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Archives for October 31, 2013

Lowenfels: With gardening season over, time to settle in for winter reading

This is the time of year when folks suddenly realize that it really is over. There will be no more outdoor gardening for nine whole months. What to do in that void? Obviously, indoor growing should be considered. And, it seems to me that in these dark months it’s worthwhile to catch up on reading. This is a great time to get into some gardening magazines.

I know we all have iPads and computers and get a lot of our gardening information from the Internet, but there is something about a print magazine, especially a gardening or horticultural one, that makes it important to keep them around. I note this because earlier this year the entire staff of Garden Design magazine, one of the few magazines left, were summarily dismissed as the mag went out of publication. Personally, that is a shame. There is a place for these publications in the garden world, even if there may not be in the news world. Gardeners really should support them lest they all disappear. Here are a few suggestions.

Let’s start with one I always push because it is so unique. “Green Prints” (www.greenprints.com) is the only monthly compilation of what I call “Hort Lit.” This consists of horticultural stories and writings rather than the “how-to” stuff that you find in all the other gardening magazines. This is a thick — 75 or so pages — “Readers Digest-size” monthly compilation of the best of what editor (and my good friend) Pat Stone can find amongst all the garden print. (He must read a lot!) In any case, you will find funny stories, poignant stories, children’s stories and more. As an added inducement to subscribe to Green Prints, I would mention it won the Best Garden Magazine Award from the Garden Writers Association.

Next is Rodale Press’ “Organic Gardening” (www.organicgardening.com). Yup, this is the successor title to the original Organic Farming and Gardening, still going strong after all these years. It keeps reinventing itself, which means it is always changing. If that sounds bad, it isn’t. It keeps the magazine fresher (and trying harder) than some of the others. If you are not an organic gardener as a result of reading this column, perhaps Rodale Press will convince you of how easy it is to drop the chemicals.

“Garden Gate” (www.gardengatemagazine.com) magazine comes out every two months. It is a glossy full of gorgeous pictures and fact-filled articles on all aspects of gardening. The folks who publish it are so sure you will want to subscribe, they are willing to send you a free issue to try. What have you to lose?

“The English Garden” (www.theenglishgarden.co.uk/magazine) is, as you have already guessed, a publication out of England. It is full of fantastic garden pictures and interviews with gardeners who design, build or maintain them. Yes, it is all about gardening in Great Britain and reviews their stuff and people, not ours, but hey, it’s winter here so what does that matter?

“Gardens Illustrated” is another garden magazine from England (www.gardensillustrated.com). Get ready to do some drooling. This one is full of beautiful pictures of gardens, English gardening advice, and articles about plants worldwide.

“Fine Gardening” (www.finegardening.com) bills itself as a garden design magazine. It is probably the American equivalent of a high-brow English magazine, and I mean that in a positive way. It has fantastic photography and writing. You won’t just read this in a couple of minutes. If you want you can purchase one month at a time. People use words like “breathtaking” when describing some of the gardens covered, and there is no question yours might seem a bit pale in comparison. Nonetheless, there is always something inspiring as well. Besides, aren’t Alaskan winters for dreaming a bit?

There are other magazines, horticulturally oriented and otherwise, which always devote a portion of their print pages to gardening and gardens. If you have one worthy of note, let me know at www.Teamingwithmicrobes.com. It’s a long winter, climate change or not. We have plenty of time to read.

Jeff Lowenfels’ bestselling books are available at tinyurl.com/teamingwithmicrobes and tinyurl.com/teamingwithnutrients.

Garden calendar

NOT TOO LATE: BRING IN CERAMIC POTS, UNDO HOSES FROM OUTDOOR FAUCETS AND OTHERWISE SAVE THINGS FROM WATER EXPANDING WHEN IT FREEZES.

LIGHTS: FOLKS, NOW, NOT IN MARCH, IS THE TIME TO INSTALL AND START USING GROWING LIGHTS.

HOUSEPLANTS: GET SOME NEW ONES. NURSERIES, SUPERMARKETS, FLORISTS ARE ALL STOCKED UP.

ALASKA BOTANICAL GARDEN: THE GARDEN IS OPEN DURING DAYLIGHT HOURS, ALL YEAR LONG. GREAT TIME TO CHECK OUT THE BIG GLACIER BOULDER AND SEE HOW THE PROS PUT A GARDEN TO BED.

 

Article source: http://www.adn.com/2013/10/16/3128710/with-gardening-season-over-time.html

Ex-Mayor Daley gives tour of Millennium Park for Ideas Week


Millennium Park is a must-see for visitors to Chicago that generates more than $2 billion a year in tourism revenue.

But before it was completed nine years ago, the park was an idea that then-Mayor Richard Daley had. He talked about his vision with people in town for Chicago Ideas Week.

Daley recalled the intricate planning it took to transform what was a 24-acre eyesore near Michigan and Randolph into a world-class destination.

“Landscaping was the key, very important,” he said.

Taking the tour were some of the people in town for Chicago Ideas Week, interested in learning how Daley’s vision for Millennium Park became reality.

“I’ve been to concerts here, so it’s fantastic to take a tour and learn the behind-the-scenes history of it,” said Gregory Tall.

“As we walk through the park with him, you see his attention to detail manifest itself everywhere in this place,” said Brad Keywell, Chicago Ideas Week.

Development of Millennium Park started in 1998 when Edward Uhlir was brought on board as the project design director. It took more than five years and nearly $500 million to complete. But Uhlir says the park is now a source of inspiration.

“It’s an attraction for people from all over the world who are in government designing their own parks and private-sector people, too, something to Millennium Park to see if there’s a way to do the same thing in their cities,” said Uhlir.

Daley says the goal of bringing a beautiful public space to the heart of the city has been achieved. And he’s looking ahead to more development.

“It gave us a new identity of a public space, which is really unique. Then with Maggie Daley Park, you put them together, it’s going to be sensational,” Daley said.

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Article source: http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local/chicago_news&id=9288628