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Letters from the Garden

pink flower urn

The 2018 garden: Delightful dahlias and never-ending projects

No sooner had the Christmas dinner dishes been cleared than that little voice in my head started whispering, “It’s time to think about gardening again.” That little voice was obviously a little drunk, because it’s not like I ever really stopped thinking about gardening. But my semi-drunken intuition wasn’t completely wrong. What if all the seeds I want sell out …

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Late season vegetable harvest

The first frost, the last harvest and a big project nearly complete

Well that was abrupt. Without a lot of lead-up, we had hard frost. And just like that, the growing part of the gardening season is over. I didn’t take the threat of a freeze too seriously because we usually escape the first few frosts that affect even areas just an eighth of a mile away. The moderating effect of Lake …

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Ripen tomatoes on the windowsill.

It’s time to cut your tomato losses

As I got farther and farther behind in planting my vegetable garden I knew this day would come. In fact, it comes every year, but I knew it would be even more dramatic this year, as tomatoes just wouldn’t have enough time to produce and ripen all the fruit they were meant to  provide. But here we are: If the …

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Plant vs. gardener: A battle of wills

Four years ago when I planted comfrey, I went into it with my eyes wide open. I knew that because comfrey grows very deep roots (like 15 or more feet deep), and because it grows very easily from root cuttings, that once I planted it, odds are, it would be in that spot forever. So, after selecting the Russian bocking …

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David Austin Alwick rose

Friday Finds: Catching up with the garden

It’s been a bit since we’ve had a Friday Finds here, because there’s been so much going on in the garden. But I thought I’d dedicate this Friday Finds to all kinds of catching up.  First off, I’ve been trying to get some videos up on the YouTube channel, although not as many as I’d like. Here are a few …

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Raised bed vegetable garden

Finally planting the vegetable garden for the first time

If you build it, they will come. Apparently this holds just as true for vegetable gardens as it does for magical baseball diamonds, because they’re coming. “They” would be the neighbors, who have taken a real interest in this massive project we’ve had going for a couple months now. It would be hard for them to miss it as they …

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stained garden beds

Raised bed garden construction part 3: Staining and sealing

Here’s my philosophy on vegetable gardening: I’m more interested in growing interesting and delicious food than I am in getting very high yields or never having to deal with a bug. In other words, organic is important to me. As you know, I’m all about encouraging people to do what they want in their own gardens, but for me, organic …

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The Impatient Gardener blog was started in 2009 and its library of posts includes practical how-tos, plant guides, favorite garden gear, successes and failures and much more. If you’re looking for something specific, the search function at the top of the page can help.

Thanks to Longfield Gardens for partnering with me on this post.  You don’t need to look far on this blog or in my garden to know that I am mildly obsessed with dahlias and have been for a long time. And while I admire, and maybe even envy, those photos of a field with row […]

This post is sponsored by Troy-Bilt, maker of great equipment to whip your yard into shape and supporters of neighbors helping neighbors. As usual, all thoughts are my own. Isn’t it funny how we limit our gardens to the little square of land we own? Obviously there’s a reason for this, but if the only […]

My garden has taught me a lot of lessons, but one of the most important is that good enough is usually good enough. When perfectionist tendencies rise to the surface, the garden is the perfect place to tamp them back into place. There is only so much a control a gardener can have over what […]

Thank you to Longfield Gardens for sponsoring this post and feeding my love of dahlias. Over the next couple weeks I will go through all the dahlia tubers I overwintered and plant them up in pots along with all the new tubers I just had to have. Starting dahlias in pots works well for me […]

Spring comes painfully slow here, something that I’m alternately thankful for and tormented by. It’s nearly intolerable to see the beauty of spring, all fresh green and flowery coming to other yards in warmer areas when mine is mostly still brown. But the upside is that I always feel like I get a bit of […]

I found myself with a bit of extra time at home last summer (imagine that) and, inspired by the amazing floral designers who I see sharing their work on Instagram, I decided I would try to get a little better at making bouquets. Mind you, I don’t do anything with these bouquets other than enjoy […]

I always say that the best thing I do for my garden is get out of it. Visiting other gardens never fails to provide the kind of inspiration I can’t find anywhere else. What is always interesting is that the photos I take on these visits continue to provide inspiration long after I’ve left, as […]

Hello flower lovers! I’m partnering with Longfield Gardens on this post, but you know the drill: all words and dahlia obsessions are my own. We interrupt your regularly scheduled holiday activities to talk about something that is, dare I say, even more important. And if you know me, you probably know that the only thing […]

Traditionally the gift guides here have featured a wide variety of gardening-related items for a range of budgets, but this year I’m going a different direction. Everything here is from a small or independent business, and most items are hand-crafted.  You can still check out my Amazon storefront. (If you use that link I may earn […]

I’ve partnered with Garrett Wade to create a custom gift guide from their selection of high-quality tools, gear and accessories. I received some products to review to better inform my list (you know I’d never recommend something I didn’t really like) and compensation for my time. If there was ever a year that called for special