Gardening where the sidewalk ends

Bloglull December 29, 2010

Filed under: berries,blogging,flora,summer,veggies — greenwalks @ 3:04 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

My garden blog buddy Jordan of Metropolitan Gardens (check out his incredible blog if you haven’t already) said the other day that he noticed Greenwalks has been “in a bit of a lull” lately. That was a rather kind way, I thought, to point out the obvious, which is that I had basically abandoned it, and indeed all of garden blogland, since the end of last spring.

Why did I stop? Many reasons:  life challenges, lack of time, feeling like I had nothing novel or of interest to say or show, the usual. Did I miss it? Yep. Did I feel bad for just trailing off without explanation? Kind of. But here’s the weird thing – after two years (okay, not quite) of frequent posts and obsessive tagging, a ghost trail of Greenwalks still exists out there in Web land and the clicks didn’t completely stop. I did miss the comments and the nice exchanges with fellow bloggers, though, and maybe there will be a time when I am able to come back to this world more regularly, since it has been so fun to be a part of.

In the meantime, Greenwalks will probably stay in its unofficial lull. I hope to be back eventually, but for now will leave you with the last images I uploaded to my Flickr account at the end of summer – a bit of warmth on a day where snowflakes are floating down from the Seattle skies.

Cheers and Happy New Year to all, and may your gardens grow well this coming year!

Northgate Community Center Planters

Well-composed planters outside the Northgate Community Center. Lots of kids zipping around the next-door playground, but the pottery and flowers are intact. Miraculous!

Blueberry trio

Sum total of our blueberry harvest this year. I moved the bushes to a sunnier spot, so maybe next year we’ll get a few more?!?!

Green bean first harvest

The green beans are reliable performers in our small veggie garden. We enjoyed these within about 10 minutes of picking them!

Late summer harvest

Our harvests will never tip the scales, but it’s nice to have a little something fresh every day from the garden. The end of the snap peas (planted super late, but then a bumper crop since the summer was cool), some cherry tomatoes, basil (rescued from the jr. gardener, who usually eats every leaf before I can snip any!) and chives for three-onion risotto.

Favorite sunflower

Last but not least, my favorite volunteer Mexican sunflower of the summer. I haven’t planted these for years, they just keep coming up in my parking strip veggie patch! Every year, the colors are slightly different. I wonder what colors will show their faces this coming year?


Doing the Show February 17, 2009

Filed under: garden shows — greenwalks @ 11:19 pm
Tags: , ,

I’m heading to what may be the last-ever Northwest Flower & Garden Show, taking place this week from Feb. 18-22 at Seattle’s Convention Center. “Doing the show” is always inspiring and exhausting in equal measures, and for a crowd-o-phobe like me, it takes a lot of deep breaths to get through it and manage to find it enjoyable. I always attend with my mom, and we usually check out the show gardens and merch areas as quickly as humanly possible, then escape upstairs to the relative peace of the seminar rooms and non-profit info booths.

This year, I will be looking at everything with extra-careful attention, since I want to bring back ideas not just for the garden but also for the blog. I’m also doing a “guest post” for the Garden Show’s own Flora’s Blog – in theory I need to whip it out and fire it off the same day that I attend the show, but we’ll see if my childcare situation (thanks, Dad!) allows for that.

I look forward to seeing others’ posts about the show too – there’s so much to see, I’m sure I’ll miss something really awesome but will at least get to read about it in the blogosphere.


(Photo of New Leaf Creations’ 2009 Display Garden by Michael Walmsley, courtesy of the NW Flower & Garden Show)


Looking Forward to Saturday February 4, 2009

Filed under: bloggers' gathering — greenwalks @ 6:53 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,

It seems like eons ago, rather than just a few weeks, that I put out the call to local garden bloggers asking if anyone would be up for a face-to-face meet-up. I figured maybe one or two would say yes and if anyone else was even a maybe, it would be a miracle.

The response, both from local invitees and folks further afield who wished they could be here, has been thrilling. I am so excited to meet these people as humans, not just avatars, and hope it’s fun enough that we decide to do it again so that those who can’t make it this time can be included in the future.

