Pausing for Pickles

Although winter’s chill has arrived in full force here in my Pennsylvania garden, I’ve been able to enjoy a little culinary sunshine. In my fridge and freezer sits a few pints of a friend’s strawberry freezer jam, lots of frozen veggies from my garden and quarts upon quarts of my homemade pickles.

Apple Tree No More

We lost our big, old apple tree in a windstorm last week. Although the tree was half dead and produced only a handful of fruits, I will miss it.

Corydalis: A Burst of Winter Color

We’ve had a bit of snow here in Pennsylvania, so the garden has been fairly still for the past week—but I found a surprise yesterday as I headed out to fill the bird feeder.

Trend Spotting: Edible Ornamentals

I hope you and those you love had a wonderful holiday season and that 2012 brings you much success—in the garden and in life. We had a great Christmas, followed by a trip to Florida for a few days of sunshine.

Favorite Ornamental Grasses

By far, the most interesting things in my garden these days are my ornamental grasses. I have a lot of them because they are so low maintenance and they add great texture to the garden— in summer, fall and winter.

Happy Holidays, From My Brood to Yours

With the holidays fast approaching, life is more hectic than ever. I’ve been busy getting everything together: doing a little shopping, wrapping far too many gifts, baking cookies, sending last-minute cards and making Christmas crafts with my son.

My New Buttonbush

A good friend gave me an early Christmas present last week. A buttonbush!

Brussels Sprouts and Salad Surprise

I harvested the last of our Brussels sprouts last week, and they were delicious. After washing them, I peeled off the outer leaves, then cut them each in half. I put about 2 tablespoons of water and the same amount of butter in the bottom of a lidded pot, turned it onto medium heat and tossed in the sprouts.

The Accidental Assassin (Bug)

My son and I found the strangest insect in our house the other day. It was climbing on the woodwork around the front door. Since working on my most recent book, I have come to greatly appreciate bugs and pay careful attention to the ones I find in my garden. This one, though, had me intrigued.

New Magnolia Tree

I decided to make the most of what will likely be the last few beautiful fall days. I headed to a local nursery and bought yet another tree and planted it in the backyard.