Posts Tagged condo gardening

Tips and Techniques: How to Renovate an Existing Miniature Garden

How to Renovate a Miniature Garden

A pretty miniature garden scene. This photo was take about 6 weeks after the project photos were done for our Gardening in Miniature book. The tree is a Jacqueline Hillier Elm, the two globe-shaped shrubs on either side are White Pygmy Dwarf Cypress.

 Tips & Techniques: How to Renovate an Existing Miniature Garden

Renovating a full-sized garden can be back-breaking work and take weeks to complete. Over the years of gardening in miniature, I’ve discovered it takes an average of 20 minutes to renovate a miniature garden – with no back-ache or sore muscles. In this post, we are revisiting a miniature garden that was made for the Pond in a Pot project in the Gardening in Miniature: Create Your Own Tiny Living World book. I’ve been letting a few of the miniature gardens grow without doing any maintenance so you can see (a) how fun they can be to grow one and (b) how easy it is to garden in miniature.

Click to enlarge any photo.

How to make a miniature garden pond

Here is a summary of the Pond in a Pot project, from the Timber Press winter catalog, 2013.

Fairy Gardening with Two Green Thumbs.com

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

I left it to grow without doing any maintenance on it for the last year so you can see what happens – it’s still a cute garden! Our big puppy tends to rearrange our miniature garden accessories from time to time.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Tools for the task can be found easily.

Renovating a miniature garden is just as much fun as making one. You can easily get lost in your own little world, see what plants are growing wild, and what needs a bit of help. Just like full-sized gardening, you will have plants that don’t survive, or some that didn’t do well. With our changing winters, it’s good to keep an open mind if something didn’t make it through the hard-freezes of the polar vortex, for example. This gives you an opportunity to try a different plant, or choose a plant that is hardier than your zone. It’s easy to swap the the plants out with fresh ones, or fill-in the gap in the garden bed with a new accessory.

The tools you need, you can find around the house or in your garden shed. If you don’t have garden clippers, a sharp pair of scissors will do just fine. Designate a specific soup spoon and dinner fork for your miniature garden. Thrift stores are place to go for these. Pick up a sharp cutting knife while you are there, it will come in handy. Keep an old toothbrush for cleaning up your accessories or scrubbing-down your patio. A soft rag is handy for cleaning out the pond and wiping down the outside of the pot.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Begin by pulling out all the dead plants. The Dwarf Mondo Grass in all our gardens didn’t make it through last winter for some reason. (It’s hardy to 0F and our coldest temperature was 18F) Next winter, I’ll make sure I shear that White Pygmy Cypress (behind my hand,) to prevent it from getting leggy and to keep those wonderful creamy tips. This will help separate it from the Dwarf Pagoda Japanese Holly on the right.

Links for plants: Dwarf Pagoda Japanese Holly – Jacqueline Hillier Elm – Dwarf Mondo Grass – Red Thyme

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Trim back all the dead branches and foliage. Miniature roses follow the same rules as full-size roses, deadhead the spent blooms just above a 5-leaf branch. For other shrubs, trim back any dead branches, and branches that are criss-crossed in the middle of the plant and any branch that is growing downward.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

At this point in the season, you may have new buds mixed with spent buds. Take a moment to sort them out before deadheading (cutting off the spent blooms.)

Find miniature roses from our friends down in Oregon here at HeirloomRoses.com, there are dozens of them!

Miniature Garden Plants

This miniature ‘Popcorn’ rose is intermingling with this cypress (I’m not remembering the name!!) I’ll let the rose bloom for now, then trim it back, away from the cypress, when the flowers are done.

Miniature Garden Ebook

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Churn-up the top layer of soil with your garden fork. Throughout the year, all container gardens develop this crusty layer and redirect the water to the outside of the pot, away from the plant’s roots. By breaking up this layer, the water will go where it is needed. Churn up the soil gently around each plant.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Prune away all dead branches in the trees and shrubs. Prune or pinch-off any new growth along the trunk and lower branches to keep your tree looking like a tree.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Bail out your miniature garden pond.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

If the miniature garden is grown-in, you may be able to lift the pond-pot out gently, clean it up and replace it.

