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Letters from the Garden

orange dahlias, cannas and lilies
Friday Finds

Friday Finds for impatient gardeners + a surprise

This whole “Impatient Gardener” thing isn’t just a gimmick. I struggle with impatience, and although I’m getting better with it, this time of year is especially challenging on the impatience front.  The landscaper we hired to do the grading for the new vegetable garden told me it would be done this week and now it’s “probably next week.” I know …

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Iris in bloom
Friday Finds

Friday Finds

Oh my, us gardeners are a sad lot indeed these days. Judging by the comments on my last post and what I’m reading on Facebook, it seems like everyone is feeling the pain of some very confusing spring weather. Sad as it is, I’m taking a lot of comfort in knowing that I’m not alone in my frozen little world …

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Friday Finds


I’ve heard that you should plant peas on St. Patrick’s Day. If I were to do that it would require a chisel and blow torch to get through the soil, which currently resembles an ice cube. In fact next week I’ll show two actual soil ice cubes. But that’s a long story and one best saved for another post. In …

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How to get your tools ready for gardening season

Hey gang! This post is sponsored by 3-IN-ONE®  Multi-Purpose Oil and Lava® Soap, but you know I will always tell it like it is, so all words and opinions are entirely my own. This post may also include affiliate links. Thanks for supporting the brands that support this blog. A few years ago I made a rather public resolution on …

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Joanna Gaines garden / HGTV photo
Friday Finds

Friday Finds

It’s a difficult time of year for this gardener. Social media is full of the first signs of spring for gardeners living in other areas, but the closest we’ve come to that is a lot of rain. I lamented this in a post recently and need to take my own advice: Be patient. But I’ll tell you, the struggle is …

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Troy-Bilt Storm 2690 XP

Cold winter, warm hands (and oh yeah, snow removal too)

For many years we had our driveway plowed. Mostly it was great: The neighbor who did the plowing always did ours first because he knew we had to get to work early, it was cleared quickly and we didn’t have to do anything. Well, anything other than pay for it, obviously. Most winters our plowing bill was in the $500 …

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David Austen 'Crown Princess Margareta' rose

Friday Finds

I always wonder how weeks in the middle of winter still manage to get away from me once in a while. The mental countdown to gardening season has begun, but usually this is the time of year when time seems to pass slowly. Not this week. A death in the family (expected) and deadlines at work blew several blog posts …

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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.

Thank you to Longfield Gardens for partnering with me on this post. I’m starting to think that old gardeners can learn new tricks. I’m not sure what else would explain that for the first time, possibly in history, I have a bulb plan. Allow me to explain: Typically my bulb-purchasing strategy is to order some […]

This post is sponsored by 3-IN-ONE® Brand, but all opinions and questionable design choices are my own. Oh the poor front door. These days it just doesn’t get a lot of use. In fact the only person who’s seen it in several months is the UPS guy. But even though we might not actually be using […]

They say the first step is to admit you have a problem. So I admit it: I have a dahlia problem. I grew about 100 dahlias this year, and I estimate there were between 25 and 30 varieties. I try not to count these things too carefully because denial is easier if you don’t have […]

Longtime readers will know that that we have a pretty clear delineation of yard duties around here. I manage the garden and Mr. Much More Patient handles the lawn. So it’s rare when he weighs in on garden-related matters.  But the other day he very carefully suggested that floppy plants were becoming an issue in […]

The facts are indisputable:  I enjoy starting interesting and different flowers from seed. Doing No. 1 is a great way to create lush borders on a dime. I grew way too many plants from seed this year. Restraint is called for. Those facts all call for a brutally honest analysis of the new flowers I […]

I’ve always been a reluctant seed saver. Even though I’ve been growing flowers, vegetables and herbs from seed for many years now, I save seeds from very few of them. In some cases I’m not willing to give up any flowers in order to allow the plant to produce seed, but most of the time […]

Mr. Much More Patient recently made an observation that painfully spot on. There was a time in this gardening journey when I used to aim to be more or less finished planting by shortly after Memorial Day. Later, when the sheer volume of plants being put in the ground here got so large that was […]

I regret to inform you that the enemy has broken the terms of the 2019 Rabbit Peace Accord. All rabbits are hereby put on notice that no further temporary treaties will be entered into no matter how cute baby bunnies are. For many years I enjoyed a gardening existence that was delightfully free of rabbits. […]

Thank you to long-time sponsor Troy-Bilt for partnering with me on this post. As usual, all words and ideas are my own. Let’s be honest, every yard and garden has its problems, and, especially at this time a lot of people are trying to solve them. We’re spending more time at home, and noticing all […]

A lot of people are ordering plants online this year, and although I’ll always suggest you check an independent garden center first, there are a lot of reasons to order online (from what are almost always also family-owned small businesses). But if you’re new to ordering online, it can be a little scary.  Fortunately, I’ve [&hell

I own very few things that anyone will be interested in when I go to the great garden in the sky, but there is one possession that is so dear to me that I’ll have to find just the right person to bequeath it to. I don’t expect that the lucky person who inherits it […]