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About


The Gardener

I'm the original urban (literally and euphemistically) garden blogging male. I started the blog in 2005 when I was in my twenties and carved the DIY/frugal/how-to/recycling path that newer garden bloggers are now following. I tend a small garden on Chicago's West Side and a number of houseplants as best I can. I've been interested in gardening for a long time and this blog is where I chronicle most of my gardening adventures. I don't have formal training in either botany or horticulture. What I've learned about gardening I've picked up along the way through practice, observation, gardening books, TV shows and other gardeners.

From time to time I write for people other than myself and speak on gardening topics around Chicago. Café Magazine, a lifestyle magazine in Chicago, profiled in 2009 in their "green" issue because of my involvement in urban gardening/greening in Chicago. I'm the coordinator and publicist for One Seed Chicago, an urban greening project from NeighborSpace, Chicago's land trust for community gardens. When the Chicago Tribune launched ChicagoNow I was tapped to write Chicago Garden, the blog network's first gardening blog. I've written articles about gardening for publications like the Chicago Tribune, and trade magazines like Lawn & Garden Retailer magazine. In 2012, I joined TreeHugger.com and write about various topics in the "Living" section of site.

Notable quotes about me.

"...the real deal..."
George Ball Jr., CEO W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

"...a locally famous gardener..."
Kara, age 9 garden blogger.

"...the Robert Feder of garden blogging..."
Sydney Barton, social media director Chicago Honey Co-op.

The Pictures

My first camera was a Kodak EasyShare LS443 and somehow I managed to take a decent portrait with it that was published in Digital Camera, Britain's biggest photography magazine. These days I don't have much time to do much B&W street photography because I'm always chasing bugs or flowers for my gardening blogs, but one day I'll pick it back up. The photographs you see here were taken with a Digital Rebel XT and the videos with a Sony CyberShot and a Kodak video camera. Photographs I take may be available for licensing or personal use, but not before asking for permission first. Garden photographs of mine have appeared in publications like In These Times, Northern Gardener magazine, and Sunset.

The Blog

I believe in the free exchange of information and that there isn't anything mysterious about gardening. Anyone can learn to do it and it doesn't require expensive tools or plants. This blog is written for newbie gardeners and I encourage you to leave a comment, ask questions or share your knowledge in the comments of the blog. The MrBrownThumb blog is one of only two garden blogs on Blogger to be given a Blog of Note designation. The blog has been mentioned in print publications like the Chicago Tribune and a range of websites and blogs. Since 2007 over 500k visitors from every continent have visited this blog. I'm currently focusing a lot on saving heirloom seeds and teaching people to save their own seeds and trade them with others.

Social Media

You can find me on YouTube where I post gardening videos. My most viewed videos are Pollination of a Flower (39K+ views) and Natural Pest Control (23K+ views).  Facebook where you can keep up with my blog there and Twitter where I'm probably joking around trying to get people to laugh. There is also a MrBrownThumb page on Google+.




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