December 31, 2012

Read, travel, think gardens this winter

A lot of us have at least a few days off this week for the holidays and you may be feeling a little restless. Here are some garden related things you might do now or any weekend this winter.


If the weather permits, plan your time off around a trip to the Montreal Botanical Gardens. We are fortunate to live so close to such an amazing resource. Any time of year there is always something interesting to see. Their holiday displays will be up through Jan. 6 and they are open every day but Mondays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For details on times, costs and schedules, visit the Botanical Gardens Web site (it’s easy to find with Google or any other search engine).

The Botanical Gardens have 10 greenhouses filled with all kinds of plants from all kinds of climates. Even in winter the gardens can be fun outside if the weather isn’t too harsh. Don’t miss my favorite place, the Insectarium, with more than 160,000 live and mounted specimens.


If you’re a gardener, chances are good you received a gardening book recently. Now is a perfect time to start perusing. Or maybe you’re like me and have a growing pile of books you’ve received in the past but haven’t had time to really study yet.

Garden catalogs are replacing Christmas cards in the mail now. If you read them with a jaundiced eye you can often glean a lot of information out of them. Some have excellent growing information while others gloss over the details in an effort to persuade you. Remember the old adage – if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is.

While I’m talking about reading, you might also consider signing up for our monthly home gardening newsletter, North Country Gardening. There’s no charge and it’s a good way to keep in touch with our upcoming workshops and programs. You can also check out our website with links to Cornell resources and our various Facebook pages, too at

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