Linden Flower Tea

Foraging for Linden Flowers (+ Giveaway)

I live smack dab inside an urban forest of linden aka lime (Tilia) and at no time is that more obvious than mid-June-July when the trees are dripping with blooms. Their sticky sweet, floral scent is so strong, my bet is that even if you have never noticed the trees, chances are good that you

Summer Sale

Summer is really in full swing now and I can hardly keep up with the bounty that is coming from the garden. To celebrate the summer holiday season, I’ve put the eBundle version of my pocketbook, Drinking the Summer Garden: Homegrown Thirst Quenchers, Concoctions, Sips, and Nibbles on sale for $6.99 (that’s 30% off) for

Opuntia polyacantha

In Bloom: Plains Pricklypear

This Plains Pricklypear (Opuntia polyacantha) was a new addition to the garden, planted just this spring so I was surprised when a flower appeared. All of my other opuntias took at least one full season to put out flowers. And what a stunning dusty peachy-pink colour it is! One of the small consequences of “going

Apricot Mallow

Apricot Mallow: Tiny and Tough as Nails

I saw a lot of amazing plants on the desert trip, some with fascinating stories and critical ethnobotanic ties to the region. Yet, with so many to choose from and so many photographs far better than these, even I find it a little bit odd that I chose to begin with one so tiny and

dehydrated rose petals

How to Harvest, Dry, and Use Rose Petals

I’m not sure when I made the transition from rose-hater to rose-eater. These days I have several roses planted in my garden, most of which have been chosen specifically for their eat- and use-ability. All roses are edible, but only those that smell fragrant taste good. Scentless roses are flavourless. I recently returned from a

multiplier onion tohono oodham iitoi

Sonoran Desert Multiplier Onion: Tohono O’odham I’Itoi

I have long sung the praises of the perpetual aka perennial onion. Allow a few to multiply each year and you will have them forever. I started growing one such type, ‘Egyptian Walking’ onion (Allium proliferum) aka tree onion in my community garden plot well over a decade ago. The exact date is a lost

Spinach 'Monstrueux de Viroflay'

They Freeze Spinach, Don’t They?

Indeed they do. Or at least I do. We like spinach and we eat a lot of it, so it’s a good thing I sowed a nice-sized crop this spring. I grew two varieties: ‘Bordeaux,’ a stunning variety with bright pink stems and leaf veining, and ‘Monstrueux de Viroflay,’ an heirloom with monster-sized leaves.

dianthus vodka

Dianthus Infused Vodka

Among the recipes in my book, “Easy Growing: Herbs and Edible Flowers from Small Spaces” are three herb and edible flower infused spirits that I make each year from ingredients grown in my garden. Were more space available, I could have written an entire chapter on this exciting subject — narrowing it down to just

Lily Beetle

Let’s Talk About Lily Beetles with Dianna Gibson

Over the last few years, gardening friends have been warning me about a garden scourge the seems to be new(ish) to my area. The lily beetle (Lilioceris lilii) is a pretty red and black beetle that defoliates just about anything in the Lily family, but seems to focus on Asiatics, Fritillaria, Soloman’s Seal, as well

tinyvases

Tiny Vases

This is what passes for a flower bouquet at my house. As a small space gardener I can’t grow the volume required to create large and frothy bouquets. I need to work with what I’ve got since we’re not growing cut flowers in Oprah quantities around here (I followed her Instagram account for a few

albuca

Growing Summer Bulbs in Containers with Dugald Cameron

I believe it started with a small pot of Albuca shawii, a diminutive yellow flower that dances on thin stems in the breeze. It’s delicate leaves and stems are slightly rough to the touch and they have an unexpectedly nice, somewhat herbal scent. As a garden plant, it serves no real purpose except that it

crocus_forced

My Reward for a Job Not Well Done

I have written several times both on this site and elsewhere about taking a chance with forced or forgotten bulbs. My advice has always been to just try. Forced bulbs are often exhausted and will not produce flowers the following year. But sometimes they do. And sometimes they do the year after that.

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