Summer 2019

At The Gate

NOTICE: On September 1st, the price of a one-year subscription to GREENPRINTS will go up to $24.95. Here’s why: The last time we raised our prices was 19 years ago—way back in the Fall of 2000! Since then postage has gone up 67% (a first-class stamp was 33¢). Paper has gone up—20% in just the last ten years. All our other expenses have risen as well.  READ MORE


Typing on a laptop in a garden

Kristi McCabe: From Owensboro, KY: “I am an award-winning freelance writer, an avid gardener, and a stay-at-home mother of four very busy children.”

Suzanne L. Simpson: A very passionate gardener, Suzanne now gardens—in good health—in Brooklyn, MD. Heidi Rupke: Heidi enjoys dispatching fresh vegetables (not chickens) in her kitchen. There, she believes she can hold her own with family legacies.  READ MORE


Tea Party!

Zinnias are, without a doubt, the flowers of paradise. With their spiky, eccentric faces composed of every color of the rainbow, endless varieties, and uncanny ability to attract every butterfly within a 100-mile radius, zinnias must be the flowers of the angels.  READ MORE

Eight Volunteer Pumpkins

The day my husband and I moved to our new home in Maryland, I fell off the moving truck and received a severe head injury, not the welcome to the neighborhood I expected. It was Spring—I had plans!  READ MORE

Chasing Feathers

As a child in suburban Michigan, I rarely interacted with animals. My mother, though, was raised on a farm and tells stories of riding horses, milking cows, and gathering dozens of eggs from the family’s barn each day.  READ MORE


I have to confess I like the smell of dirt. As a gardener and especially during the Winter months, I find myself longing not so much for the calming scent of lavender or a heavenly sniff of my English roses, but more for the earthy smell of dirt warmed by the Spring sun.  READ MORE

Speedy Seeder

In the middle of my eleventh year—in 1958—I experienced an epiphany of sorts. For some unknown reason, I discovered that I liked flowers. I decided to join Speedy Seeders, a 4-H Home Beautification Club.  READ MORE

Swallowtails and Memories

My love of gardening was infused in me by my mother. When I was a child, she got me started growing pumpkins at our California home. When I was in my early 20s, she encouraged me to plant flower beds and revive a weak rose at the tiny house I rented in Washington.  READ MORE

The Great Tomato Fight of 1957

Warm and fuzzy were not two adjectives used to describe my grandmother. With two rocks in her apron pocket, she might have tipped the scales at 100 pounds.   READ MORE

My Mother’s Garden

The third time my father tried to commit suicide was the summer my mother worked hardest on our garden. He was in a mental hospital, and it was a typical Midwest Summer—hot, humid, and punctuated with thunderstorms.  READ MORE

Patricia Westerford

It’s 1950, and like the boy Cyparissus, whom she’ll soon discover, little Patty Westerford falls in love with her pet deer. Hers is made of twigs, though it’s every bit alive.  READ MORE

Dances with Beetles

I am not a fan of bugs, specifically, Japanese beetles. I attribute my strong feelings to one particular incident I refer to as “Dances with Beetles.”  READ MORE

Carpenters and Gardeners

I was talking recently with another grandmother. She had heard that you can raise your children either as if you were a “carpenter” or as if you were a “gardener.” Presumably this meant “according to rules,” or “with gentle nurturing.”  READ MORE


Vermont is not a state noted for sun. In fact, sunshine-wise, we’re nearly the gloomiest state in the nation, second only to dank and lightless Washington, where apparently nobody in Seattle ever leaves home without an umbrella.  READ MORE


Every year, I fight the battle of the weeds in both my vegetable garden and my lawn. In the vegetable garden, I get on my hands and knees, pull them up by the roots, and pray they won’t come back.  READ MORE

The Shape of America

Fourteen years ago, our family moved into an old house in Scotland which stood in the middle of a large, neglected garden that was surrounded by conifer trees. Our kitchen window looked out over a patch of worn-out grass and overgrown weeds.  READ MORE


The Hand That’s Dirty

Only Worthwhile


Full Flower Moon


Farmer Palmer

The Philosophy of Flowers

Compost Smoothies

Broken Trowel

Very Well-Manured Strawberries

The GreenPrints Letter

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