Tag Archive | Wordless Wednesdays

Wordless Wednesday–From the Sublime…


I was on vacation last week.  By the time I left, it was in the 80s, and these tulips were open.

I almost didn’t get there. The northeast had one of its bigger March storms. But luckily I got out right in front of it.

Still,  it was a little jarring to come home to this:

Drifts up to the car doors are never good.

And I hate snaking through these narrow paths.  Oh well.  It’s spring and the sun is warm. It won’t last that long now.

And we’re still in drought too so every bit of moisture helps.

Wordless Wednesday


Do you grow this plant?  You might be right in asking “which one?” because there are a jumble of plants in this photo.

I mean the one with the trifolate leaves and the tiny white flowers. It’s oxalis–but it’s not a pest like the tiny, clover-like weed with the little yellow flowers that grows in your lawns and flower beds.

This is a pretty ornamental.  They sell it this time of year as the “Shamrock Plant.”  It’s really a bulb.

But if you have the weedy type,  don’t be afraid to try this plant.  It is completely different.

Wordless Wednesday–No, It’s Not All Currier and Ives


For those of you who don’t live in areas that get a lot of snow, here you are.

This is one of our parking lots at a box store.  But it doesn’t matter.  All our parking lots look like this–and will for months. Notice where the snow is piled. It’s up to the lower branches on this good sized tree.

We have mounds like this everywhere,  although some recent warm weather has brought them down a bit. What that means, of course, is that to proceed into any intersection,  you have to nose your car forward very carefully–because you can’t see past the snow pillars.

What the recent warm weather means is that every night we have a re-freezing and the following morning there is ice at the edges of the roads, the ends of the driveways,  in puddles in various places–you get the idea. You hope it doesn’t snow on top of these icy patches.

By now you must be wondering why we all don’t just move? After really bad winters,  many of us wonder that same thing.  But for the most part,  we like “seasons ” and the other three seasons and their beauty and mild weather outweigh this. At least most years, anyway.

Wordless Wednesday–Book Review

By now, you all know that I love most anything that St. Lynn’s Press publishes. So when I was offered a review copy of Jan Johnsen’s The Spirit of Stone: 101 Practical & Creative Stonescaping Ideas for Your Garden of course I said yes. As always with review copies,  opinions expressed are always my own.

What interested me about this book and topic is the fact that I have so much stone in my own garden.  In fact, I have a version of just about every project she mentions in the book with the exception of a true rock garden.

So, since we are in the middle of a a garden trends project,  I wanted to see how stone fit into that–or how its use had changed over the 25 years or so that I have been gardening at my own property.

Since Johnsen has been a landscape designer for 4 decades,  obviously the use of stone has evolved–but many stone projects have timeless appeal, of course.  Depending on one’s part of the country, one need only to think of New England’s stone walls,  which date back hundreds of years, in some instances.

And of course the stone “henges” of ancient Britain go back many more centuries than that!

Johnsen divides her book into chapters that focus on rock gardens, stone walls, walks, steps, stone accent pieces and plant recommendations.  She also addresses the issue of sustainability in an entire chapter.  That is certainly new since some of my stone was installed and it probably would have led me to make different choices from what is there now. I was pleased to see so many of my projects in the sustainable section though.  Whew!

Because the book is called The Spirit of Stone, there is a discussion of different types of stone, its history, and using local stone. This is the very first chapter of the book. I found it very appropriate.  Some people might not care for it.

The book is abundantly full of photos from botanic  and public gardens and the author’s own installations. There is a list at the end of places to visit to see some of the photos in the book. There is also a list of books about stone (some have been quoted within the book and others are just of interest to the reader).

Whether you have been thinking about a stone project or a rock garden for yourself,  or if you just have an interest in stone,  this is a lovely,  well done book.

Wordless Wednesday–Plants that Clean the Air but Don’t Need a Lot of Light

I’ve been talking about plants that clean the air of specific chemicals. These posts have gone into detail about the best plants to remove certain chemicals, and at times even how much certain plants removed from the air. But what the posts don’t do is have photos of the plants or cultural requirements. So on the Wednesdays in between, I thought I would address some of those–because while these are all common plants that most folks can find just about anywhere, sometimes photos do help.

Today we’ll start with plants that can grow in dark corners, as I like to think of them. Most of these plants would do fine in northern exposures. Does that mean they won’t grow in other windows? No, of course not. But if a low light room or apartment is all you have, these are the plants for you!20160821_100803

You’ll hear a lot about snake plants (sansevieria) in the upcoming weeks. Here are a couple of mine growing not in a north window but in a west window. What does that say? Plants are adaptable. So while these plants can take dark corners, they don’t always have to be grown in them!

peace lily

You’ll hear a lot about the peace lily (spathyphyllum)too. When I lecture, I often say that these can grow in a closet. Not really, but almost. I have one of mine–this one in fact, on a landing in an eastern exposure. The other is in a room with a northwest exposure and it is way back from the window–at least 5 feet back in fact–and it still flowers. That’s what I mean about growing in a closet. This is one of the few plants I would ever put in a situation that dark.

Spider Plant

And then there’s this plant–the spider plant. If you’re old enough to remember the 70s, you probably had one of these. They’ve made a remarkable comeback. In the 70s, they were all green. Now they’re at least variegated. This one is hanging in a south window, if you can believe it. But I have the same plant hanging in a north window and it does just fine.

As we go through the next few weeks talking about the air-cleaning plants, look out for these. You’ll see the snake plant and the peace lily several times. I think the spider plant is less common. But it’s nice to know that they’re great for air-cleaning, isn’t it?

Wordless Wednesday–Sleety Mess


This looks like a snowy mess but no–it’s sleet! Accumulating sleet, especially this much, apparently is pretty rare (and thank goodness. Shoveling it is like moving wet concrete!). Supposedly the last time we had this much was in 2007.

And it’s much slicker than snow as well.

But no worries. As has been the case all winter, the next few days will be much above average. This stuff is soon to be just a memory.