"One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it brings."

Monday, March 23, 2009

Putting faces to names.

Hellebore seedlings on their way to the meeting.

I had a great day yesterday meeting people I felt like I already knew.  The gathering was the second SAGBUTT (Seattle Area Garden Bloggers United to Talk) meeting.  This was the first one I was able to attend.  It was fun to be able to put faces to names and everyone was very friendly and had so much garden knowledge.  
Paula from Petunia's Garden did a great job of having the meeting planned and was very organized!  She brought snacks, envelopes for seeds, plant pots, aloe vera divisions, coffee grounds and more I'm sure I forgot.  We all introduced ourselves and told a little about ourselves and what we've already gotten started from seed this spring.  It seems most everyone had started something or was getting ready to.  The Gardeness from Garden Muse was there, as was "Molly" from Life on Tiger Mountain, Karen from Greenwalks, Bob from Bobsgarden.com, Curmudgeon from Weed Whackin' Wenches and our international guest Matron from Down on the Allotment, and her friend Debbie was there as well.   
A few things I learned today:  
  • They don't have planting zones in the U.K. like we do in the United States, and Matron told us the climate where she lives is very similar to Washington state.  
  • I learned that giving your seedlings their daily "exercise" would help them to grow stronger.  It's the movement that helps, and anything from gently flexing them to having a fan blowing would help.  I never knew that even seedlings needed a workout!  "No pain No produce" must be their workout motto.
  • I learned that "liming" your peas is something to help them grow better. 
  • Freezing echinacea seeds in ice cubes helps them to germinate more easily.
  • Old water cooler bottles make excellent cloches.  
  • Feeding your seedling chamomile tea is reported to help prevent damping off.
  • And more that I probably forgot to write down.   
Paula also showed us a great book "The New Seed Starters Handbook" by Nancy Bubel.  It has lots of great information in it, and one I plan to buy.
Then it was time for a seed and plant swap.  There was so much to choose from and everyone was extremely generous like all gardeners seem to be.
Look at just some of what I came home with!!  
We spent almost 3 hours talking and swapping and I'm sure it would've gone on longer if we didn't have to leave the room we used at the Bellevue Public Library.
We discussed when and where our next meeting would be.  It will be on Earth Day which is April 18th and Curmudgeon and Wingnut are setting up the details.
I want to say "Thank You!" again to everyone!  I had a great time and I'm looking forward to the next meeting.
Pin It


  1. what a great time! i wish i could attend something like this. someday.

  2. A fantastic experience. Wish we had something like that here. It is something that maybe I and a couple of friends set up. Very useful information. Thanks for sharing this experience. Becca

  3. ROFL over the "No pain, no produce" exercise motto for little seedlings! It was such fun to meet you.

  4. Wish I had been there! You guys sure spoiled each other. I love to hear about these sorts of things and then to know everyone is even more fun. Good for ya'll.

  5. I wish I could have been there, but work got in the way of my play. Sighhh!

  6. You can learn so much from joining a garden club. The ladies in my club have helped me out tremendously. I did freeze my echinacea, and it has not yet sprouted. I planted it 5 weeks or so ago. All the other seeds have come up except these. I am beginning to worry that they may not come up.

  7. How fun to actually "meet" other garden bloggers. I feel like I "know" some whose blogs I've been reading for quite a while now but I've no idea what they look like! Sounds like a great time to me. Maybe I could organize such a thing in my state? I'll have to see how many other Colorado garden bloggers there are....

  8. Sounds like a great day. I bet it's great meeting people you feel you already know at such get togethers.

  9. I am looking for the faces? Is this a SAGBUTT thing no faces? If so, it is okay but it is ever so nice to 'meet' the folks behind the blogs too. Glad you all had a great time. This is so good to be able to meet up regularly. We Tennessee bloggers have gotten together a few times, but not regularly. Hopefully soon though! I bet each meeting will become more smashing than the last and how wonderful to have an international guest. I did not know England did not have zones. You learn something new each day.

  10. flowrgirl1 - I'm glad that I got to go, it was a lot of fun.

    Becca - It might be fun to try and set one up. Maybe on your blog you could find out how many local bloggers would be interested.

    Curmudgeon - It was great to meet you too, and nothing curmugeonly about you, you were very nice!

    Anna- We sure did get spoiled. Today I need to get some of these things planted.

    keewee - I hope you can make it next time!! April 18th!

    Dirt Princess - It's amazing how much you can learn in such a little time with experienced gardeners. I hope your echinacea grows for you!

    Kathleen - I think you should try, it was fun to have a face to match with a name!

    Rob - It was great and look at all the plants I got too!

    Tina - We only had one group shot and it will probably be on Petunia's Garden. I don't think anyone was camera shy, we talked so much we ran out of picture taking time :)
    I'd love to hear about the next time you Tennessee gardeners get together.

