Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

One for you, one for a friend: giveaway!
Andrea Bellamy |

Contest alert! The delightful has partnered with Heavy Petal to offer fabulous prizes to one very lucky reader. What do you win? That’s up to you. Yep, you choose your prize! Here’s how it works:

Head on over to and check out some of their awesome wares. Comment on this post, telling us what you’d love to win for yourself. Then head back to and comment on something you’d love to win for a friend. (Each item for sale at has a comment feature just like a blog – click on “discuss or review this item” to leave your comment. Be sure to note that you’re coming from Heavy Petal.)

Even if you don’t win, has also extended an offer to all Heavy Petal readers: free shipping for purchases over $25! Just enter code HeavyPetal at checkout. (Password is case sensitive.) Who knows? Maybe this will be the year you get your holiday shopping started in October.

Now, if I may… here are some delightful picks, and my personal faves:

The Grobal by Karim Rashid. dubs it the “cutest self-watering plant pot ever,” and I’m forced to agree. Available in two sizes, I’d like mine in “sky” (a lovely aqua-tinged blue) please. This would be great to have on hand as a quick hostess gift.

Better Life Cleaning Products. Yes, the whole line (although unfortunately I have a pressing need for the one called 2am Miracle – a safe, non-toxic nursery cleaner that is “perfect for the three P’s: poop, pee and puke.” Yay, babies!). I never thought cleaning products would make my top … anything list, but hello? 100% plant-based, eco-friendly cleaning products that really work. And the packaging? So fun.

Envirosax reuseable bags. I love the patterns on the Mikado set (shown). I already have one Envirosax bag, and I absolutely love it. It folds up super tiny and I carry it everywhere and use it for everything (it’s great for plant purchases – really!). As such, one is not really enough. More, please.

But enough about me. Here’s what I’d choose for my nearest and dearest.

The J.Fold card case is perfect for my husband. He keeps buying them for friends’ birthdays. Doesn’t that really mean he wants one for himself?

The Fabulous Wine Finer and Corkscrew for my dad, who I think would appreciate it for the fact that in just 30 seconds you can decant a whole bottle of red wine just by pouring it.

The Sun Jar for my mom, who’d love its low-tech romance.

The gorgeous Snow and Graham calendar for my best friend. Love the fine-art quality and sweet letterpress designs.

These beautifully-illustrated language flash cards for Lila. Okay, yes, she’s not even six months old. And I’m not really a flash card type of parent. But they’re so sweet, and they could easily function like a book or sorting game.

Drooling yet? Get clicking. Contest ends November 3, 2008. A winner will be chosen at random.


Please hold: contest winner announced shortly
Andrea Bellamy |

engage landing configuration, originally uploaded by ndrwfgg.

Hello all, and a Happy Thanksgiving to my fellow Canadians.

The tomato recipe challenge has now closed, and I’m busy cooking, baking and canning up the last of my tomatoes. A winner will be announced… shortly. By the end of the week, at least.

In other news, I’ve had a great response to my call for entries in Rock n’ Scroll: the Heavy Petal Garden Tour. Watch for the first garden, a fantastic edible landscape in Portland Oregon, to appear later this week.


Heavy Petal up for 2008 Blotanical Award
Andrea Bellamy |

2008 Blotanical Awards

Aw, shucks! Heavy Petal is up for a 2008 Blotanical award for Best Design. There’s only one day left to vote – and I’d love yours! Vote now.


But what’s wrong with plastic swan garden planters?
Andrea Bellamy |

I recently updated my About page. It wasn’t just that it was time for an update. I’d also been feeling uncomfortable with some of the language I’d used when I first wrote it a million years ago in 2005. Here’s an excerpt from the old About:

Heavy Petal’s mission is to demonstrate that gardening isn’t just for the suburban, the aged, or the hopelessly unfashionable. Rejecting horticultural snobbery along with plastic swan garden planters, Heavy Petal is gardening – from an urban, organic perspective.

It’s pretty obvious that gardening is no longer strictly in the realm of little old ladies with acreage, if it ever was. This is especially the case if you look at gardening the way I’ve come to define it. But in the past few years, gardening has become – heaven help us – hip. We’ve heard it all: it’s the new rock n’ roll, the new knitting, the new whatever.

So I don’t think I need to “demonstrate that gardening isn’t just for the suburban, the aged, or the hopelessly unfashionable.” We know that already. Duh.

And what about my take on, er, less subtle forms of garden decor? While there’s definitely a part of me that takes an evil delight in making snarky comments about other people’s take on style, I’ve mellowed a bit. Maybe it’s the neighbourhood I live in – I’m just happy when people make some sort of effort, even if it’s not to my particular taste. And if someone’s obviously enjoying their garden, who am I to judge?

Take the above photo, for example. That yard totally belongs in the WTF category. And yet. Someone’s having fun there (or perhaps, as the Brits would say, “taking the Mick”). Is that so wrong? Depends on what kind of day it is, but now, at least once in a while, I might say “nope.” Either my sweet little baby is turning me soft, or I’m getting old. Christ.

I mean, you still won’t find plastic swan garden planters here, but for today at least I’ll say more power to you if you love them. As long as you’re gardening.


And we’re back
Andrea Bellamy |

Hello? Anybody out there?

It’s been a record 34 days since my last post. I wish I could say it’s because my summer has been full of jaunts to Europe and glorious days spent picnicking, skinny dipping, and sipping gin and tonics in my garden.

The reality is more like jaunts to the drugstore and days spent at various mom and baby groups, doing endless loads of laundry, and wiping poop off my jeans.

The culprit responsible, of course, is Lila, my now almost four-month old daughter. [This is where I’d insert a cute but completely gratuitous photo of Lila if I could figure out how to successfully upload photos via WordPress. Grrr – what am I doing wrong??] Update: Solved! Thanks everyone who commented with their suggestions, and Ryan for fixing the issue.

Lila, three months old

Lila, three months old

I won’t start talking about how amazing and beautiful and highly advanced she is, because, let’s face it, that’s boring (and debatable) to everyone except maybe her grandparents. What I will say is that the girl fights sleep like it’s the worst thing that could happen to her, leaving me with very little time for things like Heavy Petal. And eating.

But I can’t blame Lila entirely for the lack of posts. I’ve also been busy switching blogging applications. (Goodbye, MovableType, hello WordPress!). I’ve made a few small changes to start. I’ve changed my blogroll (“Heavy Petal loves…”) so that only two links from each of the four categories show up on the homepage (to reduce clutter). Click on “view all” and, well, you can view them all. I haven’t had a chance to add all my favourites, so if your site is missing, it ain’t personal. Please leave a comment or send me an email and I’ll make sure to add you.

I’ve also added a few new link categories: Home and Design, Sustainablity, and Vancouver. Home and Design made sense because I find a lot of inspiration for the garden from these sites, some of which makes it into my posts. I’ve got tonnes more links to add here.

Sustainability was also a no-brainer, because of the organic slant of this blog, as well as my tendency to digress into non-garden-related sustainability topics. More links to come here, too.

Finally, the Vancouver links section will be helpful for Vancouverites, of course, but there’s also some great links of interest to all gardeners (see City Farmer, for example) and those planning to visit our fair city.

With all the time that went into updating Heavy Petal, I’m dedicated to regular posting once again. It feels good to get into the garden – if only virtually.


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