Guestblogger: GardenRant


I’ve been enjoying the well-written and funny-as-hell GardenRant blog of late, and Susan Harris, who runs the site jointly with two other women, is guest-posting about why she wanted to start a blog that focuses on ecologically intelligent gardening. Check it out!

Why Gardening Matters 

by Susan Harris of GardenRant
When uppity women come together to create a website, the first thing they do is tell the world who they are. So EcoChicks have their Raison D’Etre and the women of GardenRant have a Manifesto, which declares that We Are:
In love with real, rambling, chaotic, dirty, bug-ridden gardens.
Appalled by chemical warfare in the garden.
Gardening our asses off.
And so on. But first on the list is “Convinced that gardening MATTERS” and we’re on a Rant to tell everyone why. Conveniently, examples abound from the our own rants and raves and comments by our community of opinionated gardeners and friends. Consider a few.

It’s about using our land to grow food. Here and here.
It’s about switching from turfgrass to a diversity of wildlife-attracting, water-absorbing, soul-enriching plants. Here and here.
It’s about changing our cities. Here, here and here.
It’s about what Home Depot and Scotts Miracle-Gro are doing to independent nurseries. Here, and here.
It’s about plant immigration – are you for it or against it? Here, and here.
It’s about guerrilla gardening breaking out everywhere. Here and here.
It’s about getting MUCH smarter about how we use our water. Here, and here.
It’s about quacks on PBS hawking their toxic homemade concoctions. Here.
As GardenRanter Amy Stewart once wrote: This isn’t needlepoint, people!

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About Starre Vartan
Starre Vartan is editor-in-chief of and the author of the Eco-Chick Guide to Life.


  1. It’s also about preserving biodiversity in our gardens, as well as through the ways we garden. Heirloom vegetables, for example, offer qualities not available with the genetic monotony of commercially available varieties.

  2. I got some great hierloom tomatoes this summer- I was so excited! But they all got wilt. I think I will have to learn about them more before I try to grow them in the future.

    I also bought hierloom bulbs last year and they came up beautifully this spring so I ordered more. I will keep trying!

  3. And it’s about raising the next generation with a wonder of gardening!!

  4. It’s also about learning how to be self-sufficient and how to get getting dirty. Dirt is alive. Our yards are alive. Our soil is a much better teacher than our hermetically sealed, anti-bacterial, cleanliness-is-godliness culture. Bravo Garden Rant!

  5. Socialpyramid says:

    When I was growing up in Michigan and Indiana, the family joke was that anytime the phone rang when we had just sat down to dinner at home, it was probably Chem Lawn. They seemed to call at least once a week to hawk their toxic brews. We never gave them our money, thank god!

  6. My husband and I and our 2 yr old and 5 yr old girls enjoyed planting our small garden for the second season here in Minnesota. We were able to harvest a good ammount of tomatoes, carrots, radishes and peppers. We also buy produce and free range chickens from locals farmers in the area. We are fortunate to live in an area alive with real farming, yet close to the MPLS metro area. We hope to increase the size of our garden and continue to support the local farmers as well. My girls are also learning all about natural gardening through my home based business Daisy Blue Naturals. Natural skin care made right here in Minnesota.

  7. It is also about the satisfaction and immediate gratification of plunging ones’ hands in the earth, feeling the rhythm of the seasons and the beauty of a garden.

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