On formality and fine tuning

Mother Nature dumped almost three more inches of rain on Blithewold this week and the gardens responded by growing with an exuberance bordering on, and even crossing over the line to loose, lush informality. I have a hard time defining formality when it comes to gardens though I’m sure I know it when I see […]

One step back…

…two ahead. By now there should be a spring in our dance step – and there is. I can tell because it squishes. This week another 2″ of rain fell. But on top of that, a frosting of sleet. A lot of wind blew in the latest storm, making a few open daffodils kiss the ground, […]

Ahead of schedule

I don’t want to crow in case any of you are feeling swamped – either by the end of the garden’s season or in anticipation of the holidays – but as Gail would say, “we’re in good shape!” Almost all of the gardens are cut back and tidied (we take our time cutting back the […]

How we beat the heat

We didn’t. We just rolled with the sun’s punches, sweated buckets, and are still recovering. But even though we lost the fight in some respects — we lost a week with the volunteers, lost appetites and energy — we and the gardens remain undefeated. The gardens actually managed to grow and bloom (all except the […]

Perennial planting spree

I think we outdid ourselves. In the last couple of weeks Gail, Betsy, the volunteers, and I planted about 700 perennials and a handful of shrubs. Going into our planning season this past winter, Gail and I both thought that we wouldn’t place big perennial orders this year. Then the catalogs arrived and we couldn’t […]