your 12 favorites from our first 6 months!

frogboy2THE FROGBOYS AND I WERE ABOUT TO PREPARE FOR HIBERNATION when we realized it’s our 6-month blog-a-versary. That woke us up! This one’s lining up to be a ribbet-ing celebration, with a guest appearance on ‘Martha’ Wednesday. Urp. To thank those of you who have helped us get this far, and as a best-of tour for newcomers, we offer this: a recap of the 6 most-commented posts so far, and also the 6 that were most-viewed. Our Top 12 (ta-da!):

6 Top-Traffic Posts

PERFECT PICKLES: An old friend’s heirloom recipe for refrigerator pickles has wooed more customers than any other blog post with its garlicky goodness. And someone thought aloud (in comments) that those were my beloved frogboys in the canning jar! Note to visitors: We do NOT pickle frogs in these here parts.

UNDERPLANTING: The antidote to boring masses of pachysandra or ivy: underplanting in complex mosaics. I showed my method, at the request of various commenters on a previous story. You asked for it, you got it.

TO THE WOODS WITH ME: I published a favorite “doodle” by offbeat English illustrator Andre Jordan, which apparently you loved (and I got to “meet” this idol of mine as a result, thank you all very much).

THE COMPLAINT DEPT: We opened the doors on Memorial Day weekend, and the gripes are still pouring in. Got a “garden no-no” you want to add to the list? (Does dyed mulch or bad staking, or maybe garden gnomes or white-gravel mulch get you all worked up?)

NO DULL EDGES HERE: Who knew you were all OCD like I am about edging your garden beds? This how-to was another popular post.

PESTO FEST: The kickoff event in our summer-long cross-blog food series with Dinner Tonight was a spicy favorite, featuring my recipe for Garlicky Green Ice Cubes. Yup. And I mean garlicky.

6 Top-Commented Posts

GARDEN NO-NO’S (104 total comments): Both in traffic (#4) and comments (#1), the Complaint Department post from May is our all-time winner. (Guess we A Way to Gardeners are a cranky lot.)

WHY DO YOU GARDEN? (89 comments). A member of our Urgent Garden Forums asked this question early on, and it eventually became our second most-commented post of all. Why do you garden?  Truth be told this topic is probably #1, since this highly commented post was actually Part 2 on the subject, if you count that original Forum dialog.

THE WEEPING-KOUSA DEBATE (79 comments):  Should it stay or go, I asked about a weeping kousa I’d grown from a tiny thing but never really liked. Boy, did you have something(s) to say about that.

YOU SAY TOMATO (71 comments): Tomato Week in our cross-blog food fests with the Dinner Tonight blog yielded a bountiful harvest of comments (even though I only had green tomatoes to write about).

EARLY SIGNS OF FALL (61 comments): When I asked if the first signs of fall a few weeks back were cause for a “Yippee” or an “Uh-Oh,” the jury was quickly in. Find out the verdict.


HOMICIDAL INSTINCTS (58 comments): In early August, I confessed to drowning numerous Japanese beetles (and you confessed to some mass garden-pest murders yourselves).

Thanks again to all of you, old and new, for being there for me and the frogboys. Here’s to sharing many more seasons to come. Now back to preparing for hibernation over here, just as soon as we mow the lawn and harvest more tomatoes and divide some perennials and move some shrubs and make Batch 5 of red sauce to freeze…And P.S., if you’re looking for me I’m also on Twitter.

  1. margaret says:

    Am at the ‘Martha’ show, made up and dressed and waiting for airtime…with a whole studio of bloggers, including celeb blogger Perez Hilton. So funny. Great energy (except for my nerves). And away we go!

  2. Kat says:

    Yes, congratulations! Six months has flown by and your blog (and readers) have given me far too many good ideas to implement with what is left of the Zone 4 season. Winter will be good for sorting through and editing all the new plans. Although I will miss the frogboys who will be cozily tucked away in their muddy dens…

  3. margaret says:

    Welcome, Gail. Yes, the chair will be here, an so will I. Now off to do my segment on the show in a few minutes…eek! Come back soon and say hi again.

