Dear Gardener2021-02-17T18:48:36-05:00

The online correspondence between Ranters Marianne Willburn (in Virginia) and Scott Beuerlein (in Ohio) began in July 2019 with Scott’s column ‘Time for a Grexit’ in Horticulture magazine which grumpily condemned British garden writers and their books. Marianne couldn’t let him get away with it; but chose to answer on GardenRant soil. Scott rebutted. Marianne rebutted his rebuttal, and Scott returned the punch.

Marianne answered with a letter.

What followed has been an edgy, informative, humorous and often intimate portrait of their gardens and lives in very different regions of the country. The letters aren’t managed or edited, and often, readers of GardenRant see them even before Scott or Marianne does.

It’s a gardeners’ correspondence for a digital age. You can find the entire collection of letters below. Enjoy!

Confronting Humor and a Lack of it from Every Angle: A Letter from The Midwest

By |February 16, 2022|

And dark and mysterious people like me hate being called “affable.” In fact, even affable people even hate being called “affable.” Which, I’m certain you knew. And why you said it. And, guess what, I forgive you. Yes, I forgive you. Because sometimes you’re a good person.

On Wild Mushrooms, Bears, and Teenage Girls: A Letter from The Midwest

By |June 28, 2021|

If you insist on traipsing around in the hollers of Virginia like Lewis and Clark, out there randomly meandering about along with all the various drug runners, moonshiners, and village psychopaths. Making yourself subject to the mood, hunger, and whims of every snake, spider, bear, and cougar loose in the woods. Completely vulnerable to things like quicksand, booby traps, landmines, and God knows whatever else, then at least be smart. Bring a teenage girl with you! Which, in fact, is what Lewis and Clark did. They knew. 

I’m Project-ed Out! Weariness Projected Through Labor Day! A Letter from The Midwest.

By |April 4, 2021|

Usually March around here is pretty dire. It is when the novelty of the outside air being so cold you can freeze water in it has long lost its charm and when the utter lack of any color outside becomes unbearable. Invariably, it’s the time of year when anything in the garden that might have once promised “winter interest” can only still be identified by means of dental records.

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