A feast of snow

Will it never end, Doctor? This compulsive diet of snow and ice and icy snow. And ice. I must confess, I’ve had my fill of it. Come on, winter, smarten up! There are snowdrops under there! Somewhere. I think. There should be snowdrops. There must be snowdrops. The snowdrops that usually tell me and the […]

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Desk accessory addendum

My eyes were opened this morning by this article in the Toronto Star on earth-friendly flowers. I don’t know why it never occurred to me to ask where our cut flowers come from before, but it’s a question we should be asking. The issue is a big one, involving both ecological and human rights. The […]

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Love/Hate: Helen’s sense of snow

It isn’t every year that Toronto is blessed, yes blessed, with such an agglomeration of snow. With the storms of the last week, I know it feels like the snow has been here forever. But think about it. As recently as January 8th, the Toronto Star had this to say about our typical post-New-Year weather: […]

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Winter desk accessories

What’s on your desk? Computer? Check. Hi-lighters? Check. Fresh flowers? Ummmmmm. Valentine’s Day is coming up. But why wait for cupid, stoopid! Get yourself some flowers! Every day can be Valentine’s Day with something petally at your side. Roses are rosy, but most of the ones you can buy at your local corner shop lack […]

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Nose Candy. No, not that kind.

What is there to inspire the gardener in the sterile outdoor environment that is winter? I remembered yesterday, when Sarah brought over a sprig of my favourite of all scented geraniums, Pelargonium ‘Rober’s Lemon Rose’. I put it to my nose and inhaled one long, deep breath. Ahhhhhhh. That’s what “smell” smells like! (The covergirl image […]

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June-is-busting-out-all-over.jpg

It’s hard to blog when you are consumed by other passions. Looking at the garden. Looking at other people’s gardens. Taking pictures of the garden. Taking more pictures of the garden – and of other people’s gardens. Occasionally weeding and deadheading. Watering the pots, perhaps too late. Taking more pictures. Reviewing the pictures. You see […]

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Love/Hate in Raccoon City

Toronto, once again standing in for some American city in the movie Resident Evil, was seen bearing the emblem “Raccoon City.” So fitting. Our city has one of the world’s most abundant raccoon populations, or so they say. At least five of them are now living and poohing on the roof of our little cedar […]

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Gnomerology

I was led into the garden by gnomes. Not today’s horror movie refugees, but 1930s pixie-on-toadstool fantasies. I was eight, and they were in my grandmother’s garden in Rhyl, a North Wales seaside town. Gran was a funny little lady, always in her pinny, hair in curlers, squinting into the smoke of a cigarette. But […]

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November Roses

In public school, we memorized Thomas Hood’s poem, November, which ends: “No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease, / No comfortable feel in any member– / No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees, / No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds, / November!” It has been decidedly grey this month. Yesterday was one […]

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