Garden Rant 1.0 is dead—long live the new Garden Rant

We are shutting down this Typepad blog and unveiling a new WordPress website—probably by Monday a.m.  You won’t see new content here Friday-Sunday, because our IT guy, Steve Ansell, will be completing the switch over the weekend. The new site will feature daily feeds from other gardening-related sites, as well as our own posts. There […]

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Posted by on May 31, 2012 at 8:18 am   This post has 13 responses.

Turfgrass Infomercial at the National Arboretum?

Readers, please help me figure out how to react to this – a federal arboretum promoting lawns and instructing visitors in lawn care. Besides the stated intention of promoting lawn, my other cause for concern is who’s behind this – the National Turfgrass Federation.  That’s the lobby for the turfgrass industry (think...

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Posted by on April 16, 2012 at 5:05 am   This post has 21 responses.

ProFlowers in the News

Would you believe it – plants are hot news again, and so soon after Michigan trees had their moment in the sun. This time it's the red hot controversy over ProFlowers' sponsorship of Rush Limbaugh's radio show. (If you've been in the Outback for the last week or so,...

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Posted by on March 6, 2012 at 5:03 am   This post has 30 responses.

Rant on the Road: Pennsylvania and Ohio

The North Museum is doing a very cool bug exhibit that includes a bit of wickedness–a traveling art exhibit based on Wicked Bugs, using original etchings from the book. And then I'm on to Ohio.  See you there?   March 1, 2012, 7 PM North Museum of Natural History...

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Posted by on February 29, 2012 at 10:25 am   This post has 2 responses.

Tree Height in the News

Michigan's just-right trees – red maple and butternut It's not every day that plants are playas in presidential politics, so let's pause to enjoy the spotlight shone on  trees by Mitt Romney, who explained his love of Michigan this way – "The trees are the right height" – before...

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Posted by on February 28, 2012 at 7:36 am   This post has 14 responses.

Rant on the Road: Walnut Creek, CA

This'll be my first time at The Gardens at Heather Farm.  Looks like a lovely spot. Do come out and say hello if you're in the neighborhood, and check out their speaker series here. February 23, 2012 7 PM The Gardens at Heather Farm Walnut Creek, CA

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Posted by on February 22, 2012 at 2:15 pm   This post has 2 responses.

You Can Grow That! Blog Campaign Launches

C.L.'s front garden on Cape Cod. by C.L. FornariBloggers need topics to write about and the gardening “industry” could use a boost. I have a proposal to help with both. Every month there will be a “Garden Bloggers Grow That” day. Four words (You Can Grow That!) on the...

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Posted by on February 11, 2012 at 5:37 am   This post has 20 responses.

Rant on the Road: Newport News, VA

I'm off to the Mid-Atlantic Horticultural Short Course, one of those horticultural gatherings that ends up being a who's who of botanists, entomologists, garden writers, and industry people.This year, Thursday's programming includes a whole day for home gardeners focused entirely on bugs.  Imagine my excitement. If you're going to...

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Posted by on January 29, 2012 at 6:05 pm   This post has one response.

Scotts Fined for Knowingly Selling Toxic Bird Seed

Wow, Scotts is in the news again, with this announcement of their $4.5 milion fine for selling pesticide-laden bird food, and falsifying their EPA paperwork about it, no less. So, back to the hot topic of Scotts being the National Wildlife Federation's new best friend, here's the NWF's statement...

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Posted by on January 27, 2012 at 11:46 am   This post has 14 responses.

Everyone Furious at National Wildlife Federation!

The yard Scotts wants us to have.  No wildlife allowed. Wow, I've never seen so much spontaneous action by gardenbloggers for an important cause as the sh*itstorm that's erupted over the NWF's decision to take money from/give greenwashing cred to Scotts Miracle-Gro. Others have covered this thoroughly, so I'll...

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Posted by on January 26, 2012 at 6:00 am   This post has 25 responses.

When zoos teach gardening, do they get it right?

On my visit to the National Zoo last October, I discovered something new and previously unimagined – a whole exhibit about wildlife in our backyards.  How to encourage and protect critters.  Good stuff. So, what do you all think of their advice?  Especially this part:  "Don't apply fertilizers, pesticides...

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Posted by on January 17, 2012 at 5:09 am   This post has 23 responses.

Martin Luther King Memorial as Landscape

I recently visited D.C.'s new and long-awaited Martin Luther King Memorial.  In the words of its designers, "the entire MLK Memorial is conceived in a landscape tradition, characteristic of other recent memorials, such as the FDR and the Vietnam Veterans War Memorials. This approach, which utilizes the contouring of...

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Posted by on January 10, 2012 at 4:15 am   This post has 7 responses.

News Roundup: Fake Trees, Fake Lawns, No Lawn, and More

War on Artificial Turf In lawn news, something I can never get enough of, the town of Glendale, California has banned artificial grass due to "potential health hazards presented by high levels of lead".  But get this – they banned it only in front yards.  "When asked why the...

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Posted by on December 13, 2011 at 3:58 am   This post has 22 responses.

What Gardeners are Thankful for

For my Thanksgiving week post I went Googling for the terms "gardeners thankful" to find out what I should be mentioning at the dinner table on Thursday, and found plenty to agree with.  Like these what-I'm-thankful-for items from across the country: Local garden centers, horticulture experts, and mail-order suppliers,...

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Posted by on November 22, 2011 at 6:44 am   This post has 11 responses.

Announcing: Michelle Obama’s Gardening Book!

Good news! Our First Lady is now a garden writer, having penned what will no doubt be a popular book that answers all our questions about her kitchen garden (we're hoping) while encouraging readers to grow food, eat well and get moving.  It'll be available from Crown Publishers in...

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Posted by on November 8, 2011 at 5:37 am   This post has 6 responses.

Another campaign to save another besieged garden

Another garden is under attack by law enforcement – but this time the gardener is a high school math teacher using the garden to teach his students all sorts of skills, from food-growing to soap-making and beekeeping.  You can guess what happened next – a story in the Memphis...

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Posted by on September 19, 2011 at 12:09 pm   This post has 10 responses.

Top Pick for September – Monticello’s Heritage Harvest Festival

I visited Thomas Jefferson's Monticello last week and will be posting about it soon but in the meantime, here's a quick plug for their fabulous Heritage Harvest Festival - coming up in just three weeks, so make your plans now to go.  As though Monticello weren't already awesome enough on...

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Posted by on August 28, 2011 at 3:53 am   This post has 10 responses.

Hurricane prep in the garden – what should we be doing?

  Here's what I'm doing in my own garden but I bet it isn't enough here in D.C., scheduled to take the worst of Irene between tomorrow night and midday Sunday. I took in all the garden furniture, at least the lightweight stuff. I'm taking in as many pots...

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Posted by on August 26, 2011 at 1:48 pm   This post has 18 responses.

It may not be a state, but DC has a funky state fair

In 2010, a couple of Washington, D.C.'s urban homesteaders decided to solve a problem – that being that the city had no equivalent of a county or state fair where residents could show off their talents in baking, canning, urban agriculture, home brewing, and photography. So with the help...

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Posted by on August 16, 2011 at 11:23 am   This post has 4 responses.

Very cool blog highlights very cool people, including a few gardeners

Thanks to this story, I discovered People's District, a blog that profiles interesting people who live in D.C.  It's a blog that if I lived somewhere ELSE, I'd copy in a minute. Naturally I looked for gardeners who'd made the cut, and found a couple. Here are excerpts from...

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Posted by on August 13, 2011 at 6:08 am   This post has 4 responses.
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