Friends, Community & Musings

  • The Importance of Being a Lackadaisical Gardener

    Life is simple, but we insist on making it complicated. Of this I am reminded every morning when I take my dog for a walk or spend time in my garden. And one way I often complicate my life is overthinking what needs to be done in my garden, especially with care and maintenance. Luckily, I’ve become an advocate of a messy garden, especially in the fall when there is a rush to ‘clean up the garden’. I’ve now taken a more lackadaisical approach, which if you have received my emails or followed me on social media you already know this to be the case.
  • Bloom Where You are Planted

    The fall garden never ceases to amaze me!
  • Orchid Rescue Update: The Circle of Life

    So, my rescue of the mini phal was short lived. It enjoyed, what I imagine, a good life with my other orchids once it came home from the grocery store. I guess life is like that. Enjoy every minute because you never know when some will over-water your pot.
  • Orchid Rescue! (Mini Phalaenopsis)

    I am starting the morning with some hot water in the kettle for my tea, a bit of breakfast and the enjoyment of a blooming mini Phalaenopsis orchid...
  • Vintage-Style Greenhouses and Terra Cotta Pots

    As most know, when spring hits here in Wisconsin, my attention turns from the art studio to the garden. The garden becomes my palette, my paint, an...
  • Ode to the Tulip

    Nothing shouts spring like a beautiful tulip! So many colors, so many shapes and sizes. I have been painting a canvas inspired by the spring garden, full of tulips. So I thought I would share some tips I have found with my tulips.
  • Iris Borer

    If you’re like me and you don’t notice iris borer until mid-summer, you have more work on your hands. If you are seeing yellowed leaves and rot at the base of the iris stalk, you have to dig up the plants to inspect them. Knock off all of the dirt. Cut away rotten parts with a sharp knife (and remember to throw these in the garbage). Place the remaining rhizomes in a bucket of water that is 9 parts water and one part bleach. Let the plants soak for 5 to 10 minutes. The borers will drown.
  • Art of Gardening, Winter Reflections

    If I am willing to admit it, winter has become a respite for me in some respects. There is no pressure to wake up first thing and go to the garden. I can lollygag in my pajamas with a cup of tea and “Instagram.” I can appreciate what the garden brings without the need to fix, mind or tend. I can enjoy the memory. I can find new inspiration.
  • Messy Garden Club

    Everywhere I read online is talking about being a lazy gardener, a messy gardener. Why? It turns out this is good for your garden and the ecosystem! All that winter interest I left (branches, dried leaves, spent flowers and seed pods) are the egg nurseries for all kinds of beneficial bugs. These are also where the adult guys spend their winter hibernating. Leaving the clean up until it’s officially warm (Wisconsin = July, lol) allows the eggs to hatch, a new generation to be born and the hibernators to emerge. (I guess the magic temperature to wait for is 50 degrees!)
  • Homestead in Summer

    Who knows the secrets of a homestead in summer but its owner?
    I know where the blackberries grow.
    Under the pines; and when they will be ripe.
    Oh to be eaten by mosquitoes in July picking tonight's dessert. Just a bowl or two. With honey and walnuts. Enough but not plenty.
  • Unexpected Herbal Teas from in and around the Garden

    One of the great joys of gardening is herbs.  They are easy to grow and if you read my earlier post, drying them for use in cooking or teas is uncomplicated.  I like to dry enough herbs to have a supply on hand to sustain our household through the long Wisconsin winter.  One of the best uses of the herbs is tea.  There is nothing like a hot cup of tea from your own dried herbs on a cold winter night.  And if you study the medicinal qualities of various herbs, you can use them to relieve ailments and symptoms.  For me, herbs can also include plants that some consider weeds. 
  • The Visitor

    She had her nest
    In the climbing rose out front
    She carefully guarded her roost
    Morning and day