Monday, March 24, 2014

The New York Botanical Garden and Garden Glamour announce Winner of Botanical Garden Quiz

The New York Botanical Garden’s (NYBG) Adult Education team recently hosted a fun, informative, and “lucrative” botanical garden quiz with Garden Glamour. 

While garden enthusiasts are plant nerds at heart and love and enjoy the sport of knowing their botanical nomenclature and showing their Linnaean prowess, the winner was also able to win $25 prize toward a NYBG class or lecture. 

Garden Glamour readers and social media fans (Twitter: @gardenglamour, Pinterest: and Instagram: ) - especially plant lovers, horticulturists, and garden designers, were invited to take a botanical garden quiz prepared by the Garden’s botanists.
The green quiz consisted of a plant identification and answering four multiple choice horticulture questions about the mystery plant. 

Garden Quiz Winner

Jean Galle is named the winner of the quiz contest!
Jean is a garden landscape designer, garden artist and serious plant enthusiast. 
Jean’s New York-metro area landscape design business is: Landscape Artistry by JGalle  

Jean Galle, Landscape Artistry by JGalle & Garden Glamour - NYBG Botanical Garden Quiz Winner

Jean earned a Master of Science in Landscape Design, Columbia University and a Certificate in Horticulture from The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG).

Jean earned a Master of Science in Landscape Design, Columbia University and a Certificate in Horticulture from The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG).
She belongs to several, key, horticultural professional associations, including the Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD), the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) and Metro Hort: an association of horticulture professionals in the Tri-State area.

Recently, one of her “mini-scape” designs was recognized with an “Excellence” award by the Long Island Nursery & Landscape Association  (LINLA)

A former fashion designer, Jean designs artful and colorful gardens, as well as botanical art.

Garden Karma
Jean also possesses a special “Plant Pedigree,” if you will.

Her uncle is Fred C. Galle, an esteemed horticulturalist who also wrote the definitive, textbook compendium of native azalea plants, Azaleas.

The book details all the species of azaleas – more than 6,000 cultivars – and tips on growing these charming plants in the garden, landscaping with them and companion plants.

So it seems that her ability to ID the plant featured in the Garden Glamour/NYBG botanical quiz is equal parts acquired plant knowledge gleaned from careful hort study, as well as some romantic element that has its roots in the Lowland area of the South, where her uncle discovered and wrote about growing azalea…

Landscape Artistry by JGalle

Special Mention “winner” is Mel.  Mel doesn’t win a prize except for our grateful, garden appreciation!  And a green salute to his “Honest Abe” mirth.

Check out Mel’s great garden designs:
Zone4 Landscapes Ltd.

P.O. Box 244, Andes, NY  13731

Garden Glamour Botanical Quiz

To recap, these were the questions, followed here, by the correct answers.  Enjoy!

1. What is the scientific name of this plant? You can include the common name if you wish but we are looking for the scientific name.

1. Answer:  Oconee Bells, Shortia galacifolia  

2. Name one state to which the plant is native. (North Carolina, Georgia, Virginia)

2. Answer: This delicate tiny plant is an evergreen - Native of North Carolina but also found in Georgia and South Carolina

3. Does it thrive in sunny sites or shady sites?

3. Answer: Shade

4. Would it grow best in a dry, arid environment, or moist one?

4. Answer: on slopes and likes it moist - thrives even by stream banks-very rare

    5. When does this plant bloom?

     A. Early spring
     B. Early summer
     C. Mid-summer
     D. Late summer
     E. Autumn

5. Answer: Bloom time spring - Late March/Early April

NYBG Classes
   Check out these suggested class offerings. And just follow the link to enroll.

Fundamentals of Gardening      

Integrated Pest Management

Container Gardening 

You can browse all classes at

The New York Botanical Garden has just released a new season of classes for Spring- Summer 2014.  
And the butterfly collage on the website and catalog cover sets the tone.

NYBG is on a mission to help people garden more efficiently and sustainably and to train you to be the best gardener you can be.  
This term, NYBG is renewing their focus on eco-friendly gardening practices, with classes on sustainable pest control, watering smartly, planting pollinator-friendly and native plants in the garden, and more.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Happy First Day of Spring & Sneak Peek of Home & Garden Lifestyle Trends at Architectural Digest Home Show #ADHDS2014

Cheers to new beginnings – and to glamour in the garden.

Soon we will be lustily shoving our hands into the earth, planting, sitting outdoors, listening to the birds and the breezes whispering to us.

What will this year’s garden design trends?  What will your “garden rooms” wear?

