Caveat Emptor

While I was host of “The Victory Garden,” Scotts was our sponsor, and every spring, a huge semi-truck would pull up in front of my house, loaded to the ceiling with free Scotts products for us to use during the … Continue reading

Bad Timing

Timing is everything in the garden. I’ve known this for a very long time, but it was recently brought to my attention again in a particularly visible way. So, short story: For years I have had a wonderful grape vine … Continue reading

Hardening Off

With the price of nursery plantings heading north of the Pole this year, there is every impetus in the world to grow your own annuals and vegetables from seed. (For a complete how-to on that process, click HERE) But now … Continue reading

Mulching Made Eas(ier)

Here’s a dirty little secret your landscaper would prefer you not to know: your annual application of shredded pine mulch is one of their highest mark-up activities of the entire growing year. Why? Because the process is highly labor intensive; … Continue reading

A Typical Spring Day

So ladies and gentlemen, in case you’ve ever wondered, this is what a busy garden designer’s desk looks like on a March morning. In addition to adding and amending to a stack of clients’ plans, I have a bucket load … Continue reading

Lessons from English Gardens for Americans #8: The Collector’s Garden

Last summer on our way to Scotland we stopped in the ancient market town of Ely to see the cathedral. Ely’s was one of the first of the Gothic cathedrals, and a trip from Cambridge through Ely, Lincoln and then … Continue reading

Care About the Environment? Get a Few Chickens.

I’ve had chickens on and off now for over twenty years (the off periods were the one or two times the fox got into the hen house) and I’m here to say that if you care about any of the … Continue reading

Ephemerality

  Since June the tropical plants that winter in the greenhouse have been enjoying the summer weather outdoors. They are quite spread out — some in the orchard, others on the back terrace, the pool terrace, the parterre garden. Today … Continue reading

Lessons from English Gardens for Americans #5: Hardscape

God is in the details they say, and I can assure you that the garden deity dwells most happily where the creator has paid attention to the quality of the hardscape. Let’s face it. Perennials come and go, trees rise … Continue reading

Lessons from English Gardens for Americans #4: Fabulous Foliage

Number four in a continuing series. Flower, flowers, flowers. “Does it flower?” I am always asked. And while flowers most certainly are important (though for me, they must have fragrance, but that’s a column for another day) what generally gives … Continue reading