in the garden and etc. with margaret

bicolor-tulipM AY IS MADNESS. I have already said that in the monthly chores column. But it’s madness otherwise, too: garden tours to prep for; workshops I’m giving with friends; a garden contest I’m judging (as in, free prizes!); a sister in the news to brag about…and oh, I need your help with the Urgent Garden Question Forums here, too. The details, on all of it (and more):

vanity-fair-final-product-436x550Win Prizes (If I Say So!) at Beekman1802: I am not the only Martha Stewart dropout to move to old farmland in the New York State countryside. Dr. Brent Ridge, a former colleague, has also done so (along with his partner, Josh Kilmer-Purcell). I have frogboys and a tiny house; they have goatboys (well, goatgirls, actually, I suppose) and a mansion. Why do I mention this? Brent and Josh are having an online garden party on the blog that celebrates their astonishing farm, Beekman1802, and in May have asked me to judge a contest they’re holding (read: I get to give away a 10-piece tool set to the winner). The challenge: Do you have a homemade garden tool or a tip about some ingenious such device? Share it in the comments at Beekman1802 to enter. See you there. (“Vanity Fair” photo.)

marion5Proud Sister Dept.: Disclaimer—this is not a horticulture item, but I do want to share it. Twenty-six years ago, my younger sister, Marion, wrote the first, first-person story ever published on Alzheimer’s disease, which our mother, already a widow, came down with at age 49. It ran in “The New York Times Magazine.” This Mother’s Day weekend, Marion (who has since lobbied for decades in Washington and Albany, NY for longterm-care reform) wrote an op-ed column for “The Los Angeles Times” on the subject, and a post on her blog recalling our mother, where you can link to the op-ed. I know it’s a topic that touches many of your families, as it did mine, and I hope you will consider sharing your comments with Marion on her site, part of The Sister Project network.  (Or you could just read about the Little Shop of Horrors Garden at her place that I am apparently to blame for, with my hand-me-down plants, if the other is too raw.)

boys190Container Garden Workshop with Margaret Roach and Bob Hyland (left), Saturday, May 23 (Memorial Day weekend) at Loomis Creek Nursery in Hudson, NY, 11 AM to 1 PM. We’re calling this “Hosta Pot, Why Not?” and the idea is that my friend Bob and I don’t observe any rules about what goes in containers, to say the least. The $10 admission will be credited to your purchase of $25 or more, so hey, if you’re buying anything it’s basically free (talk about a recession special!). Please call them at (518) 851-9801 or email info at loomiscreek dot com to save a spot.

ad_ugq160Your Help Needed in the Forums: I admit it; I need your help. On the blog, I share what I know (my way to garden) to help and inspire you. On the Urgent Garden Question Forums, the other half of A Way to Garden, I hope you will help one another, asking and answering questions and swapping information about your ways to garden. You can:

  • Learn and also teach: ask and answer;
  • Upload photos;
  • Private message one another;
  • Search for help from old postings;
  • Browse by category (scroll down the forum homepage to see the choices of subjects, from flower gardening to houseplants to a general one).

Reach the forums from the tab on top of every blog page. For security, registration is required; just a username and email, and then you must click the email that’s generated to make sure you’re not a robot. Yes, I will jump in, too. and answer questions…my username is UGQ, for Urgent Garden Questions…but the forums are really about you. Thanks!

Open Days May 31 and August 22: Open Days will be held here at A Way to Garden on Sunday, May 31, 10 AM to 4 PM, $5 admission to benefit the Garden Conservancy. Details and directions can be had at their website. The bout of 90-plus two weeks ago has sped things along insanely, so I am no longer making predictions on what will be featured. But (barring snow or locusts) alliums, perennial geraniums, and viburnums, at least, should be in attendance. (I will be the one lying face down, drooling, on the lawn from total exhaustion if you wish to say hello.) My other open day this season is August 22; information at this local website.

Container-Garden Exhibit, Opening June 6, through the season, Berkshire Botanical Garden, Stockbridge, Mass. In collaboration with Bob Hyland of Loomis Creek Nursery, Hudson, New York, to help celebrate the 75th anniversary of BBG, I’m co-creating an exhibition called “Contained Exuberance: A Fresh Look at Gardening in Pots.” (413) 298-3926.

A Way to Garden Newsletter: The weekly email newsletter, formerly on Mondays, has shifted to Thursdays. Thanks to the thousands of you who have subscribed, so that I can be in touch with what’s newest here each week (and there is plenty of room on the list for the thousands of you who haven’t yet, hint, hint).

  1. Susan says:

    Congrats to Marion, brilliant and moving article. I vote for more workshops on Sunday’s, as my Saturday’s are at my studio.
    I am so looking forward to seeing your garden, my calender has a red star on that day.

  2. Johanna says:

    Thank you for sharing Marion’s article and op ed. In doing hospice volunteer work I have encountered many elderly people with forms of dementia. I’ve watched them go through calm times and stormy. I cannot imagine the pain of going through it with a parent in her prime. Marion’s article gave a clear picture, and reading both of your “She Said”s on The Sister Project expanded the complexity. As a sister myself, I appreciate your sharing.

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