Archive for August 28th, 2011

t1As I have mention many times here, I have been trying to plant things for years and have not had much success.  My garden of choice has been container gardens with herbs, vegetables and the occasional flower.

My permanent gardens at the New Hampshire home are country gardens – which means I don’t touch them and just sit back and wait to see what comes up every summer.  I have enjoyed this, as the wildflowers and random cultivated plants have turned out to be quite pretty – if unorganized.

Because of my ignorance, I don’t weed too much.  There are some things that I would have pulled as weeds that grew into gorgeous flowers – so I have learned not to be too rash.

I admire anyone with the so-called “green thumb.”  To help me in my garden pursuits I rely on the fun little kits that make growing fun and easy.  Like the fun products offered by Dune Craft.

Dune Craft has some great micro terrariums.  I purchased a couple of them, including:

Tasty Herb Egg: “This delectable collection of herbs is sure to amaze your eyes and tantalize your taste buds. Basil, sage, and several other herbs will sprout in a matter of days and are ready to sprinkle on salad within a month.”

Rocket plant:  “Watch in amazement as the Rocket Plant speeds through its life cycle. This extraordinary plant will grow, flower, and produce seeds of its own within two months of sprouting.”

I placed the micro terrariums on the window sill in the kitchen, and sure enough they sprouted within a couple of days.  I plan to transplant them out to the containers on the back porch for some end of season results. 

Check out the micro terrariums and all of the fun planting items from Dune Craft here.

GE.D4.2One of the things I was looking forward to while house-sitting this week just south of Boston was taking advantage of all the great culture the area has to offer. I was thrilled to learn that the American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) just outside of Harvard Square in Cambridge, MA was mounting a revival of George and Ira Gershwin’s masterpiece Porgy and Bess.

I was even more thrilled to find out the production was set to star the wonderful Audra McDonald and would be running while I was in the area. I immediately purchased a ticket and was looking forward to seeing the show.  So there I was yesterday, while waiting for hurricane/tropical storm Irene to hit the area, I was fortunate to have a great seat for the afternoon matinee of this amazing new production, which will be transferring to Broadway next season.

From A.R.T.’s production notes: “In 1935, Porgy and Bess premiered at the Colonial Theatre in Boston. Now, 76 years later, the A.R.T. brings back Porgy and Bess in a new production. This classic American tale is set in the 1930s in Catfish Row, a neighborhood in Charleston, South Carolina. Bess, beautiful and troubled, turns to Porgy, the crippled beggar, in search of safety after her possessive lover Crown commits murder. As Porgy and Bess’s love grows, their future is threatened by Crown and the conniving Sporting Life.”

The heartbreaking love story of Porgy and Bess includes some of the most enduring music of the Gershwins including “It Ain’t Necessarily So” and “Summertime.”

The American Repertory Theater always does a great job, and with the iconic material by the Gershwins and the incredible talent of three-time Tony award winner Ms. McDonald and the whole cast, this was the perfect way to spend an afternoon.

The show has been – somewhat controversially – re-imagined for modern audiences.  However, the core of the piece is intact and as beautiful as ever.  If you are in the Boston area in the coming weeks and love great musical theater, I highly recommend checking this show out.  Or, wait for what is sure to be a hot ticket when it hits New York and beyond.

Click here to see the A.R.T.’s interactive guide to Porgy and Bess.