Many years ago, more years than I care to admit, an editor of a nationwide magazine (GreenPrints) bought an article from me. I was thrilled. This was my first sale to a national magazine. Pat Stone, Editor of GreenPrints “The Weeder’s Digest”, was that editor.
GreenPrints is not your ordinary garden magazine. There is almost no “how to garden” in its pages. It is filled with the truth and consequences of gardening, not much “how” but a lot of “why.”
There was a particularly funny story in the GreenPrints anniversary issue ten years ago, called Don’t Worry Dear! I’m only going to the Garden Center by Martine Caselli. Her trip to the garden center for a little cell pack of sweet basil, and her husband’s admonishments, hit hilariously close to home for me. I, too, am often overcome by “Must Haves” when I shop.
Pat Stone is our guest writer this week. His little magazine, books of short stories really, is now twenty years old. Happy Birthday!
For 20 years now, I’ve been creating GreenPrints, “The Weeder’s Digest,” the only magazine that shares the personal side of gardening. For 20 years, I’ve chosen every single story and edited every single wordevery moment of inspiration, every twist of humor, every touch of wistfulness. I’ve become America’s folklorist of gardening stories, collecting and sharing gardeners’ experiences from all over the countryand the world.
It’s been a truly rewarding journey. Gardening has so much to teach us about life, about taking care of plants, learning to accept our mistakes (you know, eating a little humble sod), and caring for each other. It’s been a great blessing to create a magazine that shares all this.
But, where did it come from? People often ask how I got the idea to create a human, not a how-to, garden magazine.
There’re two answers to that question, one “outer,” the other “inner.”
Outer? I needed a job. I used to be the Garden Editor for Mother Earth News magazine. For 12 years, I told people when to prune their raspberries (any month with an “r” in it) and how to keep cabbage moths off broccoli (floating row covers or b.t.). Then we learned that our entire magazine staff was about to be laid off. I wanted to stay in gardening and publishing, but I did not want to move my family from the wonderful mountain community we call home. That meant starting my own publication. But, I couldn’t compete with all the excellent how-to magazines out there.
Inner? All that gardening advice I’d been sharing for years was beginning to feel, well, inadequate. Sure, we never stop needing useful instructionit’s the backbone of gardening. But not its soul. We garden for food and flowers. But we also garden for the rewards we get inside. Yet very little was being written about that. So, I got the inspiration to create something nobody else was doing, a magazine sharing the personal side of gardening.
And now, two decades later, we’re celebrating our 20th anniversary with an extra special issue, filled with the best stories and art I could find. It’s a wonderful, wonderful issue. I’m grateful for the chance to share it. If there’s a theme to the 20th anniversary GreenPrints, it’s warmth. GreenPrints has always been an intimate sharing among gardeners. Something quiet at times, laugh-out-loud at others, but always welcoming and personal, like a friend whose door is always open.
There’s also a flower for the issuethe 20th anniversary flowerthe daylily. There’s a story in this issue about “Johnny Lilyseed,” a man who goes around planting daylilies all over his rural Massachusetts town. That’s what I tried to do in the issue. Plant the best dayliliesuh, storiesI could, to bring some wonderful moments of warmth and color to people’s lives.
I hope you’ll enjoy it.
Go to: https://greenprints.com/ to subscribe to GreenPrints magazine. When you subscribe this spring, your first magazine will be the Twentieth Anniversary issue.
All articles are copyrighted and remain the property of the author.
This year GardenSMART embarks on one of our most exciting adventures ever and we'd love to have you join us! We are partnering with Alki Tours and spending 10 days visiting some of the most amazing sites in Holland and Belgium. Many of these gardens are my favorite horticultural destinations in the world. If you are a plant lover, this trip is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Jump into Spring with savings up to $2200 on this Exclusive Cruise of the Rivers of Holland & Belgium with Eric Johnson Host of GardenSMART from PBS
Sail right into the pages of a storybook on our European garden tour through Holland and Belgium.
MAY 6-16, 2018
As low as $3799 per person/do, Price includes airfare from New York, Atlanta, Seattle, Chicago. CALL FOR OTHER CITIES THROUGHOUT THE USA
Watch filming and be part of the fun, telling your favorite...and not so favorite Dirty Tales.
2 Nights Amsterdam & 7 Nights River. Visit Amsterdam, Holland, Belgium, Kinderdijk, Antwerp, Bruges, Keukenhof Gardens, Rotterdam and More!
This Exclusive, Five-Star, Cruise & Garden Tours Vacation Includes:
2 nights in Amsterdam including gorgeous hotel, wonderful tours and daily breakfast
7 nights on the new, flagship Amadeus Silver III river cruise ship
Incredible excursions in Arnhem, Kinderdijk, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Ghent, Bruges and Utrecht
All of your meals on board the ship, including wine with dinner