Gnome News

ramblings of a plant lover

Fussy in Florida

I recently returned from a wonderful working vacation in Gasparilla. I love to see the island in late Spring before things get too hot. It’s really the best time to see the blooms and gardens before they fatigue in the intense summer heat of Florida. You won’t find many plastic Flamingos on the island – here it’s the real thing – live Egrets or Cranes strutting private lawns.




Summer. Let the show begin!

This is play time in a garden, especially in the more northern hemisphere. It would be unfair not to mention it’s hard work too, but like most things in life, hard work is required to continue producing rewarding results. So here are my tips for this summer season.


Fussy Update

Well folks, thanks for visiting the site on our official launch – and for telling your friends. It’s been a wee bit overwhelming frankly. Lots of very encouraging feedback and interest. I’ve tried to answer everyone personally, which is why, among other things, I haven’t posted on the Fussy Garden Journal since we launched last week.




Italy is not unduly romanticized for its spectacular history of beautiful vistas and culture of belissimo! Where there are beautiful vistas there are beautiful gardens. I had the pleasure of spending a wonderful day in Ravello on the western cliffs of Italy, above Amalfi. The whole region was fantastic, but I will never forget the gardens of Ravello. In fact if you plan to visit, I’d recommend you stay at the Villa Cimbrone, which sits just on the edge of this magnificent property. Three miles of twisty mountain roads up from Amalfi, the gorgeous resort of Ravello has been attracting celebrities for centuries, including Greta Garbo, Gore Vidal and D.H. Lawrence, who wrote Lady Chatterley’s Lover here.




Elegant Garden Lifestyle

Another favourite chain of stores I frequent when traveling in the US is Smith & Hawken. I can spend hours in their stores. I first discovered them in Soho, New York. They have a delightful selection of the most stylish and functional gadgets for garden lifestyle. A great idea place for any gardener. You can check them out at:



“Royal” Gardening Boots

I found these very cool boots from the UK in a most unusual place on the weekend– a hip and trendy shoe boutique on Queen Street in the fashion district of Toronto. Originally designed for hiking the rugged terrain of Scotland, they are the creation of American entrepreneur Mr. Henry Lee Norris who landed on Scottish shores in 1856 to establish his boot making company. Hunter’s boots have become legendary for their durability and comfort, not to mention classic style.