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So far Karen Bussolini has created 122 blog entries.


Many of us had childhood experiences that launched a lifelong journey immersed in nature and gardens. Reading Page Dickey's Uprooted: A Gardener Reflects on Beginning Again brought back memories of my own beginnings. We both began just being with older relatives in their gardens, resting or reading on thick pungent pine needle carpets, frequent walks [...]

By |2021-08-17T05:39:56-04:00August 17th, 2021|Categories: Books|Comments Off on Uprooted

The Heirloom Gardener

When an accomplished friend and kindred spirit comes out with a wonderful book, it's time to celebrate. I welcome this opportunity to recommend The Heirloom Gardener: Traditional Plants & Skills for the Modern World written by my knowledgeable, passionate and generous friend (and accomplished cook) John Forti. Forti wears a lot of hats - he's [...]

By |2021-08-17T05:56:56-04:00August 2nd, 2021|Categories: Books|Comments Off on The Heirloom Gardener

Grow Herbs Indoors

Ah, August. That bounteous time of year again. Time to think ahead to darker days. These days I tread a thin path through the dining room, so I don't catch my hair in huge hanks of anise hyssop, mint and lemon verbena hanging from the rafters to dry. Because it's been so humid, I clip [...]

By |2021-08-17T06:10:11-04:00July 28th, 2021|Categories: Books|Comments Off on Grow Herbs Indoors

Pollinator Talk – Live and in Person!

Please join me at Long Hill, a historic garden in Beverly, MA, on Boston's North Shore - live and in person for the first time since March 2019. On August 27 at 6:00 p.m. I will show photos of gorgeous gardens and give tips on Designing With Plenty for Pollinators.  The event will be held [...]

By |2021-07-18T10:29:16-04:00July 18th, 2021|Categories: Highlights & Happenings|Comments Off on Pollinator Talk – Live and in Person!

Make Lovely Lovage Soup

Inspired by my friend Betsy Williams' intriguing lovage soup and lovage-lemon pesto, I decided to get better acquainted with this leafy perennial herb. Lovage (Levisticum officinale) is widely cultivated throughout Europe and parts of Asia, but it's not so common in these parts. Fortunately, Gilbertie's Herbs grows it (organically), so I was able to purchase [...]

By |2021-06-17T18:49:35-04:00June 17th, 2021|Categories: How-To's|Comments Off on Make Lovely Lovage Soup

A Matter of Timing

Living in one place for a long time, I've begun to develop my own phenology (not phrenology; the bumps on my head are from looking at plants without watching where I'm going). Definition: the study of cyclic and seasonal natural phenomena, especially in relation to climate and plant and animal life. The USA National Phenology [...]

By |2021-06-17T18:42:43-04:00June 1st, 2021|Categories: Clues|Comments Off on A Matter of Timing

Like an Oak

A venerable oak presided on the far side of a hump of land behind the house where I grew up. Deeply rooted, steady, its head was in the clouds and arms open wide to embrace whatever came its way. It seemed to stand guard over some wonderful secret, and it dropped the biggest acorns I'd [...]

By |2021-06-17T18:21:32-04:00May 15th, 2021|Categories: Views|Comments Off on Like an Oak

Make a Cheap, Easy, Lazy-Way Compost Bin

Along with doing what I can to keep water on my property, I compost most garden and food waste. Compost - naturally decomposed organic material - improves soil structure, enhancing its ability to hold air and water, yet drain well. It is not fertilizer. Fertilizer is like vitamins. You can't live on vitamins. Compost is [...]

By |2021-04-26T19:03:23-04:00April 26th, 2021|Categories: How-To's|Comments Off on Make a Cheap, Easy, Lazy-Way Compost Bin

Plants I’ve Loved and Tossed

We all fall in love with plants - and then at some point, we're so over it. I've loved and lost many plants over the past 30+ years. But I've loved and tossed plenty of them too. Sometimes a plant just isn't as interesting as I first thought. Or it was a hot new release [...]

By |2021-04-26T18:51:16-04:00April 5th, 2021|Categories: Clues, Garden Coaching|Comments Off on Plants I’ve Loved and Tossed

Small Actions and Satisfactions

Small actions can keep us mindful. Actions have reactions, whether they happen far away or right at home, whether we see them or not. Every spring, when the fever to plant runs high, I remember the words of Bill Duesing, founding executive director of NOFA (Northeast Organic Farmers Assoc.). "We grow lettuce (which is 95% [...]

By |2021-04-26T18:40:58-04:00March 29th, 2021|Categories: Views|Comments Off on Small Actions and Satisfactions