt heard, is a hot commodity in Colorado. The dispensary reminded me of the Long Branch Saloon on the long-playing television series Gunsmoke (1955-1975). Miss Kitty traded gossip in the saloon with U.S. Marshall...

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Posted by on October 11, 2017 at 8:19 am   This post has 2 responses.

All Maters Matter

Guest Ranter Ralph Haas, and his Kailua Farm partners, had a goal of winning a ribbon at the Kentucky State Fair last week. They had one problem. They couldn’t pull together five red tomatoes between them. Ralph wrote a letter of explanation that was submitted with their fair entry....

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Posted by Ralph Haas on August 23, 2017 at 7:10 am   This post has 5 responses.

GWA/Buffalo Take-Aways

Buffalo! Time for a debrief after attending the Garden Writers annual shindig held in Buffalo this year – to the delight of anyone who’s been there in the last decade or so and the apprehension of anyone who hasn’t. Yeah, Buffalo had lots of doubters, but boy did that...

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Posted by on August 18, 2017 at 7:48 am   This post has 11 responses.