And a good time was had by all


Susan/Garden Rant, Suzanne/Vert, Vicki/Playin’ Outside, Gail/Clay and Limestone

Indeed, a few of the bloggers are still in Austin with a half-day or even full day of activities planned for Sunday. I, however, am on my way back to Buffalo.

The County Line is located on the shore of Lake Austin.

Last night, we had our final dinner for the Spring Fling event at the County Line BBQ, where we were served huge platters of charred flesh (I happen to like charred flesh), as well as some rather good coleslaw and potato salad. The brisket was also superior. We celebrated Kathy/ColdClimateGardening’s “significant birthday” and Pam and Melissa handed out a slew of door prizes. I won some pretty tulip-shaped ceramic candlesticks. Prior to that, we happy houred at Pam’s delightful home/garden, which is everything you thought it would be from viewing it on her blog. I think I had the front yard smaller and the back yard bigger in my imaginings of it. Below you can see the front yard (a composite view).


We drank “Mexican martinis,” which are pretty much margaritas with some kind of mix added. It’s totally an Austin thing and I believe Pam will be posting the recipe. She’s holding one below.


Sorry to say, I missed two blogging discussions led by Carol/May Dreams Gardens and Kathy; Susan and I had discussed enough blog business for the day (secret Garden Rant schemes). We did informally chat to a few bloggers in the back yard and I think we were interviewed by someone for the Austin Statesman. I could be wrong about that. Now, here’s an interesting point: one of the guests mentioned that though she liked the topics we Ranters brought up, she found our manifesto off-putting. I think that was as close as any conversation (that I heard) got to critiquing each other’s blogs. To be honest, I suspect most of the bloggers were overwhelmed by meeting so many people whose blogs they had never read. I know I am returning to Buffalo resolved to start reading at least ten blogs I’ve never looked at before. But now I have a post-Mexican martini face to accompany the experience. I look forward to it.

There will be a link to better images from this trip in a day to so.

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Elizabeth Licata

Elizabeth Licata has been a regular writer for  Garden Rant since 2007, after contributing a guest rant about the overuse of American flags in front gardens. She lives and gardens in Buffalo, N.Y., which, far from the frozen wasteland many assume it to be, is a lush paradise of gardens, historic architecture, galleries, museums, theaters, and fun. As editor of Buffalo Spree magazine,  Licata helps keep Western New Yorkers apprised about what is happening in their region. She is also a freelance writer and art curator, who’s been published in Fine Gardening, Horticulture, ArtNews, Art in America, the Village Voice, and many other publications. She does regular radio segments for the local NPR affiliate, WBFO.

Licata is involved with Garden Walk Buffalo, the largest free garden tour in the US and possibly the world, and has written the text for a book about Garden Walk. She has also written and edited several art-related books. Contact Elizabeth: ealicata at


  1. Elizabeth–Maybe Garden Large will be one of the ten new blogs for you.
    My friend, proprietor of Scott Calhoun’s Desert, and I so much wanted to join the Austin festivities but alas…
    Garden Large is posted south of you in Pawling,NY. It presents a wide spectrum of the world of naturalistic landscape design, including my work and business, Horticultural Design, Inc.I got underway with Garden Large last fall and have ever since been reading your ranting with great pleasure and interest.
    On Garden Large, I’ve been posting laments about important public gardens in our area, which is rural yet just north of NYC. Incredibly, the Institute of Ecosystems Studies in Millbrook,NY is in the process of ripping out its Gifford Garden. At the same time, Edith Wharton’s, The Mount, in the Berkshires is in dire financial shape. All this before our country’s new financial desperation has really gotten a grip on charitable and cultural generosity.
    I fear this may be a spring of the dark ages.

  2. It definitely looks like you guys (y’all?) had a good time in Austin! Can’t wait to read more reviews, and see what in the heck a Mexican margarita involves. Sounds delicious. 🙂

  3. It was a pleasure to meet you at the Spring Fling yesterday. I’m glad that I had a chance to visit with you while I drove you and your friends to the different activities yesterday. What a lovely day!

    BTW, here’s the link to the ‘Austin Monthly Mag’ that we talked about in the car:


  4. I love your manifesto! It feels like my gardening ideas – wish I’d written it. Maybe that person is in the “horticultural industry” or still has hopes of a magazine perfect garden.

    Critique can be helpful but I wouldn’t take that one too seriously.

  5. It was wonderful to meet you and Susan this weekend, Elizabeth. You guys were as much fun in person as on your blog(s). Can’t wait to do it again next year!

  6. Let me clarify my comment above. Can’t wait to do it again next year…in another city. The Austinites have had their fun. We’re ready to see another great gardening town. Any takers?

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