Miniature Garden Center

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Be careful not to get anything in the pond’s hole. You can barely see the upside-down pot that the pond is resting on at the bottom of the hole.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Replace the accessories. And you are done!

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Or create a new look by adding different accessories.

Janit's Mini Garden Etsy Store

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Little gaps in the ground covers create an opportunity to nestle-in another focal point.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

Add a couple of flowers to float in the pond. You can float the tiny flowers on leaves to make them look like water-lilies.

Your Miniature Garden Center

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

If your miniature garden is big like this one is, have fun creating tiny vignettes throughout the garden. It lures the viewer in to take a better look. After seeing this picture, I may plant something low in front of the trellis to for more interest.

Garden tools are here – or see all our Tools and Equipment here.

Miniature Gardening Renovation How-To

A miniature garden flower arrangement can add a bit of color quickly and easily. See below for the How-To link.

The Cutest How-To in the Whole Wide World.

Find the Trellis with Wall-Pot, see more trellises here.

See our current stock of true miniature garden and fairy garden trees, shrubs, and plants right here.

July Fourth Miniature Garden

Or collect your favorite accessories to celebrate an occasion for a party or a barbecue.

Miniature barbecues are here and here. Blue wheelbarrow is here. White water can. Cherry red bench.

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Gardening in Miniature by Janit Calvo

Click the picture to get your autographed copy from our online store. Or Amazon[dot]com has it too!

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Miniature Gardening at Sorticulture, The Coolest Garden Show

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

Remember the Seahawk Garden Shed? This is the same one dolled-up for the big Sorticulture Garden & Art Show on this weekend.

Miniature Gardening at Sorticulture, The Coolest Garden Show

Great venue, great artists and great plants from local growers can be found at Sorticulture this weekend. Everett Parks and Recreation Department puts on this show in their beautiful, sprawling Legion Park that overlooks Puget Sound. Check out the osprey and eagles while strolling through huge sequoias and arborvitaes. Great food and refreshments too! Bring the whole family – it’s a great place for the kids too.

Click to enlarge the photos!

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

A bird’s eye view of the garden shed garden. It’s grown and morphed a bit over the years. In the lower, left-hand corner, we replaced the Chirmen Cypress that didn’t do well in full-sun with a new Bullata Spirea. We’re testing out the new Alpine Spirea in the upper left-hand corner and an Hinoki Cypress in the bottom, right-hand corner. That lovely yellow plant’s name is escaping me right now – I’ll come back and fix this when this ol’ noggin’ gives it up. Lol!  

Miniature Gardening at Sorticulture 2014

Some of the Hens and Chicks grow up to be quite big. I didn’t have the urge to upset them, they were looking so lovely snuggled into the moss. That is a Thyme-Leaf Cotoneaster on the left just after it flowered.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

The full display came together nicely. It’s always different as we adjust each year to fit in and around the established planting in the garden bed. I normally don’t photograph in the full-sun but I had no choice – it was a stellar day! 

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

This is the same garden on page 46 of the Gardening in Miniature book – the one with the Easter Island head in it. (Also shown on page 231.) The Hens and Chicks have grown in nicely.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

That tree is a perennial, Sea Foam Artemisia, that’s a bit stressed out. It should be full of foliage but it looks great this way as a miniature garden tree. It loves full sun and drier soil so I paired it with Sedum Button behind the chair, and White Diamond Sedums in the left and right corners. All plant colors match, all textures are very different. That small miniature garden with the Green Terra is the same one on page 48 in the Gardening in Miniature book.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

I added a bit of whimsy, the show attracts a lot of kids and they love the tiny details as much as we do. Find new tiny miniature garden gnomes up in the online store. Link is below! The left-hand plant is Red Thyme, the right-hand variegated is Silene.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

This box was made by Lori of Scrapwood Studios, a fellow miniature gardener and crafter of fun home and garden decor. It’s a mix of sempervirens, or Hen and Chicks, and Sedum cuttings.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

We wanted to create a story for the dog in this miniature garden for our Sorticulture display this weekend. I’ve been thinking about these water balloons that Steve had stashed away because they were already small. I barely blew it up, tied a knot and cut off the big end. Found a string and undid a strand to tie it on the balloon. Stuck it in the tree and wound the string around a branch like the wind would do. Very. Fun. Red Thyme in the front, a variegated Cotoneaster trimmed into a tree shape in the back.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

A handmade trug from Albe Rustics (AlbeRustics.com.) If you go to the Sorticulture Show, you’ll see Vanca and Joe with all their fantastic twig furniture, tables, bar sets and trugs. Vanca makes some great garden flags too. 

