About Gardening in the Shade

Hi there! I’m Vanessa, the Shade Gardener. I live in a tiny little house in Ontario with my 2 grown boys, 2 dogs and a cat, where I do my best to grow plants in a heavily shaded yard and soil like cement. I am passionate about my family, my pets, MCM furniture and cheese. When I’m not in the garden I do a bit of crafting and sewing. Sometimes I build topiary animals from chicken wire for fun.

My very first ‘grown-up’ job was working in a greenhouse that grew ornamental plants. Usually that meant taking cuttings from Tropical Hibiscus to make new plants, but my first day on the job was a bit different. We got to plant prickly pear cactus that day.

The plants were dried out a bit so they would be more likely to root than rot. Which meant that all of their tiny hairy little pickers could fly all over the place. It was August so we were all pretty sweaty, so the pickers had plenty to stick to on us! I finally found and removed the last picker with tweezers about 10 months later. Every time I remember it, I’m still amazed I got up and went back the next morning.

Since then every job I’ve had has been somehow involved with ornamental plants except for a couple of years where it was tomatoes! I can honestly say that there is nothing better in the winter than walking into a warm sunny greenhouse. Although it’s a different story in July or August.

I have been a part-time blogger since 2010, and I can’t imagine life without a blog. Occasionally I will share some of what I’ve learned about blogging over the years – just because I love talking about it and my boys are tired of hearing about it.

Community Guidelines:

All bloggers love it when readers leave a comment, it truly makes our day. So I try to make it as easy as possible for you to leave a comment and tell me what you thought, positive or negative. However I believe gardening and crafts are for everyone, so comments that are inflammatory just for the sake of it, sexist, racist, or homophobic will be removed immediately.

Images and Content:

Unless stated otherwise, all images and content on this site are the sole property of Gardening in the Shade and not for use without express permission. You may use one image and a brief excerpt with a proper link back to my original article.

Meet Fred the Turtle!

Fred is my first topiary creation and family mascot. To see more projects like Fred, just sign up for my weekly newsletter and you’ll never miss a project!

Contact me:

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