To better answer the garden design queries – and for unparalleled inspiration to create an arcadian outdoor lifestyle, I’m off to the queen of all design shows. 
D'Apostrophe Renson design

Today marks the 13th annual Architectural Digest Home Design Show - March 20–23 at Pier 94 in New York City. #ADHDS2014

It’s press preview day – we start with “Marys & Mimosas!” then lots of sneak peaks, guided tours, and interviews with designers and makers.

The show is a platform for inspiring new ideas in the home design and luxury market.

Open to consumers and trade starting tomorrow, Saturday, visitors can expect to find innovative designs for indoors and out, including furniture, accessories, art, kitchen and bath products, carpet, stone and tile, lighting, and more.  
Kalamazoo outdoor pizza oven

The 2014 line up includes a well-balanced mix of returning exhibitors and emerging brands.  
I have my prepared schedule all ready of those designers and makers I want to see.

An equally rich seminar series complements the fresh crop of offerings. Held in the Jenn-Air Master Class Studio, the roster includes industry influencers, top tastemakers, and design-world luminaries such as Jamie Drake, Campion Platt, Mario Buatta, Alexa Hampton, Kati Curtis and Stephen Fanuka.

Show Highlights Include:

I am very keen to check this out: The reFRESH pavilion, a central place for kitchen, bath, and building products manufacturers to reveal their latest advancements. The show-within-the-show will include new products from more than 100 premier kitchen and bath brands, plus culinary demonstrations and tastings by top chefs. A curated selection of limited-edition, one-of-a-kind fine art, furnishings, photography, and lighting as well as today’s top young design talents in the MADE section, almost half of which hail from New York. 

Bosch and Thermador will be at the Architectural Digest Home Design Show to preview their newest appliances. Earlier this month, Bosch announced an entirely new kitchen line (available in April) that will set a new benchmark in kitchen design, while Thermador unveiled two new surface cooking products that feature industry-leading design: the Professional Grill (available in August) and the trimless Freedom Induction Cooktop (available in April).

The only showcase of its kind in North America, reFRESH has become the largest collection of luxury and premium kitchen, bath, and building products from more than 100 companies.  Experience new innovations and product launches in categories such as ovens, ranges, cooktops, ventilation, bath and decorative hardware, cabinetry, countertops, stone, tile, flooring, windows and doors, and more.
A Furniture + Furnishings section showcasing a wide range of contemporary and classic furniture, lighting, carpets, decorative arts, textiles and more.

This too will also be a must-see: A new Outdoor Pavilion featuring product demonstrations and curated lounge spaces from leading brands including Sunbrella, Royal Botania, Renson, Caliber, Stuv and American Range and Pennoyer & Newman - one of my most favorite urn and container makers.

The Jenn-Air Master Class Studio—the show’s theater—featuring exclusive programming by Architectural Digest and the New York Times, including trade seminars programmed by Architectural Digest, a keynote presentation by Architectural Digest Editor in Chief Margaret Russell, and a three-day New York Times Designer Seminar Series.
The debut of the Shops at ADHDS where products from Cire Trudon, The Cooper-Hewitt Museum Shop, DwellStudios + All Modern, Christophe Pourney, The American Design Club and more are available for immediate purchase.

The launch of ASID Designer Walks – a series of tours (Friday-Sunday 11:30AM, 1:30PM, 3:30PM) led by a highly acclaimed interior designer who will share their insights, expertise, favorite finds, and tricks of the trade as they walk the show floor,
Satori Japan
An increased international presence, including exhibitors from Italy, Spain, Belgium, New Zealand, and the UK, to name a few.

Finally, after looking under every new kitchen sink or outdoor pizza oven, trying out the integrity of garden furniture and gauging the plant practicality of the new urns and containers, it will be time for refreshments!
Cocktails, happy hours, culinary demonstrations and tastings throughout the show floor.

More than 45 incredibly designed, over-the-top, and inspiring table installations at DIFFA’s DINING BY DESIGN NY

These juried galleries feature the stunning work of more than 150 artists and designers–more than half of them exhibiting for the first time. Local and emerging artisans alongside international studios are showing the newest in original art, tablescapes, ceramics, glass, fine furniture, sculpture, textiles, and lighting. Shop MADE to find work that, in many cases, is not available elsewhere.

For more show information and to get tickets to the Architectural Digest Home Show:

Stay tuned – I’ll be reporting throughout the day on Twitter @GardenGlamour and later here and on Pinterest.

Stop and "smell" the crocus and snowdrops today! At least thrill to their drifts...

Monday, March 17, 2014

Snow & St. Patrick’s Day = the Pot of Gold at the End of the Rainbow

Like peanut butter & jelly, Romeo & Juliet, and well, Baileys and coffee, an often little-known match made in paradise is snow and peas.

