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cure for the unrelenting blah

In anticipation of good weather I’m already planning some gardening activities, there are summer bulbs to be planted and perennials beds to be cleaned up for spring.

Plodding through day after day bullied by cloudy skies and bone chilling temperatures, I almost forgot how beautiful the garden is, how exhilarating it is to feel it warm up and try to guess the fresh growth right under the soil surface, almost ready to breach it. Read more…

the potted cat

In line with the gardening theme, even during the winter season, I give you the potted cat. It was really warm that December day in the southernmost island of the Florida keys, so this gracious host found a cool place in the shade where it wouldn’t be bothered. The ratio of people to cats at the Hemingway House and Museum is reasonably low, they like to keep the kitty population to around 50 at all times, but not all of the felines are the gregarious kind. Read more…

how to grow a wildflower meadow

So, you have your heart set on creating a wildflower meadow and those packages of mixed seeds beckon you from the stands, irresistibly. You picture wild flowers and the thought of perpetual, zero maintenance beauty springs to mind. Wild flower meadows are not low maintenance, at least not for the first five or six years, while they are getting established. Read more…

gardener’s joy

On 07, Dec 2015 | No Comments | In plants, roses | By All Year Garden

Usually the first frost redirects attention from the garden, which settles down to rest through the winter, towards the heartwarming joys of the year end holidays.
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december planting

On 02, Dec 2015 | No Comments | In plants, wintergarden | By All Year Garden

It turns out it was not too late to plant daffodils after all. I found a large bag waiting sadly on the sales rack and because the relatively mild weather gave me an excuse, I couldn’t help myself. Read more…

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honesty

On 16, Nov 2015 | No Comments | In plants | By All Year Garden

There are some annuals you only have to plant once. They will never leave your garden, whether you like it or not, so plan your plantings accordingly. One of them, and frankly, one too pretty to pull with the weeds, is Lunaria Annua, the honesty plant. Read more…

pamper your skin

If any hands deserve pampering and care, there would be those of gardeners. They scoop and putter, weed and feed and by the end of the day their hands get rough and blistered, with dirt under the fingernails and hardened cuticles; it is hard work to bring forth the miracle of harvest. Read more…

lemon balm

The scent of lemon balm is warm, citrusy and soothing, a fistful of good cheer on a cloudy day. This resilient herb will thrive in any garden and it is not fussy about the soil, sunlight or water, which is why some came to see it as a symbol for overcoming difficulty. Read more…

cooking with lavender

Lavender is of course the go to plant for skin care and aromatherapy, but it can hold its own with the rest of the mints and spices in the kitchen cupboard.

I discovered Herbes de Provence a while back, a spice mix that contains a good quantity of lavender, and it keeps finding its way on every roast and in every stew ever since. Read more…

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painted trees

For the less romantically inclined among us, who don’t get misty eyed over nature’s autumnal carnival of color but would like to know why the leaves turn, here is the full prose version of it.

Foliage comes with three pigments: green – the chlorophyll, yellow-orange – the carotenoids, and reddish-purple – the anthocyanins. Read more…