In 1969, A.C. and Penney Hubbard had no inkling that the garden they would create at their home north of Baltimore would become recognized as one of the finest in Maryland. 

Read More about On Walnut Hill

Welcome to our News from On Walnut Hill

Welcome to the blog by Penney and Kathy. On it we will write about events around the book and in the Hubbard garden. We’ll pass on some advice and share stories of interesting gardens and garden people as well as the good, bad and ugly in the plant world.

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Gardening in the Time of Corona

We are on Walnut Hill, two weeks into self-quarantine. Spring is here, as usual. The seasonal cycle is a comfort; its beauty is a balm. We feel fortunate to have a garden to work in this beautiful season. It’s perfect counterpoint to the angst of the news. […]


Remembering Kurt Bluemel

The nationally renowned plantsman Kurt Bluemel is on our minds. This June marks the fifth anniversary of his death. Kurt helped us transform our Walnut Hill property into what it is today.  He established the series of three courtyards and the two-person wide brick sidewalk that form the central axis around which all of our […]


Watching for Spring

First came the winter solstice. The next day we swore we could see that daylight lasted a minute later. We love the quietude of winter, when we bury ourselves in plant catalogues and plot garden changes, but we’re always anxious for longer days and signs of spring. By January each day gains one and a […]


Remembering Ingrid Ernestl

Remembering Ingrid Ernestl (1965-2018), Great Gardener and Friend. In 1994 a friend called and asked if we would like to have some help in the garden. My husband and I were in our 50s and realized that we […]

Welcome, Joe!

A year ago we planted a stand of Joe Pye weed (Eutrochium dubium ‘Little Joe’) in a sunny spot on the path down to the garden. Fireworks of colorful purple blooms are the result this late summer. We love the late bloom time because of the color it adds to our garden and the pollinators […]


Emerald City

Big leaves. Tall plants. Prodigious blooms. More than nine inches of rain in the past six weeks have created a Rosseau-esque vision on Walnut Hill. Our plants look as if we’ve treated them with major fertilizer, but we have not. Not since June 2014, when Roger Foley documented our early summer gardens for the book, […]


Seeds Sown Early

On a recent trip to Longwood Gardens, my sister and I went with her goddaughter and family. We thought of our early trips to the rose gardens there with our parents and grandmother. Never would we have imagined we’d end up as gardeners ourselves or repeat trips with the next generation. At Longwood I thought […]


Fall Cleanup?

While our goal used to be leaf-free by Christmas, we’ve come to do much less fall cleanup. We now do one leaf gathering before Thanksgiving and let the remaining leaves (there are plenty of latecomers) rest on the beds until spring. This way we have minimal disruption and, as new growth emerges, we remove […]


Hortus Club of New York

Few things invigorate on a 96-degree Baltimore day. Our garden being the first stop on the three-day summer expedition of the prestigious Hortus Club of New York did just that. With membership limited to 30 horticulturalists from the finest nurseries, botanical gardens, arboretums, and universities in New York, the level of experience and knowledge among […]


In Praise of Hoses

In the 1990s, when our hillside was terraced and the gardens were transformed, no automatic irrigation system was installed. We made that decision, because sprinkler systems need frequent monitoring and maintenance. We were concerned that when we travelled, an automatic system might malfunction and flood the new gardens. Plants can drown where puddles form. Too […]

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