25 March 2013

Fun things to read (and listen to) until spring arrives. If it ever does...


This and that from around the web:
Spring is STILL refusing to show up here in Michigan. Since I can't get out into the garden, I'm bumming around on-line. Here's some stuff I've been finding:

Cityscapes and Garden Gates
If you've read my blog for a while, you know I'm passionate about communicating scientific knowledge about plants and gardening for every day gardeners. Which is why I'm excited that my friend Rachel has started a blog. She's a plant pathologist by training (along with other things...) and she's blogging good solid information on understanding and controlling diseases in your garden. Which is awesome. There is a LOT of scientific knowledge about how plant diseases work, but rarely is it presented for the home gardener. Until now.

Radiolab: Colors
This isn't really gardening or plant related, but it is amazing and mind bending and spectacular. Radiolab is flat out brilliant, and this episode, talking about colors is one of their best. You'll come away thinking differently about the colors you see in your garden each year. And it features a mantis shrimp hallelujah chorus. How can you resist THAT? You can't. So go listen and be happy.

Tomatoville
This is a crazy cool site I stumbled on a couple years ago, I think... It is all tomatoes, all the time, and it is amazing. If you are into this most popular of vegetables you'll find everything from advice on growing them to massive collaborative breeding projects to create a whole new class of tomatoes perfect for the home gardener.

Wintersown.org
The concept of winter sowing -- starting seeds in containers outside in the winter so they'll graduate in the spring -- has been floating around the internet for quite a while, I first heard about it 10 years ago. It is an incredibly simple technique, and I think the perfect way for most home gardeners to start the vast majority of their seeds. Forgot fussing with lights and damping off and hardening off... just start things outside and let nature do most of the work. It is a great concept, that, as so many things end up doing on the web, has been floating around mostly with attribution. But attribution is due, and as far as I've been able to figure out, it is due to a woman named Trudi Davidoff who coined the term "winter sow" and first articulated the technique. So, this is her website. Check it out, give her the credit for terrific idea, and look through the great information she's got there.

Black Walnut Dispatch
I think I've recommended Mary's blog before, but I was reading it today and couldn't get over just how FREAKING AWESOME it is. I mean... in her latest post she imagines James Joyce as a landscape contractor in the very first paragraph and then goes on to compare (poorly drawn) illustrations of crape myrtles to medieval maces or possible unexploded mines. Erudite, silly, plant humor. Is there anything better?

3 comments:

Rachelle said...

Your new picture looks like you and some green buddies are planning a road trip to a warmer zone, maybe one where Spring has actually arrived?

Mary Gray said...

Thank you for the mention, Joseph! It's so nice when readers "get" me. :-) I will check out your other finds, too!

Kaveh Maguire said...

I love Black Walnut Dispatch. When I read the comments on her blog I feel as if I am sitting in on some lit theory class that is way over my head.