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Dear Diary: A Gardener's Journal

Seems like everybody we know is journaling (when did this word become a verb? Discuss) these days.<p>And with back-to-school season underway, we’ve been looking for an excuse to go shopping for supplies (colored pencils!) of our own. Following the lead of the folks at GRDN shop here in Brooklyn who …


A Visit to Somerset: Temperley's Cider Brandy

“There is no better pleasure than to be out-talented by your own family,” says Julian Temperley, the renowned cider brandy maker from Somerset, whose daughter Alice Temperley has added layers of talent to the family name. Her recent collaboration with British department store John Lewis is called …


Escape to Alcatraz: Go Directly to Jail to Tour the Gardens

Who knew that for decades San Francisco’s famous Alcatraz prison harbored not only notorious criminals, but also a collection of lush gardens?<p>The Gardens of Alcatraz were planted more than 150 years ago for the benefit of those serving duty, those serving time, and the San Francisco residents who …


Shopper's Diary: That Flower Shop in Shoreditch

London’s “it” florist Hattie Fox recently moved her Shoreditch studio, That Flower Shop, from a nearby former blacksmith’s digs to a street-front shop at the new Ace Hotel. We can see why:<p>Above: Photograph by Mark Leary via Flickr.<p>To see more of the interiors’ signature Pacific Northwest …

East London

Black Magic: Architects' 8 Top Paint Picks

You love black houses; we love black houses. Easy to admire but a bold move to make, not just any shade will do. We’ve asked architect and designer members of our Professional Directory for their favorite black exterior paints. Here, they’ve shed some light for when you’re ready to go dark.<p>What’s …


Hardscapes & Furnishings

Luxe Urban Camping: The Hotel Daniel Airstream in Vienna

Kitted out by a professional yacht interior designer, a 1952 Airstream at the Hotel Daniel in Vienna offers luxe minimalism for the urban camper.<p>For more information, go to Hotel Daniel.<p>[[{“type”:”media”,”view_mode”:”media_large”,”fid”:”42764″,”attributes”:{“alt”:””,”class”:”media-image”}}]]<p>Above: …


A Fern of a Different Color: Hardy Blue Fern

Identified: A sturdy houseplant that manages to look delicate. The Hardy Blue Fern (Phlebodium pseudoaureum) got my attention last spring, and I’ve finally found a specimen to bring into my apartment.<p>Above: I first spotted the glaucous plant (that’s bluish-gray-green in botany speak) in the …

A Magical Glasshouse Garden in Pasadena

Rainy days can be the best time to visit a garden, as photographer Laure Joliet reminded us when she and her mother recently visited the collection of more than 3,000 succulents inside the Huntington Botanical Gardens greenhouse in Pasadena. Luckily she took her camera along.<p>We spotted these photos …


Garden Travel By Boat: Swamp Edition

When Henry David Thoreau wrote, “…if it were proposed to me to dwell in the neighborhood of the most beautiful garden that ever human art contrived, or else of a dismal swamp, I should certainly decide for the swamp,” we can only imagine that he’d been accustomed primarily to the murky swamps of …


Brit Style: Flower Farming on Wheels

You might think of flower farmers as folk who tend to stay put–people who are rooted to a particular plot of land. Not so for everyone. British flower farmers often follow a southwest trajectory for more sun, more rain, a better life. Benjamin Ranyard of Higgledy Garden made that journey in a …


Plants & Seeds

The Romance of the Homemade Candle

In the colonial era, enterprising New Englanders quickly discovered that the wax produced by boiling the prolific gray berries that grew along the coast produced a clean, aromatic flame, and thus the bayberry candle was born. Though it was eventually replaced by mass produced waxes and commercial …

Green Tomato Chutney, Courtesy of the Women's Institute

Move to the country and make jam: it’s a bit of a cliché but I did it, before realizing that I was useless at making jam. Besides, there are many top quality jars to be had at village fetes. In this season of gluts and gluttony, however, it seems criminal to ignore the heaps of green tomatoes on …

Women's News

Tried and Tested: How to Make Fresh Flowers Last Longer

We’re not so naive to think cut dahlias will stick around forever, but we’re ready to do what it takes to keep them alive just a little bit longer. What if you dissolve an aspirin in the water? Or drop a copper penny into the bottom of a vase? Can it be that easy?<p>In the interest of science, we …


10 Easy Pieces: Architects' White Exterior Paint Picks

At the risk of stating the obvious, it’s hard to find the best paint color for your house’s exterior. White is a classic, but choose the wrong shade and you’ll end up with a very expensive mistake.<p>We wanted to take the guesswork out of choosing the best white paint for your house, so we asked the …

Urban Outfitters