  4. Gay Ferland says:

    I just saw this article on the Martha Stewart show!! You are awesome! I wanted to learn about gardening and now I have a site to follow. Thank you for sharing such valuable information!!
    Have a great day!
    Gay Ferland

  5. Gail says:

    My daily visit is a joy. One of my favorite photographs remains the hot pink chairs with the incredible “Wolf Eyes” dogwood in the background. I hope it will always be in the archives so I can call it up when I “need” it. I live in northern California where no rain and afternoon winds have made this part of the state a real tinderbox. Your lush garden is an antidote.

  6. Jgh says:

    As a newish visiter to your blog, it’s great to have these listed so that I can see what went on before I got here. Looks like I have some catching up to do.

  7. Andrew Ritchie says:

    Well, Martha saved the best for last! You did a great job and your attire was well-chosen. I hope the frogboys are all waiting in standing-ovation form when you get home tonight.


  8. Paige says:

    Lovely Andre got it right–she is most kind, isn’t she? She’s the greatest queen of the garden frogs any of us could ever hope to know! Yay, Margaret!

  9. margaret says:

    Welcome, ReadSing. The sweater is a vestige of my life as a corporate exec…a favorite that now goes with jeans instead of skirts and hosiery! Come back soon again.

  10. margaret says:

    Welcome, Dayna. Did I pay you to say that? (Tee hee.) You are very generous in your praise, and therefore are welcome anytime. :) Seriously, though, do come visit regularly.

  11. ReadSing says:

    Just found out about this site on Martha. I’m looking forward to renewing by passion for gardening, learning, and having fun with everyone.

    Margaret- I love the sweater you wore on the show. I want one.

  12. Nancy says:

    I just learned about your blog on Martha today and logged on. What is this about “frogs” hibernating? Ah, I know I’m missing the point, but you are always welcome here in the Phoenix, AZ area when the snow gets deep there in the East!
    The West is beautiful too, and your bloggers might learn something new about our Nation’s desert!
    Maybe even a visit?
    I’m looking forward to seeing your site every morning and I thank Martha for introducing you to me!

  13. Karen says:

    Congrats on gracing the Martha stage (I admit to reading Perez Hilton almost as often as I read gardening blogs, shameful but true). And also congrats on your blog-a-versary, I just passed the 1-month mark and am impressed by how much you are doing with yours in such a short time!


  14. Ilona says:

    Congrats on your successful ‘Martha’ appearance and your 6 mo. blog anniversary! You certainly have done a great job building a wonderful garden blog and winning many garden loving hearts :)

    (I guess it is true what they say about performance jitters being a part of what makes a great presentation)

  15. margaret says:

    Welcome to Nancy…and yes, the boys and I take a nap of sorts when it just gets too cold to deal. They slumber in the mucky pool bottoms, and I keep a hole in the ice up top so nobody suffocates. Me, well, I “hibernate” in the house, baking pizzas and yes, still on the computer writing.

    Welcome Burnell Yow! The frogboys are indeed lovable, and they are my endless fascination in the years we’ve been together. My most faithful companions, really, other than Jack the Demon Cat.

    Welcome, Ilona. You are very kind; thanks for the compliment. I had fun with my old friend Martha today, and these last 6 months of doing my new thing and blogging.

    @Melinda: Which clip do you want the address for? Can try to help if a problem…

    See you all again soon, I hope.

  16. Melinda says:

    RATS! Going to Google now and see if I can find the clip…congrats on surviving your appearance with grace. I am so happy to have found your little slice of peaceful internet!

  17. Elaine says:

    Hi, Margaret. It was so wonderful to see you on the show today and now I will able to hear your voice as I read your posts each day. Perfect!

    It’s been a terrific ride so far and I am looking forward to continuing the journey with you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.