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Corporate Landscaping

Planted in straight lines with vast expanses of sterile mulch laid down to prevent unplanned growth between, these plants seem to have been intended to serve as a botanical model for corporate employees, a depressing landscape to be confronted with at 8:55 every morning, a mockery of a garden.

[...]

Easter Island, Omaha, Nebraska

This morning, I woke up at the Sheraton hotel in Omaha, Nebraska, and opened my window to look out upon a courtyard garden, featuring two small versions of the giant head sculptures that people had carved out of stone on Easter Island, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

What was the purpose for [...]

Elm Tree Dreams Die Quietly

1930 — The parasitic fungus Ophiostoma appears in Cleveland, Ohio and begins attacking American elm trees.

1950s to 1980s — 40 million elm trees die across the United States.

1970s — Start of government-university-community cooperative efforts to identify and propagate resistant elm trees.

1999 — Maine State Legislature creates Elm Tree Restoration Fund. 12 ME [...]

Death of a Generation

By all appearances, gone.  I have to believe something will come up from the roots.

Frustration and Fruition

Frustration is a foxglove planted too late, its blossoms struggling to set seed before the frost.

Fruition is the spiky pod of the loco weed split open in a snarl to reveal the germs of the next year’s dreams.

[...]

Echinocystis Erupts

A week ago, I wrote about my discovery of the native plant Echinocystis lobata, the wild cucumber. This morning, the specimen I collected shared with me a little surprise. Though I had severed the fruit from the vine, it remained alive, developing as it ordinarily would, given that this time do year, vines in the [...]

The Spiny Sac Cucumber

When farmers plant vast fields of soybeans and corn, and some vines of wild cucumber pop up in the fields, which plant is really the invader? [...]

Morning Mystery Mushroom

After a few days of hard rain, these fungal fruiting bodies appeared in my garden this morning, with bright red stalks and slick grey tops. Does anyone know what species this is?

Plants Maps – Now With Maps!

A few months ago, I asked the rhetorical question, What kind of Plants Map has no map? I was referring to a web site called Plants Map, which is aspiring to serve as a kind of social media network for gardeners. It’s a great idea, but at the time, what stood out about Plants Map [...]

Scapes Aplenty

Although I’ve gardened for some years, I didn’t start planting garlic until three years ago. Living in the desert, I couldn’t grow garlic without an unseemly amount of irrigation. Living in the South, so many grand oaks grew around my home that I was restricted to shade gardening. Now that I’m in Maine and have [...]

Pea Sweet

Open today.