Spring forward

Even though the forsythia hasn’t bloomed yet, we declared it time to prune the roses. We can tell that the roses are ready because their buds have swelled and the Ballerinas in the North Garden have even begun to break — to leaf out. The only danger with early pruning is that the new growth […]

An argument for roses

I have heard that there are gardeners in the world who don’t love roses and I think I can almost understand why. For starters, they’re pretty common and might not appeal to gardeners who prefer oddities and rarities. To that I’ll just show one of my annual portraits of Rosa chinensis ‘Viridiflora’ (below left). That […]

Comfort and joy

By the looks of a stubborn delphinium in the Rose Garden, I’m not the only one who would prefer to think of the winter solstice as the official start of summer. But winter might actually be here at long last. A cold blast over the past weekend froze the pond into a scattered ream of […]

Days of whine and roses

Sometimes I still feel like a backseat whiner. I should know better than to complain out loud because as a kid, whenever I asked, “are we there yet?”, my Mom would only reply cryptically, “10 and a little!” But I’m impatient to be done with the planting (10 and a little!); moved out of the […]

Heaven scent

The air smells so pervasively sweet right now that it’s almost hard to identify which plants are producing all the fragrance. I have now stuck my nose in so many flowers, it’s probably a wonder I haven’t had an asthma attack or been stung by any annoyed bees. There are a couple of easily identifiable, […]