It’s elderflower liqueur season!

June sneaks up on you after a springtime full of pruning, digging and planting. This year, it was even earlier – in May – that I saw the first elderflowers hanging in cloud-like bunches from their trees. Time to gather resources for another year’s batch of elderflower liqueur. Or “lick her” as the iPhone autocorrect […]

Schellingwoude all mocked-up

scale model Schellingwoude

René makes 3D mockups and scale models. I don’t know how he manages to work with such fiddly perfection. Though I can imagine how satisfying it is. At a dinner party in his workshop, a large wooden mock-up hung on the wall behind our heads. It was more like an abstract work of art, and […]

Clearing out the greenhouse

Greenhouse before

Back when I first got my garden, it was a neglected mess. So on a chilly spring day, I was ready to lock myself inside the warmth of the greenhouse while my husband dug up dozens of tree stumps outdoors. I had seedlings already starting, including Baker Creek heirloom moon and stars watermelons, cantaloupe and […]

Garden allotment, Dutch style

I want a volkstuin. That’s Dutch for “people’s garden” – and it is as socialistic as it sounds. They started in Holland back in the 15th century when people created “kool” (as in cole slaw) gardens – so workers could grow staples like cabbage in vacant areas at the edges of cities. The movement kept […]

The Floating Gardens of Yuppopolis

Floating gardens of Yuppopolis

Anything you can do on land, you can do on water. That’s the idea behind the amazing floating gardens created by the late Robert Jasper Grootveld. From poets to singers to politicians – any Dutch person who was even remotely hip in the 60’s knew Grootveld, who was famous for his energetic and magical happenings. […]