When blog buddies come to visit


First, look who's posing in my back yard – Anneliese and Geoff Valdes of Cobrahead fame.  (I hope you saw that power-wall shot of Anneliese with Ed Begley at DC's Green Fest!)  They only had one day to see all of DC and its gardens after the festival closed but managed to sneak in a brief ride up the subway to my place for tea and a tour.

And on the right you see the predictably wise-cracking Goodnicks of Santa Barbara, CA.  (I'm happy to report that Billy has met his match and her name is Lin.)  I managed a few whirlwind hours with the Goodnicks, first in my garden – where Billy dictated instructions for a total redo of my back garden, with a rough massing sketch to follow.  Then I had the pleasure of showing them the National Arboretum, where Billy went nuts over the bonsai and Lin went nuts over, I believe it was, everything.

On Marketing to the Blogosphere
But back to Anneliese and Geoff for a second – is there a gardening biz that's done a better job promoting their product through garden blogs, and at very little cost?  I remember back in 2006 they gave away the Cobrahead tool on the blog Heavy Petal – the first-ever gardenblog giveaway – and we were thrilled.  And of course they blog but even better, they hang out with us at the Garden Blogger Spring Flings.  Smart!


  1. Hi Susan,
    Geoff and I really enjoyed visiting you and your garden last month. Usually when we attend events like the Green Fest, we don’t have much time or opportunity to see things other than the convention center. That’s why I really love going to events like the GWA symposium and the Garden Bloggers Spring Fling. The Garden Bloggers are such genuine, down-to-earth people, and they have always been welcoming to our little company.

    Magazine advertising can be quite expensive, so we are very limited in how much we can afford to do. When garden bloggers and writers are willing to help spread the word about our products, it means so much to us.

  2. Oh, Suzie Q! (or H, or whatever): Fun post and this brings back great memories of your gracious offer to take Lin and me through your garden and to the National Arboretum. It was a very happy and emotional visit to see the masterpieces created by my bonsai teacher, John Naka, being so honored. Thanks for posting this.

    And I hope you’ll send some progress reports on my 3000-mile consultation trip to revision your garden. Let’s see the results once winter passes and you get a few twigs in the ground.


  3. And I really enjoyed and was thrilled to host a Cobrahead give-away on my blog earlier this summer. Imagine my surprise when they called and said that everyone was a winner, giving me that special “O” moment to announce “Everyone gets a Coooooobraheadddddd”! They are the nicest! And everyone really should have a Cobrahead.

  4. Hi Susan,
    I met the CobraHead duo at GWA and was immediately impressed with them.
    So you had some day landscaping support that day.

    Smart! Put that Billy Goodnick’s design chops to work.
    Haven’t met Lin, but I have to believe she is a force to be reckoned with if she’s married to Billy!

    Thanks for sharing your experience.

  5. I had the first-ever garden blog giveaway? Awesome! I didn’t even think of it being something new at the time. 🙂

    Years later, the Cobrahead is still my top can’t-live-without-it garden tool. In fact, it’s often the only thing I take out the garden with me. Yay for the Valdes!

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