Garden design lessons from florists

We’d come home exhausted after a day of loading and unloading furniture and boxes for our #1 Dot’s move to a nearby city (okay, it’s Hamilton). What was waiting for us on the porch but this beautiful arrangement. As I turned it round and round to choose “the front*” it occurred to me that a well-designed floral […]

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Ecoman’s cliff garden at Canada Blooms 2019

Of the things in my folder to share with you about this year’s Canada Blooms, this is the one that excited me most. It’s Jonas Spring’s Cliff Garden. Spring uses reference points from nature to inspire the shape and form of the gardens he builds for clients. Essentially, cities are cliffs; houses are boulders. Layered on this […]

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Creative, repurposed garden art

Our 99-year-old windows are being replaced today. Much as I love the original look, I live with the downside all winter as I sit at my office keyboard with the window view – wearing mittens. It is hard to type wearing mittens. Mr TG just came to ask, “Do you want to keep the weights?” He laughed […]

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15 container ideas and why I love them

I could give you a play-by-play, but on an almost-Wordless Wednesday I’ll just say this about why I love them: Inventive plant combos, cool containers and display ideas, great scale (from very-very big to very-very small), a mix of enthusiasm (by some) and restraint (in others), and steal-worthy ideas. All seen in the mild climes of Virginia, Maryland […]

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Crevice gardens, natural and crafted

We’d spent 20+ years clambering over Nature’s crevice gardens, had we only known it. The natural rock formations below near our former summer home on Ile d’Orléans in the St. Lawrence River near Québec City held exactly the eroded vertical spaces that crevice gardens try to mimic. As they were also naturally photogenic, I have pictures to show you, […]

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Inspiration for mosaic paving

Before the snow or, more likely, the fallen leaves cover the ground, it’s a good time to squint at your paving (what Marjorie Harris calls “creative staring”) to see if there’s anything you can do better. Here are a couple of beautiful mosaic paving designs from the Atlanta Botanical Garden. [Update: Paving design is by […]

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Bee hotels for your wish list

My adventures in urban wild bee hospitality have appeared on the blog before. Right now, other than some passive carpenter bee action on our shed, I’m out of the bee hotel business. But I’d like to get back into it. Over my garden travels, I’ve been collecting bee hotel pictures for inspiration. Hoping these inspire you, […]

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Go see Grow Op 2016 at the Gladstone

You get an underworld view of daffodil bulbs in Persephone by the Toronto Flower Market and various local growers, including Sarah Nixon of My Luscious Backyard whom we ran into at the show. Happy Earth Day. A perfect time to share earthy thoughts that make us think. These scenes are just a few from the […]

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A simple birdfeeder stand

Like the Little Black Dress, you can dress this up or down – a simple design to emulate Always, I’m grateful to neighbours for giving me ideas to steal copy emulate. That metal tube with its holes looks tip-of-the-tongue familiar – but I have no idea what it is. If you do, please tell us. […]

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How’s this as a substitute for boxwood?

If you’ve lost your boxwoods (Buxus), how about clipped Euonymus? The more popular boxwood parterres have become, and they’ve become very popular, the greater the loss if they die. After two harsh winters in a row, 2014 and 2015, I know of many who lost their boxwoods and, with them, the backbone of their formal […]

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