Josif Pančić

The Serbian Phoenix Flower February 25, 1888 Today is the anniversary of the death of the famous Serbian botanist, Josif Pančić (“pahn-Cheetz”) In 1874, Josif discovered the Ramonda serbica, commonly known as the Serbian phoenix flower. Like the peace lily, this flower is an excellent indicator plant and flops quite severely when dehydrated. At the…

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20200101 The Daily Gardener Album Cover

Today we celebrate a young botanist that wrote the first flora of Ireland at the age of 22. We’ll also learn about the Father of Serbian botany. We hear words about the birds of winter – creatures that entertain us at our bird feeders and fly freely over our winter gardens. We Grow That Garden…

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State Flower of Indiana

Peony to Fire Pink February 24, 2001 On this day, The Daily Journal out of Franklin, Indiana, shared an article called, Selection of State Flower Deserves Much Thought by “Bayou” Bill Scifres (“Sy-fers”). The article discusses the desire to change the State Flower of Indiana. “Well, we are at it again. Again we are embroiled in the state flower…

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Steve Jobs

The Kyoto Gardens February 24, 1955 Today is the birthday of the founder of Apple, Steve Jobs. A lover of simplicity and elegance, Steve once said that, “The most sublime thing I’ve ever seen are the gardens around Kyoto.” To Steve, the ultimate Kyoto garden was the Saiho-ji (“Sy-ho-jee”) – and most people would agree…

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Marion Delf-Smith

Westfield: A Place for Women’s Botany February 23, 1980 Today is the anniversary of the death of the British botanist and botanical pioneer Marion Delf-Smith. A botanical trailblazer, Marion started the botany program at London’s Westfield (a women’s college preparatory school) in 1906. To make the program a reality, Marion fundraised relentlessly, and then she…

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Agnes Arber

The Mind and the Eye February 23, 1879 Today is the birthday of the British plant morphologist and anatomist, botanical historian, and philosopher of biology Agnes Arber. Since her father was the artist Henry Robertson, Agnes learned to draw as a child, and throughout her life, she illustrated all of her own botanical work. Agnes’…

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Charles Walker Cathcart

Healing Moss February 22, 1932 Today is the anniversary of the death of the Scottish surgeon Charles Walker Cathcart. During WWI, Charles and his peer Isaac Balfour wrote a paper where they advised following the common German practice of using sphagnum moss to treat wounded soldiers. After this article, sphagnum moss was robustly harvested for…

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Edna St. Vincent Millay

Clever Compositions February 22, 1892 Today is the birthday of the American lyrical poet and playwright Edna St. Vincent Millay. Gardeners cherish Edna’s verses like: April comes like an idiot, babbling and strewing flowers. I would blossom if I were a rose. I will be the gladdest thing under the sun!  I will touch a…

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John Laroche

The Orchid Thief February 19, 1962 Today is the birthday of the American horticulturist John Laroche (“La Rōsh”). Before John was arrested for poaching wild ghost orchids, he was a typical horticulturist. In the late 1980s, John was active in the Bromeliad (“brow·mee·lee·ad) Society of Broward County, and he was giving lectures on topics like…

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The Lady Slipper

The Minnesota State Flower February 18, 1902 Today the Showy Lady’s-Slipper became the State Flower of Minnesota. The Lady Slipper orchid was discovered in 1789 by William Aiton. The Lady Slipper’s common name is inspired by the unusual form of the third petal, and it’s what makes the bloom look like a little shoe. During…

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Antoine Nicolas Duchesne

The Modern Strawberry February 18, 1827 Today is the anniversary of the death of the French botanist, gardener, and professor at Versailles, Antoine Nicolas Duchesne (“do-Shane”). A specialist in strawberries and gourds, Antoine was a student of Bernard de Jussieu at the Royal Garden in Paris. A plant pioneer, Antoine, recognized that mutation was a…

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Reginald Farrer

Reginald’s Rock Garden February 17, 1880 Today is the birthday of the legendary rock and alpine gardener, plant explorer, nurseryman, writer, and painter Reginald Farrer. A son of the Yorkshire Dales, Reginald was raised in upper-middle-class circumstances on the Farrer family estate called Ingleborough Hall in Clapham. And although Reginald was a world traveler, his…

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Rudolph Jacob Camerarius

The Anther and the Pistol February 17, 1721 Today is the anniversary of the death of Rudolph Jacob Camerarius, the botanist who demonstrated the existence of sexes in plants. Rudolph was born in Germany. He was a professor of natural philosophy. Rudolph identified and defined the flower’s male parts as the anther, and he did…

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20200101 The Daily Gardener Album Cover

Today we celebrate one of the earliest botanists and his essential discoveries about plant physiology. We’ll also learn about a man known as the ‘Prince of Alpine gardeners.’ We hear the story of a woman who over-nurturers her houseplants. We Grow That Garden Library™ with a book about worms from one of the best garden…

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