What Worked – or NOT – in the 2013 Garden

Winter Garden, Vincent Van Gogh: Buy through affiliate link at Art.com
Winter Garden, by Vincent Van Gogh (it looks like a dark and twisted place, does it not? You needn’t go there.)

It’s Garden Planning Season, and you know what THAT means: deep introspection to determine what worked and what didn’t, because unless you incorporate what you’ve learned into this year’s garden, you will be going forth with an impending sense of doom….… Read more

Garlic is UP! and Much about Mulch

“The more one gardens, the more one learns; and the more one learns, the more one realizes how little one knows.”  ~Vita Sackville-West

Siberian Purple Stripe garlic sprout in mid-FebruaryStatus report: Mid-February and the garlic is up and growing strong!

I am doing a few things differently this year than last.… Read more

Themes and Resolutions

"Glenham Arbor" by Henry Peeters, click to buy at Art.com
"Glenham Arbor" by Henry Peeters, illustrating the concept of clearly defined boundaries - a vision of orderly garden loveliness. I should hang it on the wall of my workspace to help me visualize garden utopias. (Click to buy at Art.com)

Questions for you: Do you have a strategy for keeping up with your garden tasks?… Read more

How to Plant Garlic Bulbils

The weather can get seriously nasty in November, but if you have a few garlic cloves left, you can still stick them in the ground.

I laugh as I read that sentence, which I wrote after I got the main garlic crop in the ground and also – and this is key – an experimental crop of bulbils, those tiny seed-like things in the mature scapes.… Read more

Every Soil Tells a Story

Buy at Art.com
Click to purchase this photo by Ed Clark

We delve deeper into the whys of a poor garlic crop this year, and although I highly suspect it was a combination of a long wet winter and spring, incessant strong winds, and too thick a mulch, I thought it might be a good idea to buy an NPK soil-test kit and see what the soil could tell me.… Read more

The Good, the Bad, and the Downright Ugly

Rotted garlic were put in the burn pile
Obvious signs of neck rot and mold on these garlic bulbs. Don't compost them; just burn them.

In times like these, it is good not to panic. Take your bearings. Breathe slowly, deeply, inhale, exhale. That’s right. All those things that are important when it comes to living, keep on doing them while you sort through your options.… Read more

St. James Infirmary (Ode-to-Garlic) Blues


A sad farewell to my garlic crop, which did not do well this year. Adieu, my friends. (And a thank you to all the frogs that spontaneously joined me in my farewell tribute.)… Read more

When All Else Fails, Buy Plants

I don’t know about you, but when I am sad, I go buy plants. At one point in my life, I did an inventory and realized I had over 100 different kinds of herbs. Ok – maybe that wasn’t all sadness – some of that was just pure compulsion.… Read more