Here's the real thing, but below you'll find MOST of what's in it (missing the highly off-topic right sidebar, hinted at in these photos.)
- The Seattle Times reports on what's HOT in 2008 and it's all green - organic practices, low-maintenance plants, rain barrels - everything that's here on the site! And OUT are big lawns and hiring contractors to do everything for you, though to that last item I say "Oh, really?".
- Then the San Diego Union-Tribune weighs in with their hot trends for the new year and guess what leads the list - sustainable gardening! (I'm not making this up.)
- Now the bad news - the Herald Tribune says that gardening (as in digging in actual dirt) is down as a national trend, though upgrading the garden as a living area is a hot trend. You know, those fancy outdoor kitchens.
- The NWF released some Tip Sheets for Wildlife (in pdf) - about bird feeders, nesting boxes, attracting butterflies and more good stuff. And here's more expert advice about feeding birds in the winter from HGTV's ornithologist.
- Slate.com poses the the question: What's the best tree for soaking up carbon?
- Can tree protection laws go too far? You bet.
- What's next? Climate-certified greenhouses in Sweden, so now flowers can be grown sustainably even in the frozen North.
ON THE BLOGS
- Sure, we all love outdoor fires but gasp, squint, cough - that stuff's toxic, you know? Smoke, that is. The American Right to Burn Stuff explores the issue and commenters weigh in.
- 21 Essential Skills of Gardeners is loaded with good ideas and links to more. Thanks to Stuart, who's enjoying spring in Western Australia.
- The question was asked: Do cultivars of native plants "count" as native? And readers had opinions.
- Firefly in Maine considers the question: What IS a native plant?
- Paradise Lost? Thanks to global warming, there are more ticks and tick-borne diseases in our gardens.
NEW PLANT PROFILES More evergreens for "winter interest"
- Pieris japonica and floribunda are evergreen shrubs for shade.
MORE NEW STUFF ON SUSTAINABLE-GARDENING.COM
- Next up in the Tools and Stuff section are my favorite Tools for Pruning and Making Divisions, with lots of photos and favorite types and brands.
- After this post solicited "real-life experiences with rain barrels" it was all compiled here on the site. This article about it being illegal to collect rainwater and from the comments it looks like it's not just in Bolivia.
- New combos are up and I'd LOVE to include photos of your favorites (with attribution, links, my first-born cat, whatever it takes).
- Check out this cool family project for attracting butterflies, found on The Mulch and added to my Butterfly resources.
- I've discovered Constance Casey, garden writer for Slate, and have added links to her most on-point for readers here. This meaty guide to beginning gardening has been added to the Getting Started section. How to Water has been added to the Water/No Water section. And I love this one: How to not be intimidated by roses.
"ON THE HOMEFRONT" are the stories here about transformation of my backyard from lawn to something else, yet to be determined. Just scroll down to see them.
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