It's easy to see blogging as the worst manifestation of our self-centered, navel-gazing, me-me-me culture. I once had an idea to write a book called "Nobody Cares About Your Dog" after a series of encounters with the sort of dog owners who bring their dogs with them everywhere and expect everyone to be as excited about their pet as they are.
"Nobody Cares About Your Dog" became a running joke among me and my non-dog-owning friends. Soon we wanted to make the book into a series: "Nobody Cares About Your Cat," of course, in fairness, and "Nobody Cares About Your Chickens" (but you do, don't you?) and then came: "Nobody Cares About Your Blog." I suppose "Nobody Cares About Your Tweets" would have to come after that.
But not "Nobody Cares About Your Garden," right? None of this applies to garden blogging, does it? Surely not! Because we don't just blog about ourselves, and our own gardens, but about the vast and verdant world and its many mysteries! And who wouldn't be fascinated by that?
GardenRant has brought many gifts my way; one of them was that it relieved me of the obligation to find something–anything–to say about me and gardening every single day, thus allowing me to avoid too much navel-gazing. A group blog is wonderful for that.
Another great gift: GardenRant has allowed us to lure some unlikely and extraordinary non-bloggers into our world. Allan Armitage, for instance. It's okay with us if Allan doesn't want to start his own blog–why should he? He can come here any time and let off steam.
And now–GASP–now Gardening Gone Wild has unleashed none other than Noel Kingsbury. (Which is not to say that he does not have his own blog here, but by bringing him into their ever-expanding group of contributors, they have really helped introduce him to a much wider US audience. If the photo at the top of his blog makes you swoon, you are my kind of gardener.)
Anyway, Gardening Gone Wild now sports a very impressive list of guest contributors, so we suggest you check it out. They run photo contests and do all kinds of other interesting things as a result of having put so many clever people together in one place.
And there are so many other group blogs we like:
Garden Designers Roundtable is all about design and sports its own impressive list of contributors.
The Garden Professors–how we love the garden professors. We like to imagine them, all tweedy and professorial, discussing plant pathology over sherry in the library. I know–they're in a greenhouse wearing muck boots, but I like to think there's at least a drop of sherry in a flask somewhere.
Fine Gardening has done an excellent job of bringing on board a number of freewheeling, freespirited writers and letting them do their thing on the Fine Gardening blog. (It's actually several blogs, sort of, but they all run together, more or less.)
And–oh, drats, there were one or two other group blogs I wanted to give a nod to, but they've flown right out of my head. Who's got a favorite group blog? And do you think that garden blogs in general–whether group blogs or individual blogs–have largely moved beyond the "me-me-me" type of blogging into something far more broad and outwardly-focused? Discuss.