Best. Plant labels. Ever.

One of the best things about visiting (and working at!) the Chicago Botanic Garden: you get great ideas for your own garden. I put one of them to work in my new “all vegetable” front yard garden this weekend. Horticulture program specialist Nancy Clifton faced the challenge of labeling dozens of different heirloom tomato varieties … Continue reading Best. Plant labels. Ever.

On Monticello, Thomas Jefferson, and Sharing

Gardeners share. They share seeds. They share plants. They share tips. They share the knowledge accumulated during a lifetime of gardening. And of course they share the harvest. This fall I had the opportunity to share in a celebration of the harvest. I traveled to Monticello, Thomas Jefferson’s great Virginia estate (in the fine company … Continue reading On Monticello, Thomas Jefferson, and Sharing

Valentine’s Day Wishes

From ancient China to Greece, Europe, and finally the New World, the tradition of sending messages as a gift of flowers has flourished over the centuries. Popularized in the Victorian era, when public display of emotion was frowned upon, great effort and detail went into the choice of flowers presented in a bouquet. Each flower … Continue reading Valentine’s Day Wishes

How to Plant a Glass Jar Terrarium

Tim Pollak, outdoor floriculturist here at the Chicago Botanic Garden, recently taught a fun class, a glass jar terrarium workshop, with the Joseph Regenstein, Jr. School of the Chicago Botanic Garden. I went down to the production greenhouse that morning to learn how to plant a terrarium so I could share some tips with you. … Continue reading How to Plant a Glass Jar Terrarium

Behind the Scenes at Wonderland Express, Part II

With the holidays now officially approaching, all hands have turned to preparations for our annual holiday exhibition, Wonderland Express. The ever-creative Nancy Clifton is putting the finishing touches on her fun and fragrant project for Wonderland Express: she’s making more than 400 wreath and garland decorations from a no-bake “faux dough” made of just two … Continue reading Behind the Scenes at Wonderland Express, Part II