The Midsummer Garden

Penstemon in the herb bed. It is Midsummer and as promised here is another list of essential plants for the ecological garden, my Language of Flowers. This list has more lore and fewer entries as I decided to break the growing season into three sections rather than two. Too many plants bloom after May to… Continue reading The Midsummer Garden

My Language of Flowers

As it is the last day of April and the day before Beltaine, I thought it good to give a reference list of flowers to fill your garden with love. I have an ever-growing list of essential flowers and herbs — annuals, perennials and a very few small shrubs. These are the plants that feed… Continue reading My Language of Flowers

The Needful Garden

Herbs and sweet peas April is planting month up north. There is still a chance of frost, perhaps even snow; but it’s safe to plant peas, leeks, carrots, cabbages and other brassicas, many greens, and the cool-season herbs like dill, calendula and cilantro. Keep the row cover handy, but take advantage of the moist soil… Continue reading The Needful Garden

Dandelion Break

the gardener i’ve got my trowel and my trencher she said i’m off to sow so saying, a-sowing she went with words hidden up her sleeves an idea or two tucked into her hatband and the rows await pull out weedy fallacy cut back dead superstition cultivate and amend and then drop the seed in… Continue reading Dandelion Break

A Shed Raising

The winds are howling out there tonight. Which reminds me of one of my favorite tales from my personal gardening mythos. It will be the twenty-year anniversary of a most remarkable shed raising this spring. Spring, that is, in other parts of the northern hemisphere. For New Mexico, where this story takes place, the season… Continue reading A Shed Raising

Eggs!

The birds are busy in the backyard. They’re awake at dawn, debating the latest household design fashions and hipster watering holes. Possibly a few duels among the cardinals. The doves are sighing in frustration because they prefer to sleep in. The wren is just permanently enraged. But he sounds lovely — as long as you… Continue reading Eggs!

New England Ecology

(Or Eat the Damn Deer) Deer droppings This week the garden finally thawed out. I can see the grass and soil and the lower trunks of trees again for the first time in months. And right along with that, I see enough deer droppings to cover an acre in an inch-thick layer. I know this… Continue reading New England Ecology

World Water Day and Drought

World Water Day is 22 March 2021. This annual observance was organized by the UN in 1993 to focus attention on the importance of freshwater and to promote sustainable freshwater management. Each year a different theme is chosen, centered on topics relevant to clean water, sanitation and hygiene. The theme for 2021 is Valuing Water… Continue reading World Water Day and Drought

What Is This Vernal Equinox Thing?

There is some confusion regarding the solar event that happens this week. I thought I might try to clear that up.  True or False: The vernal equinox is when spring begins. Not exactly. The beginning of spring depends on where you live, and it is more a cultural phenomenon than a meteorological one. Tradition in… Continue reading What Is This Vernal Equinox Thing?

Lion and Lamb

March is upon us once again. An Old English name for March was Hlyda, meaning “loud”, presumably referring to the roaring March winds. This name survived as Lide in the West countries.  Eat leeks in Lide and ramsons in May, And all the year after physicians may play. — proverb from western England Ducks wan't… Continue reading Lion and Lamb