Finding a space where life and garden intersect.

Tropical Plants and How To Love Them

What’s New in My Garden at Oldmeadow

Cool News!


Tropical Plants and How to Love Them has won a coveted Gold Media Award from Garden Communicators International (formally Garden Writers Association) for 2022! The book also won two Silver Media Awards in the categories of Writing Style and Publishing Design. Many thanks to the judges and all of the readers who keep sharing this book with temperate gardeners who want to play with tropical plants but don’t know where to start!

What an honor!


Passion & Pain. Perspective & Purpose.

That’s what gardening brings to our lives – a sense of connection to the world around us. 

And that’s what this site is all about.

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My husband, two children and I had been hunting for a rural way of life for years, and the first few weeks at Oldmeadow felt like a vacation. Reality kicked in a few months later when the furniture was moved, boxes were finally unpacked and we started to realize what Jeanne had told us with a grin at the closing table: “Nature wants it back.”


Gardening in the


  • Lobelia siphilitica

The Garden in September

Tramping through a collage of browned and yellowed tulip poplar leaves on my way to the front door today I realized I have absolutely no desire or plans to sweep them up.  Though they are testament to a very dry summer in my part of the Mid-Atlantic, they also symbolize the end of a busy season and a beautifully gentle month ahead; and contribute to the earthy fragrance I'm just [...]

More Conversations in the Garden …

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for Your Next Event


Whether it’s in-person or through the magic of virtual platforms, Marianne has spoken to hundreds of domestic and international audiences. 

Her informative, motivational presentations on a wide range of topics both educate and energize gardeners — leaving them with fresh ideas and a fresh perspective to apply to their home gardens.

Marianne Willburn Booking Inquiry

“Marianne Willburn’s talk was inspirational with practical advice on how to achieve the look you want by honing in on the qualities of what you love about a certain look, and then figuring out how to achieve that vibe while remaining within your budget or smaller space.”

Ruth G. – WNC Gardening Symposium
Flat Rock, NC

Booking Inquiries


“We need more authors who meet gardeners squarely where they garden. Marianne’s honesty and conversational style don’t undermine her expertise – they enhance it.”  

 -Melissa A., St. Louis

Big Dreams, Small Garden

“This playfully and passionately written book is filled with fresh ideas, not only for enhancing your garden and home with tropical plants, but for helping you adapt your own mindset so you can experience much more enjoyment from this exciting corner of the botanical world.”

Viveka Neveln, Garden Editor
Better Homes and Gardens

Autographed Copies
Mungo’s Journal – Diary of a Garden Dog

But really, who is she kidding?
This site is about ME.

Mungo’s Journal

Read the Diary of a Garden Dog

Mungo : Diary of a Garden Dog

Some of Us Can Handle Middle Age

So I was reading over Her shoulder the other night by covertly inserting my small, flexible body onto the back of the couch (Bite it, Nessa), and instead of finding 101 Ways to Be a Better Dog Owner, or What Your Jack Russell Wants, or [...]

  • jack russell terrier and mice

I’m Still Her Favorite

I bet you’ve been wondering. Nessa being a girl, and Her being a girl and the Girl being a girl and what with the way that kind all sticks together – Hell, I was wondering too. Top. Dog. But glad to say, I’m [...]

Nessa the Usurper

She got home this week. And if it hadn’t been for this 826-pound, six foot, hairy Muppet sucking up all the attention, I might have enjoyed three beautiful She-free weeks with Him.  On the bed. In the bed.  On Her pillow now that I think [...]

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