Thoughtful musings on various topics by interesting people at Blithewold

Live and let live

I’ve gotten a couple of questions in the last week or two about what we do in the gardens to manage pests and diseases. Although a lot of you already know the answer, I don’t … Read more.

Plants with promise

When it’s pouring rain outside, the greenhouse is definitely the best place to be. It’s not exactly warm on a gray day and it’s not completely dry either but it is full of summer’s promise. … Read more.

Some like it hot…

… but most spring flowers don’t. It hasn’t yet reached the temperature that was forecast for today (82!) but it’s definitely warmer than most things want to be so early in spring. As much as … Read more.

Unpredictable

Yesterday a reporter from one of the local papers called to ask about the daffodils. She wondered when they would bloom; are they early; how long would they last; and what comes next? A very … Read more.

Good for you

Yesterday was the kind of day that made me feel very sorry for anyone stuck indoors. High 60s, sunny blue sky, birds singing, bees buzzing: Exactly the kind of short-sleeves day we all desperately crave … Read more.

Pretty things

It’s hard not to want pretty things on Valentine’s Day. Or any day for that matter. Especially any day in February. But the sun is climbing higher, the plants in the greenhouse are perking up, … Read more.

Pruner sharpening 101 (remedial lesson)

The birds are singing, the Mt. Aso pussywillow (Salix chaenomeloides ‘Mt. Aso’) is coloring buds, crocus are emerging, and it feels for all the world like early-spring outside. Given that we really ought to still … 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.

Hypertufa trough tapestries identified

The best thing about hypertufa troughs is that they give us a place to plant tiny fragile things that might otherwise be lost, trampled, or overtaken in our gardens. They are also especially perfect for … Read more.

Harlequin glory bower

One of the most asked about shrubs on the property is the one that nearly hits us all in the nose as we walk towards the North Garden from the mansion. The Harlequin glory bower … Read more.