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

One of the new tiny trees, a Top Point Dwarf Cedar is paired with Tricolor Sedum for a full-sun miniature garden. I planted the Cedar in the middle of the pot and put a rim of the Sedums behind it because the terra cotta pot will wicks the moisture out of the soil and away from the plant’s roots. The Sedums will be able to tolerate the dry soil much better than the tree will.

Miniature Gardening at Sorticulture 2014

I’m loving that I can show the same miniature gardens that are shown in the Gardening in Miniature: Create Your Own Tiny Living World book. The garden was made in 2007, the photo of this garden in the book was taken in June, 2012 and here it still is. This Top Point Dwarf Cedar is flanked by two White Pygmy Cypress. The “grass” is Irish moss that has grown tighter and tighter over the years. The fountain is 7″ tall.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

If you go! You’ll find signed copies of the Gardening in Miniature book at the Sorticulture show too! The miniature garden display and the aforementioned twig furniture and YFMG, Lori and her gardens, are at the show, on the west side of the main building in the park. 

Find the miniature garden plants and accessories here, up in the online store here.

Want more insight into the plants and accessories that you see in the Gardening in Miniature: Create Your Own Tiny Living World book? Please visit our Pinterest page that we set up, just for you here.

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Miniature Gardening

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New Miniature Garden Trees for the New Hobby, Part I

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

After a couple/few years of letting this Dwarf Wisteria tree grow in, I can prune it back next winter and still have a good-looking tree. The accessories here on one-inch scale. Click the picture to get to the store.

New Miniature Garden Trees for the New Hobby, Part I

Ahhh, summertime is just around the corner! A new season always brings new reasons to the miniature garden workbench: parties, barbecues, gardening, relaxing, enjoying, making fun and creating. Want to lower your blood pressure? Start a miniature garden. Want to escape from the every day? Create a miniature garden. Want to help clean the air around you? Grow a miniature garden. Want to make someone happy? Give a miniature garden. With a combination like that, miniature gardening could get very, very contagious. And we’ve only just begun.

So, with a new season, we bring new plants for your miniature gardening pleasure. Here are the newest trees to our inventory, three of which we have been selling for a while, (but we wanted to make sure they would work out before officially introducing them,) and the other four are promising candidates recommended by our grower. This is part one of two blogs on our new trees that are now in stock.

Miniature Garden Plants

Our Dwarf Wisteria, about three years after we planted it. The pot didn’t make it through last winter, but the tree did. This is one of the photos from the Gardening in Miniature: Create Your Own Tiny Living World, by Timber Press.

Dwarf Wisteria

I thought I might have killed it – again. But my Dwarf Wisteria (Millettia japonica ‘Hime fuji’) bounced back and looks as pretty as ever. I’ve left it to grow-in naturally to see what it does and I haven’t been disappointed. Mine turned into what I call a small country-garden tree, or a tall, leggy shrub that you can plant something in front of to hide the trunk.

It’s not a dwarf version of the real wisteria apparently, but it looks like one. Do note that it does not flower. Keep it in a sunny spot but don’t let the soil dry out. Trim the wayward branches back to maintain its bushiness. Gradually trim off the bottom growth/branches if you want more of a tree look. This gem can be moved inside for the winter if you are in one of the colder regions of the country, otherwise its hardy to 10F, (or about 35F if in a container,) cold zones 8 – 10, heat zones 10 – 7.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

The Seiju Dwarf Lacebark Elm is already a great looking miniature garden tree. Shear the canopy in winter and clear away any new growth along the bottom of the trunk when you see it. Shown here in a 4″ pot, they stand about 7″ tall right now. 

