Friday, February 28, 2014

Adirondack Stone Works

My Garden Stone... Photograph by Paul Gellatly
Anyone who knows me... knows I rarely like garden decor... I feel as though, for the most part, plants and flowers speak for themselves without accessorizing the garden... There are of course exceptions to every rule...  I have recently discovered Adirondack Stone Works.  Since 2002 this small family business has been perfecting the craft of engraving stone, and creating beautiful natural stone pieces for your home and garden.

Specializing in Garden Stones, and Pet Memorial Stones, Adirondack Stone Works is certainly an amazing company to check out.  With Free Shipping anywhere in the USA, their prices are incredibly reasonable; ranging from 38 to 79 dollars! Although they don't normally ship to Canada... If you mention that you found out about them through this blog... they will arrange shipment to Canada!  Take advantage of this offer Canadian readers!

The possibilities for these stones are endless, they truly are a piece of art for the garden; from address stones, memorials, thank you gifts, and more... there's sure to be something that peaks your interest for the garden.

Growing up in a home where my parents owned a small business, I fully believe in supporting small family run businesses.

Check out their website and purchase a beautiful stone to showcase in your garden, just as I have done.  Their stones are specially chosen, hand chiseled, and deeply engraved and painted with 30 year stone paint... So you will have this piece for many many years to come!

Contact Jeremy or Tavia at and
or at (315) 845-6715 And remember to let them know you found out about them on this blog.

All photographs used with permission from Jeremy and Tavia at Adirondack Stone Works

Friday, February 21, 2014

A Bit About Me...

Photograph by Paul Gellatly "Golden Wing"
Photograph by Trystin Lewis (2014)
It occurred to me that I've been writing this blog for a couple of years now, and haven't really given much background on my horticultural experience.  For as long as I can remember I have been gardening. My father is a gardener, growing up we had flower and vegetable gardens, a rhubarb patch, and an asparagus garden, along with various fruit trees. I remember my grandparents garden, a long rose garden, in front of a rockery with snow in summer (Cerastium tomentosum) that used to ramble over the rocks... and lilac's and a mock orange who's magnificent scents would fill the air.  So I guess you could say I came by my love of horticulture naturally!

Photo by Paul Gellatly
When I was a teenager, I became a member of the Waterloo Horticultural Society, and subsequently ended up becoming a Director of the Waterloo Horticultural Society for a couple of years.  I entered flowers in the flower shows, my garden in the city competition, and attended many conferences and training opportunities.

Photo by Paul Gellatly My garden 2013
I started a small horticultural group that met at a local church monthly, arranged speakers, and often did presentations on various horticultural topics and workshops.. the group grew from a couple of members to a great group of 30 or more people in the matter of a couple of years.  I arranged trips to Rochester, New York to the Lilac Festival, and various gardens throughout Ontario, including the Royal Botanical Gardens, Niagara Botanical Gardens, and Lark Whistle Gardens.  We had a progressive supper each year where we visited different members gardens, and ate some amazing food along the way, and shared our love of horticulture.

I joined the Kitchener -Waterloo Bonsai Society after taking several courses in the art of Bonsai, attended regular Orchid Society meetings, and was a chairman of the Kitchener-Waterloo Aquarium Society.  I surrounded myself with plants in as many aspects of my life as I could.
Photograph by Paul Gellatly

In high school, I became the Environment Controller, on our schools Board of control, and organized the school's tree planting day (planting 100's of trees and shrubs) and local park clean-up.  I was awarded the Rotary Environment Award, presented by David Suzuki.

Photo by Paul Gellatly "Chicago Peace"
I have been lucky enough to travel to the West Coast of Canada and visit several of the public gardens there, Butchart Gardens, Minter Gardens, UBC Botanical Gardens, Vandusen, and Stanley Park, and to the east the Montreal Botanical Gardens, and the Biodome in Quebec, and the Public Gardens in Halifax Nova Scotia.

Photo by Paul Gellatly
Photo by Paul Gellatly 
About 5 years ago I decided to make horticulture my career. And began working multiple jobs; I started working at an amazing garden center (Plant World in Toronto, Ontario) (  Starting in sales and information, then moving to the Perennial Department.  I assist at Stephanie's Country Greenhouse in Cheltenham, Ontario (; getting the greenhouse set up, and annuals and perennials planted for the upcoming season.  I  work as a gardener for the City of Toronto; working in various parks and gardens throughout the city. I also do Landscape Consulting, and have worked on both small and large scale projects. I am very lucky to work with an amazing group of people who have such vast knowledge and varied experiences, I can't help but learn a lot along the way.  I am truly blessed to be working, and making a living, in the field that I love.

About a year ago I started a horticultural networking group on Facebook, that has just passed 1100 members... and continues to grow daily!  If you're on facebook and want to join. here's the link...

Photograph by Paul Gellatly 
I have immersed myself in the field of Horticulture, and have been walking along the path...  Enjoying every moment, learning, teaching, and networking.  This past year I moved into a house in Mississauga, (only renting) and immediately started planning my garden.  This past summer my garden became an unofficial stop on a local garden tour, and gathered lots of interest and comments from everyone who passed by.

I continue to walk along the path of horticulture and invite you to follow along and enjoy the view!

This blog has now been viewed over 140 000 times, in over 90 countries! Thank you for following along, sharing it with family and friends and making the blog so successful!  

Photograph by Paul Gellatly "Abelmoschus Manihot"

Monday, February 10, 2014

Phoenix Perennials

Every new year renews my interest and excitement for the upcoming season.  In January I start looking at different mail-order companies, seeing what everyone has chosen as their new plants for the upcoming season.  Every once in a while i'm thoroughly impressed at the quality, and selection some companies carry.

One such company is Phoenix Perennials.  Their selection of unique and rare plants available for sale will definitely interest the novice and experienced gardeners alike.  They have a great selection of over 4000 Perennials, Shrubs, Vines, Grasses, and Sub-tropical Plants.

It doesn't take long going through the website to see that Gary Lewis, owner of Phoenix Perennials, has amazing taste in plants, and goes out of his way to find unique and beautiful options for people looking for exciting new plants for their gardens. Since 2001 Gary has been providing a unique alternative to commonly available plants.

When ordering from a mail-order company, ensure to check your growing zone.  Many plants may be considered hardy where the company is based, but may only be considered an annual, or sub-tropical where you are located.  A reputable company will list the hardiness zone for each plant listed on their site.

With prices that will surprise you, and an incredible variety of unique plants, there's sure to be something for everyone.  I'm putting together my order... you should too!

You can find Phoenix perennials online at:
Connect with them on Facebook:
All photo's are used with permission from Phoenix Perennials and Specialty Plants Ltd.
3380 No. 6 Road | Richmond, BC | V6V 1P5
Email: mailorder at
Phone and Fax: 604-270-4133