In 2020, with garden trips and tours and meetings cancelled left and right due to you-know-what, Canada’s Garden Days, June 13 to 21, is all about GLU (Gardeners Like Us). It’s about how garden-variety GLUs find pleasure and activity and peace of mind, even with the usual garden frustrations, in the garden. I’ve learned a lot about gardening from […]
See the cherry blossoms here, instead
In 2020, if a cherry blossom blooms in the city, and there’s no one to see – will it still look pretty? Yes. It will. But you won’t be there this year, will you? Even Sakura Watch is on pause to discourage folks from social the-opposite-of-distancing when the cherries bloom in High Park. So, while you’re home […]
Get the jump on spring with Get the Jump on Spring 2020
Not so long ago, I was inspecting the white-topped spears of snowdrops (Galanthus) poking through the bare earth. Now most of those snowdrops are back sleeping under a blanket of snow. But spring IS on its way. Meteorological Spring is even closer! Plus, this Saturday, Feb. 22nd, the Toronto Botanical Garden lets you think green thoughts at Get the Jump on Spring & Seedy Saturday. […]
Wild Bees Need Goldenrod
This summer I talked to wild bee expert Sheila Colla, a scientist from York University, about wild bees and what we as gardeners can do to help them. One of the first things Sheila made clear was that wild bees are native bees and we must make a distinction between them and honeybees, which are not […]
How To Pick the Best Shrubs – from Expert Sean James
At a recent Toronto Botanical Gardens talk, Sean James gave us the lowdown on how he uses shrubs. Sean, who’s been gardening since he was four, is an entertaining speaker with tons of knowledge. Sean graduated from Niagara Park school and he now runs Sean James Consulting and Design. He’s an award-winning environmentalist, who is passionate […]
Plants for long-lasting spring containers
Last week, I took you on a walk in the woods. This week, it’s a walk on the really wild side: Fashionable Bloor Street. It isn’t my usual shopping precinct but happens to be close to my doctor’s office. It also happens to be a great place to window shop – and by that, I don’t mean […]
The scent of spring
In every season, you’ll find many pretty things to see, hear, and even touch in the garden. But after a long, hard winter, the forgotten sense that comes back to life in spring is the sense of smell. My nose reminded me as I passed a planter outside a client’s office. Suddenly, I was whisked back […]
Identifying a Bag of Mystery Dahlias
Are you inexorably drawn to the gardening department of a big box store when you go in to buy light bulbs? I am. Admit it, you are too. Especially after the winter we’ve had. Back in early March, I needed to get an injection of growing things. And, while Home Depot’s garden section doesn’t always represent fine […]
2019 Snowdrop alert! At last.
My first snowdrop of 2019 revealed itself this morning, on St. Patrick’s Day. Here and there are more nubs of up-pushing Galanthus foliage, too. For me, the first snowdrop is a sign that, despite this long winter of our discontent, beneath the soil surface the garden is growing. Press on, says Nature, nothing in this world can take the place […]
Happy Meteorological Spring!
After February 2019’s unreasonable insistence on winter weather, today’s evidence above, I’m all too eager for spring. To have it happen three weeks earlier than the Vernal Equinox – around March 21st – would be psychologically uplifting, right? Guess what? March 1st is the first day of meteorological spring. Yip-yip-yippee! Spring starts today! Perhaps you knew […]
Get the Jump on Spring – with us!
Come meet up with Sarah and I this weekend when the Toronto Botanical Garden hosts its free Seedy Saturday and Get the Jump on Spring events. Break the spell of this very snowy, icy February – and think springy thoughts! Free talks, free inspiration, and free seeds. How can you lose? We’ll be there on Saturday, February 23, […]
Yes, Toronto often has snow in April
Our trees were the plants most damaged by this week’s April snow and ice storms. We see the evidence in bits and pieces on the ground all around us – or, if we’ve been unlucky, on top of our cars and fences. Hopefully, not on top of us! Sometimes, fruit trees can have their flower […]