My Journey to the Sustainable Rose Garden

  • Post published:06/26/2020
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The only roses I remember as a child, was the prickery rose bush near my grandparent’s house in Vermont. It did not hold much interest for me except that I thought it might be a place visited by fairies. Occasionally I would leave a tiny gift, but I never did see any fairies. Even so, I did not lose my belief that there are magical creatures in the world. When I was a young teenager in Connecticut I…

Three Composting Techniques for Soil Improvement

  • Post published:06/19/2020
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At our house we make use of three different composting techniques. We have two black bins for kitchen scraps and weeds, wire bins for leaves, and a compost pile for weeds and pruning trimmings. These three ways of making compost provide different ways of improving our soil. Most of us are familiar with the black compost bins. I take a pot of vegetable scraps out every day. However it takes more than just those scraps and weeds. It…

Flowers in Every Season for Pollinators and Happy Gardener

  • Post published:06/12/2020
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It is not difficult to find flowers for every season.  Many spring flowers have decided it is time to take a nap until next April. If it weren’t for the fact that summer bloomers were beginning to show their colors I’d be very depressed. Like many of us my spring garden began with bulb flowers like scillas, crocuses, daffodils and tulips of every sort. In my May garden fringed bleeding hearts and a goldheart bleeding heart showed their…

Useful Gifts for the Gardener

  • Post published:12/10/2016
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  For me most holiday gifts for the gardener fall into two main categories, functional and informational. Functional gifts include the necessary tools a gardener needs. We all start out with fairly inexpensive tools, partly because as a beginning gardener we don’t really know how hard a tool will have to work. As we grow as a gardener we come to recognize sturdiness and good quality and buy, or are given, better tools. I was wandering through the…

Second Planting Season – Autumn

  • Post published:09/18/2016
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Once Labor Day is past it is time for the year’s second planting season to begin. Many garden centers and nurseries will be putting potted plants on sale. Many friends will realize they have to move plants and will have divisions to pass along. Each gardener may have her own plants to divide, to share or to move to a new location in the garden. We gardeners are lucky. We get a second chance every fall to act…

Minneapolis – Water Features Great and Small

  • Post published:07/31/2016
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My first reaction to Beverley Nichols, British gardener, author and wit, when he declared that water was an essential element of any garden was “Ridiculous!” I had seen photos of those British gardens with their rocks and rills, their reflecting pools, their gushing statuary in the topiary garden, none of which had I ever seen in real life. Of course, that showed my ignorance of British gardens, and my foolish reaction to a new idea. I should have…

Bugs and Butterflies in My Garden

  • Post published:07/23/2016
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“Chances are, you have never thought of your garden — indeed, of all of the space on your property — as a wildlife preserve that represents the last chance we have for sustaining plants and animals that were once common throughout the U.S.” Douglas Tallamy. Most of us welcome birds and butterflies to our gardens, but don’t spend much time thinking about bugs, except for pesky mosquitoes and Japanese beetles. Yet, even bugs, and there are hundreds of species…

Here’s What Permaculture Looks Like

  • Post published:07/16/2016
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Bill Mollison, considered the Father of Permaculture, said it is “. . . the harmonious integration of landscape and people providing their food, energy, shelter and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way.” Nancee Bershof became interested in permaculture after her husband’s death, and her departure from medicine. She was looking for new interests and permaculture fascinated her. She took a course that led her down a new road, supplying food, and non-material needs like community…

Tovah Martin and Terrariums

  • Post published:05/21/2016
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Tovah Martin, gardener and author, has devoted a good part of her life to houseplants. Most of us have a limited view of what houseplants we might put on our windowsills, but when she found herself working at the wonderful Logee’s Greenhouse in Connecticut she fell in love with the hundreds of houseplant varieties put into her care. Over the years Martin has written books like Well-Clad Windowsills: Houseplants for Four Exposures, The Unexpected Houseplant: 220 Extraordinary Choices…

Bridge of Flowers – a Public Garden, a Public Joy

  • Post published:05/12/2016
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May 6th was American Public Gardens Day, but the American Public Gardens Association (AGPA) says official festivities continue right through Mother’s Day. The Bridge of Flowers, possibly our most notable local public garden, will not have any special festivities, but the community enjoys the festive and floriferous atmosphere every day from April 1 to October 30. The APGA defines a public garden as one “that maintains collections of plants for the purposes of public education and enjoyment, in…