Showing posts from September, 2016

The Rolling Crabapples - smile

Rock Art by Thomas D Kent, Jr This is funny.   Glenn Eichler wrote an open letter to the New York Botanical Garden in 2014 in the New Yorker regarding his love of their rock garden. He felt it deserved more attention:  "—dragged by glaciers, striped and striated by, I guess, also glaciers—deserve better.  Not sexy? Compared to what, the Donald J. Bruckmann Crabapple Collection?  No disrespect to Mr. Bruckmann, but Mick Jagger and Keith Richards haven’t spent fifty years playing to sold-out crowds as the Rolling Crabapples, the world’s greatest crabapple-and-roll band." Glenn has a point, don't you think? Mick Jagger in garden

The Glorious Sunflower - The Fourth Sister

 I have written about the Native Americans'   Three Sisters Garden  (corn, beans and squash ) but I neglected to tell you of the  Fourth Sister ... a very important member of this family! This is from  Hubpages :  "Fourth Sister, didn't look anything like her other sisters, although she was as tall and as slender as First Sister (corn) . That seemed fair to all, because Third Sister and Second Sister shared similar but different features. They could climb and run, while their other two sisters were forced to stand tall and proud." Mother Sun explained that each sister had her job and each had to benefit from and protect one another.  But Fourth Sister's job was most important of all -- for she was the  guardian of the North ,  planted firmly, to protect others from the robbers who soon would come. The fourth sister was the elegant sunflower. The Sisters are known to the Native Americans as the “mothers of life”  but the y a

Verbena Bonariensis - Verbena on a Stick

Verbena Bonariensis is tall and airy and one of my fave flowers.   It blooms like crazy all summer into fall. I plant it next to walls and fences for a stunning effect. Here I mixed it with white cosmos -   purple and white is such a great garden combination.  The lavender clusters are held high on wiry stems that wave in the breeze from mid summer to frost.  Called "verbena on a stick",  it is a hummingbird magnet and is an easy flower to grow.  It p refers full sun in well-drained soil. Remove top 1/4 of plant periodically to force new buds.    

The Sky and Earth - a Union We Overlook at Our Peril

Farm in Upstate NY - photo Jan Johnsen I often write about creating beautiful outdoor environments to lift our spirits and enhance our wellbeing but we cannot be comfortable if the health of our planet is deteriorating. We talk about restoring balance to the earth. This starts with the soil. Once the soil is revitalized the  atmosphere and weather will correct itself.   Here is why: the sky and earth interact. In other words, droughts come from poor soils, pollution and other inharmonious activities on the ground. Fix the soil and the droughts and storms will subside.  So start with fertilizing the soil - this does not mean applying more soluble  nitrogen fertilizers loaded with anhydrous ammonia or nitrates. Doing this to plants is like feeding them amphetamines. Reliance on poisons to grow our food is one of our major problems right now.  Changing this practice will help our atmosphere greatly.  But it is not a quick process so we better start now. At this po