Antique Gardening Books

OK. I have to admit to an addiction: It’s almost impossible for me to pass up old gardening books, especially Victorian ones. I’m not quite sure exactly how I fell into this trap. Somewhere along the line I came across … Continue reading

2011 Seed Catalog Awards

Well, it’s that time of year again; the seed catalogs are arriving fast and furiously.  How to choose among all that gloss? No worries, I’ve done it for you. Here are my 2011 top catalog picks. For the second year … Continue reading

Plants With a Past: The Yew

Ah, the poor, benighted yew. Once the subject of reverence and worship, this magnificent tree (please note I did not say shrub, more on that later) has come to play an almost comically insignificant role in the modern landscape. In … Continue reading

Stop the Presses: A Hose-Repair Kit That Actually Works!

One of my annual fall tasks is putting away the hoses, sprinklers, and other watering paraphernalia, and this year, I decided to get a jump on spring and repair the problem hoses BEFORE they were urgently needed. (‘Bout time!) However, … Continue reading

The Garden in Autumn

Once again, late autumn settles into my garden like a weary old man into his favorite chair. It’s a quiet time, a comfortable time, certainly not hectic like spring, nor showy like summer – more a season to contemplate the … Continue reading

Alliums

These days is rare to find the smallest garden that doesn’t include at least a few early spring bulbs, even if  the selection is limited to several clumps of  daffodils, crocus, tulips or hyacinths. But when it comes to the … Continue reading

From the Kitchen Garden: Thyme for Fall!

In ancient Greece, if you wanted to describe someone as chic and stylish, you said he or she “smelled of thyme.” Since then, thyme has never lost its appeal. The Greeks valued the herb for its pungent scent and delicious … Continue reading

Invaders

Now generally, I don’t label a plant I’ve deliberately sown as an invader, but little else can be said of this year’s bottle gourd crop. While the picture above may not look threatening, matters change a bit when I tell … Continue reading

From the Kitchen Garden: Lovage

If there were to be a contest for the most sorely neglected culinary herb, lovage would certainly rank among the top five candidates. I first encountered this member of the parsley family two decades ago, not so much because I’d … Continue reading

An Embarrassment of Riches

One of my favorite times of year has arrived again: oriental lily season. Other than perhaps German iris, there is really no other flower in the entire gardening palette that makes such a spectacular cut flower, and without exception, none … Continue reading