Seiju Dwarf Lacebark Elm

Charmed, I’m sure! We love this new Seiju Dwarf Lacebark Elm (Ulmus parvifolia ‘Seiju’) for it’s perfectly in scale trunk and tiny leaves. It’s a common tree for bonsai so we know it will work well in the miniature garden. The leaves will drop in the fall and leave an interesting framework as the stems develop an exfoliating bark, as they get older.

Trim wayward branches, it should promote more bushiness too. It prefers full to part sun, and moist, well-drained soil. It matures slowly, about 3” per year to 4 feet tall; you can slow this down even further by trimming it back in late winter. Keep the foliage pruned away from the trunk to keep the tree’s shape. Hardy to -20F (or -5F if in a container,) cold hardy zones 5 – 9, heat zones 9 – 5.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

The crimson-red flowers on the Bullata Japanese Spirea are set off by the deep, slight bluish-green leaves, a lovely combination.

Bullata Japanese Spirea

A little shrublet for the miniature garden AND it flowers too. The Bullata Japanese Spirea (Spiraea japonica Bullata’) offers a deep green,

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

The one in the middle is just finishing its first flush of flowers, the two on the left and the right are coming into their second flush. A great miniature plant without the flowers too.

broadleaf with clusters of rose-crimson flowers that flush out in late spring. This will be a very pretty compliment to the miniature and dwarf conifers in your miniature or fairy garden.

This spiraea (pronounced spy-REE-ah) is slow-growing at 2 to 4” per year, but for the miniature garden, shear this little bush back about one third each winter to help keep it small for years. Great for a full sun spot with soil that can remain damp. I think it can tolerate a little dryness, but never leave it too long in between watering sessions. Shear it after flowers in the spring and you’ll get a second bloom out of it. Hardy to -30F (or -15F if in a container,) cold zones 7 – 9. Heat zones 9 – 1.

Zoned Out

Don’t know your zone? The USDA developed a general cold zone map. And the American Horticultural Society developed a heat zone map for the other half of the country. Put the two together if you are in the southern states, and be sure to double-check to see if the plant you want is the correct heat-zone rating. Right plant, right place – but you may be surprised with a little experimentation too.

USDA Cold Zone Map is here.

AHS Heat Zone Map is here.

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Gardening in Miniature book

The best book on the new hobby! Don’t take our word for it, click in to read the reviews in our online store.

 

 

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Miniature Gardening in the Southeastern States

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

I was hired to do a talk and demo for three days so I took the opportunity to make three different gardens. The silver shrub is a Blue Star Juniper. The burgundy bush is the Helmond Pillar Barberry matched with Red Thyme. Perfect for an eastern or cool sun spot.

Miniature Gardening in the Southeastern States

When you start looking for the plants that will suit miniature gardening, you’ll find a new world of plants will open up to you. The same thing happened when I was asked to do a talk at the wonderful Epcot Flower and Garden Festival at Disney World. Southeastern climates with extreme heat and humidity will need plants that can withstand those conditions if you want them to thrive. I started my search with my short-list of ways to find plants for miniature gardening, consulted my library and found that some of our plants that we’ve been working with for years will work too. Here are the results.

What’s a Miniature Garden Plant?

Not everyone knows what a “miniature garden plant” is yet, and some nurseries are mixing up the fairy garden idea with miniature gardening. Just because it has a “fairy” name, doesn’t mean it will work as a miniature. And, just because it has small leaves, doesn’t mean it will suit either. Here, on the other hand, is what will work if you focus on the right combination of small leaves, slow growth rate and the height of the plant and its flowers. Note that what I mean by the height will depend upon whether you are using that plant as a tree, shrub or bedding plant – and that includes flowers too. Look for small-leafed and slow growing: – Rockery plants – Miniature and dwarf plants, (‘miniature’ and ‘dwarf’ are growth rates) – Alpine plants – Baby plants – Ground covers

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

For this set-up, I anchored the bed with a Top Point Dwarf White Cedar, (the tall tree,) the round shrub is a Red Tip Podocarpus and matched with Dwarf Mondo Grass and a Fairy Vine. A good combo for cool sun or part sun with regular water.