The Gardeness over at Garden Muse was kind enough to help me brainstorm some topics for the gathering. I would also welcome any further input by Friday afternoon so that I can try to put together at least a rough agenda. So far, we have these proposed topics (including some that came in via comments, thanks!):

Introductions Does anyone have spare sticky nametags? If not, I will try to go and buy some.

Organization name Oh please, not SAGBUTT!!??!! I’m sure someone can come up with something better, and less embarassing, than my initial in-jest suggestion!

Listserv for those who are interested

Facebook page for those like me who are also wasting time on FB

Garden hopes/plans for the next growing season – maybe a specific focus, like what are you planting for spring/summer and what are your biggest challenges in the garden?

Ideas for future meet-ups Botanical garden tours, seed/plant swaps, relevant volunteering/community service, checking each others’ gardens out, etc

Garden Show What days are people going? Do they want to meet up there?

Blogging technicality questions Platforms, functions, bugs, etc.  Maybe we could keep this one fairly brief and leave most of the details for the listserv, if that idea is a go?

Parking lot swap Jute bags for weed barrier use have been kindly offered by Paula of Petunia’s Garden. Anything else garden-related you have excess of and would like to share?

Next meeting Should it be on a Sunday so people who work on Saturdays can come? Could we make it work as a regular thing, like the third Sunday of the month or ??

Please add to this as you wish but also consider that two hours is probably going to fly by and there’s a chance we won’t get to everything the first go-round. Also want to say that I am definitely not “in charge” of this group by any means and am not a natural meeting leader to boot, so I hope it will just shake out as a fun, cooperative gathering and a chance to share our common interests. Then anyone who has time to stick around afterward can visit the surrounding gardens. Maybe we’ll even get some ideas for our own plots!

Look forward to meeting all who can come. Full details here, recap below.

Woo hoo!

Seattle Area Garden Bloggers’ Meet-up

Saturday, February 7, 12:30-2:30pm

Conference Room, Elisabeth C. Miller Library

UW Center for Urban Horticulture, Merrill Hall, Room 102

3501 NE 41st Street, Seattle


(Image courtesy of katiescrapbooklady via Flickr Creative Commons. To see more by this photographer, click here.)


We’re On! January 5, 2009

Filed under: meetings — greenwalks @ 1:12 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

OK folks, thanks to everyone who replied with comments and suggestions for the first-ever Seattle garden bloggers’ get-together. I think we have enough folks to make it worthwhile, so I called the Miller Library at the Center for Urban Horticulture and reserved their conference room. Here are all the details:

When: Saturday, February 7, 12:30-2:30pm
Where: Conference Room, Elisabeth C. Miller Library, UW Center for Urban Horticulture, Merrill Hall, Room 102, 3501 NE 41st Street,
Seattle, Washington 98195

Getting there: Click here for the address and directions from the library’s site

What: A chance to meet face to face with others who blog about gardening in the Seattle area. If it’s fun, we can make it a regular thing with field trips, parties, a listserv to coordinate it all centrally – whatever people want!

Bring: Just yourselves. I will try to put together a little something to snack upon while we’re talking.

If you have suggestions for what we should talk about, please leave a comment or just bring your ideas along. I wasn’t thinking that this would be very formal – just a chance to introduce everyone around and talk about gardening, blogging, and, um, blogging about gardening! The library is open from 9-3 that day, so if you want to register to be a borrower or just marvel at their array of hundreds of seed and garden catalogs, feel free to come early. Although the library closes at 3pm, the gardens are open anytime, so we could potentially end the meeting with a stroll around to look at what looks good now and can survive what so far has been an unusually extreme winter!

So far, the wonderful, varied  list of probable attendees includes these brave souls:

– Curmudgeon and WingNut of Weed Whackin’ Wenches

– Aerie-el from Gardener’s Roost

– Paula from Petunia’s Garden

– Melanthia from Garden Muse

– David from David Perry Photography

– Molly of Life on Tiger Mountain

– Lorene from Planted at Home

– and, well, me, your temporary hostess, Karen from Greenwalks

We also might be able to rope in the Cheap Vegetable Gardener, and eventually Jean from Pill Bug’s Point of View if we make it a fiesta next time.

If you can think of anyone else who might enjoy this, feel free to pass along this link. I also invited the Shibaguyz, Willi from DigginFood, and the GardenHelp gal, but haven’t heard anything yet. I think the conference room fits 15 or more, so we have room for more folks. If you know someone who hasn’t started a garden blog yet but is thinking about it, they can come on along too! Look forward to seeing the real humans behind all the great words and pics I’ve been enjoying these past few months.

