New summer articles by Debra
July 13th, 2013
It was fun to visit the newsstand yesterday and pick up three new magazines with my articles.
When you see them in one place, it might feel like I’ve been super productive. But there is a back-story about each, and I have to be honest with you. Sometimes it takes YEARS for a story to see the light of day.
Case in point: The Southern California garden owned by Cheryl Bode and Robin Colman, featured in the July-August issue of Horticulture, was photographed in 2009. Since then, it has often seemed to Cheryl, Robin and me that the story would never appear in print. When I finally saw the issue, just out on newsstands, I understood why. The photos are incredibly disappointing. I have so many wonderful photos of their garden and the magical feeling one experiences when visiting there was simply not expressed in the Horticulture magazine. Click over to my articles page to read the story and see my photos rather than the ones printed below. Theirs is an inspiring story of two homeowners who yearned to bring an old house back to life, along with its garden. To physically walk through it is truly special.
Then there is the August 2013 issue of Better Homes & Gardens, which features a beautifully-photographed story that I produced in 2010 with photographer Laurie Black. I can’t tell you how hard it was to disappoint the homeowner/designer, Susann Schwiesow, year after year, when I had to tell her the article had been bumped. First it was bumped in 2011. Then last year it was bumped again. Susann has been incredibly gracious about these disappointments. Her garden in Bellingham, Washington, is simply one of the most well-designed and artful private residential landscapes I’ve ever seen. I’m so pleased that BH&G fit the piece into this issue. You can see lots more of Susann’s garden by clicking over to my articles section where I’ve added some of my personal photos.
Finally, check out the August 2013 issue of This Old House, which features a dahlia story I was asked to write only a few months ago. This was my first time working for the publication, and frankly, it was so much harder than I thought it would be. If one has a distinctive writing style and voice, it’s often hard to synch up with a new editor and a new publication’s own style. I am super grateful for the patience of associate editor Ann Stratton. She had a particular vision and we finally got there with the piece. It’s filled with a ton of information in limited space, which is so hard to do. But hopefully, it will inspire those new to growing dahlias to add the gorgeous flowers to their gardens. You can read my original version of the story here.