gardening

Photo used courtesy of Clare Cooper Marcus

The healing power of gardens and nature is well known to almost anyone who gardens and has been recorded by gardeners, landscape designers and medical practitioners as far back as antiquity. This week on Cultivating Place we’re joined by Dr. Clare Cooper Marcus, a leader in the field of evidence based research, education and design of what are alternatively known as healing gardens and therapeutic landscapes.

Photo courtesy Hunter Ten Broeck

This week on Cultivating Place, we talk land and water with Hunter Ten Broeck of WaterWise Landscapes Inc. in Albuquerque, NM. No matter where we live, or how differently our land and our water supplies and sources may look, our gardens and our nature love are wholly interdependent with these two much larger elemental forces.

Photo courtesy of Eliot Coleman

It is mid-January. It is deep mid-winter, even in my relatively mild USDA zone 9, Sunset zone 8. While I am fortunate enough to have a year-round Saturday farmer’s market available to me, my own home garden is looking spare. Which is at it should be this time of year, but it could be looking a little less spare while still remaining seasonally appropriate. One of MY New Year’s resolutions is to strive to do a little better on this front. After the calendar year 2016, I would like to feel a little more self-reliant.

Clarkson Potter, 2014

The term “herbal” refers to far more than a soothing tea or tasty spice. An herbal is a book or otherwise codified collection of knowledge about the use of plants for food or medicine. Dating back as far as ancient Egypt, Sumer and China, there are more herbals published every year. On Cultivating Place this week, I’m joined by Stephen Orr, editor-in-chief of Better Homes & Gardens and author of "The New American Herbal," published by Clarkson Potter/Random House in 2014. 

As we enter a traditional two-month period marked by celebrations of giving thanks, this week on Cultivating Place we’re joined by Qayyum Johnson, farm manager of Green Gulch Farm Zen Center in Marin, CA.  Practicing in the Zen Buddhist tradition and farming 7 acres of cool season crops, Qayyum explores with us the connection between the back breaking physical labor of farming and the cultivation of awareness, generosity and thanksgiving in our minds and spirits. Join us! 

Photo courtesy of the SPP.

I don't know about you, but for me the garden grounds me, at the same time that it liberates me. Being out in nature - in the garden or on the trail - opens my mind and heart, settles me down while simultaneously teaching me about and connecting me to nature, science and humanity. For some, the combination of grounding, expansion and liberation that can be gleaned from a greater understanding and connection to the natural world is crucial and valuable in even more immediate ways. 

Thomas Rainer is a “horticultural futurist fascinated by the intersection of wild plants and human culture." A landscape architect by profession and a gardener by obsession, Rainer is co-author of “Planting in a Post-Wild World,” (Timber Press 2015). 

Jennifer Jewell

 

Some people garden for food, some people garden for beauty, and some people garden and farm for cloth. Sandy Fisher is a weaver and fiber artist who since 1980 has literally interwoven her artistic eye, her impulse to garden, her love of natural fibers and natural dye colors to create functional art.

Photo courtesy of Old House Garden.

 


Today is the Autumnal Equinox. If gardening at its core is an activity of optimism, then planting fall bulbs is one of its most profound gestures of hope wherein you plant something that looks like next to nothing and then some months later – perhaps when you might need it most — it appears out of the cold, damp earth and then — it blooms. 

Does simply removing your lawn bring you up to speed as a gardener? Have you noticed how when a lawn is replaced with a garden, some homeowners approach these new gardens with the same mow and blow management technique they afforded their prior lawns, while others seem to assume these are static installations and leave them to their own devices of overgrowth, weeds or death.

Pages