Showing posts from February, 2011
As a budding garden writer, I must share with you one of my favorite authors - Edith Wharton.
Edith Wharton was a famous woman of letters in the 19th century when she went to Italy and wrote her seminal, turn of the century  Italian Villas and Gardens. The writing is classic garden literature.

First serialized in the popular 'The Century Magazine' and then released in book form in 1904, Italian Villas and Their Gardens is Wharton's description of her visits to 75 different villas. It combines Wharton's flowing prose, her keen intellect and eye and Maxfield Parrish's striking and nuanced color  illustrations.
What a combination for such a wonderful topic!
All the Parrish illustrations shown here are from a fabulous website called 100 years of Illustration and Design by Paul Giambarba (click here).

The book was a genuine collaborative effort between the two. Each traveled to Italy to gather material for the project and then they met later in The Mount, Wharton's hom…

Jupiter Artland and its Life Mounds by Charles Jencks

Jupiter Artland Logo by Iain Mckintosh, illustrator
Edinburgh has a unbelievable private sculpture garden called Jupiter Artland, a private (no public funding!) sculptural park featuring a magical collection of outdoor land art and more. Nicky and Robert Wilson created Jupiter Artland on the grounds of their 80 acre home, Bonnington House in West Lothian. It is what they call, "their life's work."

Jupiter Artland is open on weekends, during the summer, for a modest entrance fee.

Photo from Times On Line of Life Mounds at Jupiter Artland
The marvels they feature include a Charles Jencks earth sculpture called Life Mounds which is bisected by the driveway up to the house.  See above photo.
Jupiter Artland Map by Iain McIntosh, illustrator
Robert Wilson, in an interview with Anna Burnside of the Sunday Times said, "“I dislike private collections that are not open to the public,"  He wants to share his wonder with others. “Otherwise it’s like King Midas, sitting on his…

A Great Blog - Toronto Gardens Blog

When I started this blog I wasn't very savvy about photos and linking and all that.

But now I am so I hope to rectify a few omissions.  My first priority is to make up for my use of a great photo from Toronto Gardens blog  - I did not ask them or even worse,  link back to them...

I just wrote Toronto Gardens blog under the photo...

from Toronto Gardens Blog
Well, to make up for that, I am here to tell you how great the Toronto Gardens Blog is. (click here or on the title of this post)...
The bloggers write about themselves : "Brought to you by the muddy hands of Helen Battersby and Sarah Battersby, sisters and neighbours who come from long lines of English gardeners...".

Their blog is both beautiful and informative. And they have high ratings to prove it.

They have been at this garden blog business a while...they started their blog in 2006!

from Toronto Gardens Blog
So please add Toronto Gardens Blog to your garden blog 'must read' list....

Of course - Toronto is t…

Grassy and Strappy Plants for Warm Weather Climes - OZBREED

Cassa Blue Flax Lily
Do you live in a place where it is Zone 7? Are you an avid plantaholic?
If so, please look at this wonderful website and its great breeds strappy leaved and grassy plants and has a US outlet too...
OZ BREED(click on the name for the site)

It describes the new varieties of certain sub tropical plants beautifully, shows them in the Chelsea garden displays and makes me dream of living in a warmer clime...Florida, perhaps?

For example, it features the improved varieities of Dianella caerulea—an evergreen perennial herb commonly known as Blue Flax Lily.  This strappy leaved plant flowers throughout the spring and summer. The species, which requires little maintenance, is hardy both to drought and to frost.

courtesy of J.G. Flikr stream
BECCA (see below)  is an improved selection of blue flax lily.
It is a medium textured "strappy-leafed" plant with arching sprays of tough, green foilage that slowly spreads by rhizomes. Plants are accented in the spri…

Valentine's Day and Musings on the Color Red

Photo by Angie Harms
Valentines’ Day is synonymous with RED - red roses, red hearts and red carnations.
Red, the hottest of the warm colors, is the color of love, romance, passion and energy.... (and of Target Brides wear red in China, India and the Islamic countries. Audrey Hepburn wore it in Funny Face.

Red arouses, excites and evokes strong emotions. In fact, studies show that seeing red can stimulate your body to pump out more adrenaline and increases blood pressure, respiration and pulse rate.
I remember the first time I saw how powerful red could be - it was in the movie GiGi by Vincente Minelli. I was very young and I sat in the movie theater looking at the magnifent red salon in Paris, thinking how dull our little rooms in my Queens, NY apartment were.  

Minelli, a film director, was a master of color, saying, 
 "I use colors to bring fine points of story and character. " - Vincente Minnelli
I think Minelli got the red room idea from the French artist, Henri …

Persicaria amplexicaulis 'Firetail' - Red Fleeceflower or Knotweed

photo by Chris Ghyselen
Want to know what plant is 'all the rage' in Europe? and a 2010 Royal Horticultural Society Plant of Merit?

The 3' - 4 ft tall 'Firetail' Knotweed or Persicaria amplexicaulis ‘Firetail’

photo courtesy of Big Dipper Farm
Beloved by James Van Sweden and Piet Oudolf, this non-invasive Himalayan perennial adds a “nice red spark” to the late summer garden (from July through Frost). It forms a bushy mound of foliage topped by brightly colored “tails” of tiny crimson flowers.

It looks great in a mass planting and wonderful as a background for Asters, mums, short grasses, geranium 'rozanne'. Contrasts well with purple salvia, echinops, helianthus, nepeta or perovskia. Also effective in moist areas along streams or ponds. Underplant it with early-spring-blooming bulbs for color in the spring .

avalon perennials
Persicaria amplexicaulis prefers moist soils and partial sun to full sun conditions. It has no serious disease or insect problems.  Har…

Have You Seen Houzz?

Johnsen Landscapes & Pools Project
Have you seen Houzz?
It is a must for all designers, students, home and garden lovers...
I have just started uploading photos and I am suggesting all professionals do the same. I have a lot more to share...
You will love all the various designer images here.
Click here to see my page on Houzz.

Have a Good Time!

Planting with the Pull of the Moon

"With the waxing of the moon, the earth exhales." ~ Ute York
A few days ago we had the New Moon (or No Moon as I say). At that time, there is no visible moon in the sky ( it is there but just not illuminated by the sun).

 Photo above is from the SpaceFellowship, Rob Goldsmith.

So with that I felt it was a good time to tell you about lunar is fun and makes so much sense!
The gravitational pull of the moon on the earth affects water on our planet. The moon's pull is stronger than the sun because, even though the sun is larger, the moon is closer to the earth.

As the moon gets full or waxes, its gravitational pull on the earth gets stronger. And it is felt the most when the moon is full (the moon and sun pull from the opposite sides of the earth at this time). This is when the tides are at their height and lunar people such as a person born in the sign of Cancer, go a little wild.
But not only does the moon’s gravity affect tides, it also affects underground wate…