Our Trip au Canada

  • Post published:10/07/2008
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Journeys can be planned, but they usually hold many fascinating surprises. We set off to enjoy the beautiful autumnal foliage, which seems particularly beautiful this year, zip through Vermont and land in Montreal. We were enjoying the foliage, but stopped at a Rest Area in Vermont. First we were surprised by the big sign, Free Wi-Fi. Oh why hadn't I brought the laptop?! We found that all the Vermont rest areas had Wi-Fi and many also had fax…

At the Garden Gate

  • Post published:09/11/2008
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Marion Ives, the metalsmith (and Hawley neighbor) calls this copper and brass garden gate, currently on display at the Norman Rockwell Museum Good Morning Glory. I think of it as Good morning. Glory! which is the way I feel when I walk into my garden early in the day. This detail shows not only the morning glories, but the dragonfly which I find so charming.Although Marion has shown her work at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge before,…

The View From Wilder Hill

  • Post published:08/29/2008
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Lilian Jackman, owner, grower and general factotum of Wilder Hill Gardens, invited me over to see the late summer garden. I found her at her shady potting bench, situated so that she could keep working in the heat of the day. I admired the thought that went into the design and siting of the potting bench, but did not feel up to the concept of working all morning, having a little lunch and digesting time and then setting…


  • Post published:07/14/2008
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This is garden tour season. It is a pleasure to leave the weeding chores and go off to look at beautiful gardens where I am sure whole energetic crews took care of the weeding before we tourists arrive. The Lenox Garden Club arranged a wonderful tour of the Hidden Treasures of the Berkshires that sent me into fantasy mode pretty quick. Since I have no ancient specimen trees or bedrock boulders, this kind of shady garden is one…

Deciduous Azaleas

  • Post published:06/07/2008
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One of the problems I find with local garden centers is that they cannot possibly stock specialty plants, or much variety within a species. One of the delights of Garden Open Today events is that gardeners get to see and learn about plants they never knew existed. These deciduous azaleas which are blooming now in early June are in Jerry Sternstein's garden. A riot of color that I never imagined existed. In fact I didn't know anything about…

Party Time!

  • Post published:05/28/2008
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Blooms everywhere. I have two blooming rhododendrons, Boule de Neige and Rangoon, but a friend who lives in Hawley has 300! He recently invited the Greenfield Garden Club to enjoy the rhodie pictured above along with others in shades of red, yellow, salmon, and white. If they needed more variety they could wander off into the fragrant grove of 70 lilacs. Jerry invited everyone back for another Garden Open Today when he is hosting a delegation from the…

Tower Hill Botanic Garden

  • Post published:05/04/2008
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The daffodils were dripping in my own garden when I left for Tower Hill Botanic Garden in Boylston. It was the weekend of the Daffodil Show and the Primrose Show. I got to walk the long border of the Systematic Garden holding all 11 classes of daffodils, more properly known as narcissus. The Systematic Garden has numerous other beds laid out to hold varieties of one type of plant. Then it was down the steps to the Daffodil…

Kathy’s Cure

  • Post published:01/06/2008
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Once the perennial gardens filled with dozens of irises, hemerocallis and every other flower are put to bed, Kathy Puckett find she starts sliding into a funk. It isn't only the short days and long dark nights. She misses Flowers! Three years ago she decided the only cure was winter blossoms. Thus she began collecting orchids, tiny orchids, orchids that need a morning shower every day, some with an intense fragrance that is released only at the time…

Jenny’s Garden

  • Post published:12/17/2007
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Jenny Ruhl bought a house in Gill four years ago and started a new garden. She also started a new website describing all the limitations of her landscape - rocks, thin soil, lots of shade - and then documented the 2007 garden year with wonderful photographs and brief text. Jenny's Garden can be seen at www.phlaunt.com/jennysgarden.This is the time of year when we can all review the garden year and think about 2008. This is what Jenny had…