If you don’t live in the Seattle area, I still encourage you to check out these blogs, as they are some of my favorites and really span a huge range of focus and interest within the general frame of garden blogging.

That’s all for now! If there are any changes or updates, I’ll post them here. Maybe it would be a good idea to check back on the morning of the event to make sure it’s still on – they did say the boardroom could be taken over if they have some kind of emergency meeting need.

Here’s another example of a face-to-face meet-up:


(Image by Randy Son of Robert, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons)

PS I was glad I wasn’t asked for an organization name to reserve the room, or I would have had to get creative on the spot. I don’t really like Associations, Societies, Clubs, Crews, Mafias, or Round-ups too much, all have negative connotations to me. I was thinking Seattle Area Garden Bloggers United to Talk (SAGBUTT) but it seemed a little too close to home after all that holiday eating… any suggestions?


Seattle Area Garden Bloggers Meet-up? January 2, 2009

Filed under: meetings — greenwalks @ 5:17 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I’ve been thinking for a while that it might be fun to get together with the actual humans behind the Seattle-area gardening blogs I’ve been reading and enjoying so much in the past few months. It seems like folks in other areas (Austin, TX comes to mind) have done this, so it’s certainly not an original idea, but since it’s winter and we can’t do all that much actual gardening at the moment, maybe we could at least meet up and talk about gardening, blogging, planning for next summer, or whatever people wanted to discuss.

If this ends up happening and we decide to do it again, maybe we could pick a monthly meeting date and people could take turns “hosting.” I’m probably getting ahead of myself here, but I thought maybe the host could bring something to nosh on that either comes from their garden or is at least vaguely related (I could make thyme scones if any of my thyme survived the freeze – keep forgetting to check!). Or we could try for a field trip someday, to the Bloedel Reserve maybe or Kubota Gardens or elsewhere. We could also discuss gardening books we’ve been reading lately that have sparked our interest, or ??? Your ideas are most welcome! I’m not much of an organizer by nature but just thought I’d throw this out and see if anyone was interested.

I thought that we could try for our first meeting either the last weekend in January or the first in February, and that it might be interesting to meet at the Miller Library at the UW Center for Urban Horticulture. They have free meeting space, which I’d be happy to reserve if there’s any interest.


If it seems like something you’d enjoy, feel free to either comment here or to email me at

PS I certainly don’t mean to exclude anyone outside the Seattle area – if you live further afield but would be up for the journey, please let me know!!!

(Image courtesy of the UW Center for Urban Horticulture site)


Reply-o-rama September 25, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — greenwalks @ 11:25 pm
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

One thing that I don’t seem to have got the hang of with this whole blogging thing is the replying-to-comments part. I already feel like I spend a ton of time (that I could instead be putting to use in the garden or on a million other things) on the writing, photos, and visits to other people’s sites. It’s astonishing to me how well some of you manage to keep up not only with your gardens and posts, but also with your comment replies.

I was feeling really guilty about it today, not to mention avoiding some other big projects and boring house tasks, so I decided to do a comment-reply marathon and not go to sleep until I finished. Well, it’s 11:20 pm and I’m finally done!

Reading through all of the comments I’ve received from visitors to Greenwalks really warmed my heart. Whether people stopped by once or have come back almost daily, I truly and deeply appreciate every (non-spam) word, whether it’s encouragement, a tip or hint, a story shared from your own experience, or something you saw and wanted to pass along. I made every effort to respond to each comment individually, but forgive me if I accidentally skipped a few. I was getting pretty tired towards the end!

My in-laws are coming for a visit tomorrow so I may not have time to put up anything until next week. Until then, happy fall gardening (and blogging) to you all, and thanks again to those who took the time to connect here.

Late summer color


Birthday September 8, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — greenwalks @ 2:53 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Greenwalks celebrated its one-month birthday today. Thank you to anyone and everyone who has stopped by, left a comment, read a post, clicked on a link or offered support. All you other gardeners and bloggers out there are so inspiring! It’s so nice to be part of this online green community.

– Karen

Big Rock, Little Rocks