Le Jardinet Newsletter

 December 2011
The war of the parsnips.
I was NOT impressed.
Parsnips are a family favorite, either oven roasted, in creamy soups or mashed together with carrots as a side dish. I can buy them locally but they are not plentiful and rarely available in the organic section. So I decided to grow our own from seed. They are really easy - just sprinkle the seed on well tilled, fertile soil, thin out the seedlings and stand back!
Sadly while we were standing back the voles were moving in. I saw a suspicious hole or two in the vegetable garden and thought perhaps we had a rat. Bad enough but the reality was worse. We had an army of voles. (Moles eat meat i.e grubs and voles eat vegetables i.e. MINE). They started with the biggest parsnips and worked their way down the line, leaving me a couple of stunted, misshapen specimens that were barely big enough to toss into a casserole. They also generously left me the green tops albeit prostrate. As I moved them aside there was a 12" deep hole where the parsnips used to be. Not even a husk left.
We have declared WAR.
We're going to rent an excavator (again) to dig a 4' deep trench around the perimeter of the vegetable garden in which to bury 1/4" steel mesh to keep rabbits and voles out. We will extend this above ground 12-18" onto the deer fencing in case they feel like testing their climbing skills. Just one problem. We need to make sure they have all vacated the plot before we enclose it. Hmm. Dynamite?
As we enter the holiday season may I wish you all health, happiness and a good harvest of vole-free parsnips in the New Year. 


Gifts for Gardeners


Big silver ball 

Did you take some nice photographs of your garden this year? What about sharing them and making a unique gift for friends and family? 


Several companies offer an easy way to turn your images into everything from luggage tags to calendars. You can even make your own holiday cards this way. A few years ago I used the above photo of one of my winter designs and it was a big hit, as was a calendar I made with each month showing a different scene from our garden.


Head over to Shutterfly or Snapfish for more ideas. 


Not a photographer? No problem! Follow this link to my 2010 newsletter to get ideas for everyone on your wish list. (Scroll down to the article 'Gifts for Gardeners').


Back to top 


Holiday makeover

EW before EW holiday

Ready to party; refresh tired containers with cut evergreen boughs from the garden and a few silk accents. Champagne optional!



Back to top
Sign up for my Blog!

metal and wood trellis 

Garden Adventures - for thumbs of all colors, is a lighthearted, information packed blog for all gardeners and garden lovers. Laugh while you learn, pick up new ideas and be inspired by others.






The most popular post this month was 


'Evolution, Renovation and Rejuvenation' .


Click on the title to enjoy it again. It's now really easy to add comments too - try it!


Don't miss out! Just head over to my blog and click on SUBSCRIBE BY EMAIL on the right hand side.


Back to top
Follow Le jardinet on Facebook



Take a moment to sit back, enjoy photographs, garden news and links to the latest garden products: all in bite sized chunks. Always fresh - take a look!



P.S. You don't need a Facebook account to view a business Facebook page


Find me on Facebook 


Back to top

Northwest Flower & Garden Show 2012 -TICKETS!


NWFGS 2012 
You know you love it! Buy your early bird tickets online today and pick up some extras as gifts for your friends. 
Click here to purchase.


Back to top

Hot off the Press - or almost


Chicken gardens book coverDue to hit the bookstores any day now is


Free-Range Chicken Gardens: How to Create a Beautiful, Chicken-Friendly Yard 


written by my friend Jessi Bloom. Jessi is an award-winning landscape designer whose work emphasizes ecological systems, sustainability, and self-sufficiency. She's knowledgeable, a gifted speaker and FUN!


Many gardeners fear chickens will peck away at their landscape, and chicken lovers often shy away from gardening for the same reason. But you can keep chickens and have a beautiful garden, too! In this great handbook you will learn everything you need to know, including chicken-keeping basics, simple garden plans to get you started, tips on attractive fencing options, the best plants and plants to avoid, and step-by-step instructions for getting your chicken garden up and running.


Published by Timber Press this promises to be a real winner. Order your copy today.  


Back to top

December Garden Events
  • November 4th - December 24th Annual Festival of Poinsettias. Choose your favorite from 25 Molbak's home-grown varieties, find the perfect gifts, sample yummy treats and get into the holiday spirit. Molbaks.
  • Friday December 2nd 5m After Hours Event at Volunteer Park Conservatory, Seattle. Lighting ceremony, live harp music and dazzling holiday displays. Details.
  • Now though December 31st, 5-10pm. Garden D'Lights at the Bellevue Botanical Gardens. From shrubs to spiders & slugs this garden becomes a magical light display. Details
  • Saturday December 3rd. Holiday Wreath Making Workshop at Molbak's. For the creative or the creatively challenged you'll have fun at this great workshop with expert guidance and instruction. $50 fee. Advance registration required.
  • Friday December 9th, 3-7pm and Saturday 10th, 10am-2pm. Gifts & Greens Galore - a holiday fundraiser at Seattle Arboretum. Wreaths, swags, tools and other garden related items. Details.
  • Saturday December 10th 10am-3pm, Winterfest at Marenakos. Know someone who would like a rock for Christmas? This amazing stone yard can provide everything from a basalt column to a stone bench - and it's all on sale! This is being combined with a top notch art sale to raise funds for Seattle Children's Hospital, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and North West Harvest. Details

Share the News
Love these newsletters? Want to tell your friends about some of the fun events or share some of my design ideas? Either click  or use the social media links at the top of the page to send via Facebook, Twitter and the like. Encourage friends and family to sign up so they don't miss out on special offers, plant news and local garden events!

Want more? My newsletters are now archived on my website so you can look up seasonal tips and photographs from previous editions.

Thank you all for your business, encouragement and friendship in 2011.


Karen Chapman CPH
Le Jardinet
425 765 3574 
In This Issue
Gifts for Gardeners
Follow my Blog
Northwest Flower & Garden Show 2012
Hot off the Press
December Garden Events
Goldcrest cypress 

'Wilma' Goldcrest cypress
Cupressus macrocarpa

Delicate, chartreuse foliage and a delicious lemon scent make this a wonderful addition to an indoor or outdoor container garden. Team it with red and gold for the holidays or purple and silver for a more contemporary look.

Hardy to zone 7.


Professional Affiliations

GWA logo

GGS logo
Book a seminar!

WSNLA logo

 NHS logo

Quick Links

Visit my blog

Find me on Facebook

View my profile on LinkedIn

Back to the top


Imagination goes here
Join Our Mailing List