Author Archives: Rhonda Nowak

Create pollinator “pads” in your garden

“There is a flower that bees prefer/And butterflies desire;/To gain the purple democrat/The humming-birds aspire.” ~ Emily Dickenson, “Purple Clover,” 1890  In Sunday’s column (January 29, 2017), I wrote about the importance and gardening pleasures of attracting bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to our gardens. I also provided some examples of vegetables, herbs, and flowers that [...]

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Analyzing soil texture in my yard, and figuring out what to do with all that clay!

“The assemblies of the clays are like those hedge mazes and forests in which fairy-tale children become lost, like those places where the old woman is met and where treasures are won. The landscape of the clays is like the wall of the stomach, or the tree of the capillaries, or the intricate folds of [...]

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Mapping out garden success

“The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies.”— Gertrude Jekyll Here is the garden record form I use to inventory my vegetable and herb seeds and plants, plot out where the plants will go in the garden and keep garden records throughout the growing season. I use something similar for my [...]

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Tips for organizing seeds from Pooh Bear and me

“Organizing is something you do before you do something so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.” ~ A.A. Milne (1882-1956), “Winnie-the-Pooh” As a young child, I loved listening to Winnie-the-Pooh stories, and even today I cherish my little book of Pooh Bear’s witticisms. I agree that organization is a worthy [...]

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SPF and UPF – What’s the difference?

I mentioned in this week’s column (January 1, 2017) that my top-priority garden goal this year is to protect my skin. I’ve recently undergone  surgery to remove basal cell carcinoma from the tip of my nose and another surgery to reconstruct the tip. Definitely not the way I would have liked to spend my winter [...]

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Caring for winter-worthy plants

“I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape — the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show.” ~Andrew Wyeth, American artist, 1917-2009  Winter doesn’t have to look and feel lonely and dead, though. In Sunday’s column (Oct. 30, 2017), [...]

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Autumn’s beauty captured in seeds

“Touch-me-not seed vessels…go off like pistols on the slightest touch, and so suddenly and energetically that they always startle you, though you are expecting it. They shoot their seed like shot.”~ Henry David Thoreau, “The Dispersal of Seeds,” c.a. 1856 In this week’s column, I wrote about fall as the beginning point for plant life [...]

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Great garden reads for flower gardens and container gardens

“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” ~ Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman philosopher and orator (106-43 B.C.E) This week, I offered some suggestions for fall and wintertime reading to spark your gardening imagination (“Garden of the Mind: 25 Tips for Winter Garden Imagining,” Oct. 16, 2016). In addition, I [...]

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More ideas for winter gardening: Propagating from cuttings

“Propagation is a fascinating subject and is well worth taking up for the sheer interest and enjoyment that it provides.” ~ Alan Toogood, “Plant Propagation Made Easy,” 1993 I’ve been writing about different ways to garden during the wintertime, and propagating plants from cuttings is yet another way to continue our horticultural endeavors throughout the [...]

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Fall and winter gardening in a hotbed

“Winter is not a season; it’s an occupation.” ~ Sinclair Lewis, “The Job,” 1917 If gardening will be one of your wintertime occupations, there are several ways to ensure that your plants don’t become too cold, even if you do. (See “Undercover gardening: Mysteries revealed, Oct. 2, 2016 for my discussion of cold frames and [...]

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  • About the Authors

    Rhonda Nowak

    Rhonda Nowak is a Rogue Valley gardener, writer and teacher. With more than 25 years of gardening experience and a Ph.D. in literature and language arts education, she combines a love for plants, poetry, and prose in her Literary Gardener blog. ... Full Profile
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