Tips for growing Two Green Thumbs’ trees in southern climates:

A lot of the trees that you buy in 4” pots for miniature gardening are little balls of young foliage. In cooler climates the air helps keep the plant at a comfortable temperature if you keep the conifer dieback cleaned out of the center where it tends to collect in the young shrub. In more humid climes, you can help the young shrubs get air circulation into the wee canopy by “opening them up.” With a little patience and a sharp pair of garden scissors, carefully prune out the middle branches on the shrub. Work gradually and always take the entire plant into consideration before each snip. Cutting the wrong branch or a “big” branch can compromise the overall look of the shrub. Start with cutting away any criss-crossing branches, snip any downward branches and then concentrate on shape. Plant in part shade or part sun to avoid that strong afternoon sun. Many of our plants can handle the full sun in northern climates where the sun is a bit cooler, and the ground stays evenly damp. You can mimic these conditions by giving the plant a cooler spot to grow in with cooler sun, eastern sun, dappled light or on the northern side of the house. Don’t over plant. Our tendency is to fill up the garden right away to get that look of a “real” garden – and that’s one of the joys of gardening in miniature: instant gratification. But, in some southern regions where there is a lot of humidity, the trees will appreciate any extra air circulation that they can get. So not only help the tree/shrub with a little pruning, plant the plants further apart so the air can go through the plants to keep them healthy.

Miniature Gardening with Janit Calvo

The combination can handle a little bit more sun. The yellow shrub is a Limeglow Juniper, paired with a Teeny Mugo Pine and an Elfin Thyme for the lowest layer.

Rethink your plant selections. You can always change your thinking and consider the miniature and dwarf conifers as annual plants that will last for a couple/few months. Hinoki Cypress or any dwarf Spruce can certainly be enjoyed over the holiday months until they start to fade. Don’t’ think of the initial cost of the tree as an expense, but rather as entertainment, and amortize the cost over the 4 to 6 months that you can enjoy your miniature garden – I bet it’s cheaper than a latte! And, it’s easy to replace too – swapping out a miniature garden tree for a fresh one takes minutes – and you can still go to work on Monday morning a brag about all the gardening you got done on the weekend. Here is a list of miniature garden plants that we stock in our online store that don’t mind the heat and humidity of the southeastern garden. Note that not all plants are not available at all times and there may be some trail and error needed in finding out what they need to be happy. Red Tip Podocarpus – Podocarpus aplinus ‘Red Tip’ Blue Star Juniper – Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Star’ Groundcover Juniper – Juniper horizontalis Tansu Japanese Cedar – Cryptomeria japonica ‘Tansu’ Ulmus parvifolia ‘Hokkaido’ – Dwarf Chinese Elm Dwarf Mondo Grass – Ophiopogon japonica Nana Fairy Vines – Muhlenbeckia complexa Lily Turf – Lirope spicata Sedums – small leafed I’m posting from Disney World and I’m not able to link these plants to the store – yet. ;-) I’ll show the results of the demos on our next blog so stay tuned! The books I consulted in my library, in addition to our bestselling Gardening in Miniature Book: Create Your Own Tiny Living World: Succulent Container Gardens, by Debra Lee Baldwin, published by Timber Press Miniature Garden Guidebook for Beautiful Rock Gardens, Container Plantings, Bonsai, Garden Railways, by Nancy Norris Like this? Then you’ll love our Mini Garden Gazette newsletter. It’s FREE and you get a free PDF just for signing up with us! Join us here. Your Miniature Garden Center   http://www.TwoGreenThumbs.com

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Gardening in Miniature at the Northwest Flower and Garden Show

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

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Gardening in Miniature at the Northwest Flower and Garden Show

It is our Two Green Thumbs’ 10th anniversary display at the country’s best garden show, the Northwest Flower and Garden Show this year! We decided to give you a better peek into what we do, so we modeled the display after our studio and it contains as many miniature gardens as we could logically fit in – we actually had to bring some back home! Lol! Miniature gardens of all ages, shapes and sizes demonstrate the many things you can do with this idea – and they all start with “fun.”

