Of Humane Gardening

Another week, another nor’easter–though today’s may be a bust. In a way, I’m done with snow for the season. It is now spring after all. Yet, the slower pace and minimal effort outside (apart from shoveling snow, breaking up ice, and cutting up and carrying off fallen branches) still suit me. Viewing the world from…

Bye bye Blackbird

With a fast moving, heavy  storm passing through our area, a flock of grackles flew in, at least fifty, competing with each other at the bird feeder. Two waited patiently.

Famous Last Words

Famous last words: If you don’t like my winterberry, keep it to yourself. That was my first reaction after my ill-considered submission of a winterberry branch with dead leaves at our December garden club meeting. At the time, I thought the specimen met requirements and was doubtful I’d ever submit anything again after its lackluster…

Everybody loves Amaryllis

Everybody loves Amaryllis. So says Steve Bender, also known as the Grumpy Gardener, who writes a weekly column on gardening for Southern Living and is the author of the recently published book, The Grumpy Gardener, An A to Z Guide from the Galaxy’s Most Irritable Green Thumb. I agree, so when I got started early…

Think Spring

“Think spring.” It’s the greeting or parting words of choice around here. I’ll ask quite seriously, “Are you tired of winter?” and the response is invariably a facial expression that says “Are you kidding?” The calm before yesterday’s storm I generally don’t like to rush the seasons. Each has its merits. Winter is an excellent…

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner

Bird paradise lasted for about a day before squirrels descended on the squirrel-proof feeder. It took no time for them to figure out how to loot it. When I saw the first squirrel, I remembered why I had abandoned keeping a bird feeder years ago. Some like squirrels and are amused by their acrobatics. I…

Birdy, It’s Cold Outside

Ten to fifteen minutes, tops; any longer and you’ll get frostbite. So said my in-house town crier when I came downstairs ready to walk our dog. The day before, he’d said the temperature in southern New England was going to be colder than Mars. I didn’t ask for his authority; he usually does his research….

The Power of Positive Moments

  Why do we remember some fleeting moments, whether bad or good, so vividly? Driving home last week from R.J. Julia Booksellers in Madison, Connecticut with my daughter from New York riding shotgun and a captive audience, a podcast provided some insight. The podcast, one of my favorites, is Just the Right Book hosted by…

Honesty is the Best Policy

I have a confession to make. I am the president of our local garden club and never have exhibited in a state flower show. This seems incredibly unimportant when compared to almost anything, yet it makes me feel like an imposter among my club peers. I joined our garden club not because I am expert…