Tovah Martin and Terrariums

  • Post published:May 21, 2016

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…

Children, Seeds and New Worlds Opening

  • Post published:May 8, 2016

  It has been my privilege and joy to spend a few Thursday afternoons with Kate Bailey’s first grade at Four CornersSchool reading about, and learning about seeds. They were already quite learned. They not only knew that apples held a star in their centers, that fruit pits were seeds; they also knew that strawberry seeds were on the outside of the fruit, not inside. They are all so eager to share information about their own gardens and…

After Pollinators and Wildflowers Comes a Cocktail Hour

  • Post published:April 17, 2016

It doesn’t seem so very long ago that no one gave a thought to pollinators. People were afraid of bees and stings, but they never thought about the hundreds of bee species that kept vegetable and fruit farms producing. Perhaps that was because so much of our food came from far off places like California where we were never aware of what farms, farmers and crops needed. Nowadays, with people we are more sensible of the benefits of…

L is for Literature – Literature about Gardening

  • Post published:April 14, 2016

L is for Literature.  In the A to Z Challenge I am referring specifically to Garden Literature which covers a lot of ground. I cannot garden or do much of anything without books. There are general garden books and specific garden books. I’ll mention just a few of my favorites with links to earlier columns that will have more information about each of them.             One of my oldest and most useful vegetable garden books is How to…

Everything Changes – in the garden and everywhere

  • Post published:January 9, 2016

Everything changes. Change on all fronts is inescapable, unstoppable and inevitable. No one knows this more than a gardener who watches her garden change over the years. In 2016 I will be gardening in a new garden, a smaller garden, a garden that will not require as much maintenance as the Heath garden. It is also a garden with very different features. The soil is heavy clay. The soil is very wet and drains slowly.  There is a…

Gift Books for the Gardener

  • Post published:December 20, 2015

At my house every gift giving occasion should include a book, or three. Every year there is a new crop of books to help new and experienced gardeners keep up with new trends and techniques, and find new ways to make their gardens, indoors and out, more beautiful and/or productive. Here is a sampling of new books for the gardener. Fruit Gardener’s Bible: A Complete Guide to Growing Fruit and Nuts in the Home Garden by Lewis Hill…

Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh

  • Post published:October 31, 2015

Winnie-the-Pooh and I did not become acquainted until I was an adult and read what had become literary classics, Winnie-the-Pooh and The House at Pooh Corner, to my young children. I had known of the books, of course, but only through an Eeyore-ish high school friend who was devoted to all the characters who lived in the 100 Acre Wood. I did not understand his devotion at the time, but as I read these gentle stories of friendship…

We have a winner!

  • Post published:August 19, 2015

We have a winner for Beardless Irises: A plant for every garden situation by Kevin C. Vaughn. Congratulations to Cathy over at Rambling in the Garden.

Beardless Irises – and Giveaway

  • Post published:August 12, 2015

I recently reviewed Beardless Irises: A plant for every garden situation and now Schiffer publishing is offering a Giveaway of this beautiful, fascinating and useful book.   I have been reading Beardless Irises: A Plant for Every Garden Situation by Keven C. Vaughn and published by Schiffer.  My own experience with beardless irises is with Siberian irises which are one of the most beautiful and easy care flowers in the world, and Japanese irises which often have a…

Drainage Problems and Happy Irises

  • Post published:August 1, 2015

The day after we planted all our water tolerant shrubs Greenfield was inundated by torrential rains. I was told over three inches of rain fell the afternoon and evening of July 7. We knew that our Greenfield house had a wet backyard and after planting nine shrubs we were fully aware of the heavy clay soil. However we did not expect several inches of standing water in the back half of the yard. Fortunately, our excellent plumber, Scott…