  11. We always post about it Catherine. I will have to check out Petunia's blog. I'd love to put faces to names. I know those 3 hours just FLEW by for you and can understand running out of picture time. ttyl

  12. I'm a little jealous - that sounds like so much fun! I'll have to check the map again, but so far I can't find any other blotanists from Spokane. I searched google for other local gardening blogs last week and couldn't find any of them, either. Spokane has 2 strikes against it, being neither an especially tech-savvy nor gardening-crazy area. Maybe I'll change all that with my little blog ;-)

  13. Sounds like you have a lovely day! And you got some lovely plants to swap as well! Fab!!!

    Bet it was lovely to put faces to names!

    Glad you have a lovely day!!

    Linzi x x

  14. Tina - Have a great day. Hope your weather is better than ours today!

    VW - I think your blog is great, maybe it will inspire some Spokane area gardeners to start a blog. Maybe you'll be in town on a weekend that we have a meeting, it would be fun to meet you in person!

    Linzi - It was great. I was out planting the garlic today and seeds to start today as well!

  15. It looks and sounds like you all have a wonderful time! What a great idea and love those little tidbits!

  16. Wow, looks like a lot of fun and all that new stuff you traded with your pals is just a bonus. Fun stuff!

  17. Oh yeah, I keep forgetting to ask where you got that cool "contact me" button? I would love to copy the idea if you don't have a problem with that or I could find one that didn't look the same. I just can't seem to find anything like it.
    Thanks in advance

  18. What a fabulous opportunity to share ideas, plants and fun! The book sounds great too.

  19. Sounds like a great group! And they would be, they're all gardeners! It's great to see your group take off so well!

  20. Susie - We did have fun, and I learned a lot!

    Heather - I just planted some of my new seeds and plants. Tessa helped me with the contact me and email. I opened a new email account and then cut and pasted into the html code she sent me. I'm sure she'd help you too.

    Mildred - The book had a lot of great info in it, and I have a lot to learn about seed starting.

    Tessa- I wish you lived closer so you could meet with us too. Maybe you and Grace could start one?

  21. Catherine, It was great meeting you.
    I look forward to our next SAGBUTT meeting. I'll have lots of starts for everyone. As far as the sweetpeas go, I'm sure I'll have a few extra to share with you. So don't worry about starting any unless you need more than ten.

    All the best, BOB

  22. How exciting! I see you learnt a lot and thank you for sharing the info :)

  23. It was wonderful to finally meet you Catherine! Thanks again for the awesome Corsican, too. Hope I can make the next meeting before we leave on vaca. How is later this week for getting together, btw?

  24. Hi Catherine - Wonderful to meet you in person after reading so much about your garden and family! Thanks so much for the hellebore, I'm going to find a space for it this week and hope it does okay here. Great write-up, and what fun to get to hear what everyone's getting started with (except me, ahem). Hope to see you again on 4/18!

  25. Neato! I know you had a great time, and what wonderful tips! The plants look healthy too.

  26. I saw a photo of your upbeat get together on Melanthia's blog a day or 2 ago. It looks (and sounds) like so much fun. I'm glad you guys are forging ahead, sharing gardening info and friendship!

  27. Bob - Great to meet you too! I'm not sure if I'll make the next meeting or not, but if I do I'd be glad to have some sweet peas, thanks!

    Chandramouli - You're welcome :) Maybe you'll be our international guest sometimes.

    Melanthia - Great meeting you too! I hope the corsican grows great for you. Maybe Monday would be best for us, the end of the week got busy. I'll give you a call.

    Karen - It was great to meet you too. I've got my sign all ready to put outside today, thanks for bringing them. This year I went a little more seed crazy than usual, I just don't have any room for them inside.

    Darla - I've been planting and still have more to go. You can only imagine what you learn from a room full of gardeners.

    Jan - I wish we would've had a little more time for people pictures, but we talked and swapped so much...It was fun to meet people who are as excited about gardens as I am.

  28. What a fabulous connection with those gardeners! I too wish there were more opportuninites to meet up with like minded individuals here. Learning those tips was invaluable. In particular, the echinacea seeds in ice cubes! Thanks for all of them. :-)
    no pain no produce should be copyrighted!!! It's brilliant!

  29. Frances - Wouldn't be amazing to gather up all the knowledge the garden bloggers have and put it in a book? It would be gigantic!
    I haven't given my seeds their exercise yet, I do want tomatoes from them so I better get to work!

  30. What a great opportunity to meet up with other gardeners like this! I'm reading the SAGBUTT posts now and feel you all are sooo lucky!

  31. Ditto everything that everyone above has said! I now have some dark red yard-long beans to go with my green ones!! Great to meet you all!

  32. It sounds like you had a great time, and came away with some great information and stuff. Cool!


Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and leave a comment. I try my very best to answer any questions you may have, but usually don't have time to respond to each comment. Please leave a link to your blog so I can visit you in return.