Welcome to the GVAG Blog

These palms have an inner glow that warms the soul.

Patterns and Politics

  For the last week I’ve been enjoying warm snow-free days on Kiawah Island, a vacation spot off the coast of South Carolina. One of the joys of being here (apart from the weather, of course) is seeing plants I can’t identify. This isn’t because they are rare, it’s because they are unfamiliar, and in vacation…

Read more
Can anyone identify these trees?

Crocus on my Mind

  For the last few days I’ve been driving south, from Montreal to South Carolina. I was expecting the days to get warmer and they have, but not by much. Along the Skyline Drive in Virginia, snow was very evident, up close …     … and in the distance.     Seeing so much…

Read more
Ninfa is south-west of Rome. It was built over several generations, so both the setting and the creation of the garden provide layering in time.

Layers in the Garden, or The Necessity for Ruins

When gardeners mention layers, or layering, they are often talking about propagating a plant. Tucking a flexible shoot of a shrub underground and leaving it to form roots is one method of layering. Separated from the original, one shrub becomes two or more, depending how many branches were layered. Layering can refer as well to different vertical…

Read more
What more is there to say?

The Writing is on the Wall

  The writing is on the wall — not metaphorically but literally.     This latest work of art is a collaboration with my friend and neighbour John Hay. He and I previously collaborated on a mosaic map of Glen Villa and a giant turtle that sits in the Upper Field. More significantly, though, the project is a…

Read more
This photo is from September 2014. The plants have grown a lot since then.

Happy Birthday!

Three years ago, on January 26 2013, I wrote my first blog post. Since then I’ve published 170 pieces, an average of slightly more than one post per week. In my first post, I wrote that I saw the blog as a forum, a place to reflect on my own garden, Glen Villa, “and about how it got…

Read more