First ’Maters

Finally! I put the first tomato plants in the ground yesterday. By my calculations, I’m about a month behind my usual planting schedule.

Blue Flowers

Pre-spring in the garden brings out some of my favorite blue-colored flowers. In addition to the regular irises and two kinds of bluebells, the garden is currently loaded with volunteer borage plants and the two big patches of evansia irises.

Artichoke Season

Artichoke season has started and cases full of the flower buds are showing up in the markets. Yummy!

Fava Flowers

It’s still too chilly to work much in the garden and the ground is still too wet to be worked properly, but the signs of impending spring are all over the place.

Cacti, Succulents and Tourism

This has been a cold winter with a bit of snow. Some of the tender stuff in the garden, like the clivia, is frost damaged, but most of the plants have come through fine. Some, like the succulents and cacti, have actually seemed to thrive.

Charming, Nonetheless

I’ll admit that I feel lousy at the moment. It’s been years since I was ill, and now I remember how much I dislike it.

Farmers in Mink Coats

Last weekend was the big annual fair in Rapallo, and as usual, two of the streets down by the water were filled with agricultural vendors.

Rock Walls

Photo by Rick Gush Because of the abundance of rock in the soil, Italy is covered with rock terraces, like this one found next door to my studio. One thing that Italian agriculture has in abundance, particularly here in Liguria, is rocks. Except for the big flood plain called the Po river valley in the area […]

Italian Agriculture

Most people might think all those Roman ruins and medieval castles and paintings are the most notable historical artifacts in Italy. Personally, I think the thriving small-farmer culture that still dominates Italy is the most important gift from the past.

An Excuse to Set Up Shop

I’d love to be writing about all the exciting developments in the garden, but unfortunately, we’ve had rainy and cold weather for a long time, now.