Garden 'siteseeing' in England and the US

Garden blogs in the US and England

 With my plants finally biting the dust because of frost, what I should be doing is getting out and cleaning up the garden -- pulling down the tomato vines, putting the terra-cotta pots in the the garage for the winter, and mulching evergreens. But it's cold and windy today, so I'll leave all that for later. Instead, I'll stay indoors at my computer and visit other gardeners, to see what they're doing.

The Reluctant Garden Designer calls herself "a Swedish garden grump" who has found "horticultural harmony" on the south coast of England. That's because in East Sussex, the winter weather is so much better for gardening than back in Sweden.

So Camellia,  a graphic designer and talented amateur photographer),  is falling in love with evergreens -- they're not dull or boring at all (as the British sometimes complain), she says, if you're used to the cold and snow of Sweden, where many of England's evergreen plants are deciduous.

She visits Kew Gardens, grows lavender, makes a drawing of her landscape, and comments that a butterfly bush in bloom can resemble  a  woman in curlers who's had a rough night.Isn't that a wonderful comparison?

I started visiting this blog for the photography, but now very much enjoy the quiet and interesting posts.

The Cactus Blog actually belongs to a California Nursery, Cactus Jungle, not an individual. Although its focus is San Francisco and Berkeley, its range is actually country- and worldwide.

Can you imagine a labyrinth created with succulent plants? I look forward to returning to learn more about that. Did you know that prickly pear cactus grows well in parts of Italy? I had to laugh out loud at the discussions of Canadians and cactus  -- cactus with eggs for breakfast, a "cactus cam" aimed at a houseplant -- do you think that's like watching grass grow?

It's drolly entertaining and informative at the same time.

Ready for more cacti? Let's visit the state that's known for it, Arizona. Water When Dry is written by Aiyana, a certified desert landscaper and Master Gardener in Phoenix (where today's noontime temperature is a balmy 75 degrees F.).

Unless you live in the desert, you probably had no idea there were so many different types, shapes, and sizes of cactus. The "pet cactus" photos are very appealing -- plants with personality.

Imagine what you think an octopus agave would look like. Have it in your mind's eye? If you're anything like me, your image -- based on the name -- isn't anything like reality, which turns out to be very pineapplelike. (Still, the tops do resemble tentacles.)

It may be a week before Thanksgiving, but gardening hasn't stopped in Iowa City, Iowa -- at least not indoors. Meet Mr_Subjunctive, who works at a medium-sized greenhouse/garden center. He believes that Plants Are the Strangest People and mostly writes about indoor plants.

There's a detailed discussion of a Dieffenbachia flowering and exactly what takes place. He also introduces us to a bright orange passionflower. (And you always thought they were just purple or violet, right?)

His creativity shines in Wizard of Oz plant profiles, and humor is likely to break out at any time.  (He uses so much Latin, he says, "because those are the plants' names." So there.)

We'll end our gardening siteseeing there for today, but will pick up our weekly feature again the day after Thanksgiving as we visit four more gardeners and their gardens.

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