Stone Cold

I sat down at the bar at Hunter Gather alone.  It’s warm and dark, the kind of place strangers talk. A few other farmers, craftsmen, tradesmen types were always there at 4 p.m.  One time, I was telling some guy a story. I’d explained how my farm is an hour out of town and that…

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30 Years of Garden Design in the South

Jenks Farmer challenges and southern garden design. He’s been a leader in public and private gardens for the past 30 years. Jenks will share photos spanning 30 years of design work. And address how his style and garden design in general has changed. From 80’s style, perennial border artifice to more relaxed styles incorporating heirloom…

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The Earliest of Flower Gardens

There’s a patch of paper whites and snow drops in our pasture that’s older than I am. Just behind the little shed that’s been pony shed, goat shed and now donkey shed. Those are the kinds of bulbs I want in my gardens. From a practical stand point, because they come back, they thrive and…

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Artisans, Craftsmen and the Foundations of Garden Design

Sometimes I felt as if I was torn between being a scientist and an artist.  So I compromised and became a horticulturist. —  from the design chapter, Finding The Spirit, of Deep Rooted Wisdom, …. I’m too dirty to make gardeny-decorator things that look neat on Pinterest. Sure I can make cool stuff from left…

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Bonding, Gardening, Literature & Turtles

When we were younger, Andy and I bonded over a project inspired by a mule-drawn plow and the death of an old man. An inspiring old man: a visionary, a looking-to-the-future old man who’d used and loved old farm tools. He’d done well, lived well, and raised a family, who had hired us young guys…

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The Mechanics of Life

There’s a term I remember from the putty-green workrooms of Clemson’s agricultural building.  I overheard from the hall, a professor, teaching floral design say something like, ‘You get it right with wire and tape and picks and then you hide those things, you hide the mechanics of flower arranging.   He should have used a different…

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Like It Rough? Rustic Touches for Modern Gardens

One of the most overlooked design elements in modern gardens is the rustic touch. Sleek lined furniture, fine crew-cut turf, solid hedges….if everything is planned and primped, then it’s all boring. Dunaway Gardens has the coolest water feature — gentle streams channeled down a hillside. Sometimes, in formal octagon shaped gardens. Sometimes coursing through carved…

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