Keeping the garden tidy requires a few deft moves with the right tools, and, time and again over the seasons, shrub rakes are... Read more »
Entire books have been written on the science of making compost, but it isn’t as hard as people think. In five easy steps, you... Read more »
Weeding, pruning, and raking all make a huge difference in the appearance of a garden, but, to finish the job, you have to rou... Read more »
The Fiskars® aluminum shrub rake features a slim head with uniquely tapered tines that are perfect for reaching into tight spac... Read more »
Our Eco Bin Composter features an easy-to-assemble, easy-to-use design that can simplify and speed the composting process. It i... Read more »
Our HardShell® Kangaroo® Gardening Container is perfect for all your outdoor cleanup needs — whether you’re gathering yard and... Read more »
Are school fundraiser ideas keeping you up at night? A unique handmade art piece that represents your school is sure to be a p... Read more »
Creating beautiful and personal touches does not have to be difficult, especially when you have great designs to work with! Read more »
Recycle and give a new life to some of your old T-shirts Read more »
Teresa Collins is a top craft celebrity who has been featured numerous times on My Craft Channel, HSN, QVC and DIY network, wel... Read more »
Our unique Tag Maker with Built-in Eyelet Setter features an innovative design that makes it easy to create tags perfect for gi... Read more »
By creating a few simple tags, you won’t be caught at the fabric store not knowing what fabrics or yardage you have in your st... Read more »
A brocade drawstring pouch can be a beautiful and luxurious accessory or gift. Read more »
Transform a simple hoodie into a super simple unicorn costume and take the stress and pressure out of making a complicated Hal... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of sewing and quilting tasks, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Serrated Fabric Shears sense blade separation an... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of sewing and quilting tasks, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears sense blade separation and force t... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of crafting and mixed media tasks, our Amplify® Mixed Media Shears sense blade separation and force th... Read more »
Try some new punches out and make some cards to celebrate World Card Making Day! Read more »
A personalized Duck Tape® crown is quick and easy to make with your Fiskars® Duck® Edition Scissors. It is a fun way to cele... Read more »
Our Preschool Training Scissors features a special training lever that opens the blades after each cut, helping children learn... Read more »
Children love our Designer Non-stick Blunt-tip Kids Scissors for the colorful handle patterns that make cutting fun and the non... Read more »
Our Designer Non-stick Student Scissors are larger than our Kids Scissors but smaller than adult scissors, perfect for those ol... Read more »
Transform a basic jacket into something personal and unique. Read more »
Create a simple reusable calendar to plan all of your back to school activities. Read more »
Creating a miniature collage with your Fiskars® Duck® Edition Scissors is a great way to use up any last bits of Duck Tape® yo... Read more »
Designed for long, easy cuts down strips of Duck® Tape, our Duck® Edition Scissors feature a non-stick blade coating that preve... Read more »
Designed for all-purpose cutting through a range of craft materials that incorporate glue, tape and other sticky adhesives, our... Read more »
Designed for tight, precise cuts through a range of craft materials that incorporate glue, tape and other sticky adhesives, our... Read more »
Plant labels and garden-shop receipts bookmark my attempts to mark my garden’s progress through the seasons. What have I learned?
For one thing, I could use a secretary. Keeping up with the goings-on in my garden requires diligence, and I haven’t always lived up to my ambitions. But everything I write down teaches me something — even if it’s something I’m still working out. When did my husband and I finish the spring job of mulching the flower beds? On July 8th. When did the hummingbirds leave for the winter? Our last humming-bird sighting was September 29th. What happened to the melons? Crop failure! The melons, my journal notes, were overpowered by the squash plants. Next year, I’ll separate these two.
Carl Klaus, an essayist and gardener who keeps a careful garden journal, reminded me, back in January, to “write about what’s on your mind,” and I have allowed myself to wander in the pages of my journal. It’s not always even about my own garden: Mr. Horsley, who farms about 100 acres in our county in Virginia, sowed soybeans in a field he rents from our neighbors on June 4th. This seemed significant, and I wrote it down right next to observations about a yellow-billed cuckoo in the red oak. My journal notes — repeatedly — that this year was a great year for butterflies (and spiders) in the garden, and that our friends Judy and Steve came to visit in early June, when we made strawberry jam. I didn’t really need to make a note of that: we do it every year.
During the course of the year, I made a checklist of the trees in the garden and sketched plans for a new obelisk, which my husband and I built in June. The rhythm of the peonies and roses didn’t earn as much attention this year as my new vegetable garden, but I took a little time for each, consolidating my records on our peony collection in May, and making a note of a big day pruning the roses in early March.
Every year is different. We seem to like to reduce our calendars to simple schemes — spring, summer, winter, fall; baseball season, football season; flowers, snow — but a journal full of observations about weather extremes (snow in May, a warm day in January) and fresh juxtapositions and changing enthusiasms, helps us shake off these colorless generalities. My observations in my journal seem unpredictable, because so much of life really is, thank heavens. A journal, taken as a whole, turns into more than notes — almost into a play, with scenes that shift from the flower beds to the apple trees to the meadow. Without meaning to, I’m writing a book about my garden, and exploring my place in the nature of my own back yard.
A long relationship with a garden journal allows you to look back, and also to plan for the future. “What shall I learn of beans, and beans of me?” Thoreau asked in an essay on his bean field in Walden. “I came to love my rows, my beans, though so many more than I wanted,” he wrote. My garden journal — which records a pretty good bean harvest for this year — gives me lots to think about. Some of my thoughts fluttered away with the butterflies, but I tried to capture what I could in my journal. I wonder what I’ll learn next year?