The Adequate Gardener is Pooped

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “Winter is the malady, while flowers, blessed flowers, are the antidote.” I am suffering from late-season gardening. It’s a disease that I’m sure must be listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) next to bipolar illness. It starts every year in mid-July and builds until by September I

The Adequate Gardener Praises the Status Quo

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “Hang on tight. Because it appears that foliage is the new flower.” It’s winter, and I’m hibernating like a big old bear in my cave (which, thankfully, comes equipped with a fireplace and a martini glass), but I’ve still been keeping one ear twitchng towards fads, and let me

The Adequate Gardener Praises Annuals

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “You still grow annuals?” I was visiting a friend’s garden and I happened to mention that I’d forgotten to thin my annual poppies, so now I was in jeopardy of losing the entire dell, and my friend, he of the upscale collector garden on the nice side of town,

The Adequate Gardener: Fine Gardening Comes Calling

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “Fine Gardening commissioned an article on poppies, and they wanted to fly up to Vancouver to photograph mine.” Joy and I started gardening with one proviso: We could garden our little hearts out, landscaping and tilling every inch of our 120 foot by 33 foot lot into beds and

The Adequate Gardener Climbs Her Clematis

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “Doesn’t anyone just take it easy anywhere at any time anymore? Pass me a beer. I never studied Latin. I just want to grow plants.” I’m that frustrated, really. I’m climbing a braid of tangled clematis like it’s Rapunzel’s hair. This one’s a Clematis montana (what’s the story with

The Adequate Gardener Puts Her Garden to Bed

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “…we had plenty of expensive, susceptible, fragile exotica that needed winter protection.” It was August. And then it was September. We’d put in a whole lot of tropicals and sub-tropicals and still hadn’t solved our winter storage problem. Which was stupid, since 16 months before we’d bought a lotus,


The Adequate Gardener Contemplates Compost

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “Black gold? Not in our composters. More like brown zirconium.” Organize our compost? Itemize all the stuff there is to do in the garden: cleaning up, digging, planting, fertilizing. Rearranging the beds. Dividing. Putting up seeds. Spraying for damping off. Spraying for black spot. Fence fixing. Lawn mowing. And

The Adequate Gardener Buys Three

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton “It never crossed my mind that the experts were giving bad advice.” All the books said buy three or five or better yet seven of every perennial so the plants wouldn’t look like green toothpicks stuck in a frosting of dirt. Well, I couldn’t afford five or seven of

The Adequate Gardener

Guest post by Jane Eaton Hamilton ” I used to try to be perfect. “ The perfect gardener, me? Hah. I wouldn’t even try. I garden on the adequate system. There’s no point in going for anything else, not if, like me, you still always come up short. Short on resources, short on energy, short