It’s a day for “wearin’ the green” – and the true green is to be found, where? 
In the garden.

Here is a March Mash-Up that is a sure-fire garden success.

Some have confused the St. Patrick’s calendar-marker and think it’s the day to plant the seeds.

Good gardeners know the old adage:  “Plant your pea seeds in Mid-March – by St. Paddy’s and then pray for snow on St. Patrick’s Day.”  (Or near enough to the calendar date)

So this could be the best year ever for our peas! 
Last year was a winning tandem mash-up too.

Last week, we checked the weather forecast; and tickled with the pending snow scheduled for St. Patrick’s Day in the Mid-Atlantic/New York area, we planted our pea seeds.

This morning, we woke to a blanket of snow. 

Blanket is the operating word here.
Snow brings nourishment and insulation to the soil

March Madness

This is not some beer or Jameson-infused garden hallucination.

Rather, the snow blanket tucks in those newly-planted seeds, keeping them warm and snug; content too because they know that warm spring sun will warm them soon enough.

We use Burpee ( and other cool or early seed varieties found at our local hardware store.

We plant our pea legume seeds spaced along the edible garden’s fence – perfect for trellising the pea tendrils – and further – they are so pretty to look at.  You can also easily plant peas in your containers.

photo courtesy: Butte in the Farm

So, cheers to the March Mash-Up. 

And now you can sit back, enjoy the St. Patrick’s Day parade and a day of Erin Go Braugh Food & Drink. 
See my Examiner story on Re-Discovered vintage Irish whisky cocktails to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in grand style – and sipping your drink with the smug knowledge that beer and whiskey are plant-based beverages. 
In fact, Whiskey is fermented beer!


Peas, Please.

Soon enough, you will be harvesting your oh-so-tasty peas.  
photo courtesy: Gookosystem

In the meantime, you can prepare to make this scandalously-good Pea Soup Recipe from my cookbook, The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook.

This recipe is from Chef Jason Weiner, chef and co-owner of Almond restaurants – located in both Bridgehampton and New York City:

English Pea and Mint Soup with a Parmesan Flan and Smoked Bacon 
photo courtesy: Food & Wine

Yield: 6

First make the Soup Base:

4 Large Leeks (white part only, split in half and thoroughly rinsed—they can be sandy)
1 Large Russet Potato (peeled and medium diced)
1/4 Stick of Butter
1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
1 Sprig Each of Thyme, Parsley, and Tarragon
1 Bay Leaf
1 Rib Celery
1 Quart Chicken Stock (if using a store-bought product dilute with half water)
1/4 Cup Crème Fraiche
Salt and White Pepper to taste

·      In a heavy bottom pot on a low flame put the butter, leeks, potatoes, a couple pinches of salt.
·      Stir often with a wooden spoon until the potatoes and leeks become translucent. You don’t want the vegetables to take on any color so attention and a low flame are important.
·      Add the wine.
·      Tie up the herbs and bay leaf in a bundle with butcher’s twine and add to the pot.
·      When the wine is no longer releasing an alcohol aroma add the stock.
·      Simmer until the potatoes are soft.
·      Take the herbs out of the pot.
·      Puree in a blender with the crème fraiche. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Sometimes the soup needs a squeeze of lemon as well.

Now make the Pea puree:

2 cups shelled English peas
2 nice handfuls baby spinach
Salt to taste

·      Blanch the peas until they are tender in a pot of heavily salted water. Immediately transfer them to a blender.
·      Now quickly blanch the spinach in the same water.
·      Now puree the spinach and peas with about a cup of the soup base.  Cool immediately to maintain the vibrant color.

The Flans:

1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
2 yolks
Salt and white pepper.
Cooking spray

·      Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
·      In a sauce pot, bring the cream to a simmer. Whisk in the cheese and let reduce slightly. 
·      Put your yolks in a mixing bowl.
·      Slowly whisk the cream into the yolks. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper
·      Spray six 2 oz. Ramekins or shot glasses. Divide the flan mixture among the molds. Put the flans in a hot water bath, cover with a couple layers of plastic wrap and put in the oven on the middle shelf.
·      Cook until the flans are set up—about a half hour or so.


1/4 cup bacon lardons
1/4 cup homemade croutons
1 tablespoon mint chiffonade

·      Divide the mint, bacon, and croutons into six warm soup bowls
·      In the center of each bowl place one flan.
·      In a saucepot, warm the soup base. Whisk in the pea puree.
·      Either serve the bowls as they are and serve the soup tableside, or divide the soup into bowls and serve.

And to learn more about Gardening, Register for the Spring classes at The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG)

Fundamentals of Gardening:

Be sure to enter the fun NYBG – Garden Glamour quiz – you can win $25