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January 17, 2012

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Jhoanna

Hi! I'm from the Philippines. I would like to start gardening and my mother loves to cook so I'm thinking of having container kitchen and herb garden. And I hope someday we could provide free vegetable foods to street children. A rainbow of california poppies or butterfly garden will also be nice to have since the plants can survive in hot weather.

I think gardening can uplift the spirit. Happy holidays!!!

Noisefreelakeland

Ooh yeah, I'd love some alpine strawberry to grow too.

Katherine

I'm planting for the first time (wish me luck!) and I've heard that tomatoes which are a favorite in my family and hellebore which is really pretty are both really easy. I'd like to grow those two because I know they'll be a big hit!

Tami

This year I am planting an entire garden for my local food bank it Will help hundreds of people in my local community

Khadijah

Hello Valarie I have a very dry shady, hot Georgia red clay filled yard,i've mulched my leaves, drawn up an workable plan(anything I grow has to be eddible), I have plenty of volunteers(my husband and children. This year would like to grow brocolli, claiflower, onions, I have tomatoes...spinach,corn, and berries, echinechia,calendula... shade loving plants

Nikki

Along with the veggies, herbs, and fruits that I'll be growing, I'm really dreaming of growing honeysuckle. lol...it almost doesn't feel right to admit that among the fancier dreams listed here. But honeysuckles remind me of childhood when my sister and I sucked the sweetness out of the flowers, and I absolutely love the smell of them. I have a wooden arch I built a few years ago, and it needs something...I think honeysuckles would be the perfect addition.

Lucy

Hi Val! My friend Lynn Coulter sent me here from Douglasville Patch. I'll grow some herbs from seed this year, and some daisies, and I would love to try growing lettuces.

Myles MacMILLAN

There's about a half foot of snow outside my door. Last year was the first time i planted a garden. It is only yesterday that my thoughts turned once again to gardening. Last Summer's garden was a success in so far as we ate salad almost every day once the lettuce grew. For sure i am planting again this year. I am planting more cilantro than last year & anything else that will add some pizazz to the salad days of Summer. My radishes weren't a success & i will be trying a different potato variety. I also didn't have much success with onions which is a redo with onion sets this time out & carrots were a huge success with my five year old niece that i am sure to plant many more again this year. I only hope for success as it is a bit of effort. Nasturtiums were also a hit, colorful & great taste, those i can successfully grow in the same spot as last year's. Thank-you gardeners for getting me thinking green!!

Sue

I will be planting watermelons again this year (we got six over 20 pounds last summer!), some Silver Queen corn (it burned up in the drought), and I would like to try lettuces and swiss chard in containers (we have a snail problem). I had great luck with spanish lavender last year, too, so I will add more plants.

My DH will be planting Early Girl tomatoes, golden melons, and Italian basil.

ikkinlala

I don't have garden space of my own this year, but I'm hoping to talk my boss (who is also a friend, and who doesn't use his yard) into letting me garden at his place in exchange for sharing the produce. Therefore, I'm planning on annual vegetables to keep the commitment level low. I know he'll primarily want spinach (and I want some too), and I also want other greens like lettuce and corn salad, as well as peas, carrots, potatoes, zucchini, maybe tomatoes, maybe broccoli...

I'm in Canada, so I don't know if your seed offer applies, but I appreciate the reminder to start planning.

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Bayview Farm and Garden

Far Reaches Farm

Swansons Nursery

B&D Lilies

Renee's Garden

Dig Nursery

New Book: Petal & Twig

  • Petal & Twig Made The New York Times!
    From Anne Raver's review: "Valerie Easton, a Seattle-based garden writer, discusses the art of growing and arranging cut flowers in “Petal and Twig: Seasonal Bouquets With Blossoms, Branches and Grasses From Your Garden” (Sasquatch Books; $16.95). Written as an informal diary, with photographs of arrangements from her own garden, and tips on cutting and keeping flowers fresh, the book inspires ideas not only on what to grow but on how to combine (or not) those beauties inside. See review here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/29/garden/new-books-on-growing-and-arranging-flowers.html?scp=1&sq=petal%20&%20twig%20anne%20raver&st=cse
  • The first reviews on the new book are in! From Publisher's Weekly:
  • "Open your eyes and keep it simple: those are two lessons Easton passes on from her own 40 years in the garden. When selecting and arranging flowers for bouquets, you needn’t spend a bundle buying a bundle of imported flowers.....The result will be unique, local, imaginative, and inexpensive. Color photos throughout illustrate and inspire."

In the News

  • Montreal Blogger Reviews "A Pattern Garden"
    I was so pleased to find that "A Pattern Garden" is still being reviewed...check out Allan Becker's generous review on his Garden Guru blog.. I felt like Allan really understood what I was working towards in that book....he writes...."There is a delightful abstract quality to this publication. In it, the author takes good garden design to a higher, more spiritual level. Instead of discussing the aesthetic and scientific elements of design, as so many traditional garden design books do, she focuses on the role played in garden design by archetypal ideas - a.k.a. patterns - that reference the longings of human beings. These pleasure and comfort-rooted ideas are those that inspire designers to create gardens that are satisfying beyond their beauty." see more at http://allanbecker-gardenguru.squarespace.com/journal/valerie-easton
  • Planting art
    Check out this interview with Val in the Chicago Tribune on using art in the garden...

The New Low Maintenance Garden

  • Reviews Are In....
    "Over the years, countless books have espoused a low-maintenance approach to gardening. None have been as engaging, practical, or inspiring as this latest of Easton's contributions to the gardener's bookshelf,"
    - Pacific Horticulture magazine, Jan/Feb/Mar 2010

    "A handy guide to a garden you can raise without a corresponding increase in your blood pressure..handsome and informative...."
    - Metropolitan Home, Dec. 2009

    "This book is an invaluable addition to the garden library – destined to be a classic for many years to come."
    - Garden Design Online

Photo Credits

  • The banner and portrait photos were taken by Jacqueline Koch; all other photos by Val Easton unless otherwise credited.

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