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Posts Tagged ‘Bay-friendly gardening’

Months ago, the University of North Carolina Press asked me to write two blog posts that relate to Chesapeake Gardening & Landscaping. The first of them was published today, and I wanted to share a link to it here on Eastern Shore Gardener. Six Tips for Creating an Eco-friendly Landscape, outlines the fundamental principles covered in the book that help create a sustainable landscape. Each principle offers many options for implementation. Chapter One presents ten tips for each principle that gardeners can use to move toward a beautiful, sustainable landscape.

Since it looks like spring is really finally here, I am spending the afternoon outdoors cleaning up beds and replenishing the leaf litter on the garden. The simple act of mulching works toward several principles. It is especially important for #4, Manage Water Runoff, but it also is an essential part of principle #6, Garden Wisely, because of all the benefits mulch brings to soil, weed control, and more. I wait until spring to clean up and cut down, because deep leaf litter and stems provide overwintering sites for insects and good hunting grounds for birds. All the stems and other plant parts pulled off the garden in spring go directly to the compost pile, and eventually are returned to the garden to complete the cycle.

If you don’t already have a copy of Chesapeake Gardening & Landscaping, consider coming to one of the events listed in the calendar. Adkins Arboretum has copies available by mail. It is also available from Amazon.

Uvularia-grandiflora

Above: Large-flowered bellwort (Uvularia grandiflora) is finally beginning to emerge from the soil. It brings yellow spring flowers and handsome foliage to the garden.

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New Year’s resolutions are on everyone’s mind this time of year. This year my list starts with a very general vow: Spend more time out in the garden. At this point, I don’t care if that means time spent weeding, planting, pruning, propagating, or just watching the plants grow. During 2014, I simply spent far too little time doing what I love to do best. My garden suffered as a result, and so did I. With any luck, working in the garden will also help with resolutions relating to getting in shape and losing weight. According to Web MD, you can burn anywhere from 200 to 600 calories per hour in the garden, depending on the activity.

Galanthus

Above: All my resolutions will make room for more plants, including bulbs like these snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis).

I also want to continue taking steps to make my garden and landscape more Bay- and earth-friendly. Obviously, this is an issue I have been thinking quite a lot about in recent years, since it is a major focus of my new book, Chesapeake Gardening & Landscaping. Since I don’t want to start off the year with a daunting list, today I am concentrating on steps that will help reduce maintenance or bring other benefits.

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I haven’t managed many blog posts in the last year, and I have missed posting about plants and events in my garden. Happily, I have more than a lame excuse for the lapse involving dogs (or parrots) eating my homework.

After months and months of research and writing, plus agonizing photo editing and rounds of review, my book Chesapeake Gardening & Landscaping (CG&L for short) has finally been sent to the printer. It is scheduled for publication March 30, 2015.

CG&L Cover005Published by The University of North Carolina Press in association with Adkins Arboretum, the book features 293 pages and 317 color photographs. I can’t wait to see it in color. (I have a black-and-white version of the book now.) The cover here is just a tiny taste of what is inside. I hope this book (all sales benefit Adkins Arboretum!)  will become a guide for gardeners throughout our region.

You can pre-order Chesapeake Gardening & Landscaping by clicking the cover image on the right side of this blog. Or, to order from the University of North Carolina Press directly, visit http://uncpress.unc.edu/books/11759.html.

Of course, copies also will be available for sale at Adkins once they come from the printer. In addition, I have started booking talks based on the book, and I will be bringing books to all of these events as well. I will announce dates here once they have been finalized.

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I hope you’ll join me at Unity Nursery in Church Hill, Maryland this Saturday, June 15, 2013 for Adkins Arboretum Day.  There are speakers scheduled throughout the day, plus plenty of opportunity to tour the nursery, which specializes in ecologically sensitive and functional outdoor spaces. If you haven’t been there yet, they have great garden ornaments and a wide selection of native plants.

Meadow-runoff

Meadow runoff. Spend the day learning about ways to make your garden and landscape more Bay friendly by reducing runoff, attracting wildlife, and much more!

 

I am scheduled to give a talk at 2:00 p.m. titled titled “Sustainable Gardens and Landscapes: One Step at a Time” that is based on my upcoming book Chesapeake Gardening & Landscaping. During the day, I hope I can meet some readers of Eastern Shore Gardener! (If we haven’t met yet, look for the person accompanied by a small black-and-white dog. I will be coming straight from a puppy class I teach on Saturday mornings, and Bing, my demo dog, is happy to announce that he will be with me for the day.)

Other speakers include Robyn Affron, Master Naturalist from Adkins Arboretum,  “Wildlife Gardening”  at 11:30 a.m.; Nancy Robson, garden writer and author, “Garden Stormwater Management” at 12:30; Neenah Newell, Landscape Designer at Unity Church Hill Nursery, “Wall Pocket Gardening” at 1:15 p.m.; and Michael Jensen, President, Unity Church Hill Nursery and Unity Landscape Design/Build, “Shoreline and Erosion Control on Waterfront Properties” at 3:00 p.m.

Hours for the event are 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Unity Church Hill Nursery is located on Route 213, south of Church Hill. The address is 3621 Church Hill Road, Church Hill, Maryland. Phone: 410-556-6010. Hope to see you there!

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First the talk: I am going to be giving a talk at the Chestertown Garden Club January meeting, and it is open to the public. Here are the details

When: 11:00 a.m., Tuesday, January 3, 2012.

Where: Church hall of Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 101 North Cross Street, Chestertown, MD 21620

Topic: Befriending the Bay: Creating Bay-Friendly Gardens and Landscapes.  Join local gardener and garden expert Barbara Ellis for a practical look at what gardeners can do to benefit the bay. Learn how principals like reducing lawn and runoff as well as attracting wildlife can help you create beautiful, unique gardens and landscapes that also help the Bay.

Hope to see some of you there! I’ll have books and a few tools available for purchase.

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