Sunday, August 29, 2010

Life in the Blogosphere - What a Wild Ride!

It's another + 90 degree day in IL, so I opted to do my 'gardening' on the Blogosphere instead of pulling dandelions out of the gardens (they'll be there tomorrow...).  I've gotten a little sentimental (Ok, a lot) and have been taking a short trip down memory lane.....

The 'Blogosphere'
(Image from the creative minds at Google)
A mere 7 months ago, this place called the Blogosphere barely registered on my radar screen.  It was an untapped world...  A friend recommended creating a blog as a forum for my 'gardening journey' (thanks Anita!).  I was reconstructing the greenery in my yard - so why not document the work, since I was starting from scratch.   There is NO WAY I could have had a clue what doors ( ...avenues ...roadways ...networks) it would open?!!!

"OMG - NO way!"
The garden blogging community reaches far and wide.  You folks are amazing, creative and generous.  There have been online mentors, like Jean:  Jean's Garden (ME). She was my very first garden blogger who left a comment, suggested joining garden blog communities like:  Blotanical and generously featured me on her blog list "Blogs of the Month" in March 2010.  She is a 'power blogger' and has introduced so many garden blogs to the community.

Who knew you could actually FIND a graphic like this on Google-Image?!!
There are veteran gardeners like: Dakota Garden (SD) and:  Hoe and Shovel (FL) that came by, sharing 'construction/renovation' projects of their own.

"Home" September 2007
(There had been gardens in there - somewhere!?!)
There are bloggers that make me laugh out loud (humor in gardening - how cool is that?), like:  Crystal Coast Gardener  (NC) and: The Idiot Gardener (who hails from the UK).

...laughing out loud...
There are garden bloggers that encourage and rally fellow gardeners with comments and memes, like: Garden In Paradise  (FL), Deb's Garden (GA), May Dreams Garden (IN) and Thanks for Today (VA).

Nurturing new growth
There are garden bloggers who's focus is on native and eco-friendly gardening:  Leaping GreenlyMr. McGregor's Daughter and Restoring the Landscape with Native Plants ... and garden bloggers that bring regional flair to the Blogosphere: Dung hoe (CO),  The Deep Middle (NB), Deborah's Garden (FL), A Gardener in Progress (WA) illic est haud equus quoque mortuus barruo (OH)  and Obsessive Neurotic Gardener (NJ).
International garden bloggers are fascinating to a semi-native Midwest girl like me -- and opened up a world 'far, far, away', like My Dry Tropics Garden (Australia),  Gippsland Gardener (Australia), Elephant's Eye Garden (Africa) and Our French Garden (France).  I love that Australia is enjoying the opposite season we do!  As the Americas and United Kingdom head into fall, friends in Australia are heading into spring.

Illinois topo
(courtesy of
Then there are the artisan gardeners - those folks that bring a whole different expertise right to PC's like mine!  They have businesses, master certifications, websites and Facebook pages!  Blogs like:  Curbstone Valley Farms (CA),  The Galloping Gardener (UK), Gardens of Petersonville (CA)  Recreating Eden Landscape (GA),  Stone Art Blog (IRE) and Wall Flower Studio Seeds (CAN).

Speaking of artisans, gardens aren't the only place to find magic.  A gifted man here in Illinois designs and creates custom furniture - the likes I have never seen.  Barry uses the original tools of the trade - carried through the centuries.  In your online travels, check out his website:  Barry Newstat Furniture (IL)

Visit "Barry Newstat Furniture"
(A phenomenal artisan who makes custom furniture here in IL)
So now you know - this is how my mind wraps itself around the garden bloggers I follow and read, kind of by categories .  (I need a bit of structure, otherwise my mind might implode!).  There are many, many more talented, inspiring garden bloggers out there... I recently found: This Grandmother's Garden.  It's a whole new world - I promise I will be exploring more!

A few weeks ago, I added the "Blog Hop" gadget to my blog page (thanks to the Obsessive Neurotic Gardener).  As of this moment it's up to 123 blogs listed.  It's opened up another whole new door of blog links, and I've only hit the tip of the 'iceberg' on this resource.  I checked out the following blog link, and it got me started on another thought process - antique finishes in the garden:  Bella's Rose Cottage - Gazebo tour.  I am not super girly, with lace and bows, but I really appreciate clever design - Bella's Gazebo is so well done.
I love that the Blogosphere makes this BIG old world just a bit smaller!  (I have so much to learn... and SO much more garden work to be done...  D@mn dandelions!)   

...Happy gardening....     --Shyrlene


  1. Such a great post. It's all so, so true ... the blogging world is fascinating, intriguing, entertaining, informative and just downright fun. It's amazing how we gardeners across the world can enter each other's lives, albeit virtually, and feel like we have a garden of friends.

    Thanks you kindly for mentioning my blog ... and you have highlighted so many brilliant bloggers that are worthy of great praise. I feel privileged to be mentioned.

    You did however forget to mention just how great your own blog is ... it's definitely one of my favourites. Even though I don't always leave a comment, I always visit regularly. Keep on blogging!

  2. Hello Shyrlene, while Australia might sound far away and exotic to you, the Midwest is only somewhere that I can imagine, and I have quite a romantic image of it!
    Thank you for the lovely mention :)

  3. Good morning Shyrlene,
    It is truly amazing how blogging opens up the world on so many levels. I never knew when I started blogging back in 2007 that anyone would blog about gardening. Little did I know. It's been great getting to know you and your garden via this method. I can't wait to see all the progress you make in your renovation.

