Normandy woman creates garden like a painting come to life

Once upon a time, the stunning garden I want to tell you about was an orchard in a farming village in northern France. Apple trees, luxuriant green grass and wild flowers grew there. Far enough from the city that the dominant sounds heard were garden birds singing, roosters crowing and hens clucking, the village probably […]

Gardening in Northern France

The next few columns will focus on gardeners and their gardening secrets in a place far from the Eastern Shore – Upper Normandy, an area well north of the Normandy Beaches of World War II that so many people associate with Normandy. This part of France is a land of high cliffs, split by long, […]

Edging plants add color and fragrance to a garden

Santolina or lavender cotton makes an attractive edging plant with unusually colored, fragrant foliage and cute little yellow flowers.

Edging plants, whether growing along a walkway, flower beds or some other spot, lend a decorative touch that can transform a garden from nice to lovely. Like a cake that’s delicious without garnishing, add frosting, rosettes and a happy wish written in butter cream, and you elevate it to a different sphere. Among the many […]

A time to seek inspiration

Lurie Garden, in Chicago, designed by Piet Oudolf, grows on the roof of a parking lot.

At this chilly time of year, with Thanksgiving and the winter holiday season approaching, gardening slows to a crawl for most of us. Yet even when confined indoors, the mind of many a gardener may wander along horticultural paths. Indoors looking out, one can plan new ways of organizing the garden: Different spots for flower […]

Delicious native fruit, ripe for re-discovery

By fall, many of the luscious fruits grown in our region have come and gone. Local strawberries, peaches and melons will remain a sweet memory until next summer. But the paw-paw, a tasty native fruit largely unknown to modern Americans, has just started to ripen. Depending on a paw-paw tree’s variety and location, the fruit […]

Collison to manage Lewis store

NECK DISTRICT — The John Lewis General Store, a venerable watering hole in the countryside west of Cambridge known as the Neck District, is to reopen on Oct. 1, after a hiatus of two years, under new management, new ownership and a new name. On Thursday, Jacob Collison, 22, will leave his job as a […]

Gardening on the wild side

In these long, hot, last days of summer, it may not be too late to find surprises in your yard, particularly if parts of it have been abandoned to Mother Nature. Last month, I went away and left my yard to its own devices for about five weeks, apart from the lawn. A friend kindly […]

Colorful, versatile hydrangeas

On a recent trip to northern France, I was blown away by hedges of brilliantly colored hydrangeas, often planted alongside thatched cottages and other traditional country dwellings. The pom-pom flower heads, set against deep green leaves, resembled a child’s drawing made with pink, blue, purple and green crayons. In the past, I’d considered hydrangea blossom […]

Gardener works miracles on semi-urban lot

Just east of Cambridge, on a half-acre lot in a peaceful development, one man has created a vegetable garden that encompasses twice as much space as his house and is well on the way to becoming a homestead. Chris Du Plessis, a self-taught gardener with only three years of trial-and-error under his belt, feeds not […]

Seasoned gardeners try something new

Many gardeners get an urge to branch out into something different from time to time, such as an unusual plant or a novel method of gardening. Personally, I’m besotted with the idea of growing a miniature lemon tree. (After how many years will it produce fruit, did the catalogue say?) Of course, if I moved […]