Thoughtful musings on various topics by interesting people at Blithewold

Happy New Era

I never much liked the idea that the world might end today. It’s so much better that it’s simply the start of a whole new cycle. Just like every other day that rolls into another … Read more.


It seems impossible to speak or think about anything else right now. The news is too full of horrific loss and our hearts are too broken. I won’t claim to have a clue about how … Read more.

September color

As much as I love the freshness of a June garden, September is my favorite month. Some visitors seem surprised that we “still” have so much color but I can’t imagine it any other way. … Read more.

Deadheads in the garden

Our Tuesday volunteer group has been known for years — for ever? — as the “Deadheads” because they work in the Display Garden and traditionally, the biggest summer chore in these gardens has been to … Read more.

The awesomeness of agastache

I am as fickle as any gardener. I’ll pick a new favorite color, fragrance, leaf, flower, and plant habit every other week (or day) and reserve the right to change my mind over the slightest … Read more.

Natural companions

I finally bought my very own copy of Ken Druse’s latest book Natural Companions: A Garden Lover’s Guide to Plant Combinations and if you don’t have a copy yet, it’s worth dropping everything else – … Read more.

Avant Gardens

This week we just about finished planting 300-something new perennials – with the garden volunteers’ help, thank goodness! – and that meant it was time to pick up another order. One of the highlights of … Read more.

Spring carpets

Why is it that a pack full of seedlings is a thrilling thing and a carpet of seedlings in the garden is alarming? I once got in big trouble with a friend for bringing teasel … Read more.

A new USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

It is prettier than the old map, interactive (click on it to check out the zip code zone finder), and the information is finally up to date. But it’s not good news and there are … Read more.

Mum’s the word

Don’t tell anyone but I am not a big fan of potted mums. For weeks now they’ve been popping up on doorsteps everywhere and plopped pot-and-all into every other foundation bed, and I can’t help … Read more.