How delightful of the Austin Statesman to publish an article about GBBD and Carol/May Dreams Gardens’ founding of it. I’d like to see the day when my hometown paper would deign to notice garden bloggers. Ha.
Of course it helps that writer Renee Studebaker is a garden blogger herself. GBBD, as many of you know, is a monthly post of what happens to be blooming in your garden. Some bloggers list every single flower. Some, like me, just hit the highlights. It was fun to read this; I had completely forgotten Carol’s original inspiration for GBBD, which was as follows:
Michel says she was inspired to start Bloom Day after she read this quote from North Carolina garden writer Elizabeth Lawrence: “We can have flowers nearly every month of the year.”
Keep in mind that Carol didn’t pick a day in June or July to start this; it started in February, 2007, when the only flowers we Northeastern and Midwestern gardeners have are blooming behind closed doors. There is plenty of information NOT included in the Austin article, so I did my own brief interview with Carol.
How many bloggers—just ball-parking it—are posting on GBBD now? How much has it grown?
For the first bloom day on Feb. 15, 2007, we had 36 bloggers leave comments. Now it averages out to around 100. The peak months for joining in for bloom day appear to be late spring (April-May), when we had close to 125 bloggers join in each of those months this past year.
How long does it take you to visit all the posts, leave comments, and then add links on your blog? Do you visit every single GBBD post?
I do try to visit every single post, and depending on how many there are, it can take a few days. I didn’t manage it past November, but otherwise, if someone leaves a comment, and I can find their blog, I read it, and leave a comment, as long as I don’t have to register. I also see that several other bloggers are visiting a lot of the bloom day posts and leaving comments, too. Other than one moment of temporary insanity last summer, I don’t try to add links to all the bloom day posts to my own blog post, but last month I added a Mr. Linkey widget so people could add their links at the end of my post, and that seems to work well. I’ll do that again this month.
What’s the weirdest or most unexpected bloom you ever saw posted?
I enjoy the creativity people exhibit in their bloom day posts, especially when it’s winter and they really have no blooms.
What are the rewards of GBBD for you?
Having nearly two years of bloom day posts for my own garden, I really do have a much better record of what is blooming when. I’ve read some posts about flowers blooming in other gardens that I’ve decided I should have, too, and I’ve learned a lot about what it’s like to garden in other climates. I also feel rewarded personally that so many others thought bloom day was a good idea and joined in with such interesting posts.
Carol, you put a lot of time into your blog. Are you hoping to build into something that produces revenue, or is it just a fun thing?
My blog is a fun thing to do. I’ve always said that most of us gardeners work in our gardens alone most of the time and don’t know enough real gardeners to share with in real life. … Bloom day is like having dozens of your gardening friends stop by and check out what you have flowering in your garden.
Maybe some of you could link to your first GBBD post in comments? I would love to see the range, and I bet others would too. And if you haven’t been participating on GBBD, maybe this week (GBBD is Thursday) would be a good time to start.