I’ll be in the Hood Room on Sunday at 10:45 am with a slide-show and talk about ideal miniature garden plants and how to get started in the hobby. See you there!

You can find all the plants, parts and pieces at www.TwoGreenThumbs.com

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

We have indoor, outdoor, 10 year old miniature garden trees and new trees less than 3 years old.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

The inside of the studio – not entirely unlike our studio at home – but a lot tidier. ;o)

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Miniature gardening is an amalgamation of several different hobbies, craft and art forms. The many variables can keep a crafty gardener entertained for years.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

The shelves in our “real” studio tend to develop into a collection of miniatures, raw materials, samples and local artwork too. That mosaic pot in the center is by a friend from our Fremont Market days, over 10 years ago.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Steve made the ceramic camper. That dinosaur was a toy that I rusted. I found the clothespin-chair at a thrift-shop and superman reminds me to be strong every day.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Lil’ Valentine’s Day garden has a tiny Jean’s Dilly Dwarf Spruce and a Tsukomo hinoki cypress on the left. That’s a Butter Ball hinoki cypress with lacy foliage in the 2″ pot in front-right.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Tiny gardens all lined up on the shelf. This size is perfect for cheering somebody up, or just for a laugh. They make great hostess and thank you gifts too.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Baby date palms are great tropical trees in miniature – they take awhile to grow up so we have a few years to enjoy them in the miniature garden while they do.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

An Emerald Green Hebe on the left beside the sculpture, a Majestic Japanese Holly tree on the right with Dwarf Mondo Grass in front of it.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

A tiny Nana Lutea hinoki cypress keeps the deciduous Golden Torch Barberry company while it begins to bud – one the prettiest time of year for barberries.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

What to do with your overgrown miniature garden? Go with it! This little tree-hut is made from a block of wood attached to stilts to look like a secret getaway.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

12th Man Represents!! We are very proud of our Seattle Seahawks. They were the laughing stock of the NFL after the draft-picks they chose last year – no one thought they could win the Super Bowl Championship – but they did with hard work, faith and focus. Go Hawks!

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Jervis Canada hemlock grows slowly from a shrub to a grand miniature garden tree – just plant it in the right place, water it regularly, and trim off some of the foliage and bottom branches.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Jean Iseli Dwarf Hinoki does the same: it grows from a darling little shrub to a substantial miniature garden tree with very little effort.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

An older date palm on the left makes a great match for a Norfolk Island pine behind it on the right and a Haworthia in front of it beside the ramp. Can you feel that tropical island breeze?

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

Another Jervis Canada Hemlock that has grown into a perfect miniature garden tree.

Miniature gardening at the NWFGS

See this display on the skybridge at the Northwest Flower and Garden Show at the Seattle Convention Center – it’s on until February 8th. See you there! 

Like this? Then you’ll love our main website, online store and to sign up for our Mini Garden Gazette: http://www.TwoGreenThumbs.com.

2014 NWFGS Speaker Decal

Click in for the details!

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Getting Ready for the Super Bowl of Garden Shows

nwfgs display preparation

Getting ready for the big Northwest Flower and Garden Show that starts next week. All balls are in the air as the display arises from the pre-chaos preparation.

Getting Ready for the Super Bowl of Garden Shows

It really is the Super Bowl for gardeners as the teams of people from all over the industry gather and descend upon downtown Seattle for one week only. Landscapers, independent garden center owners, garden designers, floral designers, growers, nurserymen, authors, clubs, associations and  – well, I probably missed a few people but you get the gist – they join forces to bring you a dose of spring in the middle of winter. If you haven’t been, go. It’s a treat for the senses when you need it most.

Here’s a sneak-peek of our big display for the Small Space Showcase at the fabulous Northwest Flower and Garden Show. It’s a special year for us – it will be our 10th year displaying and it’s the garden-show-debut of our bestselling Gardening In Miniature: Create Your Own Tiny Living Gardens book by Timber Press. We just couldn’t wait any longer to show you a little about what we’ve been up to!

nwfgs display preparation

Big, small, medium and tall. Our display in the Small Space Showcase is going to be all about miniature gardening this year, and jam-packed with only miniature gardens.

