Archive for June, 2009


Have one of the simple pleasures denied you even for a brief while and it reminds you not to take your pleasures for granted, but enjoy each and every one. Savor each moment of satisfaction, of joy, of passion, of delight.
Appreciation is the key to keeping your pleasures coming, so appreciate, appreciate, appreciate … !DSC_8109


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My friend, Amber Freda, does wonderful rooftop garden designs in the city (NY). She wanted a few more links to her site and I thought … we can do that! Gives me a chance to put a couple of her pix on this site as well. She has been helping me out with the rooftop project!

Roof Garden and Urban Garden Designer – Amber FredaRooftops





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I am in for a wild fun ride (and I think I will take Adam along – some most of the time). This is going to be FUN! I just met someone I am going to be working with and we talked for two hours. She is fantastic.

All I can say is if you want a mind boggling, eye popping, heart stopping, roller coaster ride of an event; one that everyone you invite will remember and everyone you didn’t will envy … something that is at the same time immensely creative, lush, sensual, elegant AND eco friendly, then the person you want to call is Mary Spicer.

Look for me taking photos.  I will be the one with a grin on her face, hanging from something precarious trying to get the best angle for the shot.

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I received a very nice compliment last fall and only found out about it an hour ago. I was doing some garden searches for my book project and ran across this in the NYT.

In case you are wondering … I am the source of the “equally appealing” photo spread mentioned.

And just after I am attaching a few more pix of Dollie’s wonderful place.  If you would like to see more images of Katsura, go to OUTtoSEE.com or seeglover.smugmug.com.

Revisiting ‘The Heiress Out Back’

Q. I’m a big fan of The New York Times’s Home and Garden section and as it turns out a fan of yours. I was reading “Talk to the Newsroom: Home Reporter” and I wondered if one of my favorite Home and Garden articles , “The Heiress Out Back” (September 2006), was written by you. I’m embarrassed to admit that I didn’t recall the name of the author … a lesson to me to start paying more attention. The story of Ms. Briggs is fascinating and inspiring … I printed the article and have reread it several times and often wonder how things are going at the “gardener’s cottage.” The photo essay that accompanied the article was equally appealing … Ms. Briggs’s life looks as whimsical as it sounds. Thank you for your excellent journalism.
— Paul Daigle

A. I’m so glad you enjoyed the story. Dollie Briggs is indeed still thriving in her gardener’s cottage and greenhouses. There are now 14 dogs (I believe there were six two years ago) and “an explosion of bunnies,” Ms. Briggs told me (18 at last count, she said). A 1977 Airstream Sovereign is parked on her lawn, awaiting decorating, after which it will become a guest room. Ms. Briggs’s latest project is her support of the Growing Connection (thegrowingconnection.org), a grass-roots project that uses the Earth Box (earthbox.com), a low-maintenance container garden, to grow food and provide education in school gardening programs and community gardens around the world.Dollie_3139Dollie_3156

Dollie_7313Dollie_3091Dollie_2650Dollie_1906_1Dollie/America at HomeDollie_1538



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Don’t get me wrong, I love ‘clean & green’ living, but sometimes it amuses me that we feel so proprietary about it.  I started thinking about this today, because on my agenda is watching the 144th Yale Harvard race down the Thames River.  As it has been done for each of the previous 143 years of the competition, only muscle power will get them down that four mile stretch of river today.

Green isn’t a new concept, it’s just something we have renamed and reinvented post industrial revolution.  Over two centuries ago, there was no other way of life.  So our trick now is to have our cake and eat it, too.  We want all of the frills of modern life, but make them green, please.

Most of us would be lost without our day to day luxuries (which we consider necessities); things which had yet to be dreamt into existence during the last ‘green movement’, like computers the size of an iPhone.  So our intolerance of what makes others happy – their desired gadget, gizmo, or thing that goes ‘vrrrooom’ – makes us, well, a bit hypocritical.

My suggestion is stop complaining and find a way to green it up, no matter how large, luxurious or ostentatious.  Green Hummer … now there is a concept.  And a pretty simple one.  Heard of bio-diesel?

Revolutions take a bit of time (and this is just a movement).  We didn’t trash the earth overnight in one big industrial party, so have patience.  It may take us awhile to turn everyone’s luxuries green, but we’ll get there.

And come to think of it maybe we should be calling this the “Neo Green” movement.  It’s not as if we are the ones who invented it.

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Pays off !!

I don’t usually photograph swans simply because they are such a popular topic for photography it is difficult to get an exceptional image.  This time I think it was worth the effort.

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I am so waiting to be able to run my car with this!


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