My Winterberry Farm Primitives Shop Blog

Thursday, June 1, 2017

It's June 1st and the New Summer Issue of Mercantile Gatherings is out!

I am happy to announce that this is the second issue of Mercantile Gatherings that includes two articles written by yours truly....Me! I feel lucky that I have been asked to be a featured writer for this wonderful magazine where I will be writing on antiques and early primitives along with writing a second article titled 'Did You Know...' that will feature information on our early American ancestors. Here is the front of the Summer Issue so run out and buy one at your local primitive shop or better yet!
Subscribe and you can get your magazines delivered directly to your door! PLease check out the magazine here: and make sure to set aside some time to sit down with a cup of coffee, tea, or a nice cool drink at this time of year to read the articles and, of course, look at all the pictures! I was sitting on my front porch this morning breathing in all the early summer smells and listening to the birds sing and the baby birds yelling to be fed and felt very content. I have been working on my gardens for the last month, trying to rein in my shrub borders and some of my trees that have become so overgrown this spring with all the rain we have had in the couple of months. We added a new walkway in the front garden, a new arbor (made of metal this time) and added to my beds of spring ephemerals. We have also decided .... I think add a cage bar to our great room and maybe rechristen it as our tavern room. Watch this space for updates on this project. That is all for now but I have to tell you about our bunnies that call my gardens home. They raise their babies here (and I have an Irish Setter/Lab mix!), hop through the gardens playing and running around, and have learned to run behind the short black metal garden fences that I have up to protect my more delicate plants from my 7 year old male Irish Setter/Lab mix when he is in a crazy spring mood. They will sit in among the perennials and watch him as he barks at them and hysterically runs around trying to get to them but they know they are safe and just to make it even more perfect.... in this picture I took this morning, you can see one of our many bunnies that call our gardens their home just lying out in the grass and taking it easy. Isn't that the life?

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Winterberry Farms in the Garden - Spring 2017!

Hello all! Spring 2017 has sprung and you can see pics and descriptions of my native plant gardens here: 'Normal' suburban gardening can be difficult in any season with neighbors that may be as close as just a couple of steps away from your front door or as far away as a very short jaunt through your side yard. No matter the size of your garden or yard, you can decrease your carbon footprint, save some money, and increase your joy depending on your need for grass. Have you ever gotten up on a beautiful SAturday morning and wished you could get out and enjoy the weather? But instead you have to mow the grass or spread grass food or herbicides to keep your lawn perfectly green? All of that fertilizer and grass food costs money and eventually finds its way into our groundwater BUT what if you could walk out your front door and survey your gardens as you get in your car to take off for the weekend? What could save all of that money you spend on grass food and pesticides to use on vacations or even just for a weekend getaway? Would those green, green, overfed lawns look as nice? or would you give up hours of mowing, feeding, and killing pests to spend elsewhere? Enter the idea of suburban gardens that take a lot less work while taking care of our fragile habitat. You can start small with just a few native flowering shrubs to replace those solid green evergreens that you have as your 'landscape design' surrounded by more green in your lawn or you can do what I did and remove your grass to develop your own little woodland that can be self-sustaining after the initial planting. This first entry in my quest to share my love of suburban gardens instead of suburban yards will just give you a few ideas of what you can achieve in a small, simple front garden full of native trees, shrubs, and wonderful spring ephemerals. Below are just a few pics of my tiny front garden that is located in a huge housing development in suburban Delaware. When we moved in there was the usual grass lawn and green 'meatball' shrubs lined across the front of our home that was built in the late 1980's. Today this same area is full of trees, shrubs, herbaceous plants, and those amazing spring ephemerals along with several species of animals and birds - including hawks, peregrine falcons, and at least one owl that has been seen from time to time around dusk. We don't mow, feed, or spray chemicals to keep everything going nor do we rake or bag up our leaves to protect that green, green grass. Check out the pics below for an idea of what can be accomplished here and then be sure to click on this link for more pics on my Pinterest site: