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Speaking of Nature: Selective mowing: Finding the right balance of how much and how often to cut back the grass
07-09-2024 1:17 PM

By BILL DANIELSON

I think it is safe to say that most everyone is familiar with the notion of something called “No Mow May.” Basically, the concept promotes the idea that all mowing be put on hold during the month of May in order to allow our pollinators to get the...

Displaying articles 1 to 20 out of 41 total.
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A blooming movement: Pollinator gardens proliferate as homeowners, others look to create ecosystems on their properties
06-24-2024 5:36 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

FLORENCE — Morey Phippen and Brian Adams’ yard looks nothing like the traditional blanket of green grass associated with suburban lawns.Instead, bumblebees and butterflies bob and weave around her destined for the nearby foxglove, pink primrose, red...


Valley Bounty: From seed to vase: At Passalongs Farm and Florist in Florence, Adrienne Bashista grows and designs custom floral arrangements
06-21-2024 10:32 AM

By JACOB NELSON

“In a different life, I think I would have been an artist from the beginning,” says Adrienne Bashista, owner of Passalongs Farm and Florist. “I wasn’t forbidden from a career in art, it just didn’t occur to me. But now in my 50s, I’ve realized what I...


Valley Bounty: Pea time is upon us: Dave’s Natural Garden in Granby grows a variety of the seasonal favorite
06-14-2024 11:32 AM

By LISA GOODRICH

After the cold of winter in New England, spring on our region’s farms is a treat for the senses. While locals may argue over whether asparagus or strawberries declare the arrival of spring, Meghan Hastings, owner and farm manager of Dave’s Natural...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: ‘This is my playground’: Saturday’s Northampton Garden Tour grants access to six beautiful home gardens
06-07-2024 12:38 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

I recently heard about a practice called Forest Bathing, which involves spending a few hours in a forest, or at least a sheltered patch of trees, and allowing one’s awareness to settle on all the immediate sensory surroundings. Forest Bathing is...


Panel discusses local efforts to combat sexual exploitation of minors
05-31-2024 2:35 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

GREENFIELD — Authorities in Hampshire and Franklin counties spelled out how they are combating sexual exploitation of minors as part of a community education initiative Wednesday, with experts saying that a special emphasis is placed on fighting...


Sex trafficking documentary to screen at Greenfield Garden Cinemas
05-28-2024 10:42 AM

GREENFIELD — A free screening of the Frontline documentary “Sex Trafficking in America” will be offered at Garden Cinemas on Wednesday, May 29, at 6 p.m.The screening is part of a community education initiative undertaken by the Northwestern District...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: Venture beyond your garden walls: Plant sales and noteworthy gardens to visit this season
05-10-2024 2:56 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

After long weeks of yearning for gardening weather, we’re suddenly inundated by spring. Endless outdoor chores beg for our attention — composting, mulching, edging, scrubbing birdbaths and, at least in my garden beds, pulling out multitudes of maple...


An artist with a green thumb: The creative vision and resilience of Kathleen Chapman, designer of Tuesday Market poster
05-09-2024 3:20 PM

By PAT JAMES

Kathleen Chapman (“KC”) and I met under a clothesline near her patchwork garden behind McDonald House in downtown Northampton. I wanted to learn more about her artwork, what brought her to Northampton, and how she connected with Grow Food Northampton...


Valley Bounty: Your soil will thank you: As garden season gets underway, Whately farm provides ‘black gold’ to many
04-19-2024 11:13 AM

By JACOB NELSON

“Compost is not soil, but it makes your soil better,” says Mike Mahar, owner of Bear Path Compost in Whately. “It adds life to it. If you’re going to take something out of the soil by harvesting, you should put something back in, and compost is...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: What good is an herbarium? Herbariums, like Emily Dickinson’s, are an essential resource for scientists
04-05-2024 2:01 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

The word “herbarium” sounds a bit quaint, even antiquated. We may think of Emily Dickinson’s herbarium, which she created during her year at Mount Holyoke in 1847-48. Although she had begun studying plants at age 9 and was helping her mother in the...


Growing along with the land: Piyush Labhsetwar joins Grow Food Northamton as new farm and land stewardship manager
03-21-2024 2:08 PM

By PAT JAMES

Visiting his great-uncle’s farm in central India was a “magical experience” for Piyush Labhsetwar, Grow Food Northampton’s new farm and land stewardship manager. He relishes memories of picking ripe mangoes and oranges, drinking fresh cow’s milk, and...


Longtime employees buy Kitchen Garden Farm in Sunderland
03-10-2024 10:39 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

SUNDERLAND — The change of the seasons, as farmers know, often brings a slew of other changes along with it, and at Kitchen Garden Farm, this spring brings the largest change of all.Soon, the farm will change hands for the first time since its...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: Become an educated gardener: Three upcoming symposia will answer all your gardening questions
03-08-2024 9:51 AM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

Most of us humans assume that other creatures experience the world through their senses of sound, taste, smell and touch, the same way we do. But we couldn’t be more wrong, as science writer Ed Yong explains in his fascinating new book, “An Immense...


Greening our brains and our thumbs: The many opportunities in the Valley to increase your garden knowledge and skills
02-29-2024 2:22 PM

By PAT JAMES

After moving from the city into a rural home with land 25 years ago, I was excited that the property was mostly bare ground that I could bend to my will and create beautiful gardens over time. As a kid, I’d helped in the garden a lot, so how hard...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: A garden is a canvas: “Painting the Modern Garden: From Monet to Matisse” comes to Amherst Cinema
02-08-2024 1:35 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

As the calendar page flips to the short but cruel month of February, I suspect that many gardeners, like me, are getting tired of the somber palette of gray and brown.Just in time to rescue us from seasonal ennui, a wonderful documentary, “Painting...


If the land could speak: Community gardens on land with social justice roots
01-25-2024 3:54 PM

By PAT JAMES

Community gardens grow on all kinds of land. Many gardens start as derelict lots, long abandoned by owners who sometimes reclaim the property after community gardeners reveal its beauty and productivity.Schools and parks are common sites for community...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: Thoughts of the garden in winter: Gardening has its discouraging moments, yet we persevere
01-12-2024 12:13 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

There’s not a lot going on in my garden, now blanketed under a foot of snow, to inspire this month’s column. So I took a break from dreaming over the spring promise of seed catalogs and went in search of a soul-satisfying poem about the garden in...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: The importance of talking to plants
01-13-2023 4:26 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

A few years ago I was having coffee with my two sisters-in-law at a family gathering in North Carolina. Both of them had recently built new houses and were quizzing me about how to create gardens in the bare dirt surrounding their homes. The question...


Beware of jumping worms: Locals can help thwart invasive found in forests, gardens
10-08-2021 2:38 PM

By EVELINE MACDOUGALL

Those of us lucky enough to live in western Massachusetts sometimes feel at least partly insulated from global crises. Of course, our region is not immune to challenges. Fortunately, the creativity that makes us the envy of visitors helps us find...


Shutesbury designer brings vision and long view to laying out greenspace
09-09-2021 5:05 PM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

SHUTESBURY — Many of us find ourselves puzzling over what to do with a bare yard, or an outdoor space that doesn’t quite work, or even an established garden that has gone “meh.” We want to make a change, but we’re stuck. We might have too many ideas,...

Displaying articles 1 to 20 out of 41 total.
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