Middle South Editor

Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association
Barbara Pleasant

Middle South Editor

Barbara Pleasant
Brevard, NC

Spring in our region means azaleas are blooming everywhere.

My climbing Cypress vine reseeds readily in my garden.

Verbenas are great annuals for our region, flowering in the summer heat.

Hellebores are a surprising flower, blooming early and sometimes staying in bloom for up to three months.

Barbara claims to have a primal need for interaction with plants. After living in Alabama all her life, she moved to North Carolina in 2002. In her new mountaintop garden she grows flowers, vegetables, and herbs in close company with a lush zoysia lawn, and spends lots of time digging organic matter into her rocky clay soil.

Barbara has written a dozen books herself, and a dozen more with other people. She particularly liked contributing to Gardening for Dummies and Annuals for Dummies, but she tries not to name favorites. She also writes magazine articles for Carolina Gardeners, and regular columns for Mother Earth News and The Herb Companion.

Barbara has a big black dog and a 16-year-old daughter. She likes to cook and eat good food, and she reads a lot of books, watches very little TV, and enjoys all types of music. A dedicated outdoor explorer, Barbara is an avid hiker and gentle mountain biker. "There's no such thing as a bad time to be in the woods," she says.

"I have yet to find a type of gardening that I don't like," Barbara says. "Every time I try something new, I'm hooked." Some of her favorite projects from recent years include building small "pocket ponds," planting wildflower meadows, and working with various types of stone to build walls, walkways, and other landscape features. She enjoys talking to garden clubs of all persuasions. "Gardeners are so generous with their wisdom," she says. "They constantly teach me exciting things I need to know."

After 25 years of pursuing her green passions in the Middle South, Barbara thinks she's just begun to tap the possibilities open to gardeners in her region. Her best advice? Keep looking for answers, but never stop asking questions about how you can enjoy the natural link between plants and people. "When a new idea grabs you and won't let go, give in and just do it," she says. Barbara practices what she preaches. She recently started studying mushrooms and native herbs -- the latest chapter in her obsession with what she calls "Nature's treasure plants."

Visit Barbara's Web site to learn more about her gardening books and interests: http://www.barbarapleasant.com


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