Hot Green World

Spring, after wandering around aimlessly and hiding behind winter for some weeks, just landed on the garden like a ton of bricks. We had two eighty-degree days and then it rained all night. I woke up this morning, looked out the window, and the world was GREEN. Not just any green, of course. That hot, […]

Starting the year with the Old Farmer

I got the farmer’s almanac calendar this year, to replace 365 days of Songbirds, and having put it up today (a day early, fine) I have already learned several exciting things. And the writing is positively lyrical. There is a note informing me that At New Year’s tide The days lengthen a cock’s stride. and […]

Bloody Great Asters

Well, we had a hard rain and knocked the giant willowleaf asters flat. I don’t know why anybody wants a six-foot-tall aster anyway, except that I apparently do. Show me a native plant that gets eight feet tall and I will hand you my wallet, grab the pot, and run giggling down the street. It’s […]

Grey Days and Scarlet Sage

It’s a grey day in the garden, and it’s beautiful. Why this particular grey day is beautiful, and the last handful just made me want to sleep for a week, I will leave for the reader—either you know the difference in greys or you don’t, and there’s not much point in explaining it. Possibly it […]

Autumn Descends

I went outside yesterday and it was fall. Pretty much like that. Wham. The day before had been summer, without much question, and today it was fall, and that was the end of the matter. The air was cool and damp instead of hot and muggy and I looked at the garden and instead of […]


Kevin got me a new pair of mud boots, called “Sloggers.” My old Birkenstocks had kinda exploded, and the mud boots are awesome anyhow, given how much mud there is in North Carolina in the spring. (I do not have DIRT paths. Oh no. Dirt is for summer.) The boots have enormous flowers all over […]

Carpenter Bee on Blueberries

This handsome fellow is—I think—a large carpenter bee of the Xylocopa persuasion.* He is on my blueberries, and there is an excellent chance that he is pollinating them. There is also an excellent chance that he is chewing a hole in the side of each flower to get to the nectar. Since I think his […]

So I just nearly died!

And by “nearly” I mean that I was fertilizing my Carolina lupine (a lovely native plant! Recommend it highly!) and heard a splintery creaky noise and looked up and yelled an obscenity and a tree came down about three feet from where I was standing, tore through the trellis I’d put up for the climbing […]

Ephemerals and not-so-Ephemerals

Very early spring is a great time to go away on vacation, because everything is happening so slowly in the garden that you barely see anything from day to day, but when you come back, stuff has actually happened! (Stuff! Glorious stuff!) There are plenty of buds on the shrubs (although the Redbud That Looked […]

I woke up, showered, ambled into the studio and plopped down into the chair–and a red-shouldered hawk went by the window about five feet away. Scared the hell out of me for about two seconds–those are not small birds! Fortunately when he turned to go into the woods, I got a good look at the […]