Gardening

Holed up in memory

August 2, 2008

Big news about the definitive confirmation of water’s presence on Mars dispatches my mind not to the Red Planet but back in time. Back to a dark hole at the edge of a Florida orange grove. When we were kids growing up in Maitland, my two brothers and I dug down five feet through the […]

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Nothing stops more people along our precious corner of Northeast Portland than these towering July beauties. I sit on the porch, unseen by passersby, and eavesdrop on the oohing and ahhing. Luckily, the flower thieves haven’t struck; some regal lily blooms were snipped last summer.

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Boy and the bug

July 9, 2008

This morning at breakfast, my little boy Atticus freaked out when a big fly buzzed on a window near him. It seemed like an overreaction for someone who dug worms and fed them to the goldfish in our little pond before he could walk. (Easy for me to judge.) Maybe this stunning photo will make […]

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Summer stars greet the sun today — freshly opened blossoms in my Portland teardrop pond. I’ll wade in and reward my babies with fertilizer pellets. But I’ll be tempted to disappear beneath the lily pads into my past.

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Really local locavores

June 25, 2008

A little publicity goes a long way. In May, I wrote a story for The Oregonian about two Portland men starting a new business, City Garden Farms. Their idea: grow vegetables in the urban yards of people willing to participate in return for a weekly supply of the harvest. Their entrepreneurial zeal impressed me. Their […]

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Garden porn

June 16, 2008

Sex in my garden, courtesy of dracunculus vulgaris. Just saying the name is a turn on. The dime on one shows how big they are. Too bad they smell like rotten meat for a day or so to lure flies into their throats. Voodoo lily and Mick Jagger’s tongue are among the many nicknames. Two […]

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My latest landscaping project, completed as Hillary Clinton endorsed Barack Obama:

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Hyperbole was among my mother’s traits, especially when I was a kid. Before issuing a warning or threat regarding my behavior, she would foreshadow her pronouncement with squinted eyes, like a gunslinger telegraphing lethal intent. Then she might let loose with the cliché of clichés: “It will go on your permanent record!” I’d respond with […]

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Dear Tulip Thief

April 27, 2008

For a few weeks, we watched the dozen green tulip buds grow taller and fatten. They cloaked themselves in a hint of red. I planted them three years ago in a small corner garden at the intersection where we live in Northeast Portland. The tulips were on the verge of opening, an event we and […]

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