Halloween Planter Ideas

One trip to the dollar store and it's very easy to add scary to your indoor and outdoor gardening. So, yes, I keep a box of plastic Halloween body parts in the basement. You never know when you'll need a... Continue Reading →

Book Review & Giveaway of Kiss My Aster: A Graphic Guide to Creating a Fantastic Yard Totally Tailored to You

Amanda Thomsen (aka Kiss My Aster on Twitter and Facebook) is what I’d call a punk landscaper and garden designer if we’re using the broader meaning of punk. The punk ideology is really about doing it yourself and doing it... Continue Reading →

Veganic Gardening: Information about earthworms and how to avoid harming yours.

Reviewing Troy-Bilt's Lithium-Ion Cultivator got me to thinking more about the impact of invasive gardening techniques on our friends, the earthworms. So I started digging :-P Here's what I found: It depends on who you ask but there between 2700... Continue Reading →

Product Review & Giveaway: Troy-Bilt TBC57 Cordless/Battery-Powered Cultivator

Oh baby, yeah. Power tools! Nothing like an efficient tool to make gardening a little easier, right? Troy-Bilt rocks a winner, again. The TBC57 Cordless/Battery-Powered Cultivator is a new item from Troy-Bilt for 2012. The lithium-ion battery enables you... Continue Reading →

Vegan Fertilizer Review: yep, there is a fertilizer that does NOT contain animal products! And it works!

Vegan gardeners!! I have great news! There IS a veganic fertilizer now available, it works, and is named Grow Veganic. If you're impatient to order, go here:, otherwise, read my review below. What is a veganic fertilizer? Vegan +... Continue Reading →

Making a miniature terrarium from Apple mouse packaging.

You know how some companies, like Apple, tend to over package even the tiniest gizmos? And then you're left with this package that could withstand a zombie apocalypse? And there's NO recycle logo anywhere on any of the plastics so... Continue Reading →

Hail damages Garfield Park Conservatory to the tune of $5 million.

It's truly unbelievable. The worst damage in the history of this 105-year-old American institution. While there has been hail damage in the past, it only ever amounted to a few panes of glass. This is totally different. DONATIONS They need... Continue Reading →

Can’t get rid of that queen of invasive weeds: garlic mustard? Eat ’em!

Garlic mustard is one of the most invasive weeds tormenting our parks and yards, able to take down an entire maple forest. What to do? Eat it! Yes, there are many recipes available if you want to use eat your... Continue Reading →

Seeds of Change: The sowing millions project!

Just a few mere days ago, Seeds of Change launched their Sowing Millions Project with the intent to outfit home and community gardeners with enough free organic seeds to encourage organic gardening and eating. Luckily I heard about this in... Continue Reading →

Seeds Available for Swap

I have the following sees for swapping. Leave a comment if you're interested in trading. I'm looking to trade for tomato, eggplant, pepper, herb, leafy green or perennial seeds. squash, Delicata Honey Boat, Botanical Interests, 2011 squash, Delicata Honey Boat,... Continue Reading →

List of seed swaps and what I’m planning to swap this year!

Tis the season for swapping seeds and making more gardening friends. There are three upcoming swaps that I know of and gardeners are already organizing their stashes to prepare: February 12th, 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM, The Lurie Garden, includes... Continue Reading →

Team Eggplant for the Win!!

I've thought long and loose about which seed would get my vote for the 2011 One Seed Chicago seed competition and I tell ya, it was close. For those not yet in the loop or not in Chicago, the three... Continue Reading →

My orchids are liking me this year.

