As more irises begin to appear in the garden, I've found another lost lady of garden writing, Ella Porter McKinney, who wrote Iris in the Little Garden (1927). I will confess I didn't find very much information about Ella. Like other writers in The Little Garden series of books from the 1920s, she appears to have been involved with a local garden club—hers was in Madison, New Jersey—and the National Garden Club of America. I did figure out after many searches that she got married in … [Read more...] about Lost Ladies of Garden Writing – Ella Porter McKinney
I recently started reading Some Ancient Gentlemen: Being an Examination of Certain People, Plants and Gardens by Tyler Whittle (1966, Taplinger Publishing Co., Inc. ) Ah, the good ol' days of garden writing. I'm not saying that gardening books these days are boring. I'm just saying that reading books from 50—oh wait—56 years ago, introduces one to a style of writing that we don't often see these days. I could quote and quote and quote from this book but instead I'll just hone in on the … [Read more...] about What is a floracrat?
Yesterday I was pleased to be a guest on Better Lawns and Gardens with Teresa Watkins to talk about some books that gardeners might like to see under the Christmas tree this year. If you live in Florida, this is a wonderful radio program to listen to on Saturday mornings. Teresa provides great information for gardening in Florida and she takes questions from callers. I have the utmost respect for anyone who can take live calls and answer questions like that on the radio for everyone to … [Read more...] about Books for Gardeners!
I've started a new series of short videos to provide some previews to my next book, Digging and Delighted: Live Your Best Gardening Life. Each video is three minutes or less and covers one chapter. I started on July 1st with Chapter 1 and will continue until July 30th with the final chapter, Chapter 30. I'm trying to do something a little different each time, but it's just me, my iPhone, and the simple editing of iMovie so they are nothing fancy, believe you me. My hope is by the end … [Read more...] about New Videos!
Cutting the seed heads off my Amsonia is the worst gardening job of the season. And I did that job today. What makes this the worst gardening job of the season is the sap hidden in those branches. It looks like ordinary, white glue but its stickier than glue and leaves a stain on whatever it gets on. I know this from experience. So every year, I put on the same long pants and long-sleeved shirt that I wear for just this occasion. No sense ruining more gardening clothes with … [Read more...] about The Worst Gardening Job of the Season
In honor of National Poetry Month, which is every April, I present some book spine poetry, gardener's edition. I just learned about book spine poetry which was originally created by the artist Nina Katchadourian in 1993. Now it is a "thing" as they say, with memes devoted to it and pictures of the poems all over the internet. My contributions are all stacks of gardening books I have around my house. The general idea is to go through your books, or those of someone you know, and … [Read more...] about Book Spine Poetry – Gardener’s Edition