A couple of weeks ago I went to Tulsa and Ft. Worth for confabs with such lovely gardeners. I also attended the Garden Bloggers Conference in Atlanta. I’m on the advisory board, but I had few expectations when I boarded the plane. I knew the Digital Sherpa folks from talking on the phone and emails, but we’d never met in person. Still, I liked their vision for blogging, and the speaker lineup they assembled was mighty.
In all this time, I’m embarrassed to say I’ve never heard plantsman, Dan Hinkley, speak. Maybe, because I live in the center of the country, and I’ve missed the few opportunities he’s been here. His self-deprecating, Lutheran, midwestern humor was great, and no one knows more about plants. From him, I also learned to add video and sound to presentations. They give a depth and dimension not already in mine. What a humble guy for all he’s done for our garden world!
Teresa O’Connor from Seasonal Wisdom, along with a great panel of bloggers, including Robin Horton from Urban Gardens, Matt Mattus from Growing with Plants and Rochelle Greayer from Studio g were inspiring.
Why do we need inspiration?
Folks, blogging is hard whether you just started or have done it awhile. I’ve blogged since 2007, and writing a book this summer has taken a toll. My mind is tired. I needed inspiration, and the bloggers were full of ideas. It’s not easy to share your story/passion, week after week. So, to my generous friends and readers, thank you for sharing and reading.
Later, the Digital Sherpas spoke. I’m joking, calling them sherpas, but they did work as guides taking us up a mountain slope. You can see the entire lineup of speakers on the garden bloggers website. I expected a professional conference, and I hoped to learn something, but I gained so much more. I think I’m pretty good at SEO, social media and other professional blogging tools, but things are constantly changing. I came home with a mind swirling with ideas along with a full heart. I met such wonderful bloggers like:
- Mary Louise Hagler of MLCH Gardening who runs this amazing Flower Camp every year. Why didn’t I ever get to go to Flower Camp? That’s what I want to know.
- Carmen Stanek Johnston who is a lifestyle expert for the Southern Living plant collection and has her own blog too.
- Whitney Curtis of the Curtis Casa who also blogs for Better Home and Gardens.
- Ilona Erwin, who’s blogged for much longer than I. We’ve chatted over the virtual fence forever. She’s as lovely in person as on her blog.
- Nancy Wallace, of Wallace Gardens who tweets with me all the time.
No wonder, I’m still smiling. I’m sure I forgot someone. If so, I’m terribly sorry. I’ve only now descended from a mountaintop, and it’s back to work on the book. Please go and check out some of my new and old friends’ links. I love great blogs and great gardens because they’re filled with people like you.