06/28/2010 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

High Season for Gardeners

Anyone who gardens knows that this time of year is probably the most important time of all. Certainly, the local nurseries know it, since they need people just to direct traffic on the weekends. It's the time for planting, mulching, beautifying, cleaning up, and spiffing up. Hard work now should pay off in lots of gardening pleasure all summer long.

Besides working hard in my garden, I've been working hard at garden events. On Sunday, I was at the NYC Grows festival organized by my favorite NY nonprofit, the New York Restoration Project. Unfortunately, the weather was more April showers than May flowers--but it was still a great day. Organic breakfast was served at the Organic Diner by Nature's Path, Organic Valley, and Stoneyfield Farm. In the Organic Gardening area, product samples were available from Nature's Gate, Choice Organic Teas, Wholesome Sweeteners, Marcal Small Steps, and Aveeno.

On Monday, my sister Heidi and I took a field trip with Ethne Clarke, editor-in-chief of Organic Gardening magazine, to the headquarters of Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Free People, and a new nursery brand, Terrain. Though it was a "business" day, I didn't let that stop me from filling my pickup truck with plants. While these brands aren't especially organic or even "green," I'm always curious to learn about new types of businesses--especially ones close to home. And I'd like to learn how to put more thought and effort into my own little store! (Too bad I can't sell live plants to you all--right now the store's limited to what I can be bought on

Check Maria's blog for photos from her travels.

HAPPY GARDENING! AND HEY! Check out my blog tomorrow--that's right, Thursday. I'm having my first guest blogger, Dirt Diva herself Annie Spiegelman. Let me know if you like having guests here, and we'll start a party--good parties always end up in the kitchen, anyway!

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