Charles Clemon Deam: Not a Fan of Honeysuckle

Charles Deam

Honeysuckle Inquiry 1951  On this day the botanist Charles Clemon Deam replied to an inquiry about the honeysuckle. Charles wrote: “That [plant’s] name is to me the same as a red flag to a bull. I cannot tell you in words how I regard this vine.  Your question is: Does it propagate from seed? I…

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Thomas Nuttal

Thomas Nuttal

Adventures in Mackinac  On this day, a 24-year-old botanist named Thomas Nuttal jumped in a birch bark canoe with Aaron Greeley, the deputy surveyor of the territory of Michigan, and they paddled to Mackinac Island arriving two weeks later on August 12. Thomas spent several days on Mackinac – He was the first real botanist…

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Edith Coleman

Edith Coleman

The Wasp and the Orchid Today is the birthday of the Australian naturalist and prolific writer Edith Coleman. Until recently, little was known about Edith. The author, Danielle Claude, wrote a book about Edith called The Wasp and the Orchid, which explored how Edith went from being a housewife until the age of 48 and then…

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Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent Van Gogh

Fifteen Sunflowers Today is the anniversary of the death of the artist Vincent Van Gogh. After shooting himself in the stomach, Vincent managed to get back to his home and live for two additional days before dying beside a stack of his sunflower canvases. In March of 1987, his painting titled Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers…

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Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter

Letters to Dulcie Beatrix Potter writes to a little girl named Dulcie and describes her garden. She writes that her garden has: “… a box hedge around the flower bed, and moss roses and pansies and black currants and strawberries and peas —and big sage bushes for Jemima, but the onions always do badly. I…

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Ryan Gainey

Ryan Gainey

A Bountiful Life  It’s the anniversary of the death of the landscape designer extraordinaire, Ryan Gainey. Ryan died trying to save his two beloved Jack Russell terrier’s, Jellybean Leo and Baby Ruth, from a fire at his home. Neither he nor his dogs survived. When it came to landscape design, Ryan was entirely self-taught. In…

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Hot July Brings Cooling Showers

by Sara Coleridge Hot July brings cooling showers, Apricots, and gillyflowers. As featured onThe Daily Gardener podcast: Words inspired by the garden are the sweetest, most beautiful words of all. Sara Coleridge

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Good Tomato

Good Tomato

by Janice Northerns     She took the purity pledge (Sweet Baby Girl, Super Snow White, Artic Rose), fled the grasp of Big Beef and Better Boy on a Southern Night and, baptized in hydroponics, gleamed waxy and vapid under a fluorescent gaze.   She was a good girl (Beauty Queen, Gum Drop, Mighty Sweet,…

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Ode to Tomatoes

by Pablo Neruda  The street filled with tomatoes midday, summer, light is halved like a tomato, its juice runs through the streets. In December, unabated, the tomato invades the kitchen, it enters at lunchtime, takes its ease on countertops, among glasses, butter dishes, blue saltcellars. It sheds its own light, benign majesty. Unfortunately, we must…

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Bill Cullina: Dreaming of Gardening

Bill Cullina

The Roots of My Obssession 2011   In the popular gardener book The Roots of My Obsession, the former executive director of the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay, Bill Cullina wrote: “Yesterday it happened.  With everything finally planted, the weeds temporarily at bay, and the garden refreshed by rains after a long dry stretch, I…

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Roger Tory Peterson

Roger Tory Peterson

The King Penguin Today is the anniversary of the death of Roger Tory Peterson of Peterson’s Field Guide to Birds fame – he was born in 1908. A son of Jamestown, New York, Roger, helped new generations of people fall in love with ornithology. Roger not only wrote the guides, but he also illustrated them.…

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John Evelyn

John Evelyn

The 66 Year Diary Today the English Gardner and writer John Evelyn recorded in his diary that he met with the dowager Queen Henrietta Maria. John kept a detailed diary for 66 years, and he had a devoted passion for gardening. As a result, his diary has been a treasure for garden historians over the…

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Andrew Jackson Downing

Andrew Jackson Downing

The Fruits of America Today is the anniversary of the tragic death of the horticulturist and writer Andrew Jackson Downing. Andrew was the author of The Fruits and Fruit Trees of America, which came out in 1845. He also served as the editor of a magazine called The Horticulturist. Regarded as one of the founders…

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You Are a Tulip Seen Today

Tulip

by Robert Herrick You are a tulip seen today, But (dearest) of so short astay That where you grew, scarce man can say. You are a lovely July-flower, Yet one rude wind, or milling shower. Will force you hence, and in an hour. You are a sparkling rose in the bud. Yet lost ere that…

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