Browsing Tag

October 2012


Love is Real

October 22, 2012

We may still be months away from February 14th, but that won’t stop us from celebrating love everlasting. Especially when plants – well, oak trees in this case – stand to be the medium for expression.

As a tribute to his late wife, Winston Howes, a seventy year-old farmer in South Gloucestershire, England, planted several thousand oak saplings in the shape of a heart on his 112-acre farm. The heart’s point faces the direction of his wife’s childhood home. The meadow was a family secret until recently photographed by a stranger from a hot air balloon. Howes reflects, "I sometimes go down there, just to sit and think about things. It is a lovely and lasting tribute to her which will be here for years." 

Read more about Howes at The Telegraph.


Friday Find – For Your Coffee Table

October 12, 2012

Larry Lederman’s photography in Magnificent Trees of the New York Botanical Garden is a visual tribute to trees. A member of the Board of Advisers at The New York Botanical Garden, a well-known attorney, and an adjunct professor to New York Law School, Lederman has been photographing landscapes for the past ten years capturing the details of their form, color and texture. His work has been exhibited at The New York Botanical Garden’s Ross Gallery, the Four Seasons Restaurant in New York City, and Olana, the home of painter Frederic Edwin Church, in addition to inclusion in private and corporate collections. 

Larry Lederman’s stunning photographs of The New York Botanical Garden’s 30,000 tree-specimens, are complimented by the vivid descriptions of Todd Forrest, Vice President for Horticulture and Living Collections at the Garden. For Lederman and Forrest, each tree has a story to tell. "People don’t even notice trees, but they have stature and personality. They’re alive," Lederman says, "They have good days and bad days, good years and bad years." 

– Magnificent Trees of The New York Botanical Garden can be purchased online at the NYBG Shop


#PlantsMakePeopleHappy, How-to, Plant Care

Plant Care: Watering 101

October 10, 2012

Beware: overwatering is the easiest way to kill an indoor plant. Some plants do just find on a water once-a-week schedule, but it is best to check your plants regularly (every 3 to 4 days) and water only when needed. Ideally, you give the plant just enough water so that its potting mix is moist. Allow it to dry out before watering again.

How do you determine if your plant is thirsty? You can rely on one of the following methods.

1. Eye It.

Small plants, under 4″ planters, typically need water as soon as the surface is dry. Take a peak under the foliage to check out the color the potting mix. Moist potting mix will be darker than dry potting mix. You’ll soon start to recognize when the potting mix appears dry.

2. Try it.

Use your finger tip to check the consistency of the potting mix along the edge of the planter – is it moist? If the first inch of soil is dry, its usually time to water your plant. Try and avoid too much poking, though. You don’t want to damage your plant or its roots.

3. Lift it.

Your potted plant will feel much heavier after it has been watered. If it feels considerably lighter than after a watering, chances are it’s thirsty.


Water your plants with tepid – room temperature – water. They like this very much!


Mid-Week Musings

October 5, 2012

Today at The Sill we’re craving cupcakes! It is Wednesday, after all. For that mid-week treat, create a potting soil base from brownie or chocolate cake mix, cover with chocolate frosting and oreo or graham cracker crumbs, and top with fondant foliage. Not a seasoned cake decorator? Purchase pre-made toppers here.

Feeling inspired? Check out Pixel Whisk’s Succulent Cupcake recipe.  (Yes, that’s a cupcake!) 


Mid-Week Musings

October 1, 2012

It’s mid-week and we’re craving fresh air and some fine inspiration. 

Look no further than Long Island City’s Socrates Sculpture Park and the 2012 Emerging Artist Fellowship Exhibition, an exploration of art in the public sphere. The annual exhibition runs from September to March, featuring outdoor pieces (and in some cases performances) described as ‘subtly mysterious, visually compelling, and, at times, provocative’, by renown emerging artists. 

Selected annually by a committee of curators with a strong knowledge of contemporary art, the 2012 Emerging Artists are awarded a grant, unique residency in the Park’s outdoor studio, and technical support to facilitate their projects, which, are developed on-site during the summer. All this allows visitors the rare opportunity to experience the creation of these works. In addition to the sculptures, the Socrates Sculpture Park, an abandoned landfill and dumpsite until 1986, sits on a peaceful waterfront area of Queens with views of the Manhattan skyline. 

The 2012 Emerging Artists include Jarrod Beck, Melissa Calderon, Cui Fei, Brent Dickinson, Sarah Dornner, Tamar Ettun, Jessica Feldman, Ben Hall, Charles Harlan, Hugh Hayden, Chang-Jin Lee, Fernando Mastrangelo, Bundith Phunsombatlert, Jeff Williams, and Seldon Yuan.

* If you’re planning a visit in the near future (like we are!), be sure to pick up some farm-fresh fruits and veggies at the GrowNYC Greenmarket , every Saturday from 8 am – 4 pm (ends November 17th). 

For directions and hours, visit the Garden’s website at