Nothing like supper and a nap to renew one's energy, is there? If we had a prize for "most entertainingly original" post, I think it would have to go to Ottawa Hortiphilia for the highly amusing poem at the beginning of OH's post about our nation's capital city. It's a lovely city, if somewhat challenging for gardeners. Our friend Kylie writes movingly about her part of Ohio on a regular basis, but it's always a treat to read anything she posts from her little acre. Gloria writes about Chicago and the waters that define her fair city over at Pollinators-welcome, her wildlife-friendly blog plot, while thanks to Beckie I learned that Royal, Illinois, got its name from a sign on a railcar advertising baking powder.
The award for blogger-living-closest-to-bloomingwriter would be Nancy at Soliloquey, living 45 minutes from here in the next county, while Shady Gardener in Iowa has the best blog title I've come across yet: "Does everything grow better in my neighbor's Yard?" Gisela at Guildwood, near Toronto, showed us another side of Toronto that is far superior to what the tourist brochures and city hype provide. And the two sisters, Apple and Countrygirl, who garden at the end of Lake Ontario in upstate New York, entice us with castles and parks and friends' gardens to visit.
Historiana has taught me a lot about her plot in Kentucky with her musings, and she currently has a wonderful photo of a daffodil on her sidebar with the exhortation to "Think Spring, People!" Amen, fellow gardener! I bet it's fun doing Veg Plotting in Chippenham with two such affable looking felines as Jess and Skimble to help out. Jim, who gardens in Buffalo, New York, gets the gotcha-award for having Spunky Boomerang get up and bump the monitor: I usually have my volume shut off when writing, so didn't know about the bird songs on his front page. There are a lot of New York state gardeners participating in our meme, as Kerri lives in upstate New York in a region with the delightful name of Central Leatherstocking! The trolls under bridges had better watch out for those Weed Whacking Wenches out in Seattle--they sound like my kinda gardeners, for sure.
Are we there yet? Nope. Bathroom break, and then we're back!
Kris wrote a lovely and moving love story about Rhode Island's Blithewold, a beautiful garden I hope to visit in the not too far future. Another place I hope to see soon is the only province in Canada I've not been to: Saskatchewan, home of Larry's Sherwood Greenhouses but also of bloggin' bud Kate, both in Regina. Rather different from not-so-flat Nova Scotia, but beautiful nonetheless. We had a Bliss-ful experience visiting Yolanda and the Bliss Team's home in Dinteloord, Netherlands, returning to North America to bask in the warmth of another of the Austin Bloggers, Annie at The Transplantable Rose. Since we were sunning ourselves anyway, it was a quick trip down to the Tampa area of Florida to visit Meems at Hoe and Shovel, then skipped back over to Texas to visit Brenda in the Piney Woods of Tyler, in the Lone Star state. Needing a little drier heat, we skipped over to Phoenix in Arizona for a visit with Garden Djinn, where I learned that monsoons in the Sonoran dessert are called haboobs. We're having a Fundy Haboob here tonight, with a drownpour of mild, spring-scented rain, for what it's worth. From there, we headed back north a bit, to central Indiana and Robin's Nesting Place, where we got to enjoy both her fun writing and some utterly exquisite photography.
One of the joyous things about these meme has been getting to meet new-to-me bloggers, including the erudite and definitely amusing Benjamin Vogt of the Deep Middle, in Nebraska. Deciding it was time to skip across the ocean again, we sailed over to Giekau in Germany for a visit with Corinna at her Paradise Found, then caught the red-eye to Melbourne Australia for a visit at From Little Things, where I got sidetracked by the Italian lavender farm.
I could have stayed there permanently, but the cats needed feeding so it was back across the pond and touchdown at Garden Fool's plot near New York City. Since we were in the neighbourhood, so to speak, we skipped over to Lissa's home in Saratoga Springs and took a horse for a gallop down a track. (I did this once, with a retired racehorse while I was a student at Ag College, because the track was right next door to the barn...whoo hooo!) Entangled claims to be geographically challenged, but I'm link challenged, obviously, because I read the post, commented on it....and lost the link somewhere until today. And last but never least, we have a highly entertaining post from Sue Swift, in Milan, Italy, who's longing to be elsewhere.
Well...we've logged a lot of e-air-miles over the past month, and judging by your comments, had a lot of fun learning about our gardening neighbours near and far. I realized it wasn't going to be easy to pick a favourite post, as they're all my favourites...so I just cut up some pieces of paper, wrote each blogger's name on one, and put them all in my gardening hat. The random winner of a copy of The Atlantic Gardener's Greenbook is Frances at Faire Garden. Congratulations, Frances!
If I were independently wealthy, I'd send a copy of my book to each of you. Unfortunately, I can't quite go that far, so I've created a special badge/award for each of you who participated. Now you can all claim to have your very own Meconopsis, or blue poppy! A little story about this: this image is on my business cards, and was created by my uncle Don, a commercial artist in Virginia. So I have utterly unique business cards, and you now share something with a gardener and writer in Nova Scotia, wherever you are. Just right click to save it to your desktop and post on your blog with my admiration for your hard work. (is this better than an "A", Kylee?)
(Edit in the morning: I've made a smaller version, which I was having trouble with last night. Try this is that one is too big for you!)
Again, congratulations and my heartfelt thanks to all of you, and here's hoping we soon see spring wherever we garden. (Except of course for you in the southern Hemisphere, who are waiting for autumn!)