I've had a love/hate relationship with my orchids for over 10 years now. I love them and they hate me. I've tried everything: special orchid fertilizers, creating micro-climates using giant cement mixing tubs filled with water and elevating the orchids... Continue Reading →

Vegan MoFo: Herbs & Produce (tomatoes!) That Grow Well Indoors for Winter Cooking

Part of what makes a vegan diet so great is the use of the freshest ingredients including herbs and veggies. But groceries are one of the most expensive places to buy fresh herbs, especially in winter. And you can be... Continue Reading →

Halloween Projects: Gothic Gardening with Rusty Steel Sculpture

Rusty Steel Garden Sculpture from Steel Heart Ltd. Nothing is as cool as rusty metal, especially if it's creepy. Steel Heart Ltd. offers some fabulous Halloween sculptures including spiderwebs, witches and pumpkins. These are so cool, I'd leave them in... Continue Reading →

Halloween Projects: Gothic Gardening with Black Petunias

If you're in a warm enough zone, having black petunias in your porch planters can create just the right Gothic look that's interesting yet not too threatening. If I didn't live in zone 5, you bet I'd be planting these... Continue Reading →

Halloween Projects: Gothic Gardening with Spooky Wire Topiary Forms

I love love love Halloween and cackled with delight when I saw Glamos' skeleton topiary form at the Independent Garden Center Show in Chicago this year. But you'll need to start earlier than I did if you want some creepy... Continue Reading →

Halloween Projects: Gothic Gardening with Skeleton Flamingos

The classic (yes, I said classic) pink flamingo gets a new twist for Halloween as Skel-a-flamingos from Pink Inc. You can order these online direct from the manufacturer and they're a very affordable way to incorporate Halloween into your garden.... Continue Reading →

Halloween Project: Creating a TERROR-arium from an H. Potter Wardian Case.

Have you ever walked across a marsh, up a seemingly innocuous grassy knoll under a big gnarly tree, then noticed you're standing in the middle of an ancient cemetery? Then the sky darkened and clouds started tumbling and suddenly, the... Continue Reading →

Halloween Project: Dusty Bones Container Planting

This little project started out as a challenge to salvage the reputation of Dusty Miller, the plant that garners disdain from many professional garden designers. After pondering the shape and texture of Dusty Miller for over a month, I realized... Continue Reading →

Launching The Pink Flamingo Project!

Well it's high time somebody did this so here goes: I am launching The Pink Flamingo Project! today, right now. The primary goal is to create a forum for folks to share their best Pink Flamingo photos to inspire gardeners... Continue Reading →

Functional Art for the Garden.

Last week, I attended the Independent Garden Center show in Chicago hoping to find 3 – 5 cool new products to review for 2011. I thought I had everything I needed when I left Thursday to stand in line for... Continue Reading →

Reconsidering too-common plants for the uncommon gardener.

I was just listening to @jeanannvk and @kissmyaster's latest Good Enough Gardening podcast about plants that are so common, they are frowned upon and it got me thinking: do I have snobbish tendencies toward some overly used plants? Of course... Continue Reading →

Hell Strip: That Part of Your Yard that Hates You.

Timber Press recently held a contest on their blog for the worst of hell strips. For the uninitiated, a hell strip is that part of your yard where nothing grows. It can be hit with too much sun, poor soil... Continue Reading →

Hipster Pete Bilts a Garden One Chip at a Time with Troy-Bilt.

In April, I was approached by Troy-Bilt to see if I’d be interested in reviewing one of their products. Since I’d had such a good experience with their tiller last year, I said “Absolutely!” I hate being put in a... Continue Reading →

Hoop Hoopy Doop: Groovin’ in the Garden with Hipster Pete

OMG the cold winds of May have totally taken Chicago by surprise this month. Just after I'd planted all my pepper plants and all my tomatoes, we get a frost advisory with temps expected to dip to 34-36 F! What... Continue Reading →

Totally ugly yet cheap cloches to keep frost off your lovelies.

Everyone's been throwing around the term cloches lately in the gardenbloggertwitospere. And yes, it is a real word folks and nope, not one I'd heard of as a kid on grandma's farm. After all, it is French in origin and my... Continue Reading →

Wordless Wednesday: New Shrubs in Front Yard

P. Allen Smith’s iPhone App for Everyday Gardeners

UPDATE: I just realized this app will be a free download. You can get it at the P. Allen Smith website and Bonnie Plants starting Wednesday (tomorrow). I just got a sneak peak at a new iPhone app from the... Continue Reading →

My most embarrassing ugly vegetable garden photos from 2009.

Keep in mind that I purposefully did not photo the ugliest of the ugly vegetable garden in my back yard for fear of being judged by 'real potager' gardeners who have the means and time to design and maintain better... Continue Reading →

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