    Thanks ever so for the mention. It DOES make the worls a little smaller and yet there are SO many blogs to love it's difficult sometimes to keep up.

    Great post,

  4. Dear Shyrlene,
    I confess to not being as 'encouraging' to other bloggers as you say...due to being distracted from blog visiting for most of the summer. I am quite honored to be among those you highlight in your blog. Not sure I deserve the mention but I appreciate it:-) I am glad you have been enjoying your time in the garden 'blogosphere' really is a whole new world and there are so many lovely gardening souls out here! I hope to stop by and visit you more often after the summer winds down and I will (hopefully) have more time for just that sort of thing! I enjoy the blogs you mentioned and they are indeed inspirational! There are a couple I haven't become acquainted with yet so thank you for bringing them to light, as well!

  5. Hi, Shyrlene! I love this post, and not because you so graciously mentioned my blog in it!! :) (Thank you! You're awesome!!) You've listed some blogs that I've either not visited or have not visited lately. I also like the blog hop..great resource! I've found several new blogs from the hop already!! If only I had more time (and less dandelions, right?!)!

    I really enjoy YOUR blog...always something new going on. Isn't it great how a renovation project never really gets completed...the garden type, I mean (not so great if it's your bathroom or kitchen). I'm looking forward to your continued progress!!

  6. Ain't technology grand? ;) Thanks for the shout out! I look forward to many more of your visits and truly appreciate your readership. The blogosphere is truly an infinite source of information, inspiration, and friendship. Glad to have found you. :) - Nancy@Leaping Greenly

  7. Blogging really is amazing, it's the penpal system of the 21st Century. It inspires and depletes the wallet. I'm always interested in what's going on in gardens in my area, so finding your blog was such a treat. Thanks for the shout out!

  8. Thank you! Link, link, link. I do, but you are one of the few that I can thank in turn.
    Here is a challenge to your d@mn d@ndelions Not as exotic as Africa, but from Nebraska, so he sees your garden thru American eyes too ;>)

  9. Dear Shyrlene, thanks so much for including me in your list of featured blogs! I'm not sure how I deserve it, but if I have been a source of encouragement to other gardeners, then I am humbled and honored and very pleased. My blog is less than a year old, and I remember naively thinking when I started that there may be several hundred other garden blogs out there. I had no idea! My world has expanded, and it is a real joy to share with other gardeners like you.

  10. Thank you so much for mentioning my blog! :D I'm so glad that I make you happy with my ramblings. Makes me want to keep on going!

  11. Great post and thanks for joining my Garden Blog Hop (and adding it to your page too!) - your blog is lovely Shyrlene and now I must go check out some other blogs you mentioned...

  12. Well now, your blog is new to me and I chortled at some of your thoughts. I too used to feel like that lemur.

  13. Wow! I am so overwhelmed by the wonderful response you have given me! Garden bloggers are such a wealth of information --- garden design, cutting edge on plants, tried & true favorites. I am so inspired (I have SO much more to do!)

    -- BTW, any suggestions on creating 'visual screens'[other than the "6 foot high privacy fence" my husband keeps recommending]? I have a few key areas I'd like to put some creative / artistic screening for privacy.

  14. Heather - your "Blog Hop" is the most creative tool I have seen online. I had stopped by ONG, saw it and thought it was so cool I just had to add it! THANKS for your ingenuity!!

    (..and BIG thanks for visiting!!..)

  15. Isn't it just amazing what starting a blog can lead to? I had no clue how much I'd learn from gardening to photography. It's fun getting to know other bloggers and watching their gardens grow. The blog hop has been another fun way to find new blogs.
    Thank you so much for mentioning my blog :)

  16. Hi Shyrlene, slick new look your blog has. How kind of you to list me in your post. I just hope you don't upset to many Irish people by saying there from the UK, its kinda like the response you get when you call a Canadian, American. Don't worry though, its a common mistake, I have noticed Stuart over on Blotanical has Ireland classed under the UK blogs as well.

  17. It is wild ride, Shyrlene, and like you, I feel so fortunate to have met so many like minded people here on the blogosphere. It would have never happened otherwise, so I'm grateful to share what I'm doing in my garden, & really love viewing and learning from other's too.
    (My only problem is that my server is dial-up, & lacking hi-speed really keeps me from being able to look at some blogs, which kinda stinks, but hoping that won't be forever. Such is life in the country!)...
    Anyhow, this wonderful post of yours really got me thinking about how we gardeners are all so much alike! We all share a love of the natural world, but we all interpret it in a different ways, which to me is the best part of all.
    Thanks for including my wee blog here amongst such amazing people. I'm really honoured. : )

  18. Sunny, I am so sorry for the "UK" reference to your blog! What an idiot I am! I'm 1/2 Irish and believe me, the Leahys & O'Reillys are going to come back and haunt me for such a blunder! (I made the correction on the post! Fortunately my blog roll had it right from the start!)

    Karen - it has been great to correspond via blogs and Wall Flower Studio's Facebook page (well done, by the way!) This has been the best year for gardening for me --- blogging has everything to do with it! :)


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