An Alameda Garden: Back from Big D (With a Gardening Giveaway!)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Back from Big D (With a Gardening Giveaway!)

I've just returned from four days in Dallas where I attended the Garden Writers Association's annual symposium. I had my doubts about going, but I am so glad I did. I met so many writers and photographers, and they were all friendly and generous with their knowledge, experience and advice. I attended seminars where I picked up great tips on writing, photography, and marketing. I toured the spectacular Dallas Arboretum and many gorgeous private home gardens (don't worry--I'll be posting photos of those over the next few days). And oh my god, the swag! I came home with a bag full of Corona tools, a couple t-shirts, books, assorted samples of soil additives and fungicides and other goodies, and about a dozen or more new plants. (And I do mean "new"--these are new cultivars that nurseries will be introducing next year.)

Most importantly, I've come back feeling somewhat refreshed and very inspired. I dug into my garden today with renewed enthusiasm, and I'm planning some new writing projects that I can't wait to get to. I also came back to the Bay Area with a new appreciation for the cool, foggy weather we've had all summer. (Turns out that Dallas in September is basically one big steambath. Great for tropical plants, not so great for people.)

But it's time to share some goodies. One lucky winner picked at random will receive a package containing P. Allen Smith's Container Gardens Deck (with 50 recipe cards for year-round container gardening), and two large packages of seeds from Botanical Interests--Cosmos Celebration in Pink (a fundraiser pack benefiting Susan G. Komen for the Cure) and a Save the Bees mix. Total value of the package: $25.

To enter, just leave a comment on this post saying what was the best garden city you've ever visited. The contest will be closed for entries on Monday, Sept. 19. at midnight. The winner will be announced on Tuesday, Sept. 20.

Update: I'm extending this giveaway for one more week. The contest will now close on Monday, Sept. 27 at midnight. The winner will be announced Tuesday, Sept. 28.

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  1. And what are those plants, dear Claire? Looking forward to see photos of the gardens you visited.

    As for the contest: Bonn Botanical Gardens is my favourite with its intimacy due to the size and the architectural environment of the place. I fell in love with ginkgos there.

  2. Seville, Spain and Victoria, BC were good, but it was the National Tropical Botanical Garden on Kauai that really blew my mind. Into tiny pieces, it blew. Maybe it took root and spread throughout Hawaii as an invasive California Brain Weed.

  3. Singapore Botanic Gardens. Tropical flowers and trees arranged in a classic British or colonial style. There is a section dedicated to orchids and they cultivate unique species of orchids that are named after beneficiaries and visiting dignataries.

  4. This is a wonderful giveaway. I'm glad I could enter just in time. The best garden city I have ever visited would have to be Paris. But I made a particular point of visiting as many parks as I could while I was there. My favorite Parisian park, by the way, is the Place des Vosges. I love the combination of symmetrical patterns of green space and fountains.


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