Friday, December 25, 2009

"The Power of Beauty is Underestimated"

That is a quote from Patti Smith.

So is the power of fantasticism (not to be confused with fanaticism, though loosely related)...

In closing, I hope to captivate you with an image of my great friend Maria Pessino at her most fantastical - an inspired Christmas seraph is there ever was one....

Photo by Pavel Antonov

Monday, December 21, 2009

Garden Gift

There is no better time to succumb to your desires than now. Especially for we shopping passionistas.........take all of your spend-spend-spend frustrations out on buying gifts for those you love --- and even for some you only like or you owe a little favor to or especially --- to those who might need a special little lift... Read on for a few highly selective gift ideas beside the terrific

DIANNE B ULTIMATE GARDEN GIFT BAG And no matter what you decide to buy or create...make sure to
give-give-give: adopt families, make wishes come true, give away your coats...
Just give

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tennis Anyone?

I write this on a gorgeous November Sunday - the air filled with life and the promise of a garden newly fenced in - going about spring bulb planting with wild abandon. During the bulb ordering process it had not yet been decreed by our village that it was OK to put up an 8 foot deer I find myself on my knees with way too many Allium (totally deer resistant, those onions) and not nearly enough tulips (deer caviar)! But now that the fence is up --- perhaps the dear damn deer will just concentrate on neighboring tennis courts and stay out of my garden.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Dianne B Guarantee

Tools get the best workout of the year in autumn - all that clearing, pruning, transplanting and bulb planting. I would like to assure all of you who have ordered and received your Dianne B Tool Belts that they will soften up! If you use it even half as much as I use mine - it will look like this in no time... Francesca Freedman, a very cool gardening friend, suggested I sell vintage tool belts, as the new ones seem so rigid at first, but I promise you that this stiff riff is fleeting... It only takes one season of immersion in the garden for it to contour to your body and become yours forever.
Don't forget, it's just like the handle of a Vuitton bag and needs to be broken in.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Ten Best For Christmas

The Ten Best for Christmas
Assembled especially in a Fabulous package of 5 garden can't-do-withouts for the unbeatable price of $95 - a great deal...

We will also strive to get an engraved shovel to your most beloved in time for Christmas if you let us know now...

Any combination of the Ten Best will be cheerfully wrapped with hand-written heart-warming Holiday wishes, just tell us what you desire. Allow us to send something special from you to all of your gardening friends. We're here to take your order at

Saturday, December 12, 2009

What You Missed

Robert Wilson's Quartett with Isabelle Huppert.
In the same week that the New York Times rave-reviewed Quartett and the fascinating play was having a smashing sold-out eleven night run at BAM in New York - Bob Wilson himself was at his arts compound, The Watermill Center on Long Island. Armed with sheaves of drawings and much newly gleaned information about spring bulbs, instead of his usual museum installation or a theatrical extravaganza, he was making art of a different kind --- super-minding the weave and flow of 2500 hundred white daffodils and 500 beautiful plump guinea-hen fritillaries. Procured from Brent & Becky's Bulbs , who were very generous with this arts foundation, next spring's display is sure to be spectacular. Watch this NewsLetter for bloom-time...before and after...

Friday, December 11, 2009



Considering that I am a variegation lover --- seek it out on petals and leaves and every plant part --- as well as an astute tracker and big fan of classic plants with a twist... I must rant that they have gone to far with poinsettias this year.
Red is one's's Christmas, so one tends to overlook the scrawny nature of the plant, the insubstantial leaves and bracts prone to withering ...the ubiquitousness of the whole idea.

But this new breed of poinsettias in horrible shades of pink and with endless pointless variations on variegation is just too much to bear... and they are everywhere looking half-sick .
I am ignoring this new category of Christmas plant in the hopes that it will go away. Jettison these scraggly dogs and look around your garden for some real holly, the bronze backed leaves of summer magnolias and ultimately, elegant whole branches of the glossy and ultra chic Mahonia.

My holly berries are not too abundant this about yours?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Listen to the Radio

Right here on your computer...a podcast

Friday December 11 (and thereafter) at 1:30 in the afternoon

Ken Druse is not only a great writer and gardener --- he also has a mellifluous voice that treats his weekly audience to a gardening program.

I called my book DIRT and he calls his program REAL DIRT, so we have all sorts of things in common. I am delighted that Ken has asked me to be his guest this Please tune in to hear us both. It will be so much fun.