En vacances

– Posted in: Recommended Links
11 comments

I was going to give you an update on my wrist problem, but decided a trip to someplace warmer would be more therapeutic for all of us. Armchair traveling par excellence. I just discovered, thanks to Jane Perrone of Horticultural, a number of non-English-speaking garden blogs from sunnier climes. Un jardin habité is a garden blog written in French about a Portuguese garden, where “plants grow 365 days a year and there are 365 days a year of pure pleasure.” There are a few posts translated into English, but I found it very enjoyable to find the familiar in a foreign language–everything from Syndiquez ce site (it’s a Typepad blog and has the same fonts and everything) to le pyracantha orange. While you’re there, why not also check out Les portraits au pastel du XVIIIe for your cultural enlightenment and top it off with a feast for the eyes.

Next stop on our garden getaway is Le jardin de Sophie, which, according to Un jardin habité is “pas loin d’ici.” Sophie likes her flowers, and I made headway on her blog more on the strength of my botanical Latin than my French. From Sophie’s I ventured forth to J’ai descendu dans mon jardin, which had great images but much less decipherable (for me) French. Oh well.

Also via Sophie, I stumbled upon Banlieusardises, which, if its own translation is accurate, means “Suburblicious.” Unfortunately, the English version only gives you selected posts from the French. A pity, because this site looks like a really wacky take on Martha Stewart et. al. Besides the Jardinage section, there is Soins (which literally translates as “cares,” but which we would be more likely to call “Beauty”), Délices, Loisirs (literally “leisures,” but we would say hobbies), and–a topic dear to my heart–Maternité. Mais oui! It turns out Martine the commuter is expecting her first this spring, and we’re just about neighbors! All right, all right, she lives in Quebec, but that’s a heck of a lot closer than Portugal, n’est pas?

Well, that’s all the armchair traveling I had time for, but I’ll let you in on a little secret: I didn’t rely on my three-years-of-high-school and one-year-of-college French for my trip tonight. I had some online help. Try Lycos’ translation service or Alta Vista’s Babelfish. Be forewarned: you are not going to get a perfect translation, especially with things horticultural. For example both translation sites rendered a line from Sophie’s Garden as “Some 200 thoughts wait March to be replanted outside.” Unless you know that “pensées” not only means “thoughts” but also is the word for “pansies”, that translation is not going to be much help to you. But you can get the gist of what is being said, even if it won’t be perfect. Bon voyage!

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

Now, the digging and dividing of perennials, the general autumn cleanup and the planting of spring bulbs are all an act of faith. One carries on before the altar of delayed gratification, until the ground freezes and you can’t do any more other than refill the bird feeder and gaze through the window, waiting for the snow. . . . Meanwhile, it helps to think of yourself as a pear tree or a tulip. You will blossom spectacularly in the spring, but only after the required period of chilling.

~Adrian Higgins in The Washington Post, November 6, 2013

Comments on this entry are closed.

jp January 16, 2005, 3:18 pm

Hi, glad to see you enjoyed the site. I’m sorry I haven’t translated more but we are in the middle of moving both house and garden. Lots of fun. I’m a canadian so I can appreciate your efforts at cold climate gardening -here everything is a lot easier (and warmer).We ate lunch outside today in the sun. (knew you’d appreciate that)
ann & jp

Kathy January 9, 2005, 5:49 pm

I used to read them cover-to-cover as soon as they hit the house. But I decided the only way I would get exercise was to have an infallible carrot–sticks don’t work very well for me as motivation. I used to run out of carrot before I ran out of month, but I think my last pregnancy, complete with one-month stint in hospital, got me permanently behind (in a number of areas).

jenn January 7, 2005, 10:01 pm

I thought you would appreciate a ‘heads-up.’

Your ability to let the magazines sit boggles my compulsive little mind! When my magazines arrive I have trouble waiting until the end of the workday to read them!

Kathy January 7, 2005, 8:41 pm

Jenn, it’s a good thing you said something! They didn’t tell me, so I had NO idea. My issue of Horticulture came today, and after scanning the Table of Contents I put it at the bottom of my “To Read” pile by the exercise bike. (Right now I’m up to Fine Gardening March 2004. I ride the bike pretty faithfully, but will postpone the mags for a good [and conveniently sized] library book.) For those who don’t subscribe, it’s in the most recent issue, which doesn’t have a date, but is labeled “Special Spring Planting Issue,” on p. 27. In my issue it seems to be at the tail end of a section called “More for the Northeast,” so maybe it won’t be in everyone’s copy.

Jenn January 7, 2005, 7:01 pm

Congratulations, Kathy, for getting your blog mentioned in this month’s Horticulture (Special Spring Planting Issue.)

Go you!

Ki January 6, 2005, 9:51 pm

Thanks to you and Jane Perrone for the lovely links. The pictures were wonderful; especially appreciated in the cold and dark winter. I see that I need to ramp up my photo skills.

mike January 6, 2005, 5:11 pm

If you would like to see how I set up a balcony garden up here at 61 north, have a look at my recently established blog.

I learned a lot last year, and am planning some improvements this spring.

bill January 5, 2005, 9:54 pm

Fun stuff.

Kathy January 5, 2005, 3:13 pm

It took me a minute to realize you were referring to this post: http://www.mackhillfarm.com/wordpress/archives/2005/01/01/ . I had not caught up on the latest Note From Zone 4.

jenn January 5, 2005, 2:52 pm

That is a lovely tour! Thanks.

A nice bit of uplift after the sad story of Panic the sheep…