Blog Profile / Garden Rant

Filed Under:Hobbies / Gardening
Posts on Regator:1582
Posts / Week:3.2
Archived Since:March 5, 2008

Blog Post Archive

Gardening Podcast Update by Susan Harris

I’m thrilled to report that since 2010, when I complained about there being only two gardening podcasts on my little iPod, there are now many more and their quality is amazing! Here’s what I’m listening to now. Cultivating Place by Jennifer Jewell originates on National Public Radio, so its high production values are no surprise. That’s […]

In Praise of a Plant That Needs Your Love by Allen Bush

  Diarrhena americana. The Latin name doesn’t inspire lustful desire does it? What a pity. It’s better than its name. I remember the moment I first came across this native grass. I had no idea what its name was when I was introduced. But Rick Lewandowski knew the name right off the bat. Diarrhena must […]

From green to brown in the Caribbean by Elizabeth Licata

If you want to get a dramatic sense of hurricane Irma’s worst devastation, visit this site, which offers before/after satellite images of the Caribbean islands that were in her path. It’s not just the debris, flattened infrastructure, and—most terrible—deaths. These islands seem to have lost the lush green landscapes that provide a reason why many […]

HGTV Stars – Where are They Now? by Susan Harris

I learned to garden lo these many years ago from two sources – good magazines and good shows on HGTV, back when it had them. (Gardeners love to complain about the missing G from the channel and this year that’s truer than ever, judging from their new shows and episodes where house-hunting and lifestyle porn abound and […]

Milllennials love houseplants? Yay! by Elizabeth Licata

And it’s interesting, because I’m learning this just as I’ve begun to feel kind of blasé about my houseplants. I still have plenty, but I maintain them without as much interest as I used to—I get much more excited about my indoor bulb forcing projects, which fill the house in winter and dissipate with the […]

Apple Hunting Season by Thomas Christopher

This is the time of year when I start scouting for apple trees.  Neglected, venerable trees full of fruit that nobody wants.  Not shiny, red, and flawless, ready to be popped into a lunch box.  Nor even the big, sweet fruits bred for baking.  The apples I want can be rough-coated, gnarled, and even a […]

Robert Frost Needed Better Neighbors by Bob Hill

So maybe it was Robert Frost. That whole “Mending Wall’ thing: Something there is that doesn’t love a wall, That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it, And spills the upper boulders in the sun; And makes gaps even two can pass abreast. I read that poem 1,000 times as a kid. It could have even led […]

The botany behind the fantasy by Elizabeth Licata

It’s a good (and rare) morning when my twelve-minute commute yields two news stories in a row that make me smile. That happened today. The first one has no gardening relevance, but the second has special interest for both gardeners and Tolkien fans. Botanist Walter Judd has published a complete guide to the both the […]

The Pin Oak vs. Statues of Dead White Men by Allen Bush

Since the tragic weekend in Charlottesville, I have wondered why so few people have paid so little attention to trees. Much attention has been given to the argument about whether statues of Confederate soldiers should remain, be removed or re-located. A fallen tree here, another tree removed there. So what? We at least were not burdened […]

Monty Don’s 80 Plant Cultures of the World by Susan Harris

Monty Don has been getting an unusual amount of attention lately in the U.S., thanks to his provocative article “There’s no point trying to convince millennials to garden. Nobody wants to hear that but I suspect he’s right. So who IS this guy? Here’s a quick bio on BBC 2’s website for their show “Gardener’s […]

Hands off the hydrangeas by Elizabeth Licata

Thanks to plentiful rain and other friendly conditions, this is the summer of the Hydrangea in the Northeast, at least as far as I’ve observed. Huge stands of paniculata, macrophylla, and arborescens varieties are blooming profusely. My neighbor’s pink macrophylla blooms are easily a foot in circumference; it’s amazing they’re not pulling down the whole […]

GWA/Buffalo Take-Aways by Susan Harris

Buffalo! Time for a debrief after attending the Garden Writers annual shindig held in Buffalo this year – to the delight of anyone who’s been there in the last decade or so and the apprehension of anyone who hasn’t. Yeah, Buffalo had lots of doubters, but boy did that city shut them up! As a […]

Rant from the road: resort horticulture by Elizabeth Licata

Vacations are always busmens’ holidays for gardeners. Whether it’s a tropical paradise, a stateside resort, or a European capital, gardeners can’t help but notice what’s planted, where it’s planted, and how well it’s designed. We don’t actually work on the gardens where we stay, but we’re doing it in our heads. Over the past week, […]

Corner Makeover: Before and One Year Later by Susan Harris

Readers may have noticed I’m an obsessive-compulsive garden-maker, not happy with making and tending just the townhouse garden I now own.  I showed you one example recently – the town center garden I adopted in May of this year. Boy, did it need some love. Next up, another highly visible bit of city-owned land that looked even […]

An annual philosophy by Elizabeth Licata

Certain plants exude a message of “Don’t worry, be happy.” Others continually whine, “Maintain me!” In my garden, the easiest plants I grow are the tropical or semitropicals. They require virtually nothing, much like their brethren in my office. Once in a while, I’ll cut down a dead leaf from one of the colocasia or […]

Perennially Yours: Steve Still by Allen Bush

Garden Rant contributor Bob Hill came to my 60th surprise birthday party some years ago. After a few glasses of wine, he said, “Look around. All of these friends will be at your funeral.” I didn’t know whether to laugh or pray. I have thought about Bob’s prophetic words since the day of my party. […]

A Botanical Translator by Thomas Christopher

Botanists speak a special language, one that is frequently unintelligible to outsiders like me.  This has frustrated me at times, for instance when I’ve tried to use a botanical key or field manual to identify an unfamiliar plant.  Now, though, I’ve got expert help. A week ago I picked up a book published last year, […]

Sunflowers Rivaling Cherry Blossoms as Top Plant Attraction by Susan Harris

Here’s why I’m going out on a cherry blossom limb to assert that the humble sunflower is gaining on DC’s most overhyped flowers. Just outside DC, Maryland’s McKee Beshers Wildlife Management Area is just now seeing its sunflower fields cleared of photographers from near and far. There’s a special Guide for Photographing the Sunflower Fields. A Virginia camera […]

Impulse Buying, and the 17 Plants I Had to Have by Bob Hill

2 months agoHobbies / Gardening : Garden Rant

So having just returned from a favorite nursery with 17 new plants I didn’t really need – but couldn’t live without – my mind leans toward the phenomenon of impulse buying, if not Zen and The Art of Horticultural Maintenance. Precisely what is it that triggers the mind to buy what the billfold really isn’t […]

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