See our miniature pot selection here. You can “add sedums” if you need the plants for them if you like.

Find that wee miniature gnome here, up in the store. We stake him so he’ll stay put.

nwfgs display preparation

Something old, something new, something borrowed… no, we’re not getting remarried, it’s the NWFGS! Lol! This photo was from our very first miniature garden scene we made in 2001. An overloaded Scooter, ready for the road and parked in the garden, forces the viewer to create their own story.

Find out more about us and miniature gardening here, on our main website, www.twogreenthumbs.com

See the weird and wonderful miniature garden accessories here up in our Etsy Store.

See our regular line of plants and accessories here in our main, online store, Your Miniature Garden Center.

nwfgs display preparation

We try to include as many new techniques and ideas as we can – and some ol’ favorites too.

Find the adobe garden jar here. 

nwfgs display preparation

Many parts make up the whole. You just hope that you’ve thought of everything but you’ll only know what you’ve missed when you start to set it up at the Convention Center.

This is our 10th year doing this display, and we use this as a place to experiment with new ideas and new plants too. Above, a miniature podocarpus hedge makes a cute backdrop for a miniature vignette. (See the other nine garden displays here on our Flickr album.)

nwfgs display preparation

Our Mini Patio Mix Kit helps keep everything in place. It’s easy and very adaptable. Our formula remains true to scale too, with very fine sand that you can only find here the PNW.

Find the Mini Patio Mix Kit and a great selection of miniature garden patio materials here.

nwfgs display preparation

It’s easy to come up with a bunch of ideas for a display – the harder part is editing down what works, what will deliver the maximum value to the viewer, and, of course, what is the funnest.

nwfgs display preparation

The mess that a big display generates here in our studio is quite impressive. Once the parts and pieces are assembled at the Convention Center on Sunday/Monday – we can clean up, take stock and… breathe.

nwfgs display preparation

We keep our handmade miniature accessories from every year. You’ll be able to see them all in one place in this exhibit. It will be really sweet to see it when it’s done – stay tuned! 

2014 NWFGS Speaker Decal

Come and meet us! I’ll be in the University Bookstore’s booth #211 on Saturday, February 8th after 11 am. (Come early, I’m not sure how long we’ll be there.) AND I’ll be the Hood Room on Sunday, February 9th at 10:45 am talkin’ about miniature garden plants and trees – with lots of NEW eye candy! And here is more info on the garden show website. A book signing follows the talk.

See the Northwest Flower and Garden Show website here. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for a chance to win tickets to the show. 

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Gardening in Miniature book

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Happy Solstice in the Miniature Garden

Great Gifts for the Gardener

Ad-Solstice 2013

Happy Solstice in the Miniature Garden

Part of our series, A Year in the Miniature Garden. Give the gift that can last a lifetime: the joy of miniature gardening!

The winter solstice marks the shortest day of the year. Some celebrate with ceremony and ritual. Others mark the day quietly by lighting a candle and having a quiet moment of thanks.

For me? It’s the halfway point. It signals that it is all downhill from here for two reasons. First, the days will keep getting lighter longer and in good ol’ Seattle, it will soon be spring in the garden.

And second, I’m not much of a winter person and with my family 3000 miles away in Toronto, my holidays tend to be focused on working my retail stores. The normal last “safe” date for shipping for our online stores is usually the 21st.

Time to relax, heal and breathe.

Happy Solstice fellow MGs!

With love from Janit & Steve

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Here are the others in this series:

Thanksgiving in the Miniature Garden 

Halloween in the Miniature Garden

July 4th and Canada Day in the Miniature Garden 

Father’s Day in the Miniature Garden

A Birthday in the Miniature Garden

Mother’s Day in the Miniature Garden

Earth Day in the Miniature Garden

Spring [Easter] in the Miniature Garden

St. Patrick’s Day in the Miniature Garden

Valentine’s